Warning! Spoilers included, but none that will impact the overall viewing of the episode.
Ok, so from the plot we know that the organisers of the squid game are not wholesome, planet saving entities, but the start of episode 2, just keeps giving us the helpful reminder of that. Coffins of losers being nailed shut, some with the sounds of those still inside dying as they’re closed before being caste into the fires.
We then cut to the survivors in the aftermath of Red Light Green Light in the dorm as they’re trying to come to terms with what’s just happened as they get the results from game 1 from the ‘daft punk’ guards with guns. Almost half gone.
Some of the remaining players are obviously in second thoughts about continuing, but are reminded at gun point of the contract and clauses they signed up to- leave and you forfeit the game and life? However, if they ALL vote to leave and majority decides to, they can- queue potential light at end of tunnel.
Until that is the giant piggy bank in the sky(literally) appears and is filled with cold hard cash and lots of it….
So how important is money to the players? The vote is held.
Majority wins and it’s over…or is it, as apparently there’s the option to continue (again if majority decide).
The players are released, and we then watch as they’re returned to normality aka being dumped in pairs tied up. Will they cope being returned to the harsh reality of life. As it’s only episode 2, we can almost guarantee the answer is no, but watch as the episode gives us a chance to get to know the characters in more detail. Their strengths and weaknesses, personalities, and back stories. This is where we start to see the strength of the actors and director- Squid Game isn’t just a gimmicky battle Royale of random people being killed, they are building up the characters to get our investment in them.
And as we watch each of the main characters struggle again in the ‘real’ world we witness them as they come to the conclusion that they have to go once more into the fray.
Verdict: 7.8/10 – Whilst lacking the excitement of episode one, Hell is the ever important ‘character development’ episode. This is the opportunity to draw us in and build interest in those who will likely face the end in later episodes to increase the impact of when that moment arises. The acting and direction is sound, as is the glimpse into the culture and surroundings of South Korea. Still good vibes around where this is heading, but much relies as always is a series like this, on episode 3 and whether that picks up the pace again and gives the viewer the need to go back for more, just like to participants of The Squid Game.