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Film and TV

New Chinese version of Queer Eye is completely straight – to the surprise of no one

Lily Wakefield January 9, 2020
Queer Eye China

Five experts host the Chinese reality show You Are So Beautiful, but none of them are openly queer. (YouTube)

A new Chinese reality show is suspiciously similar to Queer Eye… except every one of its Fab Five are straight.

You Are So Beautiful was released on the state-owned streaming service Mango TV in December 2019, and the format is almost exactly identical.

The show’s five hosts each have a speciality, and they put them to use giving life makeovers to one person per episode. Sound familiar?

Wu Xin is in charge of hair and make up, Han Huo Huo handles fashion, Kun Ling overhauls their lifestyles, Fan Tian Tian teaches them to make great food and Huang Ji redecorates their homes.

But the glaring difference is that none of the hosts are openly queer, and in the three episodes that have streamed so far the show has made no effort to mention or promote acceptance of LGBT+ people.

Although Queer Eye has never officially been aired in China, some people in the country have found ways to access episodes online.

According to Inkstone, Chinese Queer Eye fans have taken to Weibo, China’s version of Twitter, to accuse You Are So Beautiful of plagiarising the American show with one writing: “One question: Have you paid for the copyright?”

On review site Douban, one person wrote: “Queer Eye is telling us how to live better. But You are so Beautiful is reinforcing our existing biases and telling everyone to live a life that can be accepted by the public.”

Another said: “It is not for the experts to say how you should change yourself when you come on, but to listen to why the guests choose this life first.

Queer Eye encourages guests to be brave and to improve their self-esteem, self-love, and self-confidence. In this reality show, I can only see the stereotypes of women that are continuously strengthening in society.

Censorship of LGBT+ issues has long been a problem in China, and a significant number of films LGBT+ themes – such as Brokeback MountainCall Me By Your Name and Deadpool – are banned entirely.

But last month it was revealed that the historic same-sex kiss in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker has not been censored in China, despite the country’s previous record of suppressing LGBT+ content.

 

More: censorship, China, mango tv, queer eye, weibo, you are so beautiful

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