‘The Ghost Bride’ captivates with inspiring heroine, exciting mysteries

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Alyssa Osborn, Staff Writer

Li Lan, a daughter of a spice trader, is proposed to marry into a wealthy family, but the marriage is far from normal. 

The young woman is thrust into solving a murder which leads her to the Netherworld in Netflix’s “The Ghost Bride.” 

The Taiwanese drama is an exceptional series based on the novel “The Ghost Bride” by Yangsze Choo. The series delves into the topic of death and is set in a beautiful unique culture while following a young woman thrown into a mystifying quest to save her father. 

The show is a historical period drama set in the 1890s Colonial Malacca, Malaysia. The proposal Li Lan is thrown into is not for her to marry charming childhood friend Tian Bai, but to marry Tian Ching, his deceased brother. 

Although the offer is tempting and would save her family from going into debt, Li Lan rejects the idea of her becoming a “ghost bride.” Becoming a “ghost bride,” in Chinese tradition, is when one or both parties are deceased and form a union. Li Lan becoming a “ghost bride” would obligate her into being haunted by her deceased husband until she meets him in the afterlife. 

Tian Ching wants the marriage to happen and forces Li Lan into solving a murder mystery. Eventually, she finds out how problematic the situation with Tian Ching is and just how willing he is to get what he wants. 

Li Lan is a persistent and adventurous heroine. She’s not like other girls her age who are getting ready to marry, but instead, she dreams of seeing the world. Her caring and strong personality lead her to be a great heroine. 

She even dares to oppose Tian Ching and creates a warm atmosphere with her fighting spirit. She teams up with Er Lang, a 500-year-old deity, to crack Tian Ching’s mischievous scheme. Their relationship starts off rocky, but their teamwork proves to be strong and they eventually develop a friendship. 

Li Lan’s and Er Lang’s relationship together includes a lot of flirting and joking around. Although their relationship resembles relationships in other Asian dramas, Li Lan’s and Er Lang’s relationship is balanced well with the other qualities of the series. Watching them doesn’t take an emotional toll. 

Death is an important theme in “The Ghost Bride” and throughout the series. There are two mysteries in the series that makes the audience anxious to find out alongside the characters what’s going on. The mystery behind Tian Ching’s murder turns into a mystery of finding out how stop to Tian Ching from cheating death. 

“The Ghost Bride” exceeds all expectations. The blend of supernatural, romance and mystery creates an interesting plotline, and because the series is only six episodes long, it’s easy to watch in a day. The sets are beautifully constructed and transport the audience to a whole new period. 

“The Ghost Bride” gives historical insight to Colonial Malaysia, while captivating the audience with its intriguing and unique qualities.

5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)