Loved “Squid Game?” Then you’ll love these Asian dramas

The rise of popularity of K-dramas following the success of “Squid Games” has led to a flurry of new shows

Sophie Shram, Arts & Culture Editor

Netflix’s recent release of the Korean drama “Squid Game” focuses on the socio-economic divides in society through the exploitation of the poor by the wealthy. It is a criticism of the modern capitalist society and displays the lengths a person will go to survive in such a dystopian society. The dark themes of the show drew many watchers in, and after finishing left them thinking, what’s next? The following Asian-made dramas are all great series that encompass all of the different themes and elements of “Squid Game” that you are sure to love.

“Alice in Borderland”

Netflix’s “Alice in Borderland” is a Japanese survival drama that follows three friends who find themselves in a world where they are forced to play “games” to survive, much like “Squid Game.”. Each game falls under a category of strength, wits, teamwork, and betrayal; all of which are very familiar elements to the games played in “Squid Game.” The games are more complex and even tear-jerking at times. It is an easy show to binge as it only has 8 episodes, each with their own terrifying games.

“Sweet Home”

“Sweet Home” is a show that focuses on the main character Cha Hyun-soo, and how he comes to discover his new apartment is packed with monsters that he must fight in order to survive. The show grapples with the ideas of humanity and monstrosity as each monster is a reflection of a human desire. The characters face many challenges that reinforce and remind themselves of their humanity. The suspenseful show leaves viewers on the edge of their seats rooting for their favorite character’s survival.

“Taxi Driver”

In “Squid Game,” there is a subplot that follows Detective Hwang Jun-ho as he searches for his missing brother and tries to expose the truth about the games. “Taxi Driver” follows a similar plot line as it is about a taxi company that gets revenge for those who can’t, and serves justice when the law fails to do so. As the show progresses, it delves into the characters’ backgrounds and motivations in joining the company, and brings attention to many prevalent social issues throughout Korea. 

“My Name”

Netflix’s newly released thriller drama, “My Name,” saw fast success by reaching the Top 10 list just shortly after its release. It follows Yoon Jiwoo who seeks revenge against her father’s murder and grows stronger under the guidance of a powerful crime boss. Though the show’s revenge driven plot differs from the survival games of “Squid Game,” it has many unexpected twists and turns and will leave watchers eager for more.

As western audiences are becoming more introduced to Asian media, it unlocks a whole new world of entertainment. As the Golden Globe award-winning Korean director, Bong Joon-ho (who directed the Academy Award-winning film “Patasite”), said, “Once you overcome the one-inch tall barrier of subtitles, you will be introduced to so many more amazing films.” When deciding to watch any of the previously stated shows, keep in mind the ratings and tags of each show as they are directed towards a mature audience and contain violence and potentially triggering content.