Photos: Tammi Tan
Video: Foong Mien Shi
Joanne Peh, Keagan Kang and Oon Shu An may play ferocious defence attorneys in Channel 5’s Code of Law, but in real life, the actors admit that they could never take on the profession.
Understandably, it’s the copious amounts of required reading and studying that puts them off. “I learn things best through experience and by talking to people – those books they have to read have so many words!” said Shu An, the newest addition to the series’ third season, which airs early next year. “I think I’ll be okay with navigating the twists, turns and logic of conversation, but getting all the facts of law would be very difficult.”
Joanne, who has been with the show since it first kicked off in 2012, revealed that she was toying with thoughts of going back to school to study law, but after getting a taste of it on set, she changed her mind.
“The discipline is tough, and to go through another four years of education… I don’t think I’m ready for that, so I’ll just leave it to the screens,” chuckled the newlywed.
Her fellow show regular Keagan, whose response “Never!” to whether he could be a lawyer came without hesitation, observed that in addition to needing “a high amount of intelligence”, being a lawyer is quite taxing. “Being an actor is hard enough!” he laughed.
If the cast could create a new law, it would be…
While they may not have anything to do with law and order in reality, the trio had some pretty interesting ideas when we got them to issue new decrees of their own (just for fun, of course).
Keagan’s policy made us wish he really were in power. “We would have three-day weekends: from Monday to Thursday we work, then Friday is our happy day, Saturday is like the meat between the sandwich, and Sunday’s when you relax before you start over again on Monday.”
For Joanne, her observation of strict courtroom dress codes has led her to imagine a world that does away with the rigid black and white. “When we sit together, we look like the Penguins of Madagascar,” she quipped. “What if everyone showed up in a onesie instead? (laughs)”
Shu An has a personal reason tied to her ruling. The former FLY Entertainment artiste (she left in late October after her contract expired and is currently not under any management) brought up the recent Sim Lim Square saga, where a store came under fire for overcharging its customers, and revealed that the same thing almost happened to her at a different place.
“[The salesman] tried to talk me into buying something that was marked up a lot higher than the price I saw at another shop,” she said. “So I bought it for a cheaper price elsewhere and went back to apologise to him because I felt bad, and he actually said, ‘Oh, it’s okay lah, I was just trying my luck.’ I was like, ‘What do you mean!?’
I get very angry when people get away with conning others, so I would create a law where people like this will not be able to get away with anything,” she fumed.
Her experience has a happy ending, though: Shu An and the would-be conman are now friends and say hi whenever she walks by the store.
Sparks between Keagan’s and Shu An’s characters in season three?
In the show’s third season, things pick up from where Jacob Fernandez, Keagan’s character, lost his girlfriend to a yet-unresolved murder. “[Because of this], he starts off with a lot of emotional baggage to overcome, so he has a pretty rough opening to the season,” said Keagan.
However, he seems to have found comfort in Stephanie Szeto, a “fierce, tough chick” (as Shu An, who plays her, described) and the latest addition to his law firm.
“Jacob and Stephanie meet in a rather interesting manner and get familiar with each other very fast, and then after that they find out that they’re working together,” Shu An divulged cryptically.
But unfortunately for those who may be wishing for a love line to swoon over throughout the series, you might be disappointed. “There’s something [between them], but it’s a question of whether it goes the way we want it to or not,” she continued.
Since we were on the topic of romance (sort of) and we had just spoken to Joanne about wedding banquets (a little bit), we had to ask Keagan and Shu An, who are attached to people outside the industry, if they would ever spring surprise “I do’s” on us like their co-star famously did in September.
We guess we might have to brace ourselves for Keagan, who is dating hairstylist Angeline Tan, because he “actually might”. “I’m a private person, so I wouldn’t overly publicise my wedding because getting married is a public affair,” he explained. However… “Whether or not I do get married is another thing!”
As for Shu An, who has been with photographer Joel Lim for about three years, her widely-known desire to get hitched – at least among her friends – would hamper any shock from out-of-the-blue nuptials. “I don’t know where [my relationship] is going to go, but I’m more excited about the wedding! I want an excuse to have a huge party. I don’t think it’s happening any time soon, but I will let you know. (laughs)”
Catch Code of Law season 3 every Monday at 9.30pm on Channel 5, starting January 5.