A summary of what’s in Shanghai’s magazines
This time around, SH/8 Days and City Weekend are in the crosshairs. And guys, we say this purely out of love: Y’allz need to step your web game up so that we can start linking to the articles themselves, rather than indulging our Wikipedia cravings. [Update: links have been added to the SH/8 Days write-up. Huzzah!]
SH/8 Days: It’s an ad ad world in the October 13 issue of SH, and no, we don’t just mean that new fancy schmansy classified insert of theirs, or the usual smattering of ads on every page. JWT CEO Tom Doctoroff explains: “The only way for a consumer to make sense of [brand-building] is with advertising and communication; they need consistent positioning” (p.7). Ah, so that’s why we get bombarded with all those funky 3-D images (and David Wu) at the subway. Identifying the different types of noodles in this city can be oodles of fun, but not as much as fun as actually slurping them down (p. 14). We love the knife-sliced noodle pick in the dining feature (it’s fast becoming our neighborhood noodle spot; Changle Lu reprazent!), but are not so enamored with the he fen at Xin Wang—a late night letdown, if we recall correctly. Dagu Lu (p. 16) isn’t exactly a culinary wonderland—only one restaurant musters a three-star review—but at least it’s still home to every expat’s favorite DVD store Ka De (same time this Sunday, guys?). The vaunted Open Bar section (p. 32, 34) dishes the dirt on Lounge Tara 57 (“probably the best cocktails in town,” with a new “second-floor hideaway”) and The House Bar and Lounge (“suggests a low-key sophistication that feels comforting rather than threatening”). Resident cinefile Renee Chen says the new Jackie Chan vehicle Rob B Hood (p. 40) is silly, silly fun, though we maintain there’s nothing silly about Louis Koo’s mug (sigh). Olympic champ Liu Xiang (p. 42) is a hurdling fool, obliterating the competition at the Shanghai Golden Grand Prix despite being jetlagged. Hurdlers of the world—be afraid. Be very afraid.
City Weekend: Cross-cultural dating is hot in China, so why not write about it (p. 21)? City Weekend isn’t shy about taking cultural niceties head-on (“I hate being the stereotypical foreigner with a Chinese girlfriend. And I hate myself for thinking that.”), though we’re not so sure if we want to put our money on this chap: “One thing I have to put up with is her humor is akin to a seven-year-old child.” (Can you say, ring the alarm?) Wanna know what else is hot? Blogging. And The Blogger’s here to tell you all about it (p. 13). There’s counter culture, and then there’s counter culture—we’re betting that “vampirism” belongs to the latter category. Dressing in all black, sucking down glasses of “thick red liquid” (relax—it’s not actual blood … we don’t think) and attending vampire clubs sounds like our kind of fun (p. E54). If you care to join them during All Hallow’s Eve, Shanghai’s got deserted alleyways (Blood Alley, now Xikou Lu) and haunted mansions (Marshall House, Swire Mansion) g(al)ore (p. E10). Or you could save yourself the trouble and simply roll over to our Halloween party. We wouldn’t mind if every food feature from here to eternity honed in on cheap eats — and a top five of cheap Chinese comfort foods (p. E38) isn’t a bad way of going about it. (Though guys, some addresses for the places you suggested would greatly enhance the chances of us agreeing with you.) Random travel fact of the day: Did you know that medieval castles are all the rage in Guangdong (p. 24)? Yeah, us neither. Random revelation of the day, courtesy of Day in the Life: Some clowns have wives. And watch Entourage. But bratty kids? Homey don’t play that (p. 30).
Photo from Shanghai Daddy.