In several countries, schools are warning parents about the dangers of the violent practices of the famous “Squid Game” of Korean origin, which, although recommended for children over 18 years of age, is also imitated by children as young as six years old.
The game’s plot involves indebted contestants competing in a series of childish games that turn deadly, looking for a chance to win a large amount of money to bail them out, describes Euronews of Oct. 14.
The program contains graphic scenes in which the losing characters are violently killed as they compete for a prize of millions of dollars.
Distributor Netflix is criticized because fans—including young children—try to imitate some games on the show, which has prompted concern from schools and parents.
Schools in many countries, including Britain, the UK, Belgium, Australia, and Spain, have issued warnings following reports of pupils playing “unhealthy and dangerous” games inspired by the series.
In this regard, Linda Wickham, principal of Dulwich Hill Public School, a suburb west of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, sent a message to parents.
“Squid Game features scenes that depict extreme violence and gore, strong language and frightening moments that are, according to its rating, simply not suitable for primary and early high school aged children,” Ms. Wickham wrote.
And she added that the content is inappropriate and negatively influences children’s playground games.
She also asked parents to change Netflix settings to prevent children from watching the program and closely monitor their online activity to further minimize exposure.
“Violent language and aggressive behaviours may be easily mimicked by children, particularly outside the confines of your home and in the wider space of a school playground,” she added.
And she also said: “Withholding the capacity of your children to access inappropriate content … will certainly assist to keep them safe and their growing minds to stay healthy.”
Separately, in a Facebook post shared more than 30,000 times, the municipal school of Erquelinnes Béguinage Hainaut in Belgium warned parents about children playing games and “beating” the loser.
“We have to protect the children as much as possible, but above all, I wanted to explain to them what happened, to work with them,” said Sabrina Caci, director of the municipal school.
She added: “I have no impact on what’s going on at home, but I wanted to explain to [the parents] that we are very vigilant about surveillance and that we do not take [the recreation of the games] lightly.”
The series is one of Netflix’s most-watched series in 90 countries, has been rated as appropriate for viewers over 15 in some countries, and has content warnings that include sex, violence, and suicide.