Binge Guide

Love Squid Game? Here Are 10 TV Shows and Movies Just Like It

The Korean series is a bona fide hit on Netflix, so we gathered together other titles with Darwinism at their core — like The Hunger Games films and Amazon series Panic — into one bloodlust-satisfying binge list.

by | September 30, 2021 | Comments

South Korean survival drama Squid Game has assembled a massive fan base since it premiered September 17 on Netflix. Starting with 456 competitors in dire financial straits, the bloody and suspenseful series finds an increasingly smaller number of them competing in deadly takes on traditional children’s games in the hopes of being the one left standing to collect the grand prize of 45.6 billion won (or nearly $40 million).

Gore aside, the nine-episode series has caught on because it’s so easy to see how these characters wound up in the situation. Lee Jung-jae plays Seong Gi-Hun, a gambling addict who enters the game at number 456 in the hopes of settling his debts and repairing his relationship with his daughter. Jung Ho-Yeon plays Kang Sae-byeok (or Number 067), a North Korean defector hoping to win so that she can pay a broker to find and retrieve her family.

But the show’s survival-of-the-fittest plot also resonates because it is a favorite theme in pop culture. We’ve rounded up 10 other film and TV titles that are worth watching once you survive Squid Game.



Forget the one-percent of today’s society. In this Brazilian dystopian drama, 20-year-olds from an impoverished Inland have one shot at an affluent lifestyle: compete in an event called The Process and get to live in luxury in a society known as Offshore. As the title suggests, only 3 percent of them make it. Challenges include solving a fake crime, surviving breathing a hallucinogenic gas, and potentially jeopardizing your family’s safety.



The Japanese sci-fi series follows friends who find themselves suddenly trapped in an abandoned Tokyo and forced to “play” increasingly dangerous games chosen from a deck of playing cards. Win and you get a visa that extends your life. Lose and you’re executed by red lasers that are shot from the sky.



In the infamous Japanese action-suspense film, teens are gassed and kidnapped as soldiers take them to a deserted island. There, they are told they have to fight each other to the death (they’re forced to wear explosive collars around their necks to ensure this actually happens). Some students are more into it than others and gruesome deaths happen. But, much like another classic story, some teens learn to outsmart the system.



The series of films based on Suzanne Collins’ best-selling novel is a future-set dystopian drama that plays with our current culture’s obsessions with reality competition television and historical class discrimination. In this world, the rulers in the Capital have an annual battle to the death where one boy and one girl from each district under its control are forced to (or volunteer to) enter an arena until only one emerges. Teenage archer Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) becomes known as the Girl on Fire and soon becomes tasked not only with saving herself, but all of civilization.



Betty Gilpin and Hilary Swank star in this horror-thriller about a group of people who wake up to find themselves gagged and stranded together in a booby-trapped forest. Coming out a few months before the 2020 presidential election, the controversial film — written by Watchmen’s Nick Cuse and Damon Lindelof and directed by Compliance’s Craig Zobel — was meant to be a political satire that pit liberal elites against “deplorables.”



The anime series focuses on Itō Kaiji, a gambler living in poverty in a world where everyone is either in debt or a ruling class who makes those who owe pay one way or another through a series of elaborate games. Our hero’s mostly been able to keep himself out of major trouble. But then a collector comes calling, saying he owes for guaranteeing loan for a former co-worker who has since disappeared. Suddenly, he finds himself on a debtors ship playing games like Restricted Rock Paper Scissors and Electrified Steel Beam Crossing.



Based on the James Dashner novel, Dylan O’Brien stars as a teen who wakes up inside an underground elevator with his memory wiped clean and soon joins other like-minded youths in an area known as the Glade. While they do eventually remember their names, none of the kids remember anything else about them or how they got there. They do know that their only chance out of there is to search for an exit in the sprawling Maze surrounding the Glade. But they’re only allowed to do so by day. No one has ever survived searching the Maze at night …



Another story of what happens when teens are left to form their own society, the 1990 and 1963 film adaptations of William Golding’s classic novel tells the story of military cadets stranded on an island. This time there isn’t some powerful overlord setting them up with extreme challenges; it’s the battles they wage among themselves that do them in. Better hold onto that conch, boys.



