No joke: China’s backlash against stand-up stirs fear of comedy clampdown


Key Topics in this News Article:

News Snapshot:

[1/3] A person walks past a show venue of stand-up comedy company Xiaoguo Culture Media Co that has closed its business, in Beijing, China May 19, 2023. REUTERS/Tingshu Wang BEIJING/SHANGHAI, May 20 (Reuters) - One joke by a Chinese comedian about the nation's military has spurred online uproar, a $2 million fine, a police probe, a sweep of cancelled shows and fears for the survival of Chinese stand-up comedy, a rare refuge for somewhat free speech. The furore over Li Haoshi's wisecrack in Beijing last weekend marks the biggest scandal yet for a form of entertainment that, despite China's tightening...