WARNING: Spoilers for Squid Game: The Challenge below.
Squid Game: The Challenge has held fans glued since it debuted on Netflix last week, exposing us to 456 players competing for a massive prize sum.
The candidates participated in a series of physical and psychological tasks inspired by the Korean drama in order to win a staggering $4.56 million.
The participants were presented with the Glass Bridge challenge from the original show in the most recent round of episodes, ahead of the conclusion next week.
In this version, participants were given numbers and took turns walking on panes of glass to cross to the other side, with competitors plunging through the glass – and down a 20ft drop – if they chose the wrong selection.
While we were witnessing some of our favourites take the plunge, it turns out that the endeavour wasn’t as terrible as the cameras made it appear.
In reality, every autumn, producers revealed that stunt doubles were brought in at the last minute to film.
Yes, I’m serious.
‘The fall itself was done by a professional stunt person for the safety of the players,’ John Hay, executive producer, told Entertainment Weekly. ‘Obviously, that’s paramount for us. There was a large airbag underneath, but that also needs to be done by professionals.
‘The order of the pattern of the [glass squares], which is a pass and which is a fail, is all predetermined before they’ve stepped on the bridge.
‘And their reactions and their peers’ reactions to stepping on a fail door and being eliminated are all real. And then, at the last minute, we swapped them out, and a stunt person did the fall.’
He insisted that, while the height of the bridge was not exaggerated, the stunt was completely safe with a ‘large airbag underneath’ the structure – and it had been ‘tested and checked’ by professionals.
Although the cameras didn’t catch any of the swaps, John vowed that this ‘didn’t in any way break the spell of the game’, continuing: ‘It was a very quick swap and fall, and they reacted all the way through that unbroken run. At that stage, they’re quite close to the money, so their elimination really landed with an impact for all of them.’
The quickness with which the participants collaborated to design a mechanism such that players only had to take one leap, rather than those at the front of the queue having to attempt to span the full bridge first, surprised those behind the cameras.
‘They decided as a group to come up with this system where they would only each have to take a 50/50 chance – with one exception, of course,’ executive producer Stephen Lambert added. ‘That was very clever of them. They did that very quickly, and it wasn’t something we were necessarily expecting, and it actually made it much fairer.’
Episode eight concluded with just three participants remaining – But who will be able to complete the task to the end?
Squid Game: The Challenge is available to stream on Netflix now, with the finale dropping on December 6.