Squid Victory – The world is in awe of Netflix’s blockbuster South Korean survival drama ‘Squid Game‘, which revolves around hundreds of people participating in deadly games for an enormous cash prize. The show has become hugely popular in China too, where Netflix is officially banned and people are not allowed to view content bypassing the great ‘Firewall of China’. But that is not the only reason why Squid Game has been making headlines in the communist country.
Youku, a Netflix-like streaming platform, recently came under fire in China after the users accused it of copying the theme of the ‘Squid Game’ series, for its upcoming game show called ‘Squid Victory’. The platform had announced its “new show” on Wednesday, when it released a poster that closely resembled that of the Korean drama.
Weibo inundated with Youku’s criticism:
Not only did the poster carry a similar name in a similar font, but it also had the same pink circle, square and triangular symbols embossed on it. As suggested by the promotional material pushed by the company, the Squid Victory game show will similarly see the contestants participate in “large-scale kids’ games”. So, when the blatant plagiarism caught the attention of the curious Chinese users, it got vehemently criticized and lambasted on Weibo, China’s Twitter-like microblogging site.
“On the one hand we complain about Koreans stealing our culture, and on the other hand, we copy their work when they produce something popular,” one Weibo user was quoted as saying by South China Morning Post. The other users dubbed Youku’s acts as “shameful” and “tragic”. “Why can’t our producers come up with our own ideas? This is so embarrassing,” a comment read.
Youku blames “technical error”:
After getting severely chastised at the hands of infuriated Chinese users, Youku came up with a lame explanation where it blamed a “technical error” for the plagiarised poster. “Due to a work error, the first draft of the new Game’s Squid Victory show – which was shot down before – was mistakenly used in promotional activities at a trade fair,” the streaming company wrote on Weibo.
But the excuse did not sound convincing enough to the users, which backfired almost immediately, triggering a new wave of heavy criticism for the company. “It sounds like such a lame cover-up. Obviously, they had tried to rip off Squid Game because of how popular it is,” one Weibo user vented his anger out.
Squid Game in South Korea – Game Squid Victory in China:
Amid massive pushback and immense backlash, the company announced the same day that it is renaming its upcoming survival drama to “Game Squid Victory”. The company also did release a new poster that carried the new name with a poorly designed font, and with pink circles and symbols completely missing.
Also read: ‘Squid Game’ breaches China’s great firewall. And CCP has lost its sleep over it
Plagiarism is something you can’t take out from Chinese DNA. Be it the cinema sector or the automobile sector, plagiarism is truly a Chinese propensity that one will find entrenched in every section of Chinese society. Hence, when the Chinese streaming platform came up with the plagiarism-ridden idea of ‘Squid Victory’, we were hardly shocked to learn about the development. But one thing indeed caught our attention — the unprecedented backlash that had poured in from the audience.
A great setback for China’s cultural war against South Korea:
The backlash from the Chinese people may have stemmed from the ongoing cultural war between South Korea and China. Last year, China was accused of stealing the Korean culture by asserting itself over the “Kimchi industry”. The irony was that the Chinese language did not even contain the characters to represent the pronunciation of ‘kimchi.’
Also read: K-Pop legends BTS just demolished CCP propaganda and extensive boycott calls
Similarly, China was reprimanded last year for saying that the Korean national dress ‘hanbok’ traces its origins in China. Not just that, the popular rap music competition show ‘The Rap Of China’, has also been criticized before for being a copy of South Korean show – ‘Show Me The Money.’
This makes it abundantly clear even for the Chinese people to see through the plagiarism and propaganda done at the behest of the Communist Party of China. This also makes the Chinese people realize how their country shamefully strips other nations of their pride and culture, only to hype fake nationalism among its dispirited masses. The public backlash against ‘Squid Victory’ being witnessed in China is actually the beginning of the end of China’s iniquitous cultural war waged against its neighbours.
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