On today's episode of BuzzFeed Daily, we broke down the top pop culture headlines AND discussed Netflix's Squid Game. You can listen below or scroll down to read more about the interview!
Buzzfeed Daily: So, Netflix's Squid Game was released a couple of weeks ago and it's become a global sensation. #SquidGame on TikTok has been viewed over 22 billion times, and Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos said the series is on track to be Netflix's most-watched show ever. Without getting into spoiler territory can you explain the basic premise of Squid Game?
Buzzfeed Daily: Now, this isn't the first story about a deadly game where contestants compete for a giant cash prize. It makes me think of Running Man, The Most Dangerous Game, or even something like The Hunger Games. With a show that's about so many people at their lowest of lows, most of whom are getting killed right before our eyes, why is this show so hard to turn off?
Buzzfeed Daily: Another big reason that Squid Game has resonated with so many people is that it's a pretty ruthless satire about wealth inequality and poverty in the 21st century. Some have even called it "a scathing critique of capitalism." You wrote a great piece for Kotaku specifically about this. What is it about the subject matter of Squid Game that seems so relevant today?
JW: I think it's that wealth inequality is now pretty difficult to ignore, especially because it's become so farcical. Like right now, there are millions of people around the world furloughed or out of work following COVID. We're all worrying about [whether we're] going to be able to afford heating this winter as the natural gas prices are soaring. Meanwhile billionaires are going into space for some jollies. That is so idiotic, so extreme that... how can it not be noticed? Even if you're comfortably off, you've got to realize something's wrong. And I think the absurdity of Squid Game, while it's so you know it's a reductio ad absurdum idea, it does feel miserably close.