The Netflix smash hit Squid Game has had a grip on pop culture since its release on the streaming platform on September 17.

For those of you who are treating Squid Game like I treated Game of Thrones a decade ago, the show follows Seong Gi-hun, aka Player 456, a down-on-his-luck gambling addict. He is approached with a unique solution to his crippling debt, to join an intense competition monitored by vibrant colored guards.

The catch? If the contestant loses, they die. After each death, the total money earned for the winner increases. The final prize money nears $38 million.

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The nine episode season explores themes of death, redemption, teamwork, and wealth inequality.

Where Squid Game excels, though, is the children’s games the contestants play. From “Redlight, Greenlight” to the titular squid game, the simple games matched with the high stakes of life or death keeps you on the edge of your seat from episode to episode.

Squid Game is this weird crossover of the Saw movies and The Hunger Games, and has invaded everyone’s timelines. Memes, TikToks, and tweets parrot the challenges and characters in the show. Player 001, the oldest player in the game, has been a star of social media. His cheerful grin during “Redlight, Greenlight” mirrored with his sulking slouch a few episodes later has become a new meme format.

Twitter users are ogling over Player 67, a North Korean defector who’s playing the game to give her family a new chance in a new country. In a rare moment of internet unity, Player 218 has risen in the ranks of the most hated television villains.

With Squid Game being so popular, I thought we could participate in a little thought experiment in which SouthCoast spots like New Bedford, Dartmouth and Westport become the setting.


Would You Survive the SouthCoast Squid Game?

Hypothetically, the next round of Squid Game is hosted here on the SouthCoast. I am the Front Man. I have made a series of games specific to this area of the state. How many games do you think you can survive?

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