In September 2021, Netflix once again struck gold and managed to dominate popular culture, with the incredibly successful Squid Game series. Subscribers to the streaming service couldn’t get enough of the dark, violent show, with record-breaking viewership figures at the time.
Squid Game was an anomaly; an absolute sleeper hit that came from nowhere. With the Oscar-winning escapades of Bong Joon-ho and his Korean thriller movie Parasite, Western culture appeared to open up to the joys of international cinema. But, surely even Netflix could not have foreseen the immense and instant demand for a Korean TV series.
The show, addressing themes of social class, corruption and wealth divide, immediately blew up. When season one aired, you couldn’t have a conversation without someone asking: “Have you been watching Squid Game?” Now, it seems that question is destined to become a common one once again, as Netflix has confirmed the second season of Squid Game is officially on the horizon.
The sheer scale of this success was unprecedented. For fans of foreign language cinema, subtitles, and stories of diverse cultures was a very normal part of a viewing experience. But Squid Game managed to reach an incredibly wide audience. Even those who had previously been averse to the “one-inch tall barrier of subtitles”, as Bong Joon-ho describes it, were tuning in.
The appeal of Squid Game was so far-reaching, in fact, that even children were somehow latching on to the infamous games we see in the show and recreating them in the schoolyard. I really hope children weren’t watching along, but fair play if they were taking in the subtitles, too; that would be impressive.
With the first season ending on something of a cliff-hanger, it has long been expected that a second season was in the pipeline. Hwang Dong-hyuk, the creator of the show was reportedly holding discussions with Netflix way back in October 2021, but was determined to be patient in striking a deal.
Back in November, Hwang himself actually confirmed a second season was in development, but now Netflix themselves have made it official. It remains to be seen what the plot will revolve around this time, but we know the creator had plans to focus on the police in season two.
The dystopian drama series is one of the best Netflix series of all time, and the streaming service’s CEO Ted Sarandos has tantalised fans by claiming: “The Squid Game universe has just began.” It’s a very exciting and mysterious thing to say, and of course, we know audiences are heavily-invested in shared universe stories at the moment, such as the MCU.
No casting details have been released as of yet, but sadly, it sounds like one of the stars of the first season won’t be returning. When asked about the likelihood of an appearance in season two, Jung Ho-yeon said she has “never thought about that”.
For now, we wait. Until more details are released, you can relive the action with this behind the scenes video, which showcases some of the effects used to create the show.