Long popular on Chinese television, dating shows have started to adopt a more traditionally focused format to widen their appeal by including not just singles looking for love, but their parents as well. The reality-TV show Chinese Dating, which sparked fresh debate after its first episode aired on Shanghai-based Dragon TV, brought this phenomenon to life. In the program, contestants vying to find a partner are screened by the parents and siblings of the potential match before finally getting to meet him or her. The parents are often picky, and their criteria for giving their nods of approval are often diverse, if not downright peculiar. Unfortunately, the pressure brought by this mentality is still very real for a great many young Chinese singles as they hit their mids. Wang Yuanfang, an art designer in her late 20s, has led a happy life as a single woman since she came to work in Beijing in the autumn of
Chinese dating show If You Are The One pulls roughly 50 million viewers each time an episode airs for its h.
A film crew visited my home and recorded an episode for the dating show at Jiangsu Satellite Television in Nanjing. But almost no one but me knows about this bizarre episode, because when it came time for my segment to air, my portion was cut out, censored, or as we say in China, “harmonized. If You Are the One premiered in January and has since become a national phenomenon. The format is copied from the British dating show Take Me Out.
The Chinese version is in your face about money; male contestants will frequently show off their bank statements and luxury cars in an effort to woo interest from a parade of 24 women, who will either pass on them or vie for a date. As ratings went up, so did government scrutiny. In China, popularity and influence go hand in hand, and that makes the government nervous.
About two months ago, I applied to be on the show. My Chinese co-worker thought the novelty of being a foreigner would give me a leg up, and he was right. A week later I got a call from the director. When I arrived at the station, I entered the meeting room and was greeted with familiar signs of China, despite the modern-looking building: A group of men gathered in the corner were chain-smoking, another group playing games on their cell phones.
When I first went on stage, the familiar theme song played and I was greeted by oohs and ahhs from the audience.
Fei Cheng Wu Rao: China’s Hottest Dating Show
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Your email address has not been verified. Please click below to complete your registration. Already have an account? Sign in to Sixth Tone. Please confirm your email address by clicking the link in the email received from us. Please wait until the countdown has finished before clicking the resend button. Just fill in your email and we will help you reset your password. Each night, the contestants — who include a sports car racer, a model, and an English teacher — must text each other anonymously in an attempt to woo the object of their affections.
Since then, the four episodes have sparked plenty of discussion online — especially about whether the show is scripted and what covert techniques the contestants use to express their love. The show has a 7. Popular dating shows let Chinese parents pick partners for their children. Unlike previous matchmaking shows in which contestants have been forced to stand awkwardly on a flashy stage in front of a studio audience, these contestants are set free in a house to interact organically, reflecting a growing interest in reality television among audiences.
China Dating Show 非诚勿扰 Now Looking For S’poreans To Star in The Show
A re you looking for that special someone to spend the rest of your life with? Well, guess what? The show is hosted by Meng Fei, a well-known host in China for his sharp wit and a hilarious sense of humour. Surprisingly, Singaporean guys are pretty welcomed on the show.
It was first broadcast on January 15, , and originally aired twice a week on Saturdays and Sundays until December Starting from January , it air on Saturday nights at pm. Episodes are also widely distributed online. The show is viewed internationally over the internet and satellite television. The show’s popularity and social commentary has drawn attention of academics and foreign media, and after concerns from Chinese regulators in the show’s format was tweaked to de-emphasize factors such as financial wealth.
In December , it was announced that If You Are the One will be returning to the original format in January for the 10th anniversary celebrations. Huang Han and Huang Lei returns for the celebratory episodes, whilst Chen Ming was announced as Jiang Zhenyu’s replacement as guest speaker for the season following the end of the revised format. The idea of the show was brought to Jiangsu Television by veteran television producer Wang Peijie, who worked in collaboration with Columbia University-educated Xing Wenning.
Wang said that the show is a window into Chinese society at large, and that through it, “you can tell what China is thinking about and chasing after. While most of the contestants are in their twenties, there have been instances of male contestants as old as 48 appearing on the show.
I Was Almost a Chinese Dating-Show Star
In case you’ve never heard of the show, the premise is this: 24 women decide whether or not they want to date a bachelor. The jury of single women ask questions of the guy, watch intro videos and press light buttons to decide if he’s date-worthy. The guy can also choose his favorite girl. If he survives the “trial,” then he gets the chance to pick one of the girls to ask out on a date. Think Tinder if it were turned into a Chinese gameshow.
The show’s title, directly translated to “if you’re not serious, then don’t bother me,” reflects the direct and to-the-point attitude that has made the program so popular since it first debuted in early He was relatively unknown when the show first aired but has now become a household name. Be careful not to confuse this show with If You Are The One , which is a film directed by Feng Xiaogang that shares the TV show’s title in Chinese , but is not actually related to the show in any way.
Single men appear one by one on stage before a group of 24 women, each standing behind a podium with a light on it. More or less immediately, the man picks one of them in secret that appeals to him. Then, through conversation with the show’s host and a series of videos including interviews with his friends, family, and coworkers, the man reveals more about himself, his life, and what he’s looking for in a mate.
At any point, if a woman decides she’s not interested in him, she can turn off the light on her podium which triggers a heart-sinking electronic pulse sound to communicate her rejection. Ugly, or otherwise unappealing, guys are often rejected by most or all of the women quite quickly. But if the man is especially dreamy, women can also choose to activate a “blast light” that shows their strong interest in him.
Once the bachelor has finished being introduced, if there are more than two lights on, he must walk up to the podiums and turn lights off for the women he isn’t interested in until only two are left. Then, he gets to ask those two women questions.
What I learned from being on a Chinese TV dating show
The show gained a cult following in Australia, after hitting screens in , pitting one male suitor against 24 women, with the ability to show disinterest by merely turning off a light and expressing their distaste with uncensored honesty. Scroll down for video. The show gained a cult following in Australia, after hitting screens in , pitting one male suitor against 24 women.
Fei Cheng Wu Rao (非诚勿扰) is a television dating game show on Jiangsu Satellite Television, one of China’s most popular TV networks.
At the beginning of last November, a Chinese teacher and colleague at my school sent me a message on WeChat the Chinese near-equivalent of WhatsApp asking if I was looking for a girlfriend in China. There followed an application and an interview for a TV show. Little did I know what I was letting myself in for. It’s six weeks later. I’m surrounded by scaffolding, cables and stage machinery, dimly illuminated by fluorescent lighting. Gradually, it all started to sink in. Not many Westerners can say they’ve been on a Chinese TV show.
The English equivalent of the show, Take Me Out, is generally light-hearted and casual. Successful ‘couples’ are whisked off to Tenerife or Cyprus for a date, which is filmed, and the result is shown on the next week’s episode. But an hour of being grilled by twenty-four female contestants and three presenters was a wake-up call, to say the least.
On the show, it looks as if I could speak fluent Chinese. In reality, this was an effect created in the editing room, and nearly every question I was asked had to be either repeated or translated into English by one of the more experienced foreigners on the show.