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Journey To The West: Netizens Call Jelly Lin’s Cleavage “Highlight of the Movie”

Although the much-anticipated Chinese movie ‘Journey To The West: The Demons Strike Back’ has broken box office records on its opening day, many moviegoers are not too impressed. They call the cleavage of actress Lin Yun’s the “best part of the movie.”

Manya Koetse



Although the much-anticipated Chinese movie Journey To The West: The Demons Strike Back has broken box office records on its opening day, many moviegoers are not too impressed. They call the cleavage of actress Jelly Lin’s the “best part of the movie.” The cleavage even became the no. 1 searched topic on Chinese social media today.

The Chinese fantasy film Journey To The West: The Demons Strike Back (西游伏妖篇) broke box office records on its opening day last weekend.

Journey To The West: The Demons Strike Back, themed around one of the four great classics of Chinese literature, is the sequel to the 2013 hit Journey To The West: Conquering the Demons (西遊·降魔篇). The sequel’s success shows that hit film producer Stephen Chow (周星驰) knows how to excite people about his films; this was a much-anticipated one.

But many moviegoers thought the film did not live up to expectations (also see this 2.5/5 review in the SCMP). On Chinese social media, people jokingly called the cleavage of actress Jelly Lin, also known as Lin Yun (林允), the “highlight of the movie.”

The topic “Lin Yun’s breasts” even became the most popular searched topic on Chinese social media after the weekend. Many people also did not understand, writing: “Lin Yun’s cleavage is not as impressive as that of Claudia Wang Likun, so why is that the highlight?”

Young actress Jelly Lin (l) and actress Claudia Wang Likun, who plays a demon in this film.

Many netizens called the movie “unconvincing.” One netizen said: “Lin Yun’s breasts are the best part of the film.” Another person said: “From beginning to end, they were actually the movie’s highlight.” Others said: “The movie is bad, the cleavage is good.”

The 20-year-old actress Jelly or Lin Yun (@林允Jelly) previously had a major role in the 2016 hit film The Mermaid (美人鱼).

It is not the first time that an actress’s cleavage becomes trending on Sina Weibo. In 2015, the cleavage of Fan Bingbing in Chinese TV drama The Empress of China (also known as The Saga of Wu Zetian) made headlines when China’s censors temporarily canceled and edited all scenes showing ‘too much’ breasts. The show returned to the screen mostly showing faces, and no cleavage.

The cleavages the Chinese tv drama The Empress made headlines in 2015.

Although many people seem to appreciate Lin Xun’s looks more than the quality of the movie, not everybody agrees. Some netizens say they really liked the film, especially appreciating the role played by Kris Wu (吴亦凡).

There is one thing that both critics and fans of the movie The Demons Strike Back seem to have in common; they all say the film is “pleasing to the eye.”

– By Manya Koetse
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Featured image via TMTpost.

©2016 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at

Manya Koetse is the editor-in-chief of She is a writer and consultant (Sinologist, MPhil) on social trends in China, with a focus on social media and digital developments, popular culture, and gender issues. Contact at, or follow on Twitter.

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    February 1, 2017 at 11:56 am

    Only the third pic is of Jelly Lin Yun. The first, second and fourth pics are of another actress in JTTW2.
    Do you still find it hard to distinguish between Chinese faces even after many years of following Chinese media?

  2. Manya Koetse

    Manya Koetse

    February 1, 2017 at 4:08 pm

    Dear ‘Weird’, thank you for your comment, I’ve now clarified it within the article. These were the sole pictures shared by Chinese netizens on Weibo when talking about JTTW2, Jelly, and Claudia Wang Likun. Sorry for any confusion and thanks for the heads up. Having said that, if you know we’ve been following Chinese media for over two years here at What’s on Weibo you probably know that we do our best and always appreciate input and assistance. No need to be mean about it, man, that’s just weird :-0. Best, Manya

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China Celebs

Female Comedian Yang Li and the Intel Controversy

A decision that backfired: Intel’s act of supposed ‘inclusion’ caused the exclusion of female comedian Yang Li.

Manya Koetse



“How to look at the boycott of Yang Li?” (#如何看待抵制杨笠#) became a top trending topic on social media site Weibo on Monday after female comedian Yang Li was dismissed as the spokesperson for American tech company Intel over a controversial ad campaign.

On March 18, Intel released an ad on its Weibo account in which Yang says “Intel has a taste [for laptops] that is higher than my taste for men” (“英特尔的眼光太高了,比我挑对象的眼光都高.”)

The ad drew complaints for allegedly insulting men, with some social media users vowing to boycott the tech brand. On Sunday, Intel deleted the ad in question from its social media page and reportedly also removed Yang from her position as their brand ambassador.

The commotion over the ad had more to do with Chinese comedian Yang Li (杨笠) than with the specific lines that were featured in it.

Yang Li is controversial for her jokes mocking men (“men are adorable, but mysterious. After all, they can look so average and yet be so full of confidence“), with some blaming her for being “sexist” and “promoting hatred against all men.”

Since she appeared on the stand-up comedy TV competition Rock and Roast (脱口秀大会) last year, she was nicknamed the the “punchline queen” and became one of the more influential comedians in present-day China. Yang now has nearly 1,5 million fans on Weibo (@-杨笠-).

