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Users Of Chinese Twitter-Like Service Weibo Search For 'Descendants of the Sun' 74.5 Billion Times

By March 31, 2016 at 12:00 am
People cheer as China's Weibo began trading on the Nasdaq exchange under the ticker symbol WB on April 17, 2014 in New York City. Korean drama "Descendants of the Sun" has been Weibo searched 74.5 billion times. (Photo : Spencer Platt | Getty Images Korea)

Users of the Chinese microblogging service similar to Twitter, Weibo have searched for the Asian sensation "Descendants of the Sun" Korean drama 74.5 billion times, reported Yonhap News. As of Wednesday, the title of the drama, the keyword, was ahead of other keywords with a large margin on the social networking site.

The KBS 2 TV drama series is a romantic tale between a soldier played by Song Joong Ki and a doctor portrayed by Song Hye Kyo in a fictional country. The series airs simultaneously in South Korea and China and has received positive feedback, perhaps, because of its messages of love, sacrifice and humanity.

The prime minister of Thailand and the president of South Korea have recognized the patriotic tone of the series and the former even urged his people to follow the drama while President Park admitted it can draw people from overseas to take interest in Korean culture that could boost the country's tourism industry.

Chinese die-hard fans not only took to Weibo to search for anything "Descendants of the Sun" but call Song Joong Ki a "heartthrob" and a "national husband" figure. They have made the actor's photo the background on their phones and they try to communicate in chat rooms with short sentences so his face will always be visible on the screen, shared an official.

"Descendants of the Sun" is the first Korean series to air at the same time in Korea and China, on KBS 2 TV and Chinese online video platform iQiyi. The megahit has reportedly been watched over 440 million times on the Chinese platform.

Since China has strict guidelines on airing foreign dramas, some scenes were altered or deleted. For example, the fight scene between the male lead and North Korean soldiers in the first episode was not included in the Chinese version.

The South Korean drama is indeed currently sweeping China, and the 74.5 billion Weibo search for "Descendants of the Sun" is just one proof. Due to the drama's soaring popularity among Chinese fans, the public security ministry of China has warned its audiences that viewing the series may lead to criminal behavior and marital trouble, said Asia Times.

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