Squid Game Show Adds Murder to Playground Nostalgia

Just Two Weeks After Being Released on The Streaming Service, The Korean Series Is Expected to Become Its Biggest Original Series

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Even if you have yet to watch the recently released series, you probably would’ve heard about it or have seen memes that have taken over the internet due to the successful launch of Squid Game. Almost everyone is talking about the hyper-violent thriller Korean series that has been able to become a massive hit after being launched just two weeks before.

Squid Game, which is centered on a brutally violent survival game, is expected to beat the romance series based on the Regency-era in England, Bridgeton, and to become the biggest Netflix original series of all time. While the series genre is not entirely new, but the relevant characters, striking and aesthetic visuals, and the distressing study of the nature of humans have been able to capture the spectators all around the world.

Character based on real life

In the series Squid Game, a large group comprising of a total of 456 individuals, that are in a huge amount of debt and had been living their lives in desperation to gain money are tempted to join a bloodthirsty game, where they would be provided with 45.6 billion KRW if they are able to survive through a series of six different games.

The twist is that if they fail to comply with the given instruction, they will lose and die.

All of the games in Squid Game are based on childhood games that the players had already grown up playing. And the surprising juxtaposition of the children’s plays that are innocent with the intense violent deaths that the players had to go through has caused the viewers to continue watching it.

During an interview, the director of Squid Game, Hwang Dong-hyuk, said that the audience is attracted towards the series due to the irony of the risks that are taken by hopeless grownup individuals with their own lives, just to win a game usually played by children.

Squid Game also had the element of nostalgia for most of the Korean watchers. For instance, in one part of episode three, when the players that were able to survive through the first game had to under through the Dalgona honeycomb challenge, which is the game that has been most played by Koreans during their young age.

In the game, the players had to carefully carve out a shape that was formed on a paper-thin piece of honeycomb candy by only using a needle. For those players who got an intricate shape made on their piece of candy, and while carving out, the original shape of the candy cracks, you will lose and die on the spot.

After watching the series, one Korean posted a tweet that Squid Game made him want to eat the Dalgona candy, as it has been more than 20 years since he last ate it, and he is unsure whether he would be able to find it again.

The worldwide success of the show has been attributed to the characters of Squid Game by the experts, as many of them had been marginalized members of our society. Although all of the players are linked with each other due to troubles caused by a huge number of debts, they all had come from the walks of life.

For example, the lead role of Squid Game is an individual without any employment and is suffering from a gambling problem while struggling to gain respect from his family members. Throughout the games, he meets with other players. One of them had been a defector from North Korea, while another one had been a laborer from Pakistan who was being mistreated by his mean employer.

Relatable with society

After watching the series, a professor for global cultural content at Sangmyung University said that the audience of Squid Game, especially the young generation, who is suffering from resentment and alienation on a regular basis during their real life, seems to be sympathetic with the players in the show.

The society’s nature of being hyper-competitive in the East-Asian countries, including South Korea, has caused disillusion in the feelings of many people. Despite working extremely hard, it is not possible for all people to be able to gain admission in some of the top institutes of the country or have good jobs.

The games in the series, although being extremely deadly, has been able to present an alternate world that was supposedly based on playing fairly.

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