China releases first national security-themed comic series adapted from real-life espionage cases
Published: Jan 07, 2024 08:04 PM
China's first national security-themed comic series Photo: screenshot from the official WeChat account of China's Ministry of National Security

China's first national security-themed comic series Photo: screenshot from the official WeChat account of China's Ministry of National Security

China's Ministry of National Security unveiled its first national security-themed comic series on Sunday, which is adapted from real cases of counter-espionage operations cracked down upon by frontline officers. 

In bright-colored pictures and with an intriguing plot, the first episode tells the story of national security police officers who outsmart overseas spies, which, Chinese observers say, is particularly appealing to younger generations and can better improve public awareness of the importance of national security.

The ministry on its official WeChat account released the first episode, titled "The Secret Special Investigation Division (SPD)." The episode features several excerpts including a scene where a person of Western appearance is being interrogated for suspected violation of the anti-espionage law. The comic series introduce several main characters.

Xiao'an, an experienced scout, has six years of experience in the national security organization. Dandan, a long-haired female police officer, excels in wrestling. Azhe, who wears glasses, is skilled in technical tactics and enjoys bubble tea while working. Laotan is an experienced police officer with undisclosed skills. Tan, the division head within the national security organization, has 25 years of experience.

The first episode concludes on a suspenseful moment as the SPD embarks on a case at the Xishan Mining Area, based on a crucial piece of intelligence.

According to the Ministry of National Security, the comic series is a salute to the Chinese People's Police Day that falls on January 10 annually. 

The comics gained wide attention and positive reviews from the public soon after it was published. 

Li Wei, an expert on national security at the China Institute of Contemporary International Relations, told the Global Times on Sunday that the comic series is visually appealing to teenagers and children in particular and the impressions they form after watching the comic series are likely to be deeper, which can better foster awareness of national security among the young generation. 

In recent years, China has released multiple films and TV series in the national security genre, such as "Storm Eye," "In the Silence," "Enemy," and "Spy Game." All of these efforts aim to continuously improve public awareness of national security and bring this concept into the life of everyday people.

Li explained that as both the international and domestic environments are becoming increasingly challenging for national security, the areas and aspects touching national security are also expanding.

Only when every one of us considers safeguarding national security as our own responsibility and obligation can national security be better protected, Li said.

Since the official WeChat account of the Ministry of National Security launched in August 2023, the ministry has released 98 articles as of Sunday. The authority said in its first article on August 1, 2023, that counter-espionage work requires the mobilization of all parts of society, noting that national security is the foundation of national rejuvenation, while social stability is the prerequisite for national prosperity.