Time travel TV Dramas

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still of "the Palace"

Time travel TV dramas have become popular in China over the past years. In most of these soap operas, the protagonists are modern people who travel via special means to the ancient times where they are essential in changing the historical process.

One of the most popular domestic TV dramas in this genre in 2011 is "Palace", in which Luo Qingchuan, a modern girl, travels to the royal court of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) and has a tangled relationship with the princes who are vying for the crown.

Though earning high ratings after its launch, the "Palace" sparks hot debate as people are split on the idea of whether the history can be fabricated for entertainment.

In fears of having a bad influence on children who are unfamiliar with the country’s history, the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT), the country’s film and TV watchdog, has shown disapproval of some frivolous time-travel TV dramas. A SARFT circular rebuked some TV dramas as 'too casual' and 'weirdly plotted'.

However, media critic Deng Haijian said the major problem doesn’t lie in the time-travel format. He noted that Hollywood created a number of successful works in the genre like "The Butterfly Effect". A good TV drama can win the test of time, while the bad one will eventually lose popularity, he said.