When the Netflix K-Drama Squid Game first started airing, fans worldwide were instantly hooked onto the dark storyline and relatable characters. In particular, it was praised for its realistic interpretation of capitalism in the modern world.
The story follows a group of Korean citizens who are picked to play the Squid Game because of their financial worries and are willing to risk death for money. It also showcases the “VIPs” who have no money worries and are so privileged that they can bet on people’s lives for fun. It shows the real lengths people are willing to go to if they are in desperate situations.
However, many companies have capitalized on the franchise releasing merchandise, holding events, and much more with the show’s global success. In particular, a TikTok video recently went viral showcasing a Squid Game pop-up cafe in Los Angeles.
In the video, the user explained that the show was broadcast from surrounding televisions, and workers wore the same green jumpsuits as the characters in the show. He then explained that he waited two hours for a Sang-woo burger, which he described as “pretty good.”
When the video was shared, many viewers shared their concerns about how a show that was meant to criticize capitalism has become capitalized.
Yet, it isn’t the first time netizens fans of the series have criticized companies for using the franchise to their own benefit. Since Squid Game first aired, many companies and individuals have been accused of “capitalizing” the franchise that was meant to represent the opposite message.
Many online fashion brands have been selling Squid Game-inspired merchandise and the YouTuber known as Mr. Beast announced that he was going to host his own version of the game. He sold branded hoodies to raise the $2m he expects it will cost to fund this.
It’s in your hands tik tok
Alongside this, one user who shared the video also voiced their sympathy for the director Hwang Dong Hyuk, explaining that he felt bad that Netflix had capitalized on the show, and through this, the world seemed to have lost the message behind the show.
You can watch the whole clip below.