Overview of China’s 2013 Popular TV Dramas


This is a top 15 of most-watched, most-discussed TV dramas in Mainland China around March 2013 according to the Baidu charts. [Update March 2016: For more recent lists of China’s popular TV dramas, see our Top Popular Dramas of 2015 and Top 10 of Most Popular TV dramas in China of 2016.]

hot tv dramas march


#1 “Good Wife” 贤妻 (Xianqi)


Family drama. 2013. When Han Dayi marries the upper-class Zhao Baxuan, they first seem to lead a happy and careless life. But as Han Dayi does not deliver the son that her aristocrat mother-in-law desires, things start to unravel. Check out my article on this tv drama here.

goodwife poster


#2 “Article 22 of the Marriage Rules” 第二十二条婚规 (Di’ershi’er Tiao Hungui)


Romantic comedy. 2013. Liyue Tong is a “golden shengnu”; a successful, trendy and attractive unmarried lady. After endless blind dates, her mother forces her to marry as her father is diagnosed with a life-threatening illness. Liyue Tong calls in Zhang Duo to play her future husband in order to satisfy her mother. Unavoidably, their feigned love slowly turns into reality.

 article 22 marriage rules


#3 “No Devil Left” 一个鬼子都不留 (Yige Guizi Dou Bu Liu)


War drama. First aired: 2011. This TV show is based on the bestselling novel by Bai Chuan, which is also titled “Yige Guizi Dou Bu Liu”. The story takes place during the Second Sino-Japanese war in a small village in Liulin County. While the Japanese are on a mission to ‘kill all, burn all, loot all’,  two brothers Zhuang Jizhong and Ban Zhuli think of a plot to take vengeance on the Japanese ‘devil’.


#4 “Love Destiny” 爱情自由天意 (Aiqing Ziyou Tianyi)


TV Drama. 2013. Because of a switch at birth, the children from the Tang and Cheng families end up living in a family they are not related to. History gets entangled when the children grow up and their destinies bring them together.


#5* “Tang Dynasty Female Inspector” 大唐女巡按 (Datang Nu Xun’an)


Costume drama/Crime series. First aired 2011. Fictional Tang Dynasty female inspector Xie Yaohua solves mysterious crime cases. 


#6 “Red Cherries” 樱桃红 (Yingtao Hong)


Family drama. First aired 2012. The sequel to the tv soap called “Cherries” (Yingtao).


#7* “Swordsmen” 笑傲江湖 (Xiao’ao Jianghu)


Martial arts. First aired 2012. Adaptation of novel ‘The Smiling, Proud Wanderer’. 


#8 “Countryside Love” 乡村爱情故事 (Xiangcun Aiqing Gushi)


Romantic Comedy. First aired 2010.


#9 “When Puberty Runs Into Menopause” 青春期撞上更年期 (Qing Chunqi Zhuangshuang Geng Nianqi)


Family drama, 2013.

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#10 “Trivial Matters of  an Only Child” 独生子女的婆婆妈妈 (Du Shengzinu de Popo Mama)


Family drama, 2013. 

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#11 “Dad, I am pregnant with your kid” 爸爸,我怀了你的孩子 (Baba, Wo Huai le Ni de Haizi)


2013. Ethical/Family drama.


#12 “The Three Kingdom Era of Sisters-in-Law” 妯娌的三国时代 (Zhouli de Sanguo Shidai)


Family drama. 2012. 

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#13 “I am a Special Force Soldier” 我是特种兵 (Wo shi Tezhongbing)


War drama. First aired 2011.

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#14 “Marrying the Wrong One/Mismarriage” 错嫁 (Cuo Jia)


Costume drama, first aired 2011. 


#15 “Bi You Cai” 毕有财


Family drama (costume) 2013.

whatson familyof5


About the author: Manya Koetse is a Sinologist (MPhil) and the editor of www.whatsonweibo.com, providing social, cultural and historical insights into trending topics on China’s social media. In her articles and academic work she focuses on social media and digital trends in China, Sino-Japanese relations and gender issues. Contact at manya@whatsonweibo.com, or follow on Twitter.

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