Squid Game: What Korean Media’s Contemporary Success Can Teach Us

Thao My editor(vietnam)

456 PLAYERS. 6 GAMES. 45,600,000,000 WON. 1 STANDING.Director Hwang Dong-Hyuk’s Squid Game stands strong in its anti-capitalist message, and its stark display of the real implications of South Korea’s techno-capitalist successes strike a cord to the hearts of people across the world. In its first 28 days of release on Netflix, Squid Game had been seen in 111 million households. This propelled Squid Game to become Netflix’s most-watched series to date, surpassing other in-house titles such as Bridgerton and Stranger Things.

To see Squid Game’s cultural impact, one does not need to look beyond their phone. On every social media, streams of Squid Game inspired content are flowing. From Halloween costumes of hot pink and green to sweat-inducing video game replications of “Red Light, Green Light”, the survival drama show has graduated from the ranks of a mere show to cultural phenomenon. Squid Game’s very own Player 067 gained so much popularity, HoYeon Jung, the actress playing Kang Saebyeok, became the most followed South Korean actress on Instagram despite this being her first foray into acting. Mr. Beast, one of Youtube’s most popular content creators known for money-incentives challenge videos has recently announced and shown a look into a real-life recreation of the show. This 2-million dollar investment into constructing a scale replication of the sets pales in comparison to the economic boost that Squid Game has inadvertently given South Korea.