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Serious TV Series Gaining Popularity among Audiences
    2008-03-04 18:10:50     CRIENGLISH.com

Since the beginning of this year, over one fourth of Chinese television audiences locked their TV channels to a 52-episode television series called Chuang Guandong, literally meaning Path-finding to the Northeast. It's actually based on real Chinese history - from the early 20th century to the 1930s, around 25 million Chinese people migrated from densely populated north China to the northeastern part of China in purpose of seeking better lives. This was the largest migration in China's modern history.

(photo source: sina)

Heated discussion arose from common audience and experts on the plots and the history behind, as well as the spirit conveyed through the series. Our reporter Shuangfeng has the detail.


                                                                                          (photo source: sina)

The television series "Chuang Guandong" tells the story of the hero Zhu Kaishan's family migrating from Shandong province to the Northeast. The story spans from the end of the Qing Dynasty to the outbreak of the Second World War, which was a period full of turbulences and even chaos. To make a living, Zhu's family did farming, mining, opened restaurant and coal mines. Although they experienced various hardships and sufferings, they did successfully make a fortune at strange places.

After the first run of the series on China's Central Television, local TV networks all over China immediately started the second and third run. The official website of the series soon received over 2 million viewings and numerous comments from audiences. A blog was even established on baidu.com, China's leading searching engine.

"The meaning is profound, and the characters are vivid."
"It is suitable for old people to watch. I especially like episodes describing the life in the old times and the characters' experiences of farming and mining."

For audiences who are offsprings of the migrants, the story is more touching in their eyes.

"My father ran a rickshaw in Dalian. My hometown is also Shandong. My father moved to the northeast and suffered a lot."
"I am 81 years old. My grandparents and parents all experienced the period and migrated from Shandong to the northeast. I was very touched by the TV series."

(photo source: sina)

The producer Fu Si thinks that the success of the work can be attributed to the realistic meaning it conveys.

"The belief of achieving goals through hard work held by the Zhu family is the traditional spirit of the Chinese people. 'Chuang' means to pioneer bravely. No matter in which era, people may feel dissatisfied with the current situation and want to change it. Then they would have to struggle, with nature, social circumstances, and with themselves, so as to change their destinies."

The famous actor Li Youbin played the hero Zhu Kaishan in the series.

"Zhu Kaishan is a character full of legends. He bears many outstanding Chinese ethos. You cannot simply say he is a man from Shandong province or any other place, I think he is the representative of the whole Chinese nation."

Chuang Guandong is another case of success of TV drama series such as Shi Bing Tu Ji, or The Ace, screened late last year. Chinese people nowadays tend to be more attached to works with realistic topics, while stories of romance, imperial palace and crimes are not as popular as they used to be.

These successful works have one thing in common: they are all about the experiences of the common people. As most of the audiences are ordinary people, they may easily understand the pains and happiness of the characters, and the struggling process of the characters can give them courage as well as some tips for their real lives.




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