SPOILERS FOR SQUID GAME EP. 7
After the last episode with so much emotion and anxiety during the marbles matches, episode 7 picks right up with the suspense as the players are thrown into a game where they have to choose one of two glass squares to jump on. One is strong enough to hold up to two people while the other one is not strong enough to hold one. Choose poorly and you fall to your death.
This was a great way to get rid of the remaining “Red Shirts” of the show (an allusion to Star Trek, of course). One of the things this show has been tremendous with has been giving a little bit of character to the Red Shirts. They may not be incredible complex or deep of characters, but they all have something to make them more than just cannon fodder. Case in point, in the Tug O’ War episode, we met married couple that Sang-Woo rejected for his team. We also saw that this couple formed a pair in the marbles, meaning one would survive and one would not. The husband (number 69) survived the marbles but was immediately crushed by the loss of his wife. We knew so very little about either of these characters and yet their loss and their pain resonates with us because we understand the feelings. We also understand when Player 69 killed himself instead of facing life of guilt knowing that he lived because his wife died.
The episode is entitled “VIPs” because the VIPs arrived to watch the final two games live and in person on the island. These characters were shown to be the stereotypically worst people imaginable. They were betting on the outcome of the games while they sipped wine an couches with real naked women acting as feet rests and pillows. They all spoke English too, which is clearly a commentary on the American way of life. One could see someone like Donald Trump beneath one of those sparkly golden masks.
These VIP character were simply there for us to hate, bringing little more than that to the story. There was one horrendous VIP who embodied the worst of the gay stereotypes, probably not a character that would make it through in the American culture nowadays. These characters were very much caricatures, but it did feel like that was their purpose. Perhaps these are the rich men who bankroll the Squid Game. It gave an impression that there are Squid Games going on in more than just this location and these men may be involved in these. I’m not sure we are going to be going into more detail with these people, but I do believe those explosive charges we saw a few episodes ago may have a purpose with these men.
What we will absolutely be getting as a resolution before this show ends is the reveal of an identity of the Front Man. I am even more sure that Front Man is the missing brother of detective Jun-ho. I made that random wild speculation several episodes ago and now it just makes more sense. Especially since we know that the Front Man still reports to someone above him, The Host. Front Man notices the little details and he moves with a gun like someone who knows what he is doing. There is definitely a reveal coming with this character and, since he has been connected to Jun-ho, it makes sense narrative wise.
While I am talking about Jun-ho, can we comment on the battery life on dude’s cell phone? Where can I get that model? I have to be charging mine every other day if I am not using it much.
Then there was the most satisfying moment of the whole episode. As they are moving along the bridge of glass, Deok-Su decides to stop and blackmail the rest of the players behind him so someone else would go first. Who steps up? It is crazy woman, Han Mi-nyeo. She wound up spared last episode because of the leftover rule (those of us chosen last for dodgeball, we know what that feels like). She was back and she pretended to take the lead from Deok-su, only to grab him around the waist and throw them both off the bridge, crashing through the next glass step and falling to their deaths. That was such a satisfying moment because Deok-su was such a horrible person and really deserved to die, and Mi-nyeo was able to deliver on her promise to kill him she had made after he betrayed her in the Tug O’War. I could not think of a better way for this pair to go out than what the show gave us.
We are down to the final three. Gi-hun, Sang-woo and Sae-byeok. Sang-woo has really set himself up as the next “Big Bad” to be faced off with. He has had a secret through this entire series, something that he has been hiding from Gi-hun and I am sure that we will have that reveal soon too. Episode 8, interestingly enough, is a shorter 32 minutes. I’m not sure why this was, but I am fine with it. I have two more episodes to finish and I will get to them today. I did not anticipate being done with this series this weekend, but once I started, I could not stop.