Weibo users and fans of astrology are probably familiar with Tongdao Dashu, a Chinese humor writer known for his ironic analysis of the stars.
Tongdao Dashu is a graduate of Tsinghua University who hails from Guangdong province. He found fame in 2013 when Weibo was at its peak of popularity on the Chinese Internet.
His amusing comics and comments about the stars were a breath of fresh air compared to the many stodgy public accounts that offered conservative astrological predictions.
Tongdao Dashu’s work focused on the negative aspects of each star sign – especially as they apply to relationships. That ironic antidote to popular astrology won him as many fans as it did critics.
Of course, his critics were usually people whose star signs took a regular beating in the column.
Many of Tongdao Dashu’s posts have made it onto lists of hot topics over the last three years. As of this April, his account had more than 5 million followers.
May 20 marked the launch of his first book, Don’t Stay With Capricorns. The book continues his sharp and comical approach to astrology, criticizing Capricorns as friends, lovers and colleagues.
Astrology has become extremely popular with China’s young adults during the last decade. Even before Tongdao Dashu’s column became popular, Virgos were already being stereotyped as picky and obsessive-compulsive. In some way, the column is less a cause of than a reaction to many of the unbearable stereotypes that dominate astrological discussion.
A few have criticized Don’t Stay With Capricorns for “lacking research value.” But really, no one who is following the author on Weibo gives a toss about the research value of his comical writing.
During a book signing on May 23, many longtime followers were surprised to learn that Tongdao Dashu is a young man born in the 1990s in spite of his “big uncle” moniker.
He is also the founder of the popular app Be With Me, a chat program designed to encourage strangers to share their secrets.