Squid Game took the world by storm when it premiered in September 2021. The dystopian Netflix thriller combined interesting characters, high stakes, relevant themes of class conflict, and a distinctive visual style, turning it into the biggest TV hit of 2021. If you're a fan of Squid Game and are looking for similar shows and movies to watch, we've got you covered. In this article, we'll explore a variety of titles that share common elements with Squid Game, including high-stakes games, intense competition, and thought-provoking themes.
One show that shares similarities with Squid Game is Physical: 100. This Korean reality competition series features 100 contestants who compete against each other in various challenges. The losers are eliminated, and the competition continues until only one person is left standing. Physical: 100 puts a premium on physical fitness, enlisting bodybuilders, MMA fighters, military personnel, and more. The intense competition and diverse range of disciplines make it reminiscent of the Jean-Claude Van Damme classic, Bloodsport.
Panic is a young adult series that came out on Prime Video a few months before Squid Game. Set in the small town of Carp, Texas, Panic follows graduating high school seniors who compete in a dangerous competition called "Panic." The participants face life-threatening challenges in the hopes of winning a life-changing amount of money. While Panic may not reach the same level of quality as Squid Game, it explores similar themes of economic desperation and the lengths people will go to escape their circumstances.
All of Us Are Dead
All of Us Are Dead is another Korean series that shares similarities with Squid Game. This jolting thriller follows a group of high school students as they fight against a zombie virus outbreak. The series centers around the students' desperate struggle for survival and the transformation of their ordinary classrooms into vicious battlegrounds. As the virus spreads beyond the school walls, the show delves into themes of corruption, authority, and the abuse of power, much like Squid Game.
For fans of Squid Game looking for another thrilling Korean drama, Hellbound is a must-watch. Created and directed by Yeon Sang-ho, the director of Train to Busan, Hellbound combines horror and morality in a captivating way. The series explores what happens when angels descend upon Earth to let sinners know when they will die and that they're being taken to hell. As the world grapples with this supernatural phenomenon, Hellbound delves into themes of right and wrong, similar to Squid Game.
Dr. Brain is a psychological sci-fi thriller that debuted on Apple TV+ in November 2021. The series follows a brain scientist who develops a way to transfer memories from one person to another. His goal is to investigate a family tragedy, leading to a mind-bending exploration of the living and the dead. Dr. Brain's psychedelic visuals and emotional storytelling make it a captivating watch, much like Squid Game.
Kaiji: Ultimate Survivor
Kaiji: Ultimate Survivor is an anime series that shares similarities with Squid Game. The story revolves around a man in debt who is offered the opportunity to compete in a series of games to pay off what he owes. The games range from Rock, Paper, Scissors to walking across a balance beam electrified with high stakes. Like Squid Game, Kaiji: Ultimate Survivor is brutal and filled with trickery as competitors try to outdo each other to escape their debts.
Alice in Borderland
If you enjoyed the survival aspect of Squid Game, Alice in Borderland is a perfect follow-up. This Japanese Netflix series follows a group of friends who find themselves in a parallel Tokyo where they must play various games to survive. Unlike Squid Game, the challenge in Alice in Borderland is solving problems rather than competing against others. The series offers a mix of thrilling puzzles, grisly violence, and intense action.
For fans of the human connection in Squid Game, #Alive is a Korean zombie thriller worth watching. The story follows a young man who locks himself in his apartment during a zombie apocalypse. Amidst the chaos, he discovers another survivor and forms a bond. While #Alive doesn't involve games or winning money, it shares Squid Game's focus on survival and morality.
Sweet Home is a fantasy horror series that captures the dark and bonkers energy of Squid Game. The story revolves around a group of people trapped inside an apartment complex as the world around them turns into monsters. These monsters reflect the characters' inner demons, leading to intense interpersonal drama and insane action sequences.
Although not directly related to Squid Game, Battle Royale is a classic movie that explores similar themes of survival and competition. Set in a totalitarian society, Battle Royale follows a high school class forced to kill each other until only one person remains alive. The film's intense violence and thought-provoking premise have made it a cult favorite and a significant influence on the battle royale genre.
While not centered around games, The Purge shares similarities with Squid Game in terms of mayhem and chaos. Based on the movie franchise, The Purge imagines a world where all crime, including murder, is legal for a designated period. The series explores the consequences of this lawless night and the impact it has on society. If you're looking for a show that delivers mayhem similar to Squid Game, The Purge is worth checking out.
For a unique take on competition and prosperity, the Brazilian young adult series 3% is a great choice. Set in a totalitarian society, 3% follows 20-year-olds who have one chance to escape poverty and live among the rich on an island paradise. To earn their place, they must go through a series of tests known as "the Process." These tests evaluate the candidates' worth and range from interviews to solving fake crime scenes. Like Squid Game, the objective is to make it to the next round and secure a better future.
If you're a fan of Squid Game and are looking for similar shows and movies to watch, this list provides a range of options. From intense competitions to thought-provoking themes, these titles offer thrilling and captivating experiences. Whether you're interested in Korean dramas, Japanese series, or international shows, there's something here for everyone. So grab some popcorn, settle in, and enjoy these gripping tales of survival, competition, and morality.