What lengths would you go to to get out of your podunk hometown after graduation? In this Amazon Prime Video series, which Lauren Oliver adapted from her own 2014 novel, 47 high school graduates participate in their town’s annual Panic competition. The winner gets a prize of $50,000. But no one said the rules couldn’t change, or become more dangerous, after the games begin.



Set in the far, far off year of 2017, the United States is now a totalitarian police state where criminals must fight for their lives by fleeing armed mercenaries — all for the delight of broadcast audiences. The cast is led by Arnold Schwarzenegger, an innocent man framed for a massacre during a food riot, with a cast that also includes Jesse Ventura, former football player Jim Brown, and Mick Fleetwood. Directed by Paul Michael Glaser and written by Die Hard’s Steven E. de Souza, the film is based on a novel written by Stephen King under the pseudonym Richard Bachman.

Thumbnail image: Youngkyu Park


On an Apple device? Follow Rotten Tomatoes on Apple News.

Tag Cloud

Photos action-comedy Baby Yoda book Trivia french dragons posters worst Spring TV facebook supernatural Bravo documentaries films international sitcom king arthur HBO Max San Diego Comic-Con best Schedule Valentine's Day Drama trailers The Arrangement Christmas spanish Summer monster movies spider-verse MCU game show YouTube Premium live event spain Avengers Television Academy First Look ABC Signature Elton John Oscars true crime sequels Sundance Now slashers Sundance TV singing competition Ellie Kemper IFC Horror finale Travel Channel nfl comic book movies Calendar miniseries golden globe awards Tomatazos toronto Awards Turner Country Watching Series ID Nominations FX golden globes Box Office Holidays Extras DirecTV The Walking Dead franchise Showtime casting rotten movies we love satire Academy Awards Pet Sematary CBS superhero italian dc YouTube Red Disney+ Disney Plus 2017 2021 Apple TV Plus king kong 72 Emmy Awards football A&E Trailer Netflix Christmas movies Arrowverse japanese archives dreamworks aapi teaser BBC One Fox News biography Emmys Comic Book American Society of Cinematographers adaptation new zealand sag awards thriller TNT Dark Horse Comics child's play TCM lord of the rings green book Pixar Pirates First Reviews romance Best and Worst DC Comics Hallmark Star Wars royal family Brie Larson Chilling Adventures of Sabrina genre social media 71st Emmy Awards Spectrum Originals Turner Classic Movies GoT hidden camera theme song mission: impossible fast and furious Musicals comedies dark Women's History Month spanish language Ghostbusters popular TCA 2017 Emmy Nominations Disney Channel halloween tv Freeform breaking bad christmas movies video on demand scorecard ViacomCBS Columbia Pictures Cosplay Marvel Marvel Studios LGBT Peacock streaming Year in Review Mindy Kaling crime jamie lee curtis Paramount Plus Image Comics superman The CW mutant zero dark thirty young adult travel Super Bowl 2015 spider-man Amazon See It Skip It Disney jurassic park NYCC deadpool Trophy Talk The Academy 90s high school cops new york Walt Disney Pictures boxing rom-coms scary LGBTQ TV Land Reality Competition dexter Logo Comic-Con@Home 2021 Pride Month BAFTA Rocketman sopranos Lifetime Christmas movies transformers halloween Winter TV series Pop TV Exclusive Video TV movies Nickelodeon scene in color justice league Apple political drama period drama Pop 99% video versus APB PBS saw Countdown Grammys discovery chucky Music Sci-Fi Instagram Live directors news hollywood doctor who Amazon Studios 2018 black comedy Paramount Network Biopics Funimation Captain marvel new star wars movies Musical book adaptation PlayStation 2016 A24 93rd Oscars