Hongkong actress Adia Chan (she used to go by Nadia and also, um, Nnadia), 50, and her husband Chinese actor Zhang Duo, 42, are the stars of the second season of reality show My Dearest Ladies, which follows the lives of celeb couples and their mums and mothers-in-law.
The first season featured Jimmy Lin and his wife and mum as well as Annie Yi and her husband and mother-in-law.
While the show is known for being heartwarming and funny, the latest episode, which revealed (unintentionally, we must add) the icy relationship between Adia and her mum-in-law, sent chills down the spine for many.
It started innocently with a phone call from Zhang Duo’s mum, who ignored a visibly nervous Adia when the actress greeted the older lady, choosing instead to engage her son in conversation.
Then Mama Zhang said she was reaching their house soon, so Adia chimed in to remind her “to let them know when she’s downstairs”, only to be ignored by the older lady again.
When Mama Zhang finally showed up at the couple’s house, she immediately gave Zhang Duo a warm hug and continued to give Adia the cold shoulder.
During Mama Zhang’s talking head segment, Papa Zhang could be heard making fun of his wife’s way of talking, which he said made her sound like she’s “reciting poetry” and that it gave him “goose bumps”. He also begged her to “speak normally”.
An embarrassed Mama Zhang went on to praise Zhang Duo, calling him “very talented”, “hardworking” and “assiduous”, amongst many other superlatives.
Papa Zhang then asked why she wasn’t praising Adia too, and that he’s never heard her say anything nice about their daughter-in-law. Upon hearing this, Mama Zhang simply shook her head, sighed and brushed him off.
After the episode aired, many netizens couldn’t help but feel sorry for Adia, saying that her achievements in showbiz are in no way inferior to Zhang Duo’s and that it’s clear that she’s trying her best to please her mother-in-law.
They also said that they didn’t understand why Mama Zhang is so mean to Adia ’cos, in a way, the actress actually “married down”.
One report claimed that it’s because the couple still have no kids after 10 years of marriage. There were rumours that Adia was left infertile after battling ovarian cancer a decade ago and her inability to have kids greatly displeased her mother-in-law.
However, at a press conference two years ago, Adia denied rumours that she’s infertile, adding that she only gave up having kids after trying IVF many times and failing.