Recently I was attacked by peer pressure, I tried to stay strong but it was just too much for me and I lost the battle and so I ended up watching squid game. It was an amazing experience and yeah my brain could not rest but to notice life lessons we can all learn from the show.
On the surface, Squid Game is all about violence and obnoxious entertainment, but beyond the daunting scenes, twists, turns and loopholes, Squid Game has many moments of contemplation and life lessons in all of it’s nine episodes.
I am pretty sure you also fell to the peer pressure and have watched this most talked about Netflix show (I can not be the only one), if not do not worry you will fall soon, most likely after reading this article.
Here is what I learned from the Squid Game;
This is well explained with our main character, when he played the flipping game. The prize for winning the game was 100,000 in cash and for losing it was that he pays 100,000, but since our main character did not have the money he opted to be slapped. Well he lost countless times and yeah he got slapped a lot to the point that his face turned red. However, the moment he won, he forgot all about the 100,000 and went straight to attempt to slap the other guy. He lost so much that when he won he forgot his initial goal.
The theme of Staying Focused is also reintroduced in the “Red light, Green light” game. The game was the easiest of all the games but well, the second gun shot caused a shock to most of the competitors and it ended up being the game with the most casualties. If these eliminated competitors just stayed focused on winning the game than letting their surroundings distract them, they might have won.
The character who really goes with this theme is
Hate him or love him but he understood what it takes to win, he let his morals, emotions and all of his humility go because those would have distracted him from the game, He had his eyes on the prizes and the only reason why he did not win was because he let his guard down and his humility side got the best of him
Desperate people do desperate things
This is one of the most recurring themes of the show, from the beginning the first act of desperation was seen through the main character when he stole his mom’s money so he can go bet. As we continue to watch we notice the real intention was to use the betting money to buy his daughter a birthday gift. He was in a desperate situation to impress his daughter that he ended up stealing his mom’s money.
This theme of desperation is even more amplified when the reasons for choosing those particular contestants is explained. They are all in some kind of financial crisis and are in desperate need of money and when the opportunity presented itself, they did not hesitate to make the call.
In episode two (the most important episode of the series), after they left the game, we got a glimpse of some of the characters’ lives and how miserable everyone in their lives was. They all needed the money. Which is why they made the desperate call to go back and try their luck at winning.
No easy way out of life
Win this game and you get 45,600,000,000. That’s an amazing offer and anyone who could have been in the situation would surely go and compete. I would. However, when we look a bit deeper at their motivation, we realize that their real world was so cruel to them and this proved like an easy way to solve all of life’s problems. However, with each and every game, they got to find out it’s not as easy.
We also see this in the final episode, after our main character wins, he is still in a miserable state. He got the prize money, but it came at the cost of losing the friends he made. In addition, he came to find his mom dead, which was one of the motivations to go back to compete. He won but it never came easy.
Adulthood corrupts Childhood
Let’s talk about the old man, contestant number 001 or as we learn of his name “il nam”. We found out that he was the mastermind behind the squid game, which was really a shock but also it was an “I knew it” moment for me, I had my doubts about him and he was just odd, and also because of the fact that he was the only one who had different motivation for participating.
The old man had acquired so much wealth that he got bored with what to do with the money, and on his way to acquiring the wealth, he lost his trust in humanity and he felt that humans are selfish, which he proved with how the contestants kept on acting more selfish as the games went on.
Now we look at the childhood games which the contestants were playing, very innocent everyday games which do not have life threatening consequences when you lose, but the old man has been corrupted by adulthood, which in turn he decided to make the childhood games sinister.
We mostly see as we grow up, adulthood hits us so hard that it kills our inner child. Our innocent self ends up being taken away and we are left with this bitter self.
The marble game put everyone’s morals to the test, we saw each pair competing on who stays alive, we saw betrayal, we saw sacrifice and we saw what it takes to be human
Player 067(Kang Sae-byeok) and player 210(Ji-yeong) share a very intimate moment while others are fighting to see who proceeds. They only had 30 minutes with each other and they spent it talking about their lives. In this we learn who Ji-yeong is; an ex-convict who killed her father because her father killed her mother and we also see Kang Sae-byeo share her story. These two never allowed the marble game to turn them into something they are not, instead they decided to not participate and just have a chat. At the end we see Ji-yeong allowing herself to die because unlike Kang Sae-byeok’s story, she did not have much reason to live.
No matter the situation, always take the moment to be human!!
Not everything has a meaning
Squid game is one of the most amazing series i have ever watched, it’s themes are amazing and relatable and some tend to be thought provoking and just like me, you would want to know the meaning, what the writer tried to invoke and what messages he is trying to communicate to us; the audience. However, that may not be the case, squid game may not have any agenda of communicating to us. It may just have been a show to entertain us and to keep us on the edge of our seats.
After watching squid game, i found myself debating each scene to try and find the meaning and that’s when it hit me that not everything in life has a meaning.
Thank you for reading!!!!!
David is a Malawian creative, tech enthusiast and a start-up founder. When he is not traveling and solving problems, he likes to critically think about things and watch movie analysis. He’s also a co-founder of Pushing 20s magazine.