Paul Merton in China

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Paul Merton in China
Paul Merton in China.png
Genre Comedy
Directed by Barbie MacLaurin
Presented by Paul Merton
Narrated by Paul Merton
Composer(s) Rohan Stevenson
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of series 1
No. of episodes 4
Executive producer(s) Paul Sommers
Producer(s) Mark Chapman
Simon Onwurah
Location(s) People's Republic of China
Editor(s) Doug Bryson
Alex Muggleton
Running time 60 minutes (inc. adverts)
Production company(s) Tiger Aspect Productions
Distributor Endemol UK
Original network Five
Picture format 16:9
Original release 21 May (2007-05-21) – 11 June 2007 (2007-06-11)
Followed by Paul Merton in India

Paul Merton in China was a four-part television series broadcast on Five commencing from 21 May 2007.[1] It follows the journey of Paul Merton, comedian and writer, and his interpreter Emma, as they voyage across the country, exploring Chinese culture, expansion and change from Mao Zedong's reign. The series was a hit for Five and Merton confirmed on Michael Parkinson's show that a second series entitled Paul Merton in India had been commissioned. The theme music from Channel Five's advertisement is Michel Legrand's Di Gue Ding Ding, which was also used as the theme music to Heston Blumenthal's series In Search of Perfection aired concurrently on BBC Two. All four episodes were released on DVD in late October 2008.[2]


  • During his time making the documentary in the country he was continuously escorted around by government appointed officials, as many documentary makers in the country are, thus Merton was mostly limited to what the officials wanted him to document.
  • While staying in a Chinese hotel the staff were told to expect the arrival of a "Western celebrity". When Merton and his interpreter arrived at the hotel, he was greeted personally by the owner thinking he was Paul Martin, the former Canadian Prime Minister, as Martin is Merton's real name.


The first episode was watched by 2 million viewers and was the 5th most watched show on Channel 5. The second episode gathered 1.58 million views and was the 6th most watched show on the channel. The last two shows gained 2 million and 1.85 million viewers and were placed 6th and 5th respectively.


  1. ^ Andrew Pettie (2007-05-19). "Great Paul in China". Telegraph Online. Telegraph. 
  2. ^ "". "Paul Merton in China 2008 (DVD)". 

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