Squid Game attracts fans internationally

Netflix’s new dystopian K-drama inspires fans with traditional Korean children’s games.

Peyton Marinelli, spotlight editor

On September 17, Netflix released it’s new Korean drama Squid Game, and it has become increasingly popular among teens and adults from around the globe.
Squid Game is a fictional dystopian drama which takes place, as well as filmed, in Korea. The plot of the show consists of hundreds of ordinary individuals who are in debt, and compete in traditional Korean children’s games for a chance to win money.
As the show progresses, the losers of each game get eliminated, while the winners continue on to the next game. The prize money increases with every player eliminated.
The series of games continue until there is one man standing, winning the ultimate prize of 45.6 billion, which is equivalent to over 38 million in US dollars.
Squid Game stars Lee Jung-jae as Seon Gi-Hun, whose character is desperate to win the prize money to keep his daughter from moving to the United States, as well as help his mother who is fighting diabetes.
The show includes other well known actors such as HoYeon Jung, Wi Ha-joon, and Park Hae Soo. Each character has their own reasons for needing the money, with their stories revealed throughout the series.
The show tackles friendship, betrayal, and the timeless lesson that money cannot buy happiness.
Although the show is based in Korea, it has still become a hit here in the United States, as well as 82 other countries. The original language of the show is in Korean, but can also be watched with subtitles, or dubbed English.
For fans, there is debate on what is the “correct” way to watch the show, dubbed or not dubbed. While watching the show in its original language matches up with the actors’ voices and emotions, the dubbed version can make it easier for non-Korean speakers to enjoy and follow along.
According to Netflix, Squid Game is on track to becoming the most popular series ever. Other than trending on Netflix, the show has also become trendy among social media platforms such as TikTok.
A game from the show that is being played in real life is dalgona, also known as honeycomb toffee. The toffee is made by melting sugar and adding a pinch of baking soda until golden brown. The toffee is then pressed down into a circle, then a shape is engraved using a stencil.
Just as in the show, players use a toothpick to cut out the shape without breaking apart the toffee.
Besides the dalgona game, the show features other games such as red light green light, tug of war, marbles, glass stepping stones, and of course Squid Game.
Squid Game continues to make an impact on countries across the globe, and is so popular, the director Hwang Dong-hyuk has even hinted at the making of a second season.