Viral Week is our weekly round-up of the weekend’s trending memes, humor, rumor, gossip, and everything else Chinese netizens are chatting about.
This week, a panda celebrates winter, celebrities try to stay out of the limelight, a bronze horse comes home, and police crack down on “magical” water:
Panda’s first snow
Videos of a panda from Sichuan province, seeing snow for the first time at its new home at the Shenyang Zoo, drew smiles for the panda’s pure delight at the novel experience.
The National Space Administration’s new Mars lander has successfully completed its first public test run, putting China on schedule to explore the Red Planet by 2020.
Drink of the immortals
Police cracked down on an Anhui company that sold ordinary bottled water as “magical” water to 70,000 customers, charging 1,000 RMB per bottle, and claiming that it could reverse aging, cure diseases, and bring success on financial investments.
BAZAAR magazine’s Stars’ Charity Night met with embarrassment on Saturday when all the celebrities tried to avoid standing in the center position in the group photo, after singer Angela Zhang was accused of not deserving the position and stealing the spotlight by standing in the spot (probably unintentionally) at 2017’s event.
A bronze horse head, looted over 159 years ago by Anglo-French troops during the Second Opium War, has been returned to the Old Summer Palace. The piece was one of the 12 zodiac animal statues that functioned as taps in the Old Summer Palace’s fountain.
As pork prices surge, a Chongqing flower shop delivered a special birthday bouquet to a woman featuring nine white roses surrounding a fatty slab of pork, eliciting Weibo comments of “How luxurious!” and “The gifts rich people give!”
The “Nonsense Article Generator,” a software created by a Zhihu user that can write over 10,000-word essays on any given topic in minutes, topped GitHub’s list of trending programs for its nonsensical but funny essays which also ridicule formulaic writing in real life.
A monkey in a Jiangsu zoo picked up its zookeeper’s mobile phone and checked out everything she’d saved in her Taobao cart while she was at lunch, having allegedly learned to shop online by watching the zookeeper.
Cover image from VCG