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Jan 19, 2010

Asia Uncut Season Two

Sunday in China (and across Asia) marked the premiere of Season Two of Asia Uncut!

Guests included Edison Chen, Jamie Lynn Sigler, Mandira Bedi, and musical guest New Pants.

Below is a review of the first show, and the author has some great things to say about Asia Uncut's return to the airwaves. Click HERE for some great moments from Season Two!

Cheeky Edison's back on the scene

By Joy Fang, Asia One

HE HAS been hissed at, ridiculed, and even subjected to a public witch hunt. But you have to admit that the mere mention of Edison Chen still sends people into a tizzy.

Everybody wants to hear from the man who was once in the centre of the biggest sex scandal in Hong Kong. Chen, 29, was involved in a massively- publicised sex scandal in January 2008, when nude photographs of himself taken four years ago engaging in sexual acts with female celebrities - including Gillian Chung, Bobo Chan and Cecilia Cheung - were circulated on the Internet.

As a result, he was forced to issue a public apology and announce his temporary retirement from the Hong Kong entertainment industry.Now, for the first time since he gave an interview with TalkAsia on CNN in June last year, the Hong Kong-based Chinese Canadian entertainer shares his thoughts about the scandal and how he has moved on from it.

In his previous interviews, Chen looked positively downtrodden.

This time, appearing in the second season premiere of Pan-Asian variety chat show, Asia Uncut, with American- born host Jon Niermann, Chen is his spunky old self (proving, perhaps, that a little old scandal can't keep a player down).

Chen, dressed in a spunky checkered jacket paired with dark-purple pants, lounges casually against the orange arm chair. He is a picture of ease as he chats with Niermann candidly about his life and the issue that everyone wants to know about.

SPUNKY OLD SELF: Edison Chen banters with American-born host Jon Niermann in Asia Uncut.

He divulges his confusion about being mired in the mess.

"A lot of people said I was doing things wrong... (but) I can't really tell if I am a villain or the victim. In my world, I'm just Edison Chen," he says.

He then grows reflective: "I just tried to live with myself and I think I have gotten past that. I learnt a lot of things. Everything happens for a reason. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger."

At the end, you won't know whether to be incensed all over again by his statements, or whether to wonder about what celebrity can do to someone.

But you do know that Chen is undeniably back.

The show - taped in Shanghai in front of a live studio audience - will also see guests such as Ed Norton, Jackie Chan and Lee Byung Hun in the following weeks.

Thankfully, it is not as excruciating to watch as the first season.

The cheesy Chinese-styled chairs have been swopped for comfy sofas, and Niermann comes off as a more credible and serious talkshow host.

Previously, he tried a tad bit too hard to dish out gags (most of which played on Asian versus Western stereotypes), which unfortunately fell flat.

But if this episode is anything to go by, this is a triumphant return to the airwaves.

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