Youku Accused of Shameless 'Squid Game' Rip Off

By Ned Kelly, October 22, 2021

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The tentacles of the internet are dragging Chinese streaming service Youku into the murky waters of controversy with accusations of plagiarism.

Netizens have pointed out that a new show announced by the Chinese streaming service on Wednesday, subtely entitled Squid Victory, bears an uncanny resemblance to Netflix's wildly popular Squid Game.

Aside from the name, critics were quick to point out the striking similarities between the poster for Squid Victory and that of Squid Game. And then there is Squid Victory’s premise, which would see contestants compete in a number of challenges involving “large-scale kids’ games.”

SPOILER ALERT: Squid Game features a not dissimilar premise. A not dissimilar premise at all…

Youku responded by offering an apology, stating that the promotional material released was an old “draft.”

“We made an error,” the streaming company wrote on Weibo. “The first draft of the show – which had already been killed – was mistakenly used in promotional activities at a trade fair. We're sincerely sorry for the misunderstanding caused.”

The post was accompanied by a noticeably different poster for a show now named Game’s Victory

Social media users were not entirely convinced by the apology, with one describing it as a “lame cover-up.”

Since its debut on September 17, Korean-language series Squid Game has become Netflix’s most successful show of all time, having been watched by 142 million households around the world to date.

Finally, for all those who disapprove of plagiarizing Squid Game, just out of curiosity – what Halloween costume will you be wearing this year?

[Cover image via Netflix]

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