The Reality of ‘Squid Game’ in Real Life


The new reality competition series ‘The Challenge’ by Netflix, based on the hit show ‘Squid Game,’ offers a non-murderous and tamer version for real people, but falls short in delivering the depth and impact of its source material.

The Setup

A group of people participating in ‘The Challenge,’ a reality competition series based on ‘Squid Game,’ experience a slightly less intense version of the game where elimination is based on chance and there’s no actual danger involved. The show aims for a prize of $4.56 million and doesn’t delve into the themes of wealth inequality and societal commentary explored in the original drama.

Comparison to ‘Squid Game’

While ‘The Challenge’ offers a reality TV spin on ‘Squid Game,’ it fails to capture the emotional depth, tension, and societal critique that made the original drama a global phenomenon. The re-created sets and games lack the chilling impact of the original, and the characters are reduced to reality TV archetypes, missing the opportunity to create resonating stories.

Lack of Depth

The show is criticized for its lack of memorable characters and deeper personal exploration, with many contestants reduced to shallow portrayals. The series’ reliance on recognizable IP and familiar reality TV tropes results in thoughtless and opportunistic programming, offering superficial entertainment that is hard to resist despite its shortcomings.

The Superficial Allure

Despite its shortcomings, ‘The Challenge’ still manages to captivate viewers with classic reality TV elements such as mind games, petty squabbles, and alliances. The allure of finding out who wins the substantial prize keeps audiences hooked, showcasing the enduring appeal of superficial entertainment.