Simon Pegg Sets Off Firestorm Among Fans on Chinese Social Media

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It’s been a rough week for Simon Pegg on the Chinese social network Sina Weibo. The Shaun of the Dead star has been easing his way into the popular micro-blogging platform over the last year and within two days was able to piss people off and draw widespread ridicule.

On Halloween, Pegg posted a photo of what looks to be delicious red velvet cake in the shape of a bloody brain. Innocuous, inoffensive holiday fun, but users quickly began mocking the insinuation that brains are anything to be afraid of because it’s quite common to eat them in China.

Image: Sina Weibo

According to People’s Daily, “Netizens posted pictures of beef and lamp stomach, worms, fresh shrimp and crabs, cooked rabbit heads and premature chicken eggs.” His followers lambasted his weak stomach and when he dressed as a Zombie for All Hallows’ Eve it got worse. “Are you fighting back and trying to terrify us? Haha, I don’t feel scared at all!” one wrote. Another attacked his undead credentials, hitting him where it hurts, “I bet a zombie would like to try real brain.”

But Pegg’s no good, very bad Weibo week wasn’t over. In an ill-advised stunt, the actor pranked his fans who were hungry for some Pegg penis. In a number of posts last week he promised to post a nude photo of himself if he hit one million followers. Fan reaction was surprisingly(?) very into this idea.


Pegg’s fans delivered on their end of the bargain and he hit one million followers yesterday. He proceeded to comically tease that he was just adjusting the lighting and getting someone to take the photo—then he dropped this bullshit.


Everyone was righteously infuriated and proceeded to bombard his account with disappointed memes and angry messages like, “I feel like I’ve been cheated,” and “You are a liar!!!!!” He quickly lost 40,000 followers.

What might shine some light on the anticipation for nude photos of a man who is not widely considered a sex symbol is this message from one of his fans prior to the reveal: “I think we are going to witness the first ever shutdown of a major verified account with 1 million followers due to the posting of nudes….” Indeed, even the action figure post was deleted by Sina Weibo admins and he could have lost his whole account if he’d followed through on his promise.


The people wanted a hero, a man with the guts to post his dong. What they got was a liar who’s afraid to eat brains.

[People’s Daily, Evening Standard]


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