China bans ‘Attack on Titan,’ other popular Japanese anime from Web


China has blacklisted 38 Japanese cartoons, including the megahit “Attack on Titan,” from appearing online, according to state media.

Amid a broadening crackdown on the country’s Internet content, 29 Chinese websites have received warnings or fines for carrying shows that “encourage juvenile delinquency, glorify violence and include sexual content,” the Xinhua News Agency said Monday.

Another eight websites have been shuttered, it said.

The actions are intended to “protect the healthy development of youth,” Ministry of Culture official Liu Qiang told Xinhua.

Rumors of a blacklist of Japanese anime began earlier this year, with speculation that candidates included popular cartoons “One Piece” and “Naruto.”

In March, the Ministry of Culture announced it would ban several lesser-known shows, including “Blood C,” due to adult content, and that a more comprehensive list was forthcoming.

The comic book version of “Attack on Titan” has sold tens of millions of copies worldwide, and the anime adaptation is enormously popular in China. A discussion group about the series, hosted on Baidu, had over 21 million posts as of Monday afternoon.

The blacklist includes the popular cartoon “Death Note.”

At least one of the 38 shows, “The Testament of Sister New Devil,” was still available online Monday afternoon.

The cartoons are the latest productions from Japan to fall victim to a push by Beijing to “purify” the Internet.

Although Chinese authorities have attempted to purge “offensive” online content for years, the project has picked up steam under President Xi Jinping.

In a speech late last year, Xi called on Chinese media and the arts to reject “vulgarity” and promote “fine artworks in line with socialist core values.”

In the last several months, officials have fined several major websites, including Baidu and Youku, for distributing shows the government deems inappropriate.

The release of the blacklist provoked passionate opposition from Chinese netizens, who criticized the Ministry of Culture for “censorship” and anti-Japanese bias.

“They should list anti-Japanese dramas,” wrote one person on Chinese micro-blog Weibo, referring to the proliferation of violent dramas about China’s resistance to Japanese invaders during World War II. “They’re gruesome!”

  • Sam

    Burn China.

  • Clickonthewhatnow

    While this is not good, I think it’s more worrisome that China stops Chinese people from reading news and history about their own country. It is especially ironic since they consistently blame Japan for not facing up to its own wartime past. Tiananmen what, you say? No search results, guess it didn’t happen.

  • GBR48

    Chinese youths will still get their anime fix under the counter, and they will grow up resenting and despising their government for its dictatorial approach.

    The Chinese people now have disposable income – they are no longer peasants and won’t want to be treated like North Koreans forever. Denying them access to the goodies everyone else on the planet can buy will backfire.

  • paul martin

    Of course China will ban any and everything popular in foreign cultures because it might actually change perceptions in Chinese youth and their outlooks towards Japan and Western culture and that would be a disaster to Beijing because free thought and choice is NOT an option in China !

  • vincelee76

    The giant dumb Titans who eat everything their path, don’t talk much, low IQ is referring to China. China is dumb, trying to eat everything in its path. Smaller countries needs to take out china. That is why china don’t like this story and tries to ban it.

  • Kuroneko

    no wonder for such a country with a long history of human rights breaches,,,