“Squid Game,” a brutal Netflix survival drama that competes to escape heavy debts in deadly children’s games, came very close to Lee Chang Kevin’s house.
The show has captivated global audiences since the beginning of September on its way to becoming Netflix’s biggest hit ever. It has affected the raw nerves in the home, where growing personal debt, job market declines and income inequality have been exacerbated by the financial crisis of the past two decades.
In the dystopian horror of “Squid Game”, Lee shows himself reflected in the main character of the show, Seung Ji-hun, a sacked worker dealing with a broken family and constantly struggling with business failures and gambling problems.
Savong was beaten by gangster creditors for signing his limbs as collateral, but then received a mysterious offer to play in six traditional Korean children’s sports series to win 38 million.
The South Korean-produced show defeated Seng in a hyper-violent contest for the final prize against hundreds of other financially distressed players, with the losers killed in each round.
It raises troubling questions about the future of one of Asia’s richest economies, where those who once murmured about the “miracle of the Han River” are now lamenting about “Hell Jozin.” A satirical reference to a hierarchical kingdom that ruled Korea before the 20th century
“Some of the scenes were very difficult to see,” said Lee, a worker at Sangyang Motors in South Korea, who fired the carmaker in 2009 after he and 2,600 other employees filed for bankruptcy protection.
After years of protests, court battles and government intervention, Lee and hundreds of other Seng Yang workers have returned to work in recent years. But not long before there were suicides among co-workers and family members who were mired in financial hardship.
Lee said, “In the squid game, you see the characters wandering around to survive after work, struggling to run a fried chicken dinner or working as a ‘dairy’ driver. “It reminded me of my co-workers who died.”
Lee said he and his colleagues struggled to find work and were backlisted by other auto companies that considered them militant workers.
A 2016 report by medical researchers at Korea University found that at least 28 fired Sang Yang workers or their relatives had died of suicide or serious health problems, including those who suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder. Are associated with the disease.
“Squid Game” is one of many South Korean shows affected by the economic crisis. Its dark story of inequality and class has been compared to Bong Jun Ho’s Oscar-winning “parasite”, another spectacular epoch-making scene and violence exposes the bottom line of South Korea’s economic success story.
Netflix tweeted on Wednesday that “Squid Game” has become its biggest original series launch after reaching 111 million viewers.
The rapid reconstruction of South Korea since the devastation of the 1950-53 Korean War has been spectacular. The dark side of this rise
“Everywhere in the world there are serious class problems, but South Korean directors and writers seem to be more courageous,” said Um San Su, a film director.
In “Squid Game”, Seung’s troubles point to his firing by the legendary Dragon Motors a decade ago, pointing to Song Yong, which means “double dragon.”
In 2009, hundreds of workers, including Lee, occupied the Sangyang plant for weeks to protest the dismissal and were surrounded by riot police, who attacked them with sticks, shields and water cannons, and helicopters. Released liquid tear gas through
The violent clash left dozens injured and is set in the story of the “squid game.” Sewing has a flashback about a dragon comrade killed by strike breakers, while the game’s co-conspirators set up barricades with hostel beds to try to end the contest with more sinister sneak peeks from vicious opponents. To prevent attacks.
After all, it is anyone who is willing to risk his life to free himself from the nightmare of insurmountable debt during a brutal battle between hundreds of people.
The show features other crushed or backward characters, such as Ali Abdul, an undocumented factory worker from Pakistan, and an owner who refuses to pay him, exemplifying how the country Exploits some of Asia’s poorest people while ignoring dangerous working conditions and wages. Theft.
And Kung Sai Byeok, a refugee from North Korea who knew nothing but hard life on the streets and is desperate for money to save his brother from an orphanage and smuggle his mother from the north.
Many South Koreans are frustrated with moving forward in a society where good jobs are falling sharply and house prices are skyrocketing, making many people reluctant to make risky financial investments or gamble on corrupt currencies. Are willing to borrow.
Domestic debt, more than 8 1.800 trillion ($ 1.5 trillion), now exceeds the country’s annual economic output. Difficult times have pushed record low birth rates as struggling couples avoid having children.
The global success of the squid game is hardly a matter of pride, wrote South Korean lawyer Si Jeong Kim in Poland in a column in the Seoul Shinmon newspaper.
“Foreigners will come to you, saying that they also watched the squid game with interest, and may ask if Ali’s situation in the drama could really be in a country as rich and clean as South Korea. Yes, and I have nothing to say. ” Said.
Kim Sangongwok, another Sangyang worker who spent months with Lee, sitting on the chimney in a Sangyang factory in 2015, called on the company to reinstate laid-off workers, he said. That they can’t watch the squid game after one episode.
“It was very painful for me,” he said.