Squid Game: Korean speaker slams Netflix series for ‘botched’ English subtitles, says 'Translation was so bad'

Oct 05, 2021 04:28 PM IST

A Korean speaker claims a few English subtitles featured in Netflix's Squid Game are ‘botched.’ She also shared a video to explain her point. 

Netflix's Squid Game has everyone talking. The Korean survival drama has ranked number one in various countries ever since its debut last month. While the show has received positive reviews, a Korean speaker has called the series out for ‘botched’ English subtitles that alter the nuances of certain characters. 

Squid Game released on Netflix last month.
Squid Game released on Netflix last month.

A Twitter user, who goes by the handle Youngmi Mayer, has said that the English subtitles in a few episodes of Squid Game do not accurately represent the actual Korean lines. “Not to sound snobby but I’m fluent in Korean and I watched squid game with English subtitles and if you don’t understand Korean you didn’t really watch the same show. Translation was so bad. The dialogue was written so well and zero of it was preserved,” she tweeted. 

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She also shared a video on TikTok and Twitter, in which she pointed a few errors and the right meaning behind the lines. Referring to one of the episodes on the show, the TikToker points out that the lines said by Han Mi-nyeo, played by Kim Joo-ryung, are ‘very sterilised’. 

“She says ‘what are you looking at’, it's turned into ‘go away’ which might seem arbitrary but everything she says is not really aligning and you're missing a lot of this character and what she stands for,” the user pointed out. 

Referring to a scene in which Han Mi-nyeo is trying to convince people to play with her, the TikToker said that while the subtitle read, ‘Oh, I’m not a genius but I can work it out', the actual translation, the user claimed, is ‘I am very smart, I just never got a chance to study.’ “Almost everything she says is being botched, translation wise,” the user said. She also noted that the concept of Gganbu was not translated properly, misrepresenting the purpose of the episode. 

Netflix is yet to respond to the claims, and the streamer has been accused of similar practices even in India – earlier this year, several viewers pointed out the inaccurate subtitles in the Malayalam film Nayattu.

Also read: Squid Game's Indian actor Anupam Tripathi has an interesting connection with Song Joong-ki and Song Hye-kyo

Squid Game stars Lee Jung-jae, Jung Ho-yeon, Park Hae-soo, Wi Ha-joon, Kim Joo-ryoung, Heo Sung-tae, Oh Young-soo, Lee Yoo-mi, Anupam Tripathi and Gong Yoo, among many others. The show revolves a deadly game involving hundreds of participants. While those who manage to complete the game proceed to the next level, those who fail are killed. 


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