Why is ‘Squid Game’ so popular? 

Squid Games Logo.

Squid Game’s Logo.

Kiyauna Lewis, Writer


142 million households have watched the hit new survival series, Squid Game.

Purpose and Effects of Squid Game

This dystopian show begins off with a businessman finding cash-strapped people who are willing to play a game for money. Due to their desperation, 456 contestants play a bunch of children’s games for the promised prize of cash.

“Squid Game is a game for people who are in debt and are desperate for money, and they cannot get out of the debt because they are so deep in, and or they owe people money. So, they find you and then you can play the game, but you have a choice whether or not you want to play it,” Senior Ashleigh Matias says.

Since this show makes the contestants play simple children’s games for money, the familiarity of the games is what sparks so many conversations across the globe. Some may agree that they would have participated in these challenges for a prize too. Therefore, the simplicity of this show and what happens to their heartwarming characters could affect some emotionally.

“Very much plot twist, a lot of plot twists. It is very exciting, and it does tend to get really emotional because you get attached to the characters,” Matias says.

The characters all have their own touching backstory, the show directly states that they all have a specific reason as to why they are risking their lives for money. With that being said, the emotional backgrounds of the characters can cause an audience to get attached and want to continue watching the show to find out what happens to the character.

“My favorite character is the old guy (Player 001) because he was really nice but then at the end, he made everything get confusing,” Junior Sydney Davis says.


With Squid Game originally being in Korean, there are 5 audios in different languages. These include, English, German, Spanish, French, and of course, Korean. Some may agree that the translations Netflix provides are not that great whilst others may oppose that claim.

“I listened to the whole show in English, it was very weird. Like, everything was just out of sync. I think people who speak Korean talk faster than people who speak English because like when they were done talking the English audio was still going,” Matias says.

Some could say that the translation for a different language such as Spanish could have been better than the English translation. Either way, some may prefer the original Korean translation with subtitles that are in English, German, or Spanish.

“I think they definitely should have translated it how they were speaking, I ended up watching the show in Korean because of this,” Junior Brisa Gonzalez says.


Squid Game’s popularity may come from the Korean media background and the show’s plot. Not many shows involve playing games for a prize, especially not simple children’s games. Adding to that, the characters and their backgrounds may make the show more interesting and further drag the audience in.

“The children’s games make this show popular, and the fact that they use references to art pieces,” Gonzalez says.

Since the show was released, it has been on the trending page for many online media such as Twitter, Instagram, and even Tik Tok. Many have heard about the show through these waves of popularity, which has caused the show to go worldwide and become Netflix’s most popular show.

“Squid Game the bloody survival series that has been at the top of Netflix’s Top 10 list in the U.S. since it premiered in September, is now the streaming service’s most-watched series yet, the company said Tuesday,” an Adweek article stated.

Upon the show building its own fanbase outside of Korea, K-Pop is a huge factor amongst Generation Z. Having said that, some of the songs included in the show are created by Korean artists. Due to this love for Korean music and culture, fans could have been interested in the Korean film industry.

“The growing popularity of South Korean popular culture has normalized Korean culture for many non-Korean Americans, especially in the past decade or so,” USA TODAY says.