Squid Game's Reality Show Spinoff Sets Fall Premiere Window
Our latest show from Disneyland:
The reality show based on Netflix's hit Korean survival drama Squid Game, titled Squid Game: The Challenge, has a Fall 2023 release window.
Netflix announced that the reality series will premiere in November this year, as reported by TVLine. Squid Game: The Challenge mimics its fictional predecessor by holding competitions for 456 players and declaring an eventual winner through repeated elimination rounds. Squid Game itself is a notably violent show with its central premise being that the winner receives untold riches but every other player is killed, which obviously won't happen in the "real" version. However, the jackpot is comparably huge: $4.56 million, the biggest in television history.
Does Squid Game's Challenge Go Too Far?
The official release for the spinoff promises, "The stakes are high, but in this game, the worst fate is going home empty-handed," but Squid Game: The Challenge has already drawn some controversy after anonymous reports from some of its competitors surfaced. Players who participated in the reality series' games, some of which are inspired by the original series alongside some new ones, called the experience "inhumane" and "rigged." One was quoted as saying, "It was just the cruelest, meanest thing I've ever been through." They continued, "We were a human horse race, and they were treating us like horses out in the cold racing, and [the race] was fixed."
In response, Netflix, Studio Lambert and The Garden issued a statement saying, "We care deeply about the health of our cast and crew, and the quality of this show. Any suggestion that the competition is rigged or claims of serious harm to players are simply untrue. We've taken all the appropriate safety precautions, including after care for contestants – and an independent adjudicator is overseeing each game to ensure it’s fair to everyone."
Squid Game Season 1 was released in September 2021 and quickly became a worldwide phenomenon. The South Korean series depicts an underground arena in which 456 volunteers must take part in lethal versions of children's games in a desperate attempt at financial recovery. Earning 14 Emmy nominations, the show broke a record as Netflix's most-watched series at approximately 1.65 billion hours streamed. In mid-2022, creator and director Hwang Dong-hyuk announced a second season of Squid Game, set to begin filming this summer.
Although many viewers found the idea of a "real" Squid Game unsavory, Hwang responded saying, "I feel like when you take things too seriously, that’s really not the best way to go for the entertainment industry… I hope that this is going to be a great new direction for the industry overall."
Squid Game: The Challenge will hit Netflix in November 2023. Squid Game Season 2 does not yet have a release window.