By this point in time, you have most likely heard about the hit show “Squid Games.” The South Korean series playing on Netflix is now the most-watched Netflix show ever – beating out recent hits as “Bridgerton,” “Lupin,” and “Stranger Things.”
In the unlikely case you haven’t seen or heard of the show, the dystopian drama is set on a mysterious island where all the game-players are literally playing for their lives. Dressed alike in teal-green track suits and white canvas sneakers, the 456 numbered players are forced to play children’s games (such a red-light green-light, marbles, and tug-of-war) to the death in order to pay off their crushing load of debt. They are controlled by faceless workers who also dressed alike in red jumpsuits and black masks.
While the high level of viewers watching the show isn’t too surprising, what is surprising is the level of merchandise being sold for the show. Not only are the track suits and t-shirts sold on Netflix, Walmart is also carrying the apparel on its website as part of the “Netflix Hub” of merchandise, along with Squid Game card games. The Walmart deal is the first online storefront that Netflix has created with a national retailer.
Netflix is a certainly an industry behemoth and now has more than 200 million subscribers around the globe. But it faces increasing competition from other streaming platforms such as Amazon, Disney+, and Apple+ TV. It is also entering the video game space in order to retain, and attract, subscribers. Original shows such as this one create buzz and garner more subscribers.
But, are you willing to play?
Group Activities and Discussion Questions:
- Discuss the show. Who has seen it? What are their thoughts about it.
- Show a trailer of the show at: https://youtu.be/oqxAJKy0ii4 (Warning: There is violence in the trailer.)
- Show the Netflix merchandise site at: https://www.netflix.shop/collections/shop-squid-game-merchandise
- Show Walmart’s Squid Games website store: https://www.walmart.com/search?q=squid+games
- What is the target market for Netflix? For the Squid Games show?
- Based on the target market profile, will the merchandise be a draw for those customers?
Source: Ad Week; New York Times; Wall Street Journal; other news sources