While the actual second season of Squid Game may still be a very long ways off, Netflix is bridging the gap with a reality series counter to its actual message, Squid Game: The Challenge. The show has been sitting at #1 on the service through it’s first two batches of episodes, but now it’s finally been dethroned by something else.
We’re still in the reality genre, but this time it’s “Bad Surgeon: Love Under the Knife.” If the title wasn’t a clue, it’s about a surgeon who is…bad, one who proclaims to have perfected stem cell windpipe transplants except his patients end up dying, and something rotten is afoot. It’s just three episodes like many of these hyper-focused docu-series are, so I would not expect it to keep this spot for long.
Third on the list is an interesting case, an action comedy called Obliterated that spans eight 50 minute episodes about a special forces team who has to save Las Vegas. Absolutely the first thing that comes to mind is Smokin’ Aces, but with a far less recognizable cast. And I’m very curious how you turn would would normally be a two hour action movie into an eight hour action series without it overstaying its welcome. It’s not getting very good critical reviews, a 47%, but audiences, at 82%, seem to like it well enough, and that’s really all Netflix cares about.
Further down the list are Young Sheldon and First Wives Club, two of Netflix’s licensed series that do well for them. Virgin River just arrived with new episodes, and if I did have to guess, given the low key popularity of that show, I would be it ascends up the ranks pretty quickly. The Crown is #8, The Great British Baking Show is #9, and repeatedly cancelled comedian Matt Rife’s special still hangs on at #10.
As for the fates of all these shows, Obliterated is probably the biggest question mark depending on how it does as a new series, but as one with a lot of big, expensive action, I would expect it needs high viewership to justify its cost. Squid Game is obviously going to get like five seasons given that they already built the sets and it’s going to be incredibly cheap to make from here. It has one more episode to go, the finale, which will air on December 6. I really doubt they will literally play Squid Game in the same way that was on the show, as that wouldn’t exactly make for gripping television. We’ll find out soon.