The Chinese entertainment industry's incessant production of anti-Japanese TV dramas, under the scrutiny of netizens for a while now, has hit a nerve with China's state-controlled media after two photographs from a war drama showing a nude girl saluting a group of Chinese soldiers leaked online.
As the territorial dispute between China and Japan over islands in the East China sea has intensified over the last three years, so have the number of television dramas [zh] about the Frist and Second Sino-Japanese War, which led to the death of millions of Chinese. Authorities in the State Administration of Radio, Film, and Television have been delighted to approve these patriotic story plots.
But the nudity depicted in the two photographs which leaked on popular Chinese microblogging site Sina Weibo seemed too much for even state-controlled media outlets, including the China Central Television and the People Daily, which criticized [zh] the country's relentless anti-Japanese TV dramas for being too vulgar.
Chinese airwaves have been inundated with anti-Japanese war dramas. According to a local news report, 70 of the 200 primetime dramas on major TV networks in 2012 were about the Sino-Japanese War. Sources from Hengdian Movie and Television City [a drama and film production compound] in Zhejiang province said [zh] that among its 300,000 contracted actors, 60 percent have performed the role of Japanese soldiers.
Annually, there are about 48 drama production crews working on anti-Japanese invasion dramas. An actor playing a Japanese soldier can die up to eight times a day. A drama takes an average of four months to complete, which means more than one billion Japanese soldiers have been ‘killed’ in Hengdian alone.
In response to the leaked photos, Sina Weibo's headline news microblog composed a collection [zh] of screen captures of other vulgar moments from war dramas. The set of images was republished more than 30,000 in less than 24 hours and attracted thousands of comments.
Below is the translated collection:
A group of armed Japanese soldiers running away from a woman with an arrow aimed at them.
All the weapons are too weak — let me tear the Japanese soldier apart. His Arms are so strong to tear the Japanese soldier into two pieces so easily.
Our soldiers have turned into armed secret agents with all-terrain vehicles. How can this be about Sino-Japanese war?
Look at this girl. Even though she is surrounded by Japanese soldiers, with her Tai Chi Chuan, touch of death and flying steps, she kills all the gun-armed Japanese soldiers with bare hands.
This drama has combined the anti-Japanese invasion theme with a love story, are you genuinely fighting against the Japanese?
This is the best one. An anti-Japanese “hero” throws a bomb to the sky and takes down a Japanese fighter plane!!! This is such a bluff!
Jump off the cliff to catch the Japanese soldiers who are driving around and kill them… You would be damn lucky if you did not die, can anyone still expect you to kill Japanese soldiers?
I have heard that this gun is called AK47…
Netizens on Weibo disparaged the films, accusing them of distorting the invasion's actual history. In reaction to the still of the nude girl, “City Grass 2013″ (＠城草 2013) wrote [zh]:
So shocked to hear that there is a nude heroine saluting to a group of Chinese soldiers in the anti-Japanese invasion drama. In exchange for a lot of viewers, there is no baseline?! In recent years, the anti-Japanese invasion dramas have a lot of strange ideas, some even turn prostitutes into anti-Japanese heroines. When the actresses are in the battlefield, they wear make-up and try to be sexually attractive. It has twisted the history. How can we let our kids see this?
User “Forest big wood” (＠林林林林大木) found [zh] the adult-television style hilarious:
The fact that they can develop adult-TV style out of anti-Japanese invasion theme has demonstrated our party's progressive style, it progresses with our times. I clapped my hands all day…
Script writer Bei Cun (@北村) was angry about the plot line [zh]:
Can't they produce something more serious? The Sino-Japanese War is a very solemn historic episode and it is a trauma for Chinese people. Such plots not only pollute the TV screen, but also disgrace our heroes by burying their blood and tears.
User “Observe the Red Cross – 365″ (@看听-红十-365) wondered [zh] who is responsible for the situation:
The TV is flooded with anti-Japanese invasion dramas that distort history. They sell fake patriotism as entertainment to make a profit. This is so disgusting…. but when you have a second thought, who did the wrong deed…
Most Chinese people understand that propaganda authorities have encouraged the production of anti-Japanese drama. That's why user “ThreeWatches” called criticism from state-owned CCTV and People's Daily hypocritical [zh]:
It is true that the anti-Japanese invasion dramas have lost their baseline but when CCTV and People's Daily criticized them as “nonsense and obscurant”, it sounds strange as if rapists are accusing others for harassing women.
“Water Rita” (@水水Rita-天然呆) made fun of the nationalistic conspiracy language and said [zh]:
I suspect the directors are the overseas enemy forces and they intentionally produce such awful anti-Japanese invasion dramas.