People in China are going bananas over a pink fox called LinaBell, who was recently introduced to the Duffy and Friends plush toy line at Shanghai Disneyland. The new Disney character has since been dubbed the ‘national daughter’ by her enthusiastic fans.
“We are so excited to introduce to you our new friend of Duffy, LinaBell. She is a fox with an inquisitive mind and the intelligence that supports it. She finds joy and excitement in solving problems and mysteries,” said Shanghai Disney Resort when announcing the character’s ‘birth’ in mid-September.
Surprisingly, in the two months since her debut, her popularity hasn’t waned but continues to grow, with the hashtag ‘LinaBell’ (#玲娜贝儿#) having gained more than 410 million views on the Chinese microblogging platform Weibo at the time of writing.
“When I saw LinaBell, my brain released so much dopamine. She is such a hardworking and energetic female celebrity!” one netizen who visited LinaBell on November 5 posted on Weibo. “Sadly, all of the LinaBell merch was sold out at Disneyland. Next time, I will bring her home!”
“LinaBell has cured me!” wrote another commenter, who shared a video collage of the fox character entertaining visitors. “Whenever I’m unhappy, I look at her, and I feel good again.”
Another opined, “When I saw LinaBell, I started to believe in fairy tales again.”
Some fans have even created memes to show their affection for the cute character.
Enthusiasts are also buying up LinaBell merchandise, and some are even offering to purchase gifts for the costumed character. On the Chinese lifestyle platform Xiaohongshu, some crazed fans have proposed buying her an iPhone 13, new clothes, accessories, luxury bags, and more. (Although we’re willing to bet no one has gone through on the generous — albeit clearly misguided — offers.)
Even real-life Chinese celebrities are obsessed with Disney’s new pink fox. Chinese actress Mao Xiaotong (known for her role in Empresses in the Palace and Love 021) visited LinaBell and jokingly asked for a foxtail scarf. LinaBell seemed in awe of the actress in the video, making her even more adorable and endearing to Chinese fans.
“Both of these female stars are so cute!” one netizen commented.
Meanwhile, singer Yu Kewei has adapted a song for the character and posted a video of her with a LinaBell doll on her Weibo account.
In less happy news, LinaBell was assaulted by a tourist last month, just like her friend Duffy the Disney Bear — who was smacked in the head. Unsurprisingly, her fans were infuriated by the incident. Many criticized the misbehaving visitor and worried whether the character’s performer was seriously hurt.
“The way she used her hands to cover her head when she walked away is heartbreaking,” wrote one concerned netizen.
Cover image via Weibo
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