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North Korea continues slamming 'Squid Game'

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A scene of South Korea's Netflix megahit
A scene of South Korea's Netflix megahit "Squid Game" / AFP-Yonhap

By Kang Seung-woo

North Korea has been taking jabs at South Korean Netflix megahit "Squid Game" by airing criticisms of the dystopian-thriller coming from many countries around the world.

The nine-episode show, the U.S. streaming company's all-time biggest hit estimated to generate $900 million (1.06 billion won) in value, features hundreds of debt-ridden adults participating in a series of deadly Korean children's playground games to win 45.6 billion won in prize money. The drama is Netflix's most-viewed drama in 90 countries.

"Squid Game is about survival in a capitalist society where you can earn money if you win by any means and you die otherwise. As children have started acting out games from the violent drama, schools around the world have been advising children not to watch it and urging parents to take extra precautions, but they are helpless," North Korean state-run website Arirang Meari said, Tuesday.

The propaganda site picked a few examples of opposition to the thriller's content.

"A school in Sydney, Australia, has asked parents to stop their children from watching Squid Game as it depicts extreme violence and strong language," it said, adding that the school issued a warning that inappropriate content from the drama has been negatively influencing playground games.

Citing a case in the U.K., the North Korean outlet also said, "A primary school in Britain has advised parents not to let their children watch the South Korean series when children are copying its violent games."

Also, in Belgium, young students were found to have beaten their friends who lost in games, following the example of "Squid Game," and this phenomenon has spread to children in the United States, Brazil and Thailand, astounding parents and school authorities, the site added.

It is not the first time that the North Korean propaganda site has blasted the Netflix show and South Korean society.

Last week, it said the drama makes people realize the sad realities of South Korean society where people are driven into a fierce dehumanizing competition.

Describing the rules of the game in the drama where only the final winner survives, it said, "The drama brings fury toward the society where those in power rule tyrannically, the unfair society where people without money are treated like chess pieces moved around by the rich."

However, it made no direct mentions of the worldwide popularity of the series.

Kang Seung-woo


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