Mystery Marathons Black History Month streaming movies Animation 21st Century Fox reviews RT21 Western zombie rt labs Alien Broadway Neflix cancelled television Podcast Hulu Tubi movie joker cartoon ghosts TCA Winter 2020 E! Red Carpet reboot festivals DC Universe what to watch 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards mob rt archives TV Masterpiece classics Star Trek based on movie CW Seed adenture Universal Certified Fresh SundanceTV twilight 73rd Emmy Awards SXSW Hear Us Out YA BBC Endgame vs. Tokyo Olympics VICE pirates of the caribbean independent cats HBO elevated horror diversity kaiju stand-up comedy olympics Starz indiana jones VH1 Syfy dogs ESPN police drama blockbuster asian-american Comedy Central canceled stop motion technology Creative Arts Emmys cults worst movies ratings IMDb TV CNN mcc TCA cinemax comic books laika Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Tarantino TruTV Discovery Channel telelvision razzies sports Hallmark Christmas movies Wes Anderson DGA 007 PaleyFest Comics on TV blaxploitation art house 2020 blockbusters The Witch science fiction DC streaming service tv talk Acorn TV indie crime thriller suspense target universal monsters 24 frames Mary Poppins Returns prank FXX ITV critic resources space History Lifetime Sundance ABC Sony Pictures Tumblr crime drama wonder woman docuseries comics binge Action boxoffice Shudder Winners CBS All Access feel good mockumentary Adult Swim ABC Family HBO Go cooking MSNBC adventure Vudu IFC Films Disney Plus Video Games cars rt labs critics edition Lionsgate latino robots Holiday kong Awards Tour 4/20 Pacific Islander Classic Film The Walt Disney Company quibi revenge Sneak Peek disaster National Geographic Rom-Com name the review critics Mary poppins medical drama Quiz Superheroe SDCC Comedy remakes Mary Tyler Moore comic south america hispanic GIFs Crunchyroll The Purge TBS romantic comedy free movies movies Rock Crackle Stephen King women BET obituary NBA australia 1990s Esquire X-Men Legendary Ovation WarnerMedia Cartoon Network Chernobyl YouTube comic book movie biopic hist marvel cinematic universe Nat Geo AMC Plus spinoff Teen Marvel Television Food Network Disney streaming service legend Character Guide Heroines cancelled stoner Writers Guild of America rotten Universal Pictures Superheroes Epix Mudbound nature El Rey venice Election Britbox james bond politics Fox Searchlight E3 slasher all-time harry potter Paramount live action Thanksgiving children's TV Interview canceled TV shows Family game of thrones cancelled TV series Television Critics Association AMC Fantasy cancelled TV shows New York Comic Con nbcuniversal 20th Century Fox spy thriller 2019 hispanic heritage month VOD docudrama Fall TV Toys sequel talk show Anna Paquin a nightmare on elm street foreign Film Warner Bros. Song of Ice and Fire richard e. Grant die hard anthology BET Awards festival television vampires know your critic Rocky Apple TV+ witnail award winner OWN USA Network TV renewals TCA Awards criterion Martial Arts Spike war composers anime psychological thriller FX on Hulu Set visit TV One OneApp black Premiere Dates kids WGN zombies godzilla screen actors guild animated GLAAD batman Binge Guide USA TIFF toy story Film Festival parents emmy awards basketball gangster Black Mirror dceu Cannes historical drama psycho heist movie comiccon werewolf TLC renewed TV shows unscripted japan documentary BBC America natural history serial killer NBC Lucasfilm Opinion President crossover strong female leads scary movies 45 Infographic CMT Shondaland Polls and Games Reality dramedy Amazon Prime screenings MTV fresh Netflix Kids & Family concert aliens debate Amazon Prime Video marvel comics RT History FOX