Netflix has announced a series of “Squid Game” contests. Some fans say it “goes against” the message of the original show.
While “Squid Game” is considered one of Netflix’s biggest hits, news of a contest series inspired by Korean drama has drawn criticism from some fans who say the premise misses the mark.
In the series, contestants burdened with immense debt compete in twisted and violent children’s games for millions of dollars. There can only be one winner, and those who lose die.
With “Squid Game: The Challenge,” Netflix said in its Release that “the worst fate is to return home with open hands” (i.e. not death).
“You’ve seen the drama, now is your chance to be a part of Netflix’s greatest social experiment!” Netflix writes in its casting call. “This oversized unscripted spectacle transforms the scripted world of drama into reality. Real gamers will be immersed in the iconic Squid Game universe and never know what awaits them. Here they will take part in a jaw-dropping series of games in to become the Sole Survivor* and walk away with a life-changing cash prize. With a fortune to be won, who will be an ally, who will you trust and who will you betray in this ultimate test of character? *Please note: Win or lose, all players will walk away unscathed. But if you win, you win big!”
When news of the reality competition spin-off broke last week, some on social media pointed out the irony of such a competition.
“The game is meant to represent the commodification of suffering by the privileged, and how watching people struggle for money and their lives is seen as entertainment for people who will never have to experience such things,” he said. said Mika Winder, 16, of Oregon. “Doing an actual version goes against the whole message of the original show in an almost comedic way.”
Others echoed similar sentiments on social media, including one person who tweeted“Did Netflix even watch the show? Did they make sense of it?
Netflix and production companies Studio Lambert and The Garden, the show’s co-producers, did not respond to request for comment.
How the competition show will work
The reality show will feature 456 English-speaking gamers from around the world who will compete for a cash prize of $4.56 million, Netflix said.
Details of what the games will involve were not revealed in Netflix’s press release or the show’s casting application.
For some “Squid Game” fans, like Dracy Peters, the reality competition series is an opportunity to “have fun.”
Peters, 23, from Louisiana, said he was applying to be a contestant to test his knowledge of the games.
“The show is a work of fiction with an elaborate plot, where the characters had to risk their lives for the money,” Peters said. “Here, the worst fate a player can have is supposed to go home empty-handed.”
But for others, like Winder, it’s a rough patch.
“People competing are projected out into the rest of the world for cheap thrills and it’s a parody of the original story,” she said. “It shows how people, especially in America, ignore the plot of something and the metaphors behind it, in order to make money.”
The show drew strong reactions before
This isn’t the first time the original dystopian TV show has garnered a strong reaction.
When the nine-episode thriller premiered on September 21, “Squid Game” snagged the No. 1 spot in 94 countries, including its home base of South Korea. There, the show struck a particular nerve to highlight a deep-rooted problem: debt and the eternal struggle to pay it off.
And soon after its debut, companies hoping to capitalize on its popularity rushed to incorporate the series into ad campaigns – a move seen as crude due to the Korean thriller’s sensitive themes.
“Squid Game” also inspired celebrities to recreate scenes from the show, sparking similar controversy.
In November, Chrissy Teigen was reprimanded for throwing a “Squid Game” themed party with celebrity guests dressed as players from the hit.
That same month, YouTuber MrBeast built sets inspired by the show and had contestants compete for $456,000 in a video uploaded to his channel, which has since racked up more than 260 million views.
A Twitter The user pointed out that he doesn’t think he’s “never seen the moral stance of a show as completely misunderstood by the general public as Squid Game has been.”