Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Show Summary Details

New Global Studies

Ed. by Chanda, Nayan / Iriye, Akira / Mazlish, Bruce / Sassen, Saskia

3 Issues per year

See all formats and pricing

Fei Cheng Wu Rao (非诚勿扰): Staging Global China through International Format Television and Overseas Special Episodes

Katherine Morrow
  • Corresponding author
  • Comparative Literature, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, USA
  • Email:
Published Online: 2015-01-07 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ngs-2014-0038


In 2010, a reality dating show called Fei Cheng Wu Rao (非诚勿扰) sparked discussions across the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and many viewers saw the show as a reflection of changes in the value systems of contemporary national society. The format that inspired the show, however, has international origins. This article considers Fei Cheng Wu Rao alongside the equally popular British version, Take Me Out, to demonstrate how Jiangsu Satellite Television has been able to adjust a global format to comply with PRC censorship and differing television dating show expectations, drawing out the opposing forms of fantasy each version of the format presents. The article then engages with overseas special episodes (海外专场) as a form of international relations that educate participants and viewers alike in how to approach foreign places and cultural difference.

Keywords: reality television; China; format television


  • Bergman, J. 2010. “China’s TV Dating Shows: For Love or Money?” Time, June 30. http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,2000558,00.html

  • Boyle, S. 2010. “Fake Me Out: Girls ‘told which men to choose for a date’ in TV Scam.” The Mirror, March 17. Accessed June 22, 2014. http://www.mirror.co.uk/tv/tv-news/take-me-out-bosses-accused-of-tv-764514

  • Brennan, E. 2012. “A Political Economy of Formatted Pleasures.” In Global Television Formats: Understanding Television across Borders, edited by Tasha Oren and Sharon Shahaf, 72–89. New York: Routledge.

  • Century, A. 2011. “Looking for a Date as China Looks On.” The New York Times, August 5. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/07/arts/television/chinese-tv-dating-shows-day-day-up.html?module=Search&mabReward=relbias%3Ar

  • Chen, Yan 陈岩. 2012. “‘Feichengwurao’ Raoluan Le Shei De Xin—Lun Dianshi Chuanbo De Meili”《非诚勿扰》扰乱了谁的心—论电视传播的魅力 [Whose Heart Did “if You Are the One” Disturb?—Considering the Fascination of Broadcast Television].” Dianying Pinglun 电影评论 5(2):97–8.

  • Couldry, N. 2011. “Making Populations Appear.” In The Politics of Reality Television: Global Perspective, edited by M. M. Kraidy and K. Sender, 194–206. London: Routledge.

  • Dowling, T. 2010. “TV Review: Take Me Out.” The Guardian, December 13. http://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-radio/2010/dec/13/take-me-out-review

  • Fremantle Media. 2012. “ITV Recommissions Two Series of Take Me Out and a New series of Take Me Out: The Gossip for Primetime Saturday Nights.” August 15. http://www.fremantlemedia.com/news/news-detail/12-08-15/ITV_recommissions_Two_Series_of_Take_Me_Out_and_a_New_series_of_Take_Me_Out_The_Gossip_for_Primetime_Saturday_Nights.aspx

  • Fremantle Media. 2014a. “Our History.” Accessed June 20.http://www.fremantlemedia.com/About_Us/history/Our_History.aspx

  • Fremantle Media. 2014b. “Take Me Out.” accessed June 22.http://www.fremantlemedia.com/Production/Our_Brands/Take_Me_Out.aspx

  • Fung, A. Y. H. 2009. “Globalizing Televised Culture: The Case of China.” In Television Studies after TV: Understanding Television in the Post-Broadcast Era, edited by G. Turner and J. Tay. New York: Routledge.

  • Ghostley, D. 2012. Comment on Hulu.com. July 24 (6:17 pm). http://www.hulu.com/take-me-out

  • Gray, J. 2009. “Cinderella Burps: Gender, Performativity, and the Dating Show.” In Reality TV: Remaking Television Culture, 2nd ed., edited by S. Murray and L. Ouellette, 260–77. New York: New York University Press.

