Squid Game: Thailand edition


Squid Game, a K-Drama on Netflix that’s taken the world by storm, has us all questioning how well we’d do in a competition where our lives are literally on the line.

Here’s a list of games people from Thailand would absolutely dominate in or lose.

Warning: spoilers ahead

Other Netflix content:


1. Red Light, Green Light


The first game in the Netflix series is a childhood classic, “Red Light, Green Light”, or in Thai “AEIOU”.

red-light-green-light
Image credit: Radio Times

Verdict: LOSE

When visiting Thailand, most travellers are fascinated by the intensity of traffic jams as well as the outstanding lengths that fearless drivers will go to avoid sitting behind a red light, even if they could be faced with death.

thai-squid-games
Image credit: Wee Boon

Thais like to joke about how some drivers see red lights as a “suggestion”, rather than an instruction to stop.

Thus, if we were ever to play “Red Light, Green Light”, we’d probably run through the creepy doll’s “red light” and get eliminated immediately.

squid-game-thailandScreenshot: Netflix


2. Honeycomb challenge


The honeycomb challenge not only sparked a forever fear of dalgona in most of the show’s audience, but also a series of memes.

honeycomb-squid-gameImage credit: Toys Matrix

Verdict: WIN

For those that didn’t run red lights in the previous game, they’d have a very high chance of surviving this game.

All throughout primary through secondary school, Thai schools have mandatory needlework classes.

thai-squid-game
Image credit: Trip Canvas


3. Midnight Fight


Though not “technically” a game, the midnight fight was an extracurricular activity organised by the caring staff of Squid Games.

thailand-squid-gamesImage credit: Stuff

Verdict: WIN

If a fight were to break out in the middle of the night, most Thais would probably pull a Player-001 and hide.

Plus, since it happens at night, if our superstitions are correct, we’d be shrouded and hidden by a ghost – making it impossible for aggressors to find us.

squid-game-thailandScreenshot: Netflix

Don’t worry, Ali, we were just hiding from the masses.


4. Tug of War


Tug of War is when Squid Game turns the intensity up by multiple notches.

tug-of-war-squid-gameImage credit: YouTube

Not only are the players literally pulling for their lives on elevated platforms, but they’re also literally shackled to the rope.

Despite how intimidating this game seems, though, Thais do have a chance of winning the tug of war.

thai-school-gameImage credit: Thai International School

Verdict: WIN

Thai students participate in annual “Sports Days”, where the most anticipated game is the “tug-of-war”.

So, just like Player 001, we’d probably have all the tactics to win the brutal game.

squid-game-thailandScreenshot: Netflix


5. Marbles


We can almost guarantee that you shed at least one tear during the “marbles” game.

squid-game-women-marblesImage credit: CNet

Verdict: WIN

While Thais would obviously lose in the sense that we’d have to watch some of our teammates perish right in front of our eyes, we do stand a chance of winning.

While gambling is technically illegal in The Land of Smiles, an article published by Khaosod English in 2019 states that 3 out of 5 Thais gamble.

thailand-squid-gameImage credit: Chiang Rai Times

Considering how widespread gambling is, it’d probably be safe to assume that some Thai players would be able to navigate their way to the top in “Marbles”.

Hey, numbers don’t lie.


6. Glass Bridge


The Glass Bridge was the most brutal game of all Squid Games in our opinion.

squid-game-glass-bridge-game-5-episode-7-stepping-stonesImage credit: Screen Rant

While your chances of winning do somewhat hinge on your athletic abilities, the game is mostly about luck.

The math teacher and glass factory employee even showed that there really is no way to game the system.

glass-bridge-squid-gameScreenshot: Netflix

Verdict: UNDECIDED

Something you’ll hear a lot in Thailand is choen ka. The phrase translates to “after you”, and is one that we use multiple times a day.

Given our tendency to let others go first, Thai players would probably end up going last. While this does give us the upper hand in knowing which piece of glass is safe to stand on, we may also run out of time before it’s actually our turn.


7. Squid Game


Now we’ve come to the final and titular activity: the Squid Game.

thailand-squid-gamesScreenshot: Netflix

Verdict: UNDECIDED

If we’re being honest, we’re still not 100% clear about the rules, so we can’t deliver a verdict based on the games.

What we do know, though, is that Thais are very familliar with heavy rains and floods, considering we live in a tropical country.

thailand-flooding
Image credit: Pattani Public Relations Office via Bangkok Post

In the series, the two players were slipping and sliding in the rain.

Here in Thailand, we have to walk through shin-deep water during the rainy season, so trying to hop around wet sand would be a walk in the park for us.

thailand-squid-gamesScreenshot: Netflix


Squid Game: Thailand edition


Squid Game took childhood games and turned them into tournament events where losing literally means death. Furthermore, the underlying themes of the show mirrored the harsher parts of our reality.

So, while we’re totally obsessed with the show, there were moments we felt a little saddened by the show. The direct correlation between money, privilege and chances of survival in the show’s universe directly reflects the way society works IRL had us ready to join Gi Hun’s quest to topple the hierarchy.

Furthermore, the way the show portrayed equality and consent as mere illusions also hit different. So, if you need a little pick me up after watching the oh-so-great but also almost-too-real show, we hope that this list provides some comedic relief.


Cover images adapted from (Clockwise from Top Left): Stuff, Screen Rant, Netflix, Netflix

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