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The Netflix series Squid Game is one of the streaming platform’s most popular shows of all time. In it, 456 people including our “protagonist” Gi-hun (Lee Jung-Jae) fight to the literal death for a substantial amount of cash.
Viewers of the show will also remember player 001, Oh Il-nam (Oh Yeong-su), an elderly man who Gi-hun befriends early on in the series. Many who watched the show couldn’t help but wonder whether the elderly player might, in fact, be Gi-hun’s father.
There are certainly clues in the first season that suggest this may be the case. The debit card of Gi-hun's mother, for example, appears to have the surname, "Oh," the same as Il-nam's. Gi-hun's birthday, April 26 (which we learned when he tried to use his birthday as the pin number for the aforementioned debit card), is also at least close to Il-nam's son's, which we learned in the marble episode. The neighborhood we see in the marble episode is also one that both Il-nam and Gi-hun say they've lived in, which also supports the theory.
“That was one of the rumors going on around among the crew on set when we were making this show,” he said. “They were saying, ‘Oh, he must be a hidden son of Il-nam.’ And there was a rumor that the character Il-nam knew that he was his son, but Gi-hun was unaware of it, so that was the rumor that was going around. That’s my answer, I’m just gonna keep it to myself.”
Hwang’s answer is basically a non-answer, but isn’t not answering an answer in itself? That's admittedly a weak argument, and sadly we might never know for sure, even though Netflix has green-lit the show for a second season. Hwang added in the interview that it almost doesn't "make sense to not have a sophomore season for something that was loved this much,” so perhaps we'll find out more about Gi-hun and Il-nam's relationship then, though we don't know exactly when that will be.
In the meantime, we can rewatch Season 1 of Squid Game and search for more clues as to whether Il-nam is or isn’t Gi-hun’s father.