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Herald Reviews: Squid Game

AS I type this, Squid Game has just become Netflix’s biggest show ever.

I can totally see why too.

I started off a doubter, I’ve long since steered away from subbed or dubbed movies and TV shows, purely because I like to sit there and browse my phone and I cannot do that if I need to keep casting an eye up to read what’s just been said. I’m lazy.

‘Into The Night’ was the first step towards changing that, Squid Game is the second step.

I should first make it clear, I watched the dubbed version and, unlike most dubs, this one seems pretty good but the feedback online suggests that you miss details if not watching it in it’s original language, that being said I still thoroughly enjoyed this amazingly tense series.

So, what’s it all about? 

Well, Seong Gi-hun is a divorced chauffeur in crippling debt, he gets invited to play in a series of children’s games for a chance to win a huge cash prize. 

After accepting the offer, he gets taken to an unknown location where he finds himself imprisoned with 455 other players who all, like him, have large debts. 

The players of the games are all kept under watch by masked guards in pink suits, with the whole thing being overseen by a mysterious figure known only as ‘the Front Man’. 

When the games start, the players soon realise that losing in these games results in their death, not only that but each death adds ₩100 million to the prize total. 

Gi-hun wisely allies himself with other players, these allies include his childhood friend Cho Sang-woo, together they all try to survive the physical and psychological twists of the games.

And twist they do, the games themselves are harsh and get harsher throughout the series.

Be prepared for blood and gore, it has it in spades. No characters are safe either, by the time episode 5 rolls around you’ll be fist-bumping the air if your favourite character survives another crazy game or even the long nights in-between.

A constantly increasing amount of money gives the players an incentive for dispatching other contestants, even after the games end.

Every character has their own motivations and reasons for putting everything on-the-line for financial gain but a heartbreaking back-story is not a guarantee of survival, not by a long shot.

So, get yourself some snacks and be prepared to discover your latest binge-worthy show, it’s so good that by the end of the first episode, you’ll be intrigued and, if you can see past the blood and guts, you’ll be rewarded with one of the boldest, bravest and freshest shows Netflix have released yet.

There’s nothing soft and safe about Squid Game, it’s risky TV and will leave you, more often than not, right on the edge of your seat.

It’s taken 10 years for this show to be made, many considered it too controversial, but its global success is earned and a whole raft of fans across the world are eagerly awaiting news on the inevitable second series. It can’t end there. Surely.