Why Chinese viewers are objecting to Netflix adaptation of 3 Body Problem


3 Body Problem, the sci-fi epic show created by Game of Thrones makers David Benioff and DB Weiss, has dropped on Netflix, and it has ruffled some feathers in China. An adaptation of Liu Cixin’s 2008 novel, it’s been accused by many viewers in China of showing the country in a negative light, as per a report by CNN. (Also Read – Netflix’s 3 Body Problem: Release date, trailer, cast, what to expect from the creators of Game of Thrones)

Netflix has adapted 3 Body Problem from a popular Chinese novel

What are Chinese viewers saying?

While Netflix isn’t available in China, viewers there have been watching pirated versions of 3 Body Problem. They’ve objected to how the American adaptation has changed its major setting to London but retained the bit where the chaos that ensues in the world originates from China. They claimed that through this show, the makers are implying that the West is saving the world from an evil caused by China.

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A section of Chinese viewers claimed the makers are “making a whole of tray of dumplings just for a bit of vinegar sauce,” suggesting that there’s an ulterior motive in the show. “Netflix, you don’t understand The Three Body Problem (the book) or Ye Wenjie (the lead Chinese character) at all! You only understand political correctness,” stated a comment on the social media platform Weibo.

About 3 Body Problem

3 Body Problem is described as a thrilling story that redefines sci-fi drama with a complex and layered narrative that spans hundreds and thousands of years. Considered one of the most successful books in the genre, the novel was translated into English in 2012 and became an instant hit. It became the first Asian novel ever to win a Hugo Award for best novel.

In the story, things are set in motion when a young scientist, disillusioned with humanity, decides to contact an alien civilisation in 1960s China. Her decision has reverberations across space and time.

3 Body Problem, which launched on Netflix with its eight-episode first season on Thursday, features an ensemble cast of Sea Shimooka, Benedict Wong, Tsai Chin, John Bradley, Eiza Gonzalez, Liam Cunningham, Jess Hong and Jovan Adepo.

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