“Squid Game” is a wet dream for North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, according to outside observers of the regime.
The wildly popular Netflix series about desperate, debt-ridden South Koreans playing a series of children’s games to see who will survive and win a multi-million dollar prize paints Seoul in a terrible light — just how Kim likes it.
“Kim’s got to be thrilled at how South Korea is being depicted to the world,” Michael Madden, a nonresident fellow at the Stinson Center and an expert on North Korea, told The Post. “He’s always railing about the influence of the West and the consumerism and of South Korean and American society. He’s got to be loving ‘Squid Game.’”
Kim has been known to rail against what he calls the “decadent lifestyle” of the West. Though he and his family are known for their secret consumption of a wide variety of luxury products imported underground from overseas, Kim presents himself as a stern nationalist out to preserve traditional Korean values.
In May, he reportedly banned skinny jeans and mullets as part of his regime’s crackdown on capitalistic culture among youth. That move came after North Korea state media published a warning warning capitalism had to be kept from “seeping” into the country.
North Korean state media called “Squid Game” is an example of the “beastly” nature of “South Korean capitalist society where mankind is annihilated by extreme competition.”
The site also slammed the series, saying “Squid Game” shows an“unequal society where the strong exploit the weak.”
Gordon Chang, author of “Losing South Korea,” said it’s no coincidence that “Squid Game” as well as the Oscar-winning film “Parasite” which also showed South Koreans in a poor light played right into the hands of Kim Jong Un,
Chang said the leftist government of South Korea president Moon Jae-in, is trying to “destroy democracy and restore unification with North Korea.”
“The filmmakers are also leftist and they’re from a generation in South Korea that hates America,” Chang said. “They’re made South Korea look horrific – even though it’s really not that bad — and the North Koreans love this and are taking advantage of it. They all think they’re involved in this existential struggle.:”
But Sean King, an Asia expert at Park Strategies, said he disagrees that “Squid Game” will be a win for Kim — not at least in the long term.
“What “Squid Game’ does is allow people in other countries to see South Koreans as people with the same problems they do,” King said. “They can relate to South Koreans more. It humanizes them even if they are being shown in a bad light.. It makes them more like us which long term is not good for Kim. He doesn’t people relating more to South Koreans.”