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, domestic abuse again hits the headlines, police become influencers, TV sign language interpreter improvises, and hairstyles are ridiculed:
Death of a star
The sudden death of actor Godfrey Gao during a recording session in Ningbo for reality TV show Chase Me put the spotlight on harsh working conditions in the industry. Fans were left reeling by Gao’s death, with some even chasing the car carrying his coffin from a Hangzhou funeral home in the middle of the night.
Police in Weifang, Shandong province, released videos on topics such as fire safety and traffic safety, all filmed in “influencer style.”
Domestic violence debate rages
Last week, online celebrity He Yuhong posted a video of her ex-boyfriend violently dragging her out of an elevator and claimed he had abused her repeatedly over the course of their one-year relationship. The video sparked an outcry from netizens. Later, it was reported that her ex would be detained for 20 days.
Even before the outrage had dissipated, another high profile case of domestic violence caused a stir. Kim Lee, ex-wife of Li Yang (known for founding Crazy English, an unorthodox English teaching company), had divorced Li in 2012 after domestic abuse. But last week, Lee wrote on social media that she had forgiven him and “would love my husband forever.” Her comments caused discussion about whether abuse perpetrators could ever deserve forgiveness.
When TV anchor Zhu Guanquan dropped a reference to the song lyrics of “Wild Wolf Disco” (《野狼Disco》) during the weather forecast, the sign language interpreter quickly improvised dance moves to a line about “drawing rainbows” in a way that some netizens humorously dubbed “hand disco”
A Weibo user managed to offend possibly all Chinese women by posting a description of the most common appearances of females from different parts of the country. Most descriptions weren’t exactly flattering. For example, the user claimed women from Guizhou typically had “fat faces” and a “big nose”
A middle school in Ziyang, Sichuan, released sketches of prohibited hairstyles for students and gave each style a humorous name, winning support from some for the innovative approach to school discipline. Others, though, took offence to the perm hairstyle labeled “woman getting old style”
Cover image of Crazy English founder Li Yang from VCG