Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Soldier, Soldier (TV Series) - Robson Green (1992) - Harbourfront, Hong Kong

Another TV series for the blog and this time one that I missed when it was originally shown back in 1992 - I was grotty student in Leeds at the time spending most of my time listening to music rather than watching the box. Strictly speaking the episodes I am looking at are from series 2, when the so-called King's Fusiliers move to Hong Kong. The first two episodes of the series were still based back in the UK but the remaining 4 episodes were filmed in their entirety in Hong Kong.

One of the first scenes we are shown an army helicopter flying along the harbour front with a few sights to look at including the Shun Tak Centre in Sheung Wan (pic 1), the old vehicular ferry pier (pic 2 & 3) and finally the Bank of China and its surrounding buildings such as the Furama Hotel, the Ritz Carlton (both redeveloped), Hutchison House, Bank of America tower etc.

4 comments:

  1. When you get to the episode with a medieval castle-like pub complete with pretend drawbridge, moat (rather bizarrely, inside the portcullis if memory serves me) and a suit of armour, I can tell you exactly where that was filmed. It was inside the Jouster II pub, located in the Hart Avenue Court Building (1984) on Hart Avenue.

    Some time after I left Hong Kong in the mid-90s, Jouster II was renamed the Opium Den. As of the most recent Google Street View imagery, it's now called the AT Pub. I was a very frequent customer there not long after the episode would've been filmed. Color me surprised when I saw it on TV! :)

    The same people ran a bar right next door in a then-brand new building called the Mega International Commercial Building (1993). That bar was called Hadado, and was supposedly members-only, although myself and a couple of friends sometimes got invited in there for free after Jouster II closed for the night.

    Nobody actually called my haunt the Jouster II, though. We all just called it Jousters, even though there was yet another pub of the same name a few streets away on Chatham Court, but without the "II". That one was, to my understanding, the original -- I only ever went in there once or twice.

    The original Jouster Pub, as of 2004, was operating as the "Down Town Pub" and apparently on the verge of bankruptcy, according to Google. It was in the basement of Kency Tower (1982), where Google Street View now shows the "Me Too Bar & Lounge".

    And in a weird coincidence, although that original castle-themed pub is long gone, there's now a rather less convincingly castle-themed restaurant called Han Guk Gung right next door to where it used to be. I'm not quite sure what the obsession with castles is in that area. Perhaps someone's a Eu Tong Sen fan -- his Hong Kong homes Eucliffe, Sirmio and Euston Castle were all castle-themed. ;-)

    I actually mentioned some of this a couple of years back in one of my very first posts on your blog, by the way:

    http://hongkongandmacaufilmstuff.blogspot.com/2013/07/bloodsport-jean-claude-van-damme-1987_15.html

    Much of it I've learned more recently, though. And since that post, I've also answered my own question about Stella and Albert, who ran and managed the place, respectively, in the early-mid 1990s. Stella is still around and last I read was running a pub in Happy Valley. Albert Wang sadly passed away in early 2013.

    There isn't a lot of info about Jousters II out there on the web. Someone on your earlier post mentioned that it also appeared in a film called 'Full Contact', and having watched that myself, I can confirm it was definitely filmed in Jouster II, as well. (You get to see much more of the place, too, which was a neat experience for me!)

    I've only found a couple of photos:

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/gnd/2262773337/ (this is inside the Jouster II)
    http://www.openrice.com/userphoto/photo/0/3/0000PD35EF0FB5F9992865l.jpg (I recognize the logo, but I'm not sure if this was on the Jouster II or the original Jouster Pub)
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/gnd/84065325/in/photolist-himvSE-bB9eTB-8qRGa (this was for the original, obviously)

    There's also a Facebook group, if any Jousters alumni stumble on this post:

    http://www.facebook.com/groups/5216612885/

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    1. yes, it's on my to do list but I shall finish off the earlier episodes first. I still haven't found out what that pub I went to was called - nor where it was.

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  2. The white blocks of flats where the soldiers live was located at Pilgrims Way, Kowloon Tsai. They were demolished in 2002 and the area has since been redeveloped

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    1. Hi Natalie, I'm not sure I recall that area featuring in this series. This series was largely based around Stanley Fort where the battalion was supposedly located.

      Cheers, Phil

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