Much like Game of Thrones or the MCU, Squid Game became a cultural phenomena the world over when it first aired in 2021. At the height of its popularity, Squid Game was everywhere and one could not escape the cultural power of the show even if he or she wanted to. Showcasing the story of several protagonists as they volunteered to take part in a dangerous life or death game in return for a cash prize that would change their very lives, the show found a large audience the world over owing to its themes of personal debt, poverty and fallouts from bankruptcies. Produced by Netflix, the Korean language drama series surprised critics and analysts who never thought that such content could rise to the dramatic heights that it managed to do.
The story of Squid Game never ended with Season 1. Instead it opened a vast world where competing forces would battle each other for various reasons. The show’s stunning popularity meant that it was swiftly renewed for Season 2. Since the life and death game itself was such a big part of the first season, it is almost given that Season 2 would also feature a new iteration of the deadly game. With no shortage of poor and economically distraught people amongst the South Korean populace, it is a given that the next iteration of the game will similarly be filled to the brim despite the deadly consequences that await every single contestant.
However, the mind behind the show, Hwang Dong-hyuk, will make Season 2 more complex than its predecessor and will, without a doubt, move to introduce thematic conflicts in the upcoming story. Considering several iterations of the game have already occurred, there will be several previous winners out there. What are these winners up to? Will they help? What will be the new role of the VIPs? How long before the secrets of the island and the company that runs it find their way to the public?
These are some of the many burning questions at the back of everyone’s minds. To predict what will happen, it is important to see what we know so far, what is sure to happen considering the plot lines of the previous seasons and what can Hwang Dong-hyuk do to ensure that Season 2 blows everyone’s socks off when it releases.
Squid Game Season 2 Release Date
The show’s stunning popularity means it is a given that it will run for several more seasons. Netflix had an extremely popular IP at its hand and it will ensure that the audience’s demand for more Squid Game content is fulfilled in all manners. Since Season 1 released towards the end of 2021 and was renewed for Part 2 soon after, there have also been hints of extending the story to Season 3. In addition, Netflix could also always release some direct-to-streaming films set in the Squid Game universe as well to keep audiences invested.
With Season 2 confirmed, details about it have been very scarce. The producers will ensure high secrecy for the project, to ensure that details of the show are not spoit before they ever air. In June 2022, Netflix released new details regarding the season and a cryptic video that heralded the production of Season 2 was underway. But, we do not know how far the production has progressed. Since Season 1 took almost ten months, a similar amount of time on Season 2 could mean fans would have to wait for a long time to see the games return.
Therefore, there is no official release date of Part 2 yet. It could premiere this year in fall of 2023 (just like Part 1 premiered in fall 2021). Or, since this time, the stakes are higher and the action bigger; it could take a lot more time to get the story to our screen. Thus, we could also see Season 2 bumped to 2024. Whenever it releases, audiences are salivating to dive right back into this world of intrigue, mystery and death.
Squid Game Season 2 Spoilers
As production ramped up on Part 2 in 2022, a few new juicy details have gradually come to light. The creator of the show Hwang Dong-hyuk released a statement through Netflix in June 2022 outlining some of the characters that would return.
The first of these characters is Lee Jung-jae’s Seong Gi-hun. A desperate every man with a bad gambling habit, Seong Gi-hun managed to win in Season 1 owing to his luck, his likable personality and his soft persona. Seeing a plethora of his friends die along the way, Seong Gi-hun was left scarred and destroyed by the psychological terrors of the game. He ended the first season dejected and defeated and spent a lot of time picking himself up from the absolute horror that had been inflicted upon him. Going through a personal transformation in which he died his hair red (a possible allusion to the rage inside him that has changed him permanently), Seong Gi-hun vowed to destroy the organization behind the game in any way possible.
The second is Lee Byung-hun who played Hwang In-ho, aka ‘The Front Man’ in Season 1. A master planner and a dedicated game warden, The Front Man turned out to be a formidable opponent. He had killed his brother Hwang Jun-ho in Season 1 as Hwang Jun-ho had successfully infiltrated the back end of the games, understood what was going on and had tried to call his department for help. His call to the police did not seem to go through since the island was pretty far from the mainland and The Front Man ended up shooting his brother into the depths of the ocean. The Front Man is a cold and calculating villain and he is sure to be up to even more schemes in Part 2. It is also possible that Seong Gi-hun will cross paths with him and The Front Man might even facing reckoning for his actions.
