The trendy TV shows of a country are a lens through which you may get an insight into its pop culture, as well as a weathervane of the latest fad among its majority. Below are the six most viral TV shows in China in 2017 so far.
The Rap of China – 中国有嘻哈
The phenomenal reality show about a group of Chinese rappers has caught the imagination of nearly every young Chinese this summer. The online TV show produced by iQiyi introduced the public to underground Chinese rappers like CyanDragon, GAI, PG One (and the Xi’an based underground hip-hop gang Red Flower Society) as well as the Chinese American hip-hop legend MC Jin. Tired of the oceans of reality shows in which celebrities appear to be conscious of their images, the audience was instantly attracted to the unpretentiously cool characters of the rappers. Not only did “Keep it real” become the motto of many because of the show, it also started a trend of rhyming in daily life.
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
The Chinese Poetry Competition – 中国诗词大会
The show produced by the state TV broadcaster CCTV (China Central Television) saw its second season in 2017, and continued to enjoy huge popularity among a broad Chinese audience. It’s a competition held among over 100 Chinese poetry buffs, with the questions covering a vast pool of poems from The Book of Songs, the earliest collection of poems and songs in China, to the poems by Mao Zedong over two millenniums later. While the candidates recite the verses that respond to the questions, the audience’s love for traditional Chinese literature is also rekindled.
Readers – 朗读者
The show is another proof of the revival of the cultural programs in China. Produced by China’s top anchoress Dong Qing from CCTV, the show invites celebrities, mostly giants in the cultural sector, to read a poem, an essay or a book excerpt they selected according to the episode’s theme. While the audience was touched by the beauty of Chinese literature, they were also deeply moved by the stories of why the readers made their choice of excerpts.
Qi Pa Shuo (U Can U Bibi) – 奇葩说
Literally translated as “Weirdos Talk”, the show that gathers a group of articulate young people to debate social issues caused a sensation when it was first aired on iQiyi in 2014. Having its fourth season in 2017, the show still sees an increasing fan base. The show takes the form of a traditional debate competition, with three people each on the positive side and negative side, but the topics it focuses on, such as whether gays should come out to their parents, whether one can get married without being in love, would one be happier without buying a house, are found more relevant to the young generation’s life. While the show is named “Weirdos Talk” (its official English name “U Can U Bibi” is a Chinglish word play), the debaters (both celebrities in the debate world and the newbies) display courage, sensitivity and a sense of humor to dig into the issues in a way unimaginable to many audiences.
The Birth of Actors – 演员的诞生
The new hit TV talent show pairs up young actors and actresses to compete by performing both scenes from famous works and improvised scenes. Their performances were not only judged by big-name actors and actresses like Zhang Ziyi, but also examined in the spotlight by audiences of millions in China. The show responds to the public’s disappointment in many millennium stars’ unacceptable acting skills. What’s more, the audience is in love with mentor Zhang Ziyi, who undisguisedly shows her likes and dislikes based on professional judgement.
Dream House Renovation – 梦想改造家
The show that borrows its idea from the Japanese TV show That’s a Dramatic Change! has been connecting architects with ordinary people who wish for a renovation of their home. Welcoming its fourth season this year, the show continues to enlighten the audience with genius renovation plans, like the Shanghai Tower House renovation by the Wutopia lab, that enables people to see the wonder of architecture.
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