Netflix’s ‘Squid Game’ Is So Popular It’s Boosting Similar Shows


Squid Game


Netflix has a monster hit on its hands with Squid Game, its most popular Korean drama ever, and what is shaping up to be one of its most-watched foreign-language productions period. The show is planted at #1 on the service, even in the US, and has been trending on social media non-stop since its release.

I’ve noticed something interesting going on with Netflix though in the wake of Squid Game’s popularity. Squid Game is actually so popular that it’s causing a surge of interesting in similar shows that Netflix offers, so much so that it’s boosting them to the “trending” page, despite many being older.

Two notable examples?

Alice in Borderland


Right now the first show listed on my Trending on Netflix tab is Alice in Borderland, which originally was released in December of 2020. It’s a Japanese series about competitors playing a deadly game in an abandoned, post-apocalyptic Tokyo, and it’s one of the shows you can immediately recommend to people after watching Squid Game, due to the similarities. Clearly it’s worked, and it’s surging in popularity as we speak.

Sweet Home


The second is Sweet Home, which was previously Netflix’s most popular Korean drama before this. That show chronicles a landscape where humans have turned into monsters, and a young man must defend those in his building, rising to the challenge. No games here, but it’s certainly a similar vibe and another great, brutal Korean series, another easy recommendation after Squid Game. That show too is about a year old, coming out at nearly the same time as Alice in Borderland.

Both of these shows are trending despite neither releasing new episodes or a new season. It’s really just the Squid Game effect. Netflix has not yet renewed Sweet Home, though it has renewed Alice in Borderland. Squid Game itself has not been given a season 2 yet, but it’s as sure thing. The only issue is that the man who wrote and directed every episode, Hwang Dong-hyuk, is unsure about future ideas for the show, and he says he’ll need help if he returns for another season.

My guess is that Squid Game will return for a second season in the end, and I bet Sweet Home will too. Netflix sometimes takes a weirdly long among of time to greenlight stuff like that, but Sweet Home may also benefit from this additional surge in popularity as people want more of their Squid Game fix.

As ever, watch Squid Game if you haven’t, it’s exceptional, and I can’t wait to see more of it.

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Pick up my sci-fi novels the Herokiller series, and The Earthborn Trilogy, which is also on audiobook.

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