Failure to complete a task in Netflix’s Squid Game results in immediate elimination, aka death, but the only penalty for playing the games IRL is extreme silliness. During an interview with The Swoon on Oct. 9, the cast of the Korean drama took on the dalgona challenge to see who would be most likely to make it to the end of the games, and the results were hilariously satisfying. “Players” included Jung Ho-yeon (Kang Sae-byeok, player 067), Anupam Tripathi (Ali Abdul, player 199), Wi Ha-joon (police detective Hwang Jun-ho), Heo Sung-tae (Jang Deok-su, player 101), Lee Yoo-mi (Ji-yeong, player 240), and Kim Joo-ryoung (Han Mi-nyeo, player 212).
Each player was given a lighter, pins for poking out the shape, and a spray bottle full of water to replace Seong Gi-hun’s rushed candy licking in the second episode. As they got to work, the cast also told behind-the-scenes stories about the difficulties of filming, pointing out that the tug-of-war game — which they played against a machine — was the most physically exhausting challenge.
“They encouraged me and cheered me on.”
While they played competitors on screen, behind the cameras, the crew treated each other like family and supported one another when they had doubts about their acting. “[The cast and I] walked at night after the shoot ended and I remember crying,” Jung said while carving out her honeycomb shape, adding that she built a close bond with Han and Lee. “I talked about how I felt my acting isn’t good enough but they listened to me and comforted me. They encouraged me and cheered me on.”
Even though none of the cast members actually managed to push their “N” shape — presumably for Netflix — out of the candy, they each received giant bouquets of flowers for their efforts. As far as penalties, they also danced without music (see 12:59 for Jung’s improvised song about the games) and wore adorable squid masks that might be our new Halloween costume inspiration. Check out the full video to watch the cast attempt the dalgona challenge and see their hilarious penalties.