I’m not cut out for K-dramas but this story, about the insane popularity of a Korean drama in China, is fascinating nonetheless:
“Many viewed the popularity of the Korean drama as a heavy blow to Chinese confidence in their culture.
‘It is more than just a Korean soap opera. It hurts our culture dignity,’one CPPCC member said.
It’s not the first time popular foreign entertainment has led to hand-wringing in China. In 2008, when Dreamworks’ ‘Kung Fu Panda’ became a runaway hit in China, it led to similar soul-searching. Why did it take American producers to find the drama and humor in a fat panda learning kung fu in China, many asked.”
I tend to be overly critical of Hallyu, or the Korean cultural wave, as a serious phenomenon in America or Europe. (Collaborations with Will.i.am or Snoop Dogg might have mattered 20 years ago.) But there’s no doubt that it really means something throughout Asia, and highlights some serious cultural anxieties among Chinese authorities.