Anachronisms In Chinese War Films & Television Serial Dramas

Anachronisms in Chinese war films and television serial dramas.


Anachronisms in Chinese war films and television serial dramas.

Chinese war movies and television serial dramas have long been the butt of jokes amongst Chinese netizens online, especially among Chinese military enthusiasts, due to the absurd use of weapons and props by both the Chinese and enemy forces portrayed on screen. The term “穿越” (chuan yue, to pass through or time travel) is often used to describe anachronisms in these productions that fail to conform to actual historical circumstances.

Below is a collection of Chinese internet posts about Chinese TV shows that have been ridiculed by netizens for their inclusion of weapons and props far more advanced than the time periods they are set in, with some pointing out that if the Chinese actually had such weapons at the time they would have easily won the war.

From Tiexue & Mop:

There is no most dumbfounded, only even more dumbfounding!! Chinese domestic war films/series time-traveling image collection

Domestically produced war films or television series have always been controversial, the reason being that the enemy is always portrayed as having low intelligence, dying immediately upon shot. Whereas our military are all incomparably heroic, almost invincible and ever victorious.

Look at these pictures below, they’ll definitely dumbfound/stun you.

AK-47! How about it!? Back then during the war [World War II], the New Fourth Army was already using such a powerful weapon to attack the enemy! But don’t forget, the AK-47 was created by Russian Kalashnikov in 1947! Our country replicated the AK-47 in 1956 to create the Type 56 assault rifle.

Another AK-47! In the 30’s and 40’s did China already have such a divine weapon??!

The Japanese Army [of WW2] equipped with the extremely advanced weapon, the AK! Note the red circle!

The Japanese Army again, their equipment and weapons not conforming to history, the red circle exposing the crew sound-recording equipment…

Look at this one, Sten submachine gun…completely ahistorical (The Sten was manufactured in 1940, and even in 1942 the British troops in North Africa were using American Thompsons…but here the [Chinese] Nationalist Army was already using it in the 30’s)

Comments from Tiexue:


Chinese directors, are you really all retarded? [Because] if you all aren’t, then [that means] us audiences are.


In reality when most people watch war movies, [they are] not watching a gun show.


In movies about the resistance against the Japanese, the enemy is always retarded. I don’t understand what the directors are trying to portray, [because if] it took 8 years to fight a retarded enemy, doesn’t that mean our own side was even more retarded?


Who knows, maybe they intended to make a comedy series all along…


Next they’ll equip the People’s Liberation Army with Katyusha rockets, B-52 Stratofortresses, AC-130 gunships, Hummers, Merkava tanks, OCIW…let them all become the legendary Terminator!!!

From Tiexue:

“Southwest Anti-Bandit Stories”: We will cross through time to the very end

Comments from Tiexue:


As has been said before, nothing is impossible/unacceptable in Chinese TV series.


Anachronistic handguns are not a big deal because handguns are hard to spot, but anachronistic big guns are really funny, even an idiot can spot [the mistake]!!!

《猎鹰1949》“Falcon 1949” [a show set in 1949]

M21, some people also call it M14


“This is a Mauser [it’s clearly not]

Even an M700


Drag the directors out and have them shot!
Good thing I didn’t watch this series!


Be content, make do with it! If you don’t like it, you can change the channel!! That they didn’t equip them with M4s is already good enough!! Nevertheless! I too always wondered why the L96 rifle and M9 pistol appears in “Falcon 1949”! What more, people in it are dumb enough to call it something else!!


When closely comparing these two pictures, [I’ve realized] the director is rather “skilled”, even learning how to PS promotional posters…I’m speechless…

From Tiexue:

Extremely dumbfounding! World War II American soldiers in Chinese TV series!

Yesterday I saw someone introducing the new series “The Great Rescue”, and I was dumbfounded me through and through; so I went online to look it up and it is said this series will be dedicated to the 65th anniversary of the victory over Japan and will be aired in August on CCTV-1 or CCTV-8, by which time everyone can throw up!

Not bad, even the 101st Airborne Division has come to China. But, given that they’re American soldiers, why did they hire all Asians?
[Is it because] the director doesn’t have the money or doesn’t want to hire a few foreigners to play the extras?? Don’t tell me this is part of the TMD legendary Nationalist Army (101st Airborne Chinese Branch)??

