Chinese drama Over the Sea I Come to You has come under fire from netizens after the series finished on July 9. The unorthodox plotline of the show has been criticized for its unrealistic take on life as an international student in the US.
Over the course of 46 episodes (yep, we did a double take on that number too), the story of a boy, Huang Xiaodong, and his father, Huang Chengdong, adjusting to life in the US unfurls in ludicrous and often unbelievable fashion.
Image via Tencent Video
The very first scene of the drama shows the father and son passing through US customs. After checking the father’s passport, the customs officer suspects that he is intending to stay illegally in the US. As you do, the father explains his situation with a song, convincing the customs officer to extend the his residency to six months.
That’s a weird opening scene, but what comes next is even worse.
Image via @Babieka/Douban
When the father and son arrive in the US, they hop in a pick-up van and meet three other international students and their parents. While people are greeting each other and introducing themselves, one of the girls in the car suddenly insults everyone. Shortly after the van takes off, the driver hits the brakes and the girl is thrown out of her seat and through the front window and dies as a result of the incident.
If that wasn’t dramatic enough, the TV show decides to take on the extremely contentious topic of school shootings. In a scene from the series, terrorists have taken over a school. The father rushes onto campus and helps to save the day, naturally.
You can watch a snippet of the school shooting scene below (VPN off):
A successful series can’t live without a good screenplay. Despite some great performances from actors Sun Honglei, Xin Zhilei, Zeng Shunxi, and Jiang Yiyi, it’s the storyline that is drawing criticism from China’s online community. Some netizens are accusing the showrunners of trying to discourage students from heading to the US to study.
As such, the online ratings for Over the Sea I Come to You on Douban have been bad, to say the least, with the TV series currently holding a score of 3.5 out of 10, and a number of users writing negative comments.
Screengrab via Douban
“Watched half of the first episode and felt it insulted my IQ,” comments one netizen.
Screengrab via Douban
“It turned out to be a political drama that persuades students not to study abroad in America,” reads another person’s comment.
[Cover image via @Babieka/Douban]