China’s Pop Idols Are Too Soft for the Party

Stars like Kris Wu are huge with fans, but sit uncomfortably with macho ambitions.

Foreign Policy
Nov 13, 2018 · 7 min read
Singer Lay Zhang Yixing performs on the stage during a gala of the 11.11 Global Shopping Festival at Shenzhen Universiade Sports Centre on November 10, 2016. Photo: VCG/VCG via Getty Images

By Lauren Teixeira

This September, a national crisis rocked China’s back-to-school season: The annual First Class for the New Semester gala program, Chinese netizens complained, contained too many “soft boys.”

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