Industry NewsOpinion

Why Netflix’s ‘3 Body Problem’ Is Causing a Commotion **UPDATE

Sci-fi series gives rare look at Chinese cultural revolution AKA Cancel Culture 1.0

Hollywood bows down to China early and often.

Remember how the 2012 “Red Dawn” remake changed the story’s enemy from China to North Korea? What about when 2013’s “World War Z” tweaked Max Brooks’ source material to ensure the zombie outbreak didn’t start in the Middle Kingdom?

They even made a movie about the tortured ties between the two nations – “Hollywood Takeover.”

That’s why a new Netflix series is causing a kerfuffle.

“3 Body Problem” follows an astrophysicist named Ye Wenjie (Rosalind Chao) trying to protect the earth from an alien invasion. The battle lines are drawn across time periods, making it one of the more ambitious sci-f tales of late.

3 Body Problem | Official Trailer | Netflix

The show, created by “Game of Thrones” alums David Benioff and D. B. Weiss along with Alexander Woo, is a hit on Netflix. It’s currently the number two show on the platform.

One early sequence in particular has plenty of people talking.

We watch as Ye’s father endures a “struggle session,” one of the insidious parts of China’s Cultural Revolution.  The brutal sequence captures how far the Chinese government went to enforce its groupthink.

Still ashamed of my part in Mao's Cultural Revolution - BBC News

It’s an infuriating chapter in history, one few Americans are taught. Echoes of the dehumanizing practice can be seen in the modern world courtesy of the “woke mind virus.”

Every time an actor serves up a “hostage”-style apology that’s a struggle session of sorts.

Shocking Footage from Inside Real-Life Racial Struggle Session

For that reason alone “3 Body Problem” is having an impact.

Woo noted why the sequence is so impactful to The New York Times, above and beyond the backstories supplied to most TV characters.

…this era is “a part of history that is not written about in fiction very much, let alone filmed.”

That’s no accident.

Hollywood is terrified to shoot any sequence showing China in a negative light.

Disney memory-holed Martin Scorsese’s “Kundun” because it dared to share the story of the Dalai Lama. The same mega-studio cozied up to China to produce the live-action “Mulan” in 2020, going so far as to thank the very government reportedly running concentration camps.

U.S. storytellers could dissect the CCP’s freedom-snuffing culture in countless ways. Artists typically stand down, knowing that doing so might threaten their professional livelihoods.

Just ask Richard Gere.

The actor says he no longer appears in mainstream studio films because of his relentless activism on behalf of Tibet.

There’s another, equally important reason this sequence is leaving a mark.

Hollywood is finally starting to recognize the horrors of Cancel Culture. Consider films like 2022’s “Tar,” which showcased a world-class musician felled by a Cancel Culture-style attack. Or last year’s “Dream Scenario,” the Nicolas Cage dramedy that touched on similar themes.

Dream Scenario | Official Trailer HD | A24

Storytellers should be on the front lines of the Culture War battles, attacking how woke theatrics, like DEI, are making society worse, not better.

Up until recently, artists have been too afraid to fight back, let alone speak out against it. The exceptions are noteworthy, including Ricky Gervais, Bill Maher, Rob Schneider and John Cleese.

Shows like “3 Body Problem” suggest that is changing. It’s produced by two of the most powerful storytellers in Hollywood and is playing on the country’s biggest streaming platform.

Now, more people than ever will learn about China’s cultural revolution. And, chances are, they’ll recognize elements of it in today’s woke world.

UPDATE: “3 Body Problem” is a hit.

More importantly, many people likely watched the show’s “struggle session” sequence.

Netflix’s “3 Body Problem” was right behind “Road House” in its first week on the chart, leading the TV side with 1.6 billion minutes watched. And though the follow-up series from “Game of Thrones” creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss came in well above the No. 2 series, Dick Wolf’s unscripted “Homicide: New York,” the two were closer together in terms of estimated total views, with 3.6 million and 3.3 million respectively, as the latter has a shorter runtime.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back to top button