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#Duang goes viral in China?!

2015-03-05 17:00

Beijing — Jackie Chan might still be popular in China, but nowadays the pro-Beijing actor is as well-known as fodder for jokes as he is for his gritty martial arts and slapstick humour on screen.

His latest contribution to the country's mass culture and entertainment: "duang".

It's not a word, but a sound he made in an old TV commercial meaning something like "ta-da!". A new mash-up video of the old ad has made "duang" a trending topic on China's social media.

Though the tone of the phrase is more derisive than fun, Chan has been a good sport. "It's quite funny," he told reporters on the steps of Beijing's Great Hall of the People this week.

Chan used the sound in a 2004 infomercial to sell shampoo. In the ad, he maintains there was no "duang" — or special effects — to make his hair look blacker, shinier and softer, but that the shampoo itself was responsible. Authorities later ruled that the commercial made false claims, and Chan's reputation suffered.

The word "duang" — in its Romanized form — has become one of the hottest expressions in Chinese cyberspace, and parodies of Chan's shampoo endorsement are spreading online. Someone has even proposed a Chinese character for the sound by overlaying the two characters of Jackie Chan's name, though modern Chinese does not officially incorporate new characters.

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