After a brief break from being released for the past year and a half (for obvious reasons), a number of dystopian TV series are flooding out from streaming services these days.
Disney+ has 'Y: The Last Man' and 'War of the Worlds' to content with, while Apple TV+ recently released 'Foundation'. Netflix's most recent world-changing offering is 'Squid Game', a South Korean action/thriller, and it has proven to be a huge hit around the world (so much so that South Korean stocks had a major spike in the past week).
Currently the number one watched title in Ireland, the series is basically a 'Battle Royale' meets 'Hunger Games' series. It sees over 450 contestants desperate for extra money receive a mysterious invitation to compete with each other in a deadly survival game. With a 45.6 billion prize pot, the stakes are quite high - and so is the body count. In order to advance to the next round, contestants will have to take part in simple children's games from their childhood, or risk death should they lose.
The writer-director of the series, Hwang Dong-hyuk, recently spoke with Variety about a follow-up. He told the publication that should a second series be created, he's going to need some extra help, even though he admits he's "not great at teamwork".
He continued: "I don’t have well-developed plans for 'Squid Game 2'. It is quite tiring just thinking about it. But if I were to do it, I would certainly not do it alone. I’d consider using a writers’ room and would want multiple experienced directors."
As well as its comparisons to 'Battle Royale' and 'Hunger Games', people have also drawn parallels between Dong-hyuk's Netflix series and the 2014 Japanese film 'As the Gods Will' by Miike Takashi.
However, the director says that he had originally perceived 'Squid Game' to be a feature film, writing his first notes about the project as far back as 2008. He says: "I freely admit that I’ve had great inspiration from Japanese comics and animation over the years. When I started, I was in financial straits myself and spent much time in cafes reading comics including 'Battle Royale' and 'Liar Game'.
"I came to wonder how I’d feel if I took part in the games myself. But I found the games too complex, and for my own work focused instead on using kids’ games."
All nine episodes of 'Squid Game' are available to watch now on Netflix.