Youth-based mental health organization ReachOut Australia has released a statement warning potential viewers of Netflix’s ultra-violent smash-hit Squid Game of triggering themes.
In an Instagram post, ReachOut detailed that there are moments in the show that some viewers may find “distressing,” including themes of suicide, violence, substance abuse, and gambling.
“We know a lot of people are talking about Squid Game,” ReachOut Australia wrote.
“Before you decide whether or not to watch, it’s good to be aware that some of the show’s themes could be distressing. The show includes things like suicide, extreme violence, exploitation of people in a disadvantaged position, and gambling or substance abuse.
“If you choose to watch the series and feel like you need support to process the themes shown, we’ve linked some info on how to deal with disturbing videos in our bio.”
Themes of suicide are explored in the second episode of the series, ‘Hell.’
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In related news, a Belgian school issued a warning following reports that students were playing a violent punching game inspired by Squid Game.
Students of Municipal School of Erquelinnes Béguinage Hainaut have been re-creating Squid Game‘s interpretation of “Red Light, Green Light.”
The series, about a group of in-debt social dropouts that compete in a gruesome life-or-death competition for the chance of winning a ₩45.6 billion ($53 million) prize, by playing bloody versions of children’s games, inspired students of Erquelinnes Béguinage Hainaut to play their own version of “Red Light, Green Light,” as popularised in the first episode of the show.
In Squid Game, participants of the game are shot dead by a murderous dummy should they lose. In the Belgian school, the loser gets punched instead of executed.
“We [must remain] vigilant so that this unhealthy and dangerous game is stopped!” read the Facebook public service announcement, posted Tuesday by the Municipal School of Erquelinnes Béguinage Hainaut.