On December 18, Bilibili has broken the monopoly on New Year’s Eve broadcasts previously held by the Big Four – Hunan Television, Jiangsu Television, Dragon Television and CCTV – with its first ever New Year’s Eve concert “The Last Night of 2019” to mark December 31, the turn of the decade. The 3.5 hour long entertainment show will celebrate the coming of age of China’s Generation Z, those born between 1990 and 2009, who are entering their 20s and 30s.
For this special occasion, Bilibili has curated a New Year’s Eve show specifically for China’s Gen Z, embodying many of the aspects of Gen Z culture. The lineup and performances will be anchored around trending cultural icons as well as nostalgic ones for Gen Z. To name just a few acts appearing in the show:
- Harry Potter, everyone’s favorite wizard who has shaped modern global fandom
- World of Warcraft and League of Legends, popular online multiplayer games
- Ne Zha, a household mythology name in China and the highest-grossing animated film of all time
- Game of Thrones, a fantasy epic and the cultural touchstone of the past decade
- Kris Wu, hiphop mogul and teen heartthrob
- GAI, one of China’s most famous rappers
- Hayao Miyazaki’s Spirited Away, an Academy Award-winning animation and Japan’s highest-grossing film of all time.
- Music Up, China’s first domestic animation idol TV series that held an important place in the childhood of China’s Gen Z
Bilibili’s iconic mashup culture will bring the creativity of this internet era into full play. For example, GAI is fittingly paired up with Ne Zha, performing its theme song to relay the fearlessness and bravery that is characteristic of young people. French pianist Richard Clayderman, who is adored in China, is tasked with playing the Harry Potter soundtrack.
“The Last Night of 2019” is an homage to the evolution of China’s world of youth entertainment. Much like their Western counterparts, China’s Gen Z has moved from old-school networks where they were forced to wait for each new episode of shows like Music Up, to now being able to binge watch Harry Potter on smartphones and tablets. Chinese youth can take such activities one step further by bonding through Bilibili’s signature “bullet chats” while they watch films like Harry Potter alongside other fans.
The past decade has also seen a renaissance in Chinese anime with the revival and reboot of nostalgic shows like Music Up and Ne Zha, as well as new ground-breaking animations like the anime adaptation of The Three-Body Problem.