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‘Squid Game’ sparks 7,800% spike in sales of white Vans

'Squid Game' inspired costumes will be all the rage this Halloween

By Emma Kelly

Seung Gi-hun in Squid Game
Fans are attempting to recreate the costumes worn in 'Squid Game'. Source: Netflix

It seems there’s going to be a whole lot of ‘Squid Game’ costumes this Halloween, judging by the spike in sales for white Vans.

Sales for the classic white slip-on shoes have seen a 7,800% spike since the Korean thriller premiered on Netflix last month.

According to data provided by Sole Supplier (as reported by Variety), the Vans shoes are flying off the shelves, while more generally, there has been a 97% increase in search for plain white slip-ons, according to Lyst. 

The huge boost in demand for the shoes stems from ‘Squid Game’, in which the game’s participants wear the plain slip-ons with green and white tracksuits.

Netflix has launched a line of merchandise for the show including numbered t-shirts and slogan hoodies, but is not selling any of the tracksuits or red jumpsuits worn in the show, so fans will have to get a bit more creative if they want to pay homage to the show for Halloween. 

Replicas of the tracksuit and jumpsuit worn by the guards have popped up on Amazon and are already becoming bestsellers, as fans scramble to assemble a speedy costume.

‘Squid Game’ premiered on Netflix on September 17 and tells the story of a man, Seung Gi-hun (Lee Jung-jae), who signs up to a game to win a 45.6 billion won (£28.1 million) and save himself from debt. 

Participants are tasked with playing childhood games to advance to the next round, but those who lose are not just eliminated from the game, but are brutally killed.

The series, which is in Korean and comes with dubbing or English subtitles, is on track to become Netflix’s most watched series ever, and topped the streaming charts worldwide.

The popularity of ‘Squid Game’ has led to inevitable calls for a second season, and while there isn’t another series in the works just yet, creator Hwang Dong-hyuk isn’t totally against the idea.

He told The Times: “While I was writing season one, I thought about the stories that could be in season two if I get to do one — one would be the story of the Frontman.”

Hwang originally came up with the idea for ‘Squid Game’ a decade ago, but thought the bloody premise was too “far-fetched” for viewers.

He told the Korea Times: “After about 12 years, the world has changed into a place where such peculiar, violent survival stories are actually welcomed. People commented on how the series is relevant to real life. Sadly, the world has changed in that direction. 

“The series’ games that participants go crazy over align with people’s desires to hit the jackpot with things like cryptocurrency, real estate and stocks. So many people have been able to empathise with the story.”

‘Squid Game’ is available to stream on Netflix.