The Chinese internet is full of people who, though often entirely undeserving of attention, receive copious amounts of it for seemingly no good reason. Whether arriving at momentary fame through careful corporate promotion or sheer dumb luck and timing, each of these individuals has managed to secure a place in the Internet Hall of Fleeting Fame
1. Sister Furong [芙蓉姐 Fúróng Jiě]
Though Sister Furong has been around for ages, her recent weight loss photos promoting her new trim bod shocked netizens who had previously taken great joy in ridiculing her poor physique. Seriously, compare the above pic to her cosplay appearance in summer 2010. Furong going from zero to (kind of) hero put her at the top of this year’s list.
2. Gan Lulu [干露露 Gàn Lùlù]
Oh, Gan Lulu, is there anything you won’t do for attention? Beijing actress Gan Lulu took the internet by storm in February this year with the aid of her psycho mom when a video was uploaded showing the mother filming Gan naked in the shower. The video was purportedly created because the mother was unable to find a suitable suitor, but in hindsight we now know it to be a huge publicity scam. See also: their ridiculous catfight on talk show Lady Guagua
3. Sister HOLD [HOLD住姐 HOLD Zhùjiě]
Sister HOLD is directly responsible for the rise and popularity of the popular slang HOLD住. On August 9th, Sister HOLD ended her scene on a popular Taiwanese comedy show by saying “Even if I screw up, I will continue to persevere!” (就算我搞错party，整个场面我要Hold住). Hold住 is also #1 on our top Weibo slang.
4. Brother Echo [回音哥 Huíyīn Gē]
Brother Echo is a mysterious Sichuan-born singer who took China by storm in September.
5. Milk-tea Girl [奶茶妹妹 Nǎichá Mèimei]
Another oldie, Milk-tea girl was popular way back in ’09 after a classmate uploaded her fresh face onto the internet. Many netizens professed their love for the young girl, and thousands set out to track her down, eventually succeeding. Milk-tea girl’s popularity made a resurgence this year after news was released in January that she had been admitted to the prestigious Qinghua University in Beijing and again in August when she left home for campus..
6. The Lotus Prince [莲花小王子 Liánhuā Xiǎo Wángzǐ]
Brazilian model Leonardo Frosi’s dashing good looks and charming smile captivated the hearts of netizens around China after he appeared as a model for the 2011 Shanghai Auto Show. His title, The Lotus Prince, was named after the car company which he was representing.
7. Brother Buckteeth [龅牙哥 Bāo Yágē]
It’s a young man. With big teeth. And he’s smiling. Some things require no explanation.
8. Ma Jingtao’s Roar [马景涛 Mǎ Jǐngtāo]
Ma Jingtao is a Taiwan-born actor whose “roar-like” voice has brought him unexpected fame. In what most likely began as a coincidence, Ma was cast in a number of roles that required him to yell loudly, and it has since become his trademark.
9. China’s Susan Boyle — Sweet Cauliflower Mother [菜花甜妈 Càihuā Tiánmā]
Anything England can do, China can do… slightly different. After Susan Boyle’s rousing performance on England’s The X-Factor and subsequent climb to fame, China found their own version in “sweet cauliflower mom” who has since become a national idol.
10. Joe Wong [黄西 Huáng Xī]
Huang Xi, also known as Joe Wong, was once a PhD researcher… before he decided to become a comedian. Debuting on The Late Show with David Letterman, Wong tore through his set, delighting the crown and the 842,000 others who have since watched on YouTube. Though the Letterman appearance is almost 2 years old now, Joe Wong is still certified fresh according to Chinese netizens.