Entertainment & Arts

Chinese TV cartoon blamed for child injuries

Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf mascots in Beijing
Image caption The Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf characters have a huge following in China

The makers of a Chinese cartoon series have been held partly responsible for injuries incurred by two children who were imitating a scene from the show.

The brothers were badly burned in April when another boy tied them to a tree and set them on fire, according to China's state-run Xinhua news agency.

The 10-year-old said he was copying a scene from Xi Yangyang and Hui Tailang (Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf).

A court said the show's producers and the boy's guardians were both to blame.

Image caption Around 1,000 episodes have been made since the show first aired in 2005

It ordered the guardians to pay 60% of the injured brothers' medical bills and Creative Power Entertaining, a Chinese animation company based in Guangzhou, to pay 15%.

The court in the eastern Jiangsu province said there was "a cause-and-effect relationship between the case and the violent scenarios in the cartoon" and that the show should carry warnings in future, the Hollywood Reporter said.

The verdict has been widely criticised in China, with some questioning why the country's state broadcaster escaped censure despite showing the cartoon in the first place.

The show, popular with both children and adults, features a wolf whose relentless pursuit of a group of goats sees both parties suffer degrees of physical punishment.

According to Xinhua, the civil case was brought by the family of the brothers, the elder of whom is reported to have suffered 80% burns to his body.

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