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​No more ‘hot girls’, bikini on World Cup shows on Vietnamese TV

Monday, June 25, 2018, 13:00 GMT+7

State-run Vietnam Television (VTV) and pay TV K+ have apparently taken public opinion into serious consideration when they decided to stop having scantily–clad female guests offer ‘commentary,’ and bikini-donning emcee to host a pre-match prediction, in their respective World Cup shows, following widespread criticism.

VTV has received a groundswell of criticism for its plan to feature 32 women, who appear to have little to no knowledge of football, to its pre-, half time and post-game commentary sections during the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

Many of the female guests have appeared on air in revealing outfits, and some of them even made ridiculous remarks about football.

Confusion seems to be a common theme amongst VTV viewers, who can’t help but getting confused by the bland and outdated commentary offered by what social media users dubbed ‘hot girls.’

Similarly, the satellite television station K+ missed the mark when they chose to air a pre-match program featuring a seal which predicts the score of each match, alongside an emcee, who appeared in some episodes in her miniscule bikini.

Both the programs have been heavily criticized as using women to draw attraction of viewers to increase ratings.

No hot girls, no bikini

In the wake of the controversy surrounding its World Cup program, VTV has aired the show without any of the ‘hot girls,’ since Friday matches.

But during the Sunday match between Japan and Senegal at 10:00 pm, one pretty girl was found among the guests.

This case, however, can be deemed an ‘acceptable exception’ as the girl is an insider of the sport industry.

She is dance sport master Phan Nguyen Quynh Huong, 19, who has won viewers’ heart not only with her beauty but also what is considered as ‘decent knowledge’ about football and commentary skill.

VTV's Friday commentary features only male guests.
VTV's Friday commentary features only male guests.

While the change in the guest list was clearly noticeable, the state broadcaster has remained quiet on the issue. VTV has never given any official comment, neither on the controversial female guests nor the recent change.

K+ has also followed suit in tweaking its pre-match prediction, “Tien Tri Nuoc Nga” (Russian Prophet), with MC Thu Hang no longer donning a two-piece swimsuit in her latest episode of the show on Sunday night.

In the video posted on the Facebook page of K+, the emcee was seen in a diving suit when she prepared to see ‘Molly the seal’ make her prediction for the Japan - Senegal clash.

The video, garnered only 23,000 views, received modest engagement from users, with a mere 128 likes, 39 shares and 49 comments. The last video where Hang hosted the program in her swimsuit fielded nearly 1,000 shares and 255,000 views.

This screenshot shows emcee Thu Hang in a black long-sleeve trainer’s swimwear in Sunday’s episode of “Tien Tri Nuoc Nga” on pay TV K+.
This screenshot shows emcee Thu Hang in a black long-sleeve trainer’s swimwear in Sunday’s episode of “Tien Tri Nuoc Nga” on pay TV K+.

Not all users are pleased

Many K+ users have shown their disappointment and objection to female host’s outfit change, saying they really prefer to see Hang in bikini.

“Oops! I wait for this show every day only for the MC,” one user commented.

“Those who took the bikini, return it to Thu Hang. Please!” the ‘most liked’ comment reads.

Another chimed in, criticizing those who voiced their objection to the bikini, something he said is normal given the program is always filmed next to a swimming pool.

“It is beautiful to wear bikini at swimming pool, but you criticized it. Now I understand your tastes!” he wrote.

An online poll by Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper asking its readers for their opinion about the emcee wearing bikini to host the World Cup program last week also received an open view from viewers.

Most readers responded in favor of the emcee, saying her choice of outfit is beautiful and sexy.

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Bao Anh / Tuoi Tre News

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