At the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, amateur investors began checking out the Reddit page r/wallstreetbets and placing investments via the app Robinhood. But when GameStop, AKA GME, became a meme stock, it unexpectedly upended Wall Street since legacy investors had bet on the struggling retail company to fail. The work of a group of misfit millennials ended up causing the ultra wealthy to lose billions on their failed short of GameStop in what Netflix is calling in its synopsis “a viral David vs. Goliath story for the 21st century.”
Touted as a documentary series with a heavy injection of humor, the streaming service teased the various ups and downs of the show: “A community of amateur traders enacts a daring plan to get rich quick and wreak havoc on the stock market. But can they beat Wall Street at its own game?”
GameStop has never strayed far from headlines in recent years and usually for unfortunate reasons, such as receiving backlash for not shutting down when the coronavirus pandemic and social distancing restrictions were in full force. Later on in 2020, the pendulum swung dramatically in the other direction when the game retail chain announced it was closing hundreds of its stores.
Though the whole stock market debacle briefly made GameStop a kind of folk hero figure amongst millennials who remember when the company was on top, much of that goodwill that was generated was immediately cashed in when the company decided to start dabbling in non-fungible tokens, a controversial digital collectible backed by cryptocurrency, by opening an NFT Marketplace.