Chinese viewers’ love for Korean variety shows brings cultures closer

'Running Man' is one of the most famous Korean variety shows in China. Courtesy of SBS

Korean reality shows have long fascinated global audiences with their inventive content.The latest to capture the hearts of Chinese viewers is “My Sibling’s Romance,” which premiered in early March. The innovative dating program introduces a fresh twist to the reality dating show genre by featuring brother-sister pairs navigating the quest for love while observing their sibling’s romantic endeavors.Two months in, the fervor continues unabated on the Chinese internet, where Korean variety shows have garnered a dedicated fan base. Once again, Korean variety show producers have left Chinese fans in awe with their ability to breathe new life into familiar themes. And it is precisely the constant innovation and creativity that captivate Chinese fans.The enduring popularity of Korean variety shows in China has also prompted a deeper inquiry into the cultural exchange between the two countries and the profound impact it holds on fostering mutual understanding and appreciation.

Jane Wan, a strategic manager at a marketing company in Shanghai, has been a fan of Korean reality shows since she was in middle school starting with the popular game show “X-Man,” which aired from 2003 to 2007.These variety shows “each have their own different charm,” she said.Take Wan’s favorite dating shows for example.“’My Sibling’s Romance’ portrays heartwarming sibling bonds, while ‘EXchange’ delves into the intricacies of past relationships and new romances and ‘Love Catcher’ examines the dynamics of love and financial choices,” she said.Over the years, she has watched a wide range of classic and new shows, including “Running Man,” “Strong Heart,” “Ya Shim Man Man,” “Super Junior’s Super TV,” “Home Alone,” “Saturday Night Live Korea” and “Let’s Eat Dinner Together,” among many others.She is also a big fan of Na Young-seok, one of the most famous Korean television producers in China. His work, including “2 Days & 1 Night,” “New Journey to the West,” “Three Meals a Day” and “Youn’s Kitchen,” among others, all enjoy immense 스포츠토토존 popularity among Chinese fans.

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