Taiwan academician becomes fan of mainland spy drama, criticizes KMT using character in the drama
Published: Jun 29, 2021 10:48 PM
Promotional material for <em>The Rebel</em> Photo: Courtesy of iQIYI

Promotional material for The Rebel Photo: Courtesy of iQIYI

An academician on the island of Taiwan obsessed with the hit Chinese mainland TV series The Rebel has gone viral after he compared a shifty and cowardly character on the show to the members of present Kuomintang (KMT) party on Monday. 

Chiu Yi, a Taiwan-based expert on the cross-Straits relations and a KMT member, who recently flew to the Chinese mainland to get vaccinated, entered the public spotlight while discussing the show on China's Twitter-like Sina Weibo. He answered some netizens who asked him whether the present-day KMT is the same as the one depicted in the TV series, which takes place in the 1930s.

Chiu noted that the present KMT has some common ground with the KMT of the Republic of China (1921-49) era, including "putting on a false smile, turning against those who are not helpful," but added that he feels it is less capable now than it was then.

He compared many members of the KMT to a character in The Rebel named Wang Shian, saying that he thinks Wang's personality represents the "culture" of the party.

Chiu said he found it annoying that many KMT members refuse to get straight to their point and that they spend a long time to sound out other people's thoughts on an issue before revealing their own stance.

Wang is one of the supporting characters in the series. His desire for profit and avoiding danger often prevails over his principles, so he constantly changes his stance and opinions in order to adapt to the environment.

Chiu recently became a fan of the 43-episode series that aired on China Central Television (CCTV) and video platform iQIYI after he began a three-week quarantine at a hotel in Xiamen, East China's Fujian Province on June 21. 

The Rebel follows a group of young people looking to save the country under the guidance of the Communist Party of China (CPC). The show and its characters proved extremely popular, allowing it to top the viewership charts for 20 consecutive days during its run and earning it an 8.4/10 on Chinese media review platform Douban

Besides Chiu, the drama has gained many young fans. 

"The series is different from other spy shows. It focuses on growing up and fighting for one's beliefs. How does a thought become belief? The show elevates that," Fang Yuan, a 27-year-old fan of the show living in Wuhan, commented on Tuesday.