Los Angeles (AFP)

The South Korean dystopian drama Squid Game, which launched less than four weeks ago on Netflix, has been viewed by 111 million subscribing households, a record for a series start on the platform, the group said on Tuesday.

Mixing social allegory and extreme violence, Squid Game features characters from the most marginalized fringes of South Korea, including an Indian migrant and a North Korean defector, participating in traditional children's games to win 45.6 billion won (33 million euros).

Losers are killed.

"Squid Game has reached 111 million fans - having the biggest start for a series" on the platform, Netflix tweeted.

The juxtaposition of childish pastimes and their fatal consequence, with a polished production and sumptuous scenography, has indeed conquered a very large audience around the world, the series prancing at the top of the rankings on Netflix in more than 80 countries.

The record so far had been held by an entirely different series, "Bridgerton", chronicling the sentimental intrigues of good British society at the start of the 19th century, which had been viewed by 82 million accounts in the four weeks that took place. had followed its posting at the end of December 2019.

The figures released by Netflix, which count all accounts watching an episode for at least two minutes, are not subject to third-party verification, unlike audience measurements for traditional television.

The Squid Game phenomenon is the latest manifestation of South Korea's growing influence on the global cultural scene, following the K-pop sensation BTS and Parasite, Palme d'Or at Cannes and first non-language film. English to win the Oscar for best film.

The Korean wave should not fall immediately: in February, Netflix announced a plan to invest $ 500 million (432 million euros) for this year alone in series and films produced in South Korea.

This Korean box also reinforces Netflix in its strategy of producing more international content and in foreign languages.

The streaming giant's third biggest success is the made-in-France series "Lupine", with French star Omar Sy playing the famous gentleman-burglar.

© 2021 AFP

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