The popularity, influence, and graphic nature of ‘Squid Game’


Kate Hicks , Staff Writer

HoYeon Jung, a lead actress in the Netflix show “Squid Game,” gained 15 million followers on Instagram in just one week following the release of the hit series. “Squid Game,” a South Korean survival drama, has been trending at  #1 on Netflix in 90 countries. Discussed widely on Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok, the series has become a source of conversation since its release on September 17. While the success of the show was not unprecedented, the reaction of the audience and the immense viewership is a novelty. 

“Squid Game” is a graphic and realistic commentary on various elements of society, specifically the treatment of the poor, social and financial insecurity/instability, the abuses of the government, and the corrupt nature of entertainment platforms. In “Squid Game,” 456 contestants, all of whom are deeply in debt, fight to the death in six childhood games to win a massive sum of money, all while being observed by masked men. The popularity of the show has directed well-deserved attention towards societal issues that continue to be rampant within our world, and although the violence can feel overdone, the show does a fantastic job of demonstrating how money-driven our culture is. 

Many schools throughout the country have warned parents about the show, urging them not to allow their children to watch it. ”

Although the artistry and creative premise of the show has drawn attention, “Squid Game” is extremely violent, graphic, and gory. Many schools throughout the country have warned parents about the show, urging them not to allow their children to watch it. Counselor Carrie Olson recently sent an article to Athens Academy Middle School families detailing the risks for younger viewers. Although “Squid Game” currently holds an MA rating, the show has been seen by various age demographics, with the top viewership age being 16+ according to Common Sense Media

“Squid Game” demonstrates that all aspects of culture, such as social media, television, and education, rarely exist without some sort of interconnection from external media, and that human nature demands that art infiltrates into all areas of life. Art, television, music, and film are continuously reflective of the state of humanity at the time, and “Squid Game” is no exception. Like Margaret Atwood’s “The Handmaid’s Tale” and Ray Bradbury’s “Fahrenheit 451,” “Squid Game” serves as both a highly entertaining television show and a cautionary tale to its audience.