Then, there is Gong Yoo. Yoo played a mysterious recruiter in Part 1, luring unsuspecting participants to the game by dangling money in front of their desperate eyes. Yoo is first seen recruiting Lee Jung-jae’s character and as Season 1 ends, we see Yoo once more as he strives to enlist another unsuspecting fool into the deadly game. Yoo is still out there, collecting human cannon fodder for his masters and it will surely be in the minds of Squid Game’s creators to bring him back in some capacity.
After announcing the return of these three characters, creator Hwang Dong-hyuk stopped short of introducing any new names. However, the interviews of Seong Gi-hun and Hwang Dong-hyuk over the last year with several different media outlets have shed some more light on the matter.
Actor Lee Jung-jae noted while talking to People magazine: “I have no idea what will happen or the scale of it, but the only thing [Hwang] did tell me was that Seong Gi-hun is going to be in the show again, and he’s going to be playing in the arena again.”
He further added: “It’s probably safe to assume that, as we all saw at the end of season 1, the main plot of season two will be revenge.”
On the issue of Lee Jung-jae’s Seong Gi-hun dying his hair bright red, Squid Game creator Hwang Dong-hyuk said to Radio Times: “[The red hair] represents that he will never be able to go back to his old self. It is also a sign of his simmering anger.”
In an interview with The Associated Press, Hwang Dong-hyuk also made it clear that “Gi-Hun will come back, and he will do something for the world.” This possibly means that this time, the fight will be global and Gi-hun will have help in going up against the corporation. It also means that instead of saving his own skin, Gi-hun will have to step out of his comfort zone and expose himself a little bit to achieve his goals.
He later compared the simmering conflict in his series to Star Wars: “I would think that in the second season, what he has learned from the games and his experience in the first season, they will all be put to use in a more active manner. As for the Front Man who was also a past winner but became a Front Man, it’s like Darth Vader. Some end up Jedi and some become Darth Vader, right?”
With these narrative tidbits, it can be inferred that a showdown is coming with Seong Gi-hun on one side and Hwang In-ho on the other. The battle will be deadly and Season 2 is bound to have even more gory deaths than its previous iteration.
Squid Game Season 2 Cast
Since the Squid Game was an intricately designed ballet of desperation and death, not too many people will return from the first season. There were 456 contestants in Season 1 and every single one of them died save one.
This survivor was Seong Gi-hun who barely got out. After a meeting with the game maker, Seong Gi-hun vowed revenge. This, however, is easier said than done. He has his work cut out for him as this far reaching conglomerate has the money and the foot soldiers to survive. Since Seong Gi-hun had enlisted for another game at the end of Season 1, it is apparent he will be infiltrating the games from the inside and possibly work with a slew of new contestants. Also, as previously stated, the involvement of Lee Byung-hun who played Hwang In-ho, aka ‘The Front Man’ is also confirmed and so is the return of Gong Yoo.
This is a bit of a stretch but Hwang Jun-ho, the police officer killed by The Front Man, could also make a comeback. He was shot and fell into the ocean but we never really saw his dead body. It is possible he made it to the shore somehow and the creators could bring him back as a twist in Part 2. Also, let us not forget about the VIPs. The rich and evil cabal of crooks who enjoy people desperately fighting for their lives, these VIPs are the very reason the games exist in the first place. It is a given that they will be back as well in some capacity.
There is a way, however, that previously dead characters can return. Lee Jung-jae’s Seong Gi-hun could reminisce about his dead friends in flashbacks. He managed to forge some pretty important relationships with some of his comrades and the creators can use these flashbacks to highlight old information or bring some new information to light. However, even if this happens, it would be for a very limited time.
What is given that several new characters will indeed be introduced in Season 2 and once more, several of these will die. Lee Jung-jae’s Seong Gi-hun will have his work cut out for him to get these characters to speed and help them destroy their shackles. In face of greed and monetary benefit, Seong Gi-hun will have to be extremely careful about who he can trust. The organization behind the game will be on to him and he will have to walk on eggshells to complete his plans.
Squid Game Season 2 is therefore shaping up to be a mammoth cultural event. Audience interest has only increased in the series since its release in 2021 and whenever Season 2 manages to hit Netflix, it will be massive. With so much audience expectations and so many wild fan theories, Squid Game Season 2 has big shoes to fill. Will it be able to do so or will it massively disappoint like Game of Thrones did towards its end? This remains to be seen but since the creators behind the show are taking their sweet time in developing Season 2, chances of it turning out sour are very low. Whatever ends up happening, one thing is clear; we are in for a wild ride.