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Time Travel Stories Banned by China
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Posted:  18 Apr 2011 17:31
Thanks to Jerod for sending me this one.

China has been cracking down on dissent of late, as the recent detainment of artist Ai Weiwei suggests.

But the latest guidance on television programming from the State Administration of Radio Film and Television in China borders on the surreal – or, rather, an attack against the surreal.

New guidelines issued on March 31 discourage plot lines that contain elements of "fantasy, time-travel, random compilations of mythical stories, bizarre plots, absurd techniques, even propagating feudal superstitions, fatalism and reincarnation, ambiguous moral lessons, and a lack of positive thinking."

“The government says … TV dramas shouldn’t have characters that travel back in time and rewrite history. They say this goes against Chinese heritage,” reports CNN’s Eunice Yoon. “They also say that myth, superstitions and reincarnation are all questionable.”

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Communists just don't like anything that stirs the imagination. Imagination is bad you see because imagination is a precursor to freedom, and then time travel stirs the concept of bettering oneself or situation which makes people think about how to get ahead as an individual, and they definitely can't have people thinking as individuals with aspirations, dreams, and goals for their lives.
Posted:  18 Apr 2011 19:13
My favourite chinese censorship is that they cut all the songs out of The Sound of Music.
Posted:  18 Apr 2011 19:47
Boy, that would make that movie useless wouldn 't it?
Posted:  19 Apr 2011 08:44
Wow, China doesn't sound like a fun place to live.  All of those are vital components to much fiction.  As a writer who loves fantasy elements, that would make none of my works fit.  Granted, I don't write for TV, but comic censorship often mirrors TV censorship.  The poor Chinese people, being deprived of Grant Morrison in that regard (really, he has violated all those rules in his stories, and most of his stories contain multiple violations).

But speaking from a strictly-TV standpoint, that means no Quantum Leap, Smallville, Supernatural, Stargate SG-1, Doctor Who, Heroes, Charmed, The Simpsons, Family Guy, South Park, Eureka, The X-Files, Lost, That 70s Show, The Twilight Zone, The Outer Limits, and so many others.  After all, I just named off the ones that I could think of at the moment.  Not to mention any time-travel episode of other shows (like Star Trek's "City on the Edge of Forever", but there are realistic shows that qualify, as well).

And this means some great movies can't be shown, like the Sinbad movies, or Clash of the Titans, Indiana Jones, Planet of the Apes, Back to the Future, likey even Groundhog Day.  They definitely wouldn't be able to show Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 3, but I don't thinkmany people would really complain about that.

And what about a show set in the future where they time travel to their past, but still our future?

And Tim, I guess this would make it difficultto market to a Chinese audience if you ever make a Time Rider show.
All the bad things in life only help you appreciate the good even more.
Posted:  19 Apr 2011 14:43
Yeah, maybe one day China will change from their communist positions to a more free society just in time for John Martin the Time-Rider Movie in 3D!
Posted:  13 May 2011 13:08
As far as I can see they don't mind time travel movies as such, just historical dramas which might interfere with the party line. I did find it amusing though, for all their braying about being the One True Political System they started handing out the freedoms pretty quickly once the middle east went up in flames. You could smell the fear from around the world.

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