Yang Li’s bold jokes and sharp way of talking about gender roles and differences between men and women in Chinese society is one of the main reasons she became so famous. Intel surely knew this when asking Yang to be their brand ambassador.

In light of the controversy, the fact that Intel was so quick to remove Yang also triggered criticism. Some (male) netizens felt that Intel, a company that sells laptops, could not be represented by a woman who makes fun of men, while these men are a supposed target audience for Intel products.

But after Yang was removed, many (female) netizens also felt offended, suggesting that in the 21st century, Intel couldn’t possibly believe that their products were mainly intended for men (“以男性用户为主”)? Wasn’t their female customer base just as important?

According to online reports, Intel responded by saying: “We noted that the content [we] spread relating to Yang Li caused controversy, and this is not what we had anticipated. We place great importance on diversity and inclusion. We fully recognize and value the diverse world we live in, and are committed to working with partners from all walks of life to create an inclusive workplace and social environment.”

However, Intel’s decision backfired, as many wondered why having Yang as their brand ambassador would not go hand in hand with ‘promoting an inclusive social environment.’

“Who are you being ‘inclusive’ too? Common ‘confident’ men?”, one person wrote, with others saying: “Why can so many beauty and cosmetic brands be represented by male idols and celebrities? I loathe these double standards.”

“As a Chinese guy, I really think Yang Li is funny. I didn’t realize Chinese men had such a lack of humor!” another Weibo user writes.

There are also people raising the issue of Yang’s position and how people are confusing her performative work with her actual character. One popular law blogger wrote: “Really, boycotting Yang Li is meaningless. Stand-up comedy is a performance, just as the roles people play in a TV drama.”

Just a month ago, another Chinese comedian also came under fire for his work as a brand ambassador for female underwear brand Ubras.

It is extremely common in China for celebrities to be brand ambassadors; virtually every big celebrity is tied to one or more brands. Signing male celebrities to promote female-targeted products is also a popular trend (Li 2020). Apparently, there is still a long way to go when the tables are turned – especially when it is about female celebrities with a sharp tongue.

By Manya Koetse

Li, Xiaomeng. 2020. “How powerful is the female gaze? The implication of using male celebrities for promoting female cosmetics in China.” Global Media and China, Vol.5 (1), p.55-68.

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China Celebs

The Online Hit of the China-US Meeting in Alaska: Interpreter Zhang Jing

While the China-US meeting is all the talk, it is interpreter Zhang Jing who has hit the limelight.

Manya Koetse



It probably was not easy to translate the tough talks at the high-level meeting between the U.S. and China in Anchorage. Chinese female translator Zhang Jing became an online hit in China for remaining unflustered, graceful, and accurate.

Over the past days, the U.S.-China strategic talks in Anchorage have been a major topic of discussion on Chinese social media.

The first major U.S.-China meeting of the Biden administration ended on Friday, March 19. Despite the tense start of the meeting and some describing the talks as a “diplomatic clash,” China’s top diplomat Yang Jiechi (杨洁篪) called the meeting “frank, constructive and helpful,” New York Times reports.

While international media focused on the meeting and what their outcome means for Sino-American relations and the foreign strategies of China and the U.S., many Weibo users focused on interpreter Zhang Jing (张京) who joined the meeting.

One video of the first session of the diplomatic talks shows how Yang Jiechi starts his response to the American side at 8.30 minutes, going on for over 15 minutes until the 24.36-minute mark. Next to him, interpreter Zhang Jing is fiercely taking notes.

When Yang is finished speaking, he glances to foreign minister Wang Yi on his right to let him speak, after which Zhang says, “Shall I first translate?”

While the U.S. side was awaiting the translation, Yang then says: “Ok, you translate,” adding in English: “It’s a test for the interpreter,” after which the American side says “We’re gonna give the translator a raise!”

Zhang then goes ahead and calmly translates Yang’s entire 15-minute speech directed at American secretary Blinken and national security advisor Sullivan.

To give a speedy translation of such a lengthy off-the-record speech is seen as a sign of Zhang’s utmost professionalism as an interpreter, which many on Weibo praise. “She’s my idol,” multiple people write.

On Sunday, the hashtag “China-U.S. Talks Female Interpreter Zhang Jing” (#中美对话女翻译官张京#) had reached 200 million views.

It’s not the first time for Zhang to become an online hit. She was previously also called “the most beautiful interpreter” of the National Congress in 2013.

Zhang Jing is a graduate of the China Foreign Affairs University (外交学院) and has been working for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs since 2007.

Being an interpreter is generally regarded an exciting and attractive job by many Chinese netizens, as the career involves much traveling and international contacts. But the ability to master another language than Chinese is also often admired.

In 2016, a TV drama titled The Interpreters (亲爱的翻译官) became a major hit, featuring Chinese actress Yang Mi who plays a Chinese-French interpreter on her way to start her professional career.

“Translators are usually the ‘heroes behind the scenes’,” one commenter writes, pointing out how rare it is for an interpreter to hit the limelight like this.

“There are still people saying it’s not important to learn English,” another Weibo user writes: “But if that were true, how could we educate brilliant interpreters like Zhang Jing? How else could we quarrel with Americans at the conference table?!”

Many who write about Zhang on Weibo say that she is an example or a role model to them: “I hope that my spoken English one day would be as excellent as hers. This motivates me to try even harder.”

By Manya Koetse

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