The Qin Empire (大秦帝国之裂变) is a Chinese television costume drama that aired in 2009.

The Qin Empire


This is the store of how the Qin Empire restored itself from former glory by hiring outsider Shang Yang to implement a series of reforms.

This show has three seasons, we just watched the first, a total of 51 episodes.


Hou Yong (侯勇) as Duke Xiao of Qin
Born in 1967 now 56 years old, his first television appearance was in the year 2000 and then movies in 2002.

Wang Zhi Fei (王志飞) as Shang Yang
Born in 1965 now 58 years old, his first television exposure came in 1993 and in movies from 2011.


This was most likely an ambitious project for the writers, actors and film crew especially to convey the scale of Qin and its army.

The story seemed solid although some left feedback that this was not quite like how things really went down.

The acting was good as it was bad. I would say 75% of the acting was good. The other 25% was really bad due to scenes of over acting which really spoiled much of the drama.

There was one actor who had an extreme character shift a quarter of the way into the series then within one episode grew up a couple of years and replaced by another actor who looked nothing like the first one. Totally bizarre.

Did grown men really kneel down crying uncontrollably when their leaders were sad or unhappy about something? Maybe they did back then but it was pretty annoying and too false.

When a large crowd in the army were starting to sing they were replaced by stock singers dubbed over them. A song that they repeated throughout the series. It was most likely impossible to organise such a large crowd singing on an outside broadcast so it may have been easier just to replace them with stock audio.

There was something wrong with the audio on the Netflix version we saw, the voices were just a little out of sync. Maybe they were dubbed but still speaking in Mandarin.

The show was definitely slow in spots with the conversation being irrelevant and I kept dropping off during those parts.


Well, despite my negative comments quite a few people did enjoy the series and overall got reviewed positively elsewhere. However, I will only give it 2/5.

Where to Watch

All three seasons can be seen on Netflix Canada but not sure where else it will be available.