A few weeks ago my housemate said he had started watching this programme called Squid Game on Netflix. It’s a sort of Hunger Games-type series, that follows the fate of driver who is in debt and invited to play a game to win money (45.6 billion wan to be precise). Once he’s in the game, alongside hundreds of others, it transpires that if you lose any challenges along the way… you die.
There’s blood, there’s gore and it’s taking over all conversations. Creator and director Hwang Dong-hyuk said it was so stressful to make that he lost multiple teeth while filming… So why should you watch it?
Who wrote it?
The show was written by Hwang Dong-hyuk back in 2008, but he couldn’t find anyone to produce it. Along came Netflix and low and behold it’s now the streaming service’s biggest hit more than a decade later (it is on its way to become Netflix’s most watched series of all time).
The games that the contestants have to play are all children’s games, like Red Light, Green Light (which is essentially grandmother’s footsteps), tug of war and marbles. But instead of being chucked off the playground when you lose, you get shot dead.
Creator and director Hwang uses the violence and brutality as an allegory for capitalism. By allowing adults to play children’s games, the focus is less on the rules of the games and more on the relationships and backgrounds of the individuals, who come from complicated and broken homes.
The number they used actually links to a businesswoman's mobile in South Korea. And she has been inundated with requests to play.
Did you hear the story about the woman whose number is accidentally in the show?
In order to take part in the Squid Game, contestants have to call a number in the show. However, the number they used actually links to a businesswoman’s mobile in South Korea. And she has been inundated with requests to play.
The woman in south-east South Korea has told local media that she had been receiving thousands of texts and calls to her phone “to the point that it’s hard for me to go on with daily life”. Apparently, she has been offered five million won (£3,073) for compensation, which she declined (although Netflix refuse to comment on the compensation bit).
What are people saying?
Overall, it’s had stellar reviews (Empire: 4*, Rotten Tomatoes: 94%, and my housemate says “watch it”).
However, some people aren’t so impressed. Kent schools are warning parents that the show is ‘not appropriate’ for children, and a few schools are implementing lessons on age-appropriate streaming.
Some people have had complaints around the subtitles and the gore… but most people have delved deep and enjoyed it.
And there are plenty of memes to keep us entertained…
As always, the internet comes up top trumps with memes of shows like this. Naturally, we’ve picked some that don’t show any spoilers. You’re welcome.
Watching Squid Game and I’m realising I need this guys phone, I haven’t seen him charge it once in 4 days pic.twitter.com/R4tGDhI4wh
— YT: AJ (Altered Jay)🇨🇩🇨🇩🇨🇩 (@AlteredJay) October 3, 2021
— Ted Mosby (@have_u_met_ted) October 5, 2021