  • “Guangdianzongju xifa tongzhi guifan hunlian jiaoyou lei dianshi jiemu” 广电总局下发通知 规范婚恋交友类电视节目 [SARFT Issues a Notification to Regulate Marriage and Dating Television Programs]. 2010. Renmin Wang 人民网 [People’s Daily Online], June 10. http://news.163.com/10/0610/15/68QUVCRA000146BD.html?f=jsearch

  • Keane, M. 2002. “As a Hundred Television Formats Bloom, A Thousand Television Stations Contend.” Journal of Contemporary China 11(30):5–16. [Crossref]

  • Kessel, J. M. and E. Wong. 2011. “A Date with the Censors.” The New York Times web video, 4:26. December 31. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/01/world/asia/censors-pull-reins-as-china-tv-chasing-profit-gets-racy.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

  • Knox, D. 2008. “Taken Out.” TV Tonight, September 1.http://www.tvtonight.com.au/2008/09/taken-out.html

  • Kong, S. 2013. “Are You the One? The Competing Public Voices of China’s Post-1980s Generation.” In Restless China, edited by P. Link, R. P. Madsen, and P. G. Pickowicz, 129–49. Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield.

  • Li, Donghong 李东红. 2010. “Cong ‘Feichengwurao’ Kan Shehui Redian Wenti” 从《非诚勿扰》看社会热点问题 [Looking at Hot Social Issues through if You Are the One].” Jinri Keyuan 今日科苑 24:233–4.

  • Luo, Feng 罗锋 and Zhou Ting 周婷. 2012. “Kan Yu Beikan: Feichengwurao De Shijue Ningshi” “看”与“被看”:《非诚勿扰》的视觉凝视 [Seeing and Being Seen: If You Are the One’s Visual Gaze].” Xiandai Shiting现代视听 5:30–2.

  • Ma, C. 2014. “An Undercover Story: If You Are the One.” Asian Creative Transformations, February 6. Accessed June 22, 2014. http://www.creativetransformations.asia/2014/02/an-undercover-story-if-you-are-the-one/

  • Moran, A. 2009. “When TV Formats Are Translated.” In TV Formats Worldwide: Localizing Global Programs, edited by A. Moran, 39–54. Bristol: Intellect.

  • Oren, T., and S. Shahaf. 2012. “Introduction: Television Formats—A Global Framework for TV Studies.” In Global Television Formats: Understanding Television across Borders, edited by T. Oren and S. Shahaf, 1–20. New York: Routledge.

  • Sun, W. 2002. Leaving China: Media, Migration, and Transnational Imagination. Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield.

  • Waisbord, S. 2004. “McTV: Understanding the Global Popularity of Television Formats.” Television and New Media 5(4):359–83. [Crossref]

  • Wang, Wenxin 王闻昕. 2011. “‘Fei Cheng Wu Rao’ Zhipianren Wang Gang: Zai Tante Zhong Dengshang Dianfeng” 《非诚勿扰》制片人王刚:在忐忑中登上巅峰 [If You Are the One Producer Wang Gang: Reaching the Pinnacle of Success While Uneasy].” Guanggao Daguan 广告大观 3:61–3.

  • Wang, Xi 王兮. 2011. “Dangdai Qingnian Hunlian Jiazhiguan: Jiyu Daxing Jiaoyoulei Jiemu “Feichengwurao” De Neirong Fenxi” 当代青年婚恋价值观—基于大型交友类节目《非诚勿扰》的内容分析 [Modern Young People’s Marriage Values.” Through a Content Analysis of Dating Show if You Are the One] Qingnian Zuojia 青年作家 5:77–9.

  • Wong, E. 2011. “Chinese TV Grows Racy, and Gets a Chaperon.” The New York Times, December 31. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/01/world/asia/censors-pull-reins-as-china-tv-chasing-profit-gets-racy.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

  • “Xinban Fei Cheng Wu Rao ben zhou liangxiang jiang zengshe ‘bao deng’ huanjie” 新版《非诚勿扰》本周亮相 将增设”爆灯”环节 [The New Edition of FCWR Comes Out This Week with an Added ‘Explode the Light’ Round]. 2012. Wangyi Yule 网易娱乐, October 17. http://ent.163.com/12/1017/07/8E0I80OJ00031GVS.html

  • Zhao, Jing 赵婧. 2011. “Hunlian Jiaoyou Jiemu Zhong ‘Nüxing Qizhi’ De Huayu Goujian: Yi Jiangsu Weishi “Feichengwurao” Weili” 婚恋交友节目中“女性气质”的话语构建 –以江苏卫视《非诚勿扰》为例 [The Construction of Femininities in TV Dating Programs: A Case Study of if You Are the One by Jiangsu Satellite TV].” Zhonghua Nüzi Xueyuan Xuebao 中华女子学院学报 6:54–9.

About the article

Published Online: 2015-01-07

Published in Print: 2014-12-01

Citation Information: New Global Studies, ISSN (Online) 1940-0004, ISSN (Print) 2194-6566, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ngs-2014-0038. Export Citation

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in