Blame me for being ill-informed, but for the US Army in World War II to have actually had such advanced camouflage, [it’s] probably made up by the director. The helmets are also NB [daringly ridiculous], including both World War II and Vietnam era ones. It was not until 2004 did the US Army switch the shoulder patch from stitched on to Velcro. The Nationalist Army’s right shoulder patch is even more TM science fiction.

Discovered yet another weapon that has traveled through time, I’m speechless.

While I’m at it I want to say: “Director, your use of shanzhai Thompson and Grease Gun is so TM dumbfounding, do you not have the money to make it better? Director: “What do you know? The money was all spent on ‘casting’ women. Without women, how am I supposed to have ‘inspiration’? It’s not like you don’t know that my ‘head’ is actually down there.”

Regarding Chinese television series I can only say: Puke, puke until you’re used to it. Congratulations directors, you have all TM succeeded again in disgusting us.

Comments from Tiexue:


I can ignore the clothes and races, but the time-traveling [anachronistic] guns are unbearable. At any rate, I don’t watch such crap retarded movies/television shows.


Our China is more suited for making sci-fi movies/TV series.


Louzhu doesn’t understand, that’s the 101st Airborne Pacific Task Force, coming especially to the Celestial Kingdom to help the war effort. They are all foreign friends!


Retarded director + stupid cunt costume designer + dumbass props designer = this series


Not respecting the audience is actually equivalent to not respecting yourself!

From Tiexue:

From a single photo, we can see the true quality of Chinese television serial dramas

1. Face is completely touching the bolt, [if she] opens fire, her little face will be blown apart and no one will want her anymore.

2. The bolt is not pulled down, the gun is completely unlocked.

3. The piece of cloth has no real function, the gun sleeve is made so poorly, on one end a small piece is covering the gun lock, and there is no way of pulling the bolt.

4. The trigger guard on the gun is too fake; one look and it is clearly not “original/authentic”.

5. That sniper scope is too far [from the eye]. This way there is no way to see things clearly, let alone shooting accurately.

6. The position of that gun stock is placed so clearly wrong, without placing it under the armpit, the moment she opens fire her face will certainly be blown apart, perhaps even her head will be blown apart.

7. Shooter’s left hand is too high; this way you can’t keep the gun steady.

8. The director and military consultants (don’t know if any were hired) for this series must all be stupid, [because] just one shot reveals so many problems. In fact, it is just irresponsible. Besides, how could there be so many sniper rifles during that time, when simply having a gun was already a blessing for the Eighth Route Army. Can you please stop raping the eyes and hearts of Chinese military enthusiasts?

9. Do you not know how to use the eye piece and scope? How could they be attached like this? [The scope is sideways.]

Comments from Tiexue:


I’ve this picture before and always felt something wasn’t right but didn’t know where the mistakes were, so louzhu has the sharper eye, having dissected every mistake on [this picture of] the girl with the gun, very satisfying!


Louzhu, allow me to correct you you a bit. The woman’s uniform is clearly from the War of Liberation era [Chinese Civil War] or not long after the War of Liberation [the series is set during in WWII]; Another is that this rifle is bolt action meaning that it has to be reloaded after every shot, whereas you only pointed out how the gun bolt cannot move freely but did not say how the bullets will eject from the gun; Also, the gun stock should go against the shoulder not the armpit; One more, this gun’s scope resembles the one in “My Brother’s Called Shun Liu” [another Chinese television drama] where the scope is also attached sideways. This lousy series is called “Saving Female Private Shi Tuhui”, which is basically the Chinese version of “Saving Private Ryan”.




I remember a report that said: When a certain American film company was filming “Platoon”, the actors were sent to the Philippines for over a month of military training,
I also remember the older generation of Chinese actors said that to make a good film, they always had to go somewhere to experience the life there before the filming began.
Don’t know whether or not these actors these days will still [first go] experience the life [they portray on screen]?
From the picture above, [I] feel like she’s a cheap slut who managed to slip into our army.


It’s already good enough that the gun is not held backwards, everyone don’t have such high expectations…


Written by Joe

Joe is a documentary producer and journalist based in Shanghai


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