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Celebrity surrogacy, hostage-taker in Kunming, trapped miners rescued, and tofu-selling DJ—it’s Viral Week

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, there’s a massive celebrity surrogacy scandal, 11 miners ar e rescued after two weeks underground, a hostage-taker is shot dead by police, and a granny DJs in clubs:

Celebrity surrogacy

Actress Zheng Shuang was accused of abandoning her two 1-year-old children, born in the US through surrogacy (which is illegal in China), and leaving her ex-boyfriend Zhang Heng to take care of them. Zheng is apparently refusing to sign documents that would allow her children to leave the US and come to China with Zhang. Multiple brands have since announced they would terminate their contracts with Zheng.

Hostage rescue 

Armed police shot dead a hostage taker who murdered one person and injured seven others in a knife attack outside of a high school in Kunming, Yunnan province. A reporter won praise for her bravery during the incident when videos circulated showed her getting close to the assailant, talking to him, and keeping him calm until police could intervene.

Miners saved

Rescuers pulled 11 miners out of a gold mine in Shandong province two weeks after they had become trapped following an explosion. One miner died from head injuries suffered in the explosion, while another 10 remain missing.

Out of wedlock

Chinese singers Hua Chenyu and Zhang Bichen admitted to having a 1-year-old daughter together, and announced they would be raising the child without marrying. Zhang explained that she hid her pregnancy from Hua and only told him after she gave birth, but various conspiracy theories have been floated online by intrigued fans.

And the Oscar goes to…

An elementary school boy in Xichang, Sichuan province, captured hearts with his rollercoaster of emotions while receiving a simple class award: first sitting down, crestfallen, when his name isn’t called, then standing up with a broad smile and running to collect his award certificate.

Women need not apply

Hengli Group, one of China’s largest private companies, amended a hiring notice that called for male candidates only for five driver positions in Guizhou province. Changes came after pressure from the provincial chapter of the All-China Women’s Federation, which were alerted to the incident by the organization Workplace Gender Discrimination Watchdog.

Sprint and spray

Netizens were impressed by the stamina and dedication of a security guard in Shanghai who, while wearing full protective gear, was caught on camera sprinting after and spraying disinfectant on a resident who was running late for work.

Chilling recording

Police have started investigating the death of Wang Xiangjun, an adventurer and internationally acclaimed photographer known for his exploration of glaciers. Wang was presumed to have died in an accidental fall into a glacier in Tibet on December 20, but his family recently claimed to have analyzed recordings from the scene that suggest his climbing companions might have had a hand in the incident.

Death education

The Ministry of Education affirmed a proposal to implement “death education” in college curriculums, following an opinion document last April requiring mental health education and counseling services to be standardized in higher education. Such classes currently exist in a handful of universities, including Peking University, Shandong University, and Guangzhou University.

Old skool beats

A 66-year-old woman sells stinky tofu on the streets of Changsha by day and DJs at clubs by night. The woman’s daughter told journalists that her mother loves to hang out in bars and night clubs after her day job and recently taught herself how to DJ.

Cover image from VCG


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