If you’re like most folks, you pop in and out of seasons of Saturday Night Live as they churn through new featured players, and you either love ’em or you’re taking a pass depending on your tastes. Sometimes the host will make you give it a peek. This week Rami Malek hosted, and he was funny! And weird! Just like we like him. This week he and Pete Davidson did everyone a favor who has been sleeping on Squid Game. They summarized, satirized, and sung a Squid Game country ballad that would be right at home on CMT.
Now, I have lived all over the world (military brat), but I was raised by two folks born and raised in the South, I can tell you ALL about country music, it’s in my genes. While completely enamored with classic country, my cut-off is probably around Dwight Yoakum. What makes this SNL song and video so much more is the critique on contemporary country. It nails it!
The caricature of a southern drawl in contemporary country is out of control. The country song tropes of yesteryear that are inexplicably still crooned about today are all represented. The old pick-up, the dog (dawg), the troublesome ex, money problems, the horse set against the backdrop of a decrepit barn, the drinking problem alluded to, by the unpaid bar tab; check, check, check, check! However, the clincher is the now ever-present borrowed hip-hop backbeat and earworm hook, which are the only things that make the incessant whine of difficulties tolerable. Kudos to the songwriter and of course, to Pete Davidson and Rami Malek. “That’s what happens in the Squid Game… that’s the way you play the Squid Game….” That hook and that beat? I’m diggin’ it.
Speaking of kudos, if you are one of the ones that needed the Squid Game primer, what are you waiting for? Squid Game is on on its way to being Netflix’s biggest show ever! It’s number 1 on Netflix in 90 countries and counting! While the music video did provide some chicken-fried spoilers, you’re denying yourself. The endless discussions I’ve had over decisions that would be made if you were playing Squid Game have ranged from hysterical to profound. It’s action, mystery, horror, gangster, dystopian, love story, drama, thriller… I could go on; it’s the Baskin-Robbins of streamers. Just pick a flavor, and the show has got you covered.
So if I’ve sold you, it’s playing on Netflix, which should be easy to remember, because things are blowing up over there. Ted Sarandos has 10 hot potatoes in a game with only a couple players, but that’s for a whole other slew of articles. If you have taken in Squid Game, where my Squid peeps at? Who’s your favorite player? What did you think of the ending? How would they do a second season?
Hwang Dong-hyuk (The Fortress) wrote and directed all nine episodes, while the cast features Lee Jung-jae (Chief of Staff), Park Hae-soo (Yungnyong-i Nareusya), Yeong-su Oh (The Great Queen Seondeok), Wi Ha-Joon (The Greatest Divorce), fashion model Jung Ho-yeon, Heo Sung-tae (Your Honor), Anupam Tripathi and Joo-ryeong Kim.