Wave Makers (人選之人— T浪者) is a recently released Taiwanese political drama. It follows the campaign staffers working for the Justice Party as they attempt to win the Taiwan presidential election. The show features a number of Taiwan Netflix series staples such as Gingle Wang, Ying-Hsuan Hsieh, and Jag Huang. Wave Makers could be thought of as a Taiwanese version of The West Wing or House of Cards.
Wave Makers captures what Taiwan’s political elections and campaign events are like. The loud music, political chants, and types of people who show up are all common sights in Taiwan. The show touches on a number of issues such as discrimination, feminism, immigration, affairs, and sexual harassment. The show also touches on the use of social media and disinformation to influence voters.
Wave Makers isn’t boring and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I’m a fan of politics and love learning about my adopted country’s politics. The drama isn’t as crazy as House of Cards, but it is one of the better Taiwanese TV shows. The acting is top-notch when it sticks to Mandarin. This leads to my only complaint about the show. The use of English during the conversation between Gingle Wang and Buffy Chen.
The show struggles when Gingle Wang and Buffy Chen switch to using English. I had a similar issue with Seqalu: Formosa 1867 where the English dialogue was stiff and felt unnatural. The actors felt like they were reading a translation. These shows could really do with a native English speaker or an English acting coach to help the actors feel more natural when speaking English.
Overall Wave Makers is one of the better Taiwanese TV shows and is a great watch if you are interested in seeing how Taiwan’s politics functions. On a side note, you’ll see the cast drinking Kombucha throughout the show. 7-11 and the local grocery stores have started selling Kombucha here and I’m assuming this is a cross-promotion with the show.