Squid Games: Psychotherapist discusses why we enjoy watching the gruesome series

Local News

HARLINGEN, Texas (ValleyCentral) — Squid Games has climbed to the top of the charts in just weeks. 

It is now the first Korean series to reach Number 1 among Netflix subscribers.   

“Social media was blasting it all over the place,” said Victor Mejia, an RGV resident, and viewer of the show.

The binge-worthy show centers around 456 adults, who all find themselves in major financial debt. They’re recruited by a secret organization, offering them an opportunity to play a series of children’s games for a chance at winning $45.6 billion won, or $28 million.  

It’s all fun and games…until someone loses.

After each round, players who are eliminated are killed.

ValleyCentral spoke with Doctor Elizabeth Cortez, a psychotherapist, to talk about the show’s popularity. She says it’s all about how our mind works.  

“Our brains are naturally geared to think of negative things,” said Dr. Cortez. “It’s the perfect show to be addicted to because it’s kind of like all these thoughts that might have crossed my mind are not really my thoughts. Instead, it is the creators, producers and writers. And [we] get to watch this.”  

Doctor Cortez says because many people recently experienced financial hardship, the raw desire to win the prize money in the show can feel relatable.  

“Because of what we’ve all gone through with the pandemic I think we all had questions about ‘what if’. What if I lose my job what if the world never opens again?” said Doctor Cortez.   

“When a show like that comes around that shows you darkness or what real grief is about you get to experience that without really being in darkness yourself,” said Mejia. “I think that’s what attracts people to squid games.” 

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