Netflix’s Squid Game is a fictional show that centers around children’s games, however, the violent series is no kids show. Now, reports are coming in from the UK that schools have been issuing warnings about kids mimicking the popular series on the playground, according to Manchester Evening News.
For those unfamiliar, Squid Game is a survival drama series set in South Korea in which people on the brink of financial ruin are recruited by a shadowy organization to participate in a macabre winner-take-all contest. The 456 competitors are told the winner of the contest gets a life-changing sum of 45.6 billion won (approx. $38 million USD). However, the contest is centered on a series of children’s games where if you lose, you die.
The show is rated TV-MA, which means it’s inappropriate for viewers under 17 in the US (inappropriate for ages under 15 in the UK). The show features depictions of sex, violence, and suicide.
With its global popularity and being on track to become Netflix’s most viewed show of all time, it was only a matter of time before the series made its way into the collective consciousness of pop culture, as well as probably a few children slipping past the barrier of its very adult-oriented content.
As a result, some of the children’s games that would normally be routine to see on a schoolyard are reportedly taking on a darker tone, as influenced by the show. For instance, a school in Belgium reportedly warned kids have been mimicking the show’s outcome by beating up on “eliminated” players.
Other schools have been issuing warnings to parents, such as was recounted by a father from east London who said as much about his children’s school in Ilford. He tweeted:
“Can’t believe my kids’ school has had to send a letter telling parents that kids are playing their own version of Squid Game and that parents will have sanctions applied if their kids mimic Squid Game. The popularity of this show is next level.”
Numerous other examples are listed in the report, with educators and parental advocates saying parents should enforce restricting what their children watch at home.
What do you think about the concerns raised for Squid Game‘s influence on kids?