Squid Game returns next month. But this time, it's for real.

Let the (non-deadly) games begin.

The South Korean phenomenon that is Squid Game returns to Netflix in November – sort of. This time, it's a reality series called Squid Game: The Challenge, and streaming has not yet jumped the shark enough to actually kill reality TV contestants.

So the ultimate stakes are simply... cash.

Watch: the trailer for Squid Game: The Challenge. Post continues below video.

Video via Netflix.

The new series sees 456 contestants compete through a series of games inspired by the show to win a US$4.56 million (AU$7.2m) cash prize. Wild!

In the trailer, contestants can be seen taking part in some of the series' infamous challenges, with the show promising "their strategies, alliances, and character will be put to the test while competitors are eliminated around them".

And yes, the terrifying doll is back.

Image: Netflix.


The trailer makes the show look very intense,  which makes sense given the... Squid Game of it all. Among the games shown are Red Light, Green Light, Sugar Honeycombs, and Marbles, which all take place under the watchful eye of the figures in red.

There's also, according to various contestants' voices, expected to be a lot of drama, backstabbing and tears.

The Challenge has faced some controversy since its announcement.

Contestant call-outs were released by Netflix in June 2022, looking for people willing to be put to the test in a series of games inspired by the show. The original show's storyline followed hundreds of cash-strapped contestants accepting an invitation to compete in children's games for a tempting prize – but the stakes were deadly.


This time they're not, but reports from filming in the UK suggested some contestants had a less than stellar experience.

Contestants alleged to The Sun that they'd taken part in games under freezing conditions.

"It was like a war zone. People left in tears. Even if hypothermia kicked in... people were willing to stay for as long as possible because a lot of money was on the line. Too many were determined not to move so they stood there for far too long," one contestant claimed.

In response, Netflix, Studio Lambert and The Garden said: "We take contributor care as one of our highest priorities and regular toilet breaks, water and food are categorically standard practice on production."

They said that all contestants were prepared by production several weeks ago and told that they would be playing a game in cold conditions, and participated knowing this.

"All precautions were taken to ensure the game was played safely."

Squid Game: The Challenge will feature 10 episodes that will air over a three-week period, beginning November 22.

And yes, season two of Squid Game – the original fictional, deadly series – is coming too. Filming began in July, and it's likely to release late 2024.

Feature image: Netflix.

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