Beijing, Feb 26: Chinese authorities have once again ordered a partial censorship of scenes from a television series, arguing that the cleavages of the actresses were excessively provocative for viewers. According to the state-controlled media, the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television has decided to partially censor images from the series “The Investiture of the Gods”, as was done in another popular show, “The Empress of China”, in December.
“The Investiture of the Gods”, aired on Shenzen TV, has had to cut several scenes that showed actresses with pronounced cleavages, which were replaced by close-ups of the actresses faces. The story draws its inspiration from the life of Su Dahi who was the favourite concubine of King Zhou, the last monarch of the Shang dynasty which lasted from 1600 BC to 1046 BC.
In China, Su is considered a classic example of a femme fatale, whose beauty was responsible for the fall of an entire dynasty. A similar type of censorship happened with “The Empress of China”, which was widely popular among Chinese viewers and included female characters with plunging necklines, besides the renowned beauty of its protagonist Fan Bingbing.
Viewers expressed their indignation at the censorship on Weibo, the Chinese version of Twitter, and made several jokes on the topic. Chinese television series are not the only ones at the receiving end of the country’s censorship, as US shows have also been dealt with sternly by the Chinese authorities.
In January, China ordered its major video streaming websites to remove US series like “Shameless”, “Empire” and “Agent Carter”, after it pulled the plug on “The Big Bang Theory” and “The Good Wife”, a measure which strengthens the government’s control of the internet. It also warned that it would ban all unregistered airing of shows and review the subtitles of the first season of all foreign television series before allowing them to be shown.
Photo: The Empress of China TV show