Should we protect children from violent TV shows?

English council urges parents not to allow children to watch Squid Game because children are copying its violent challenge which led to injuries. 

In a Squid Game challenge, participant are shot dead if they fail the game. Photograph: Netflix

Despite being deemed unsuitable for viewers under 18, the Korean drama Squid Game has led to some schoolchildren trying to recreate the show’s violent survival games. Since its release on Netflix last month, Squid Game has become the streaming service’s biggest series launch ever.

Netflix has faced criticism, however, as fans – including young children – attempt to reenact some of the games from the show, causing concern for schools and parents.

In a Facebook post that has been shared more than 30,000 times, the municipal school of Erquelinnes Béguinage Hainaut, in Belgium, warned parents about children playing versions of ‘1,2,3 Piano’ and “beating up” the loser. We asked the public that do we do enough to protect kids from violent stuff on TV, if you have children would you let them watch Squid Game?  

Jamie Williams, 39, Hairdresser, Newport

” I will protect them until they are emotionally mature enough to understand this violent drama. I got two young boys so if they saw squid game, they’d totally want this recreated. They must never hear about it. Also, I know Squid Game is rated 15 so children shouldn’t be watching it anyhow.”

Andi Davies, 25, Photographer, Cardiff

” I won’t blame Netflix and social media. The parents are at fault for not supervising what they watch online. Children are only victims of their incompetence to protect them from inadequate content.”

Mike Chu, 21, Student major in English literature, Malaysia

” I don’t understand why can’t kids watch Squid Game. Bit violent, fair enough, good moral message of always hate the rich is evil though. Besides, even if they copy the games, where are they going to get giant gun dolls and tall glass bridges anyway? I mean kids can choose what they want.” 

Harrison Emmanuel, 36, Primary School Teacher, Nigeria 

” Though I admire Squid Game for its story concept, I’m kind of bothered that children are dressed for Halloween using Squid Game as a theme. I don’t have kids but I am a primary teacher, so I talk with kids a lot. It’s not the kind of series I would introduce to my students.”

Dian Chen, 23, Student major in Architecture, China

” I think parents have a responsibility to guide their children according to the rating system for movies and TV shows. I’m an adult, and squid games are too bloody and violent for me.”