Batman in Shanghai

Just came across the impressive re-imagining of Batman, Catwoman, and Bane in based in 1930’s Shanghai. I was more surprised to learn that this was created for the Cartoon Network’s DC Nation series by a local Shanghai animation studio named Wolf Smoke.

This is the kind of stuff that excites me: local artists merging the worlds of anime and comic books into something wonderful and uniquely Chinese. This is the stuff that’ll get the nascent but fast-developing Chinese animation industry noticed by the people who actually matter: the rest of the world.

And hopefully washes away some of the nasty taste that comes from stuff like this!

Weekly Twitter Updates

  • New, faster Facebook app + Great Firewall of China = still damn slow! #
  • Take a chill pill, cat! http://t.co/GUzwjf0k #
  • Birthday cake controller http://t.co/LFRiJnlJ #
  • There are people out there getting paid full-time to write fantasy sports analyses. Think about that #idiocracy #
  • Wish we could spend some of our owners' money on buying some runs against these damn Giants #dodgers #cannotscore #
  • 腾讯太丢中国的脸了!怎么可以那么大胆的偷别人努力做出来的功劳呢?要当国际公司要有国际公司的水准。#腾讯丢脸 http://t.co/qaWmKnBN #
  • "They have steamed rice rolls with shrimp are amazing. They stick…" @ Ming Court, The Langham Xintiandi: http://t.co/T66JkdRv #foursquare #
  • I'm at Ming Court, The Langham Xintiandi (Shanghai) http://t.co/YfXayCc5 #
  • Weekly Twitter Updates http://t.co/a8mP4669 #

Weekly Twitter Updates

Weekly Twitter Updates

Why Do the Chinese Copy So Much?

The IHT Rendezvous blog has a post about a fake Austrian town somewhere in the outskirts of Guangdong province:

Why Do the Chinese Copy So Much? – NYTimes.com.

Perhaps the language is a reason why: you cannot learn Chinese unless you spend years memorizing thousands of characters needed to achieve literacy, unless you copy, single-mindedly, unquestioningly. Some linguists and cultural historians believe so much mental energy and brain space is taken up by rote learning of the language, that little is left over for innovative thinking.

I think this theory has some currency. Creativity needs to be nurtured and cultivated and practiced. It’s a muscle that can’t be neglected. And in a country of 1.4 billion, it’s exponentially harder than elsewhere for truly innovative ideas to bubble up to the top and gain and audience of influencers.

However, I think that’s only part of the story. The more appropriate question should be, “Why do the Chinese copy Europeans so much?” If the Chinese were a people of rote imitators and copiers, why don’t we see fake cities based off of Mumbai, Sao Paolo, or Lagos? As far as I know, Western European cultures have long been considered refined, luxurious, high-class. They represent an ideal for the status-seeking Chinese, who are clearly the target of these ballsy property developers. They copy because they want to be lathered in “European-ness.”

Ultimately, the copiers of this fake Austrian town aren’t copying because they lack creativity. They’re doing it because they ARE creative. Who else would think to send a group of incognito architects to scope out a mountainous Austrian town for the sole purpose of re-creating it thousands of miles away in a foreign land? That’s pretty innovative to me, and shows that some of these brains still do have some room to think outside of the box.

Weekly Twitter Updates

  • Anyone interested in a small freelance writing job covering one of SH's hot new restaurants? DM me for more info. #
  • @Jane_Paris Now it's my turn to wish you happy birthday! Let's celebrate together tomorrow night! #
  • Love my wife and parents! @ Mr & Mrs Bund http://t.co/Raip37rf #
  • Lamb cutlet with truffles. Sick. @ Mr & Mrs Bund http://t.co/8hsDfTUK #
  • Surprise birthday dinner at Mr. and Mrs. Bund. Just finished this steak tartare appetizer. @ Mr & Mrs Bund http://t.co/OH0WdiAD #
  • @Jane_Paris Hey we just booked a room at Haoledi (KTV) next to Xintiandi for 9 pm. We can start there. You in? #
  • At the dentist now. Annoyed they didn't put out candy and cigarettes on the waiting area, how am I supposed to relax? #
  • 真没用的伞。The most useless umbrella ever. http://t.co/qu41pBsl #
  • Been here 9 years and this is mu first meal ever at Shintori! @ Shintori 新都里无二 http://t.co/N0JEieuG #
  • The New Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles TV Series Trailer http://t.co/vDDJsmZ0 #
  • Watching "American Reunion" last week reminded me of how little taste I had back in college and how little I have now. #
  • Wassup, dawg http://t.co/thoKw9KF #