Survey Indicates Viewers' Appreciation of Tough Female Dramas

October 11, 2018
Editor: Xie Wen

Some 95.4 percent of film and TV viewers admire the self-reliant and independent females in Chinese dramas, according to a report recently conducted by China Youth Online and online survey site Wenjuan.com.

The report also indicated that 64.5 percent of respondents find the talents shown by women in dramas to be appealing, and 49.3 percent believe that the growth process of lead characters can be inspirational.

Meanwhile, 63.5 percent hold that the popularity of dramas showing tough women reflect the self-reliance and tenacity of young women today, and 58.4 percent believe that such portrayals reflect women's ability and are increasingly recognized in today's society.

For the production of film and TV dramas that show women's development, 65.3 percent of the respondents expect producers to respect history according to the real-life characters, and avoid historical distortion. Some 55.5 percent suggest that the storyline should be logical.

The proportion of male respondents who liked female images as seen in film and TV dramas was higher than that of female respondents by 2 percent. In addition, productions are best accepted by people around 18, accounting for 45.5 percent, followed by people born in the 90s and 80s, accounting for 36.8 percent and 30.8 percent, respectively.

Lu Rong, a professor and doctoral supervisor at the Department of Drama and TV Studies at the Communication University of China, Beijing, said the aesthetic meaning of female images is complex and profound, and has always been one of the eternal themes of literary creation.

Thus dramas, describing the legendary and inspiring lives of women from a female perspective, can usually be well rated in the history of the development of TV dramas.

Moreover, these images echo the emotional needs of contemporary urban women, and have started to reveal more on the individual's delicate emotional levels and struggle experiences. These dramas have subverted the traditional images of women who squandered and sacrificed themselves, enriching the image of females on the screen.

Beside dramas, 55.5 percent of the respondents believe that independent and self-reliant women are more appreciated; 38.2 percent think that this is a manifestation of equality between men and women; and, 21.8 percent consider it an indication that audiences are presenting more positive cultural values.

In this regard, Lu revealed that tough women themed productions cater to the viewing needs of most female groups. The plots can have an emotional or spiritual comforting effect on some young women to a large extent as a kind of compensatory psychology.

She believes that films and TV shows targeting women dominate the industry, which is a manifestation of women's enhanced social status, consumption awareness and consumption power.

Lu also commented that there are also various problems in such dramas, such as monotonous female characters and plots, unrealistic creations and a lack of deep thinking about history and life, which simply beautify women's emotional fantasies, whilst overlooking the real challenges and crises they face in contemporary society.

Lu also suggests that the production of female dramas should focus more on human nature and creation itself, instead of simply romanticizing events. Thus it is necessary for the female characters to face real survival and developmental dilemmas, and the solution of those dilemmas should not rely mainly on male characters or unrealistic factors such as the larger-than-life luck.

Rather, solutions should be found in abilities, visions, courage, temperament and patterns that have been grown during the handling of the crisis. This will enable the audience to think deeply about life and society, and obtain real growth through collision and reflection on the spiritual level.

(Source: Cyol.com/ Translated and edited by Women of China)

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