Bird Box has become a big hit for Netflix, so much so that it’s inspired an internet challenge. Since the film’s release on the streaming platform, many people have uploaded videos in which they try to do things blindfolded like the characters in the film. But it looks like the challenge is causing some concern for the company. On Wednesday, they issued a warning, via Twitter, about the “Bird Box challenge” — encouraging viewers to stay safe.
“Can’t believe I have to say this, but: PLEASE DO NOT HURT YOURSELVES WITH THIS BIRD BOX CHALLENGE,” the company wrote. “We don’t know how this started, and we appreciate the love, but Boy and Girl have just one wish for 2019 and it is that you not end up in the hospital due to memes.”
In the film, “Boy” and “Girl” are children who are being raised by Sandra Bullock’s character, Mallory. They live in a post-apocalyptic world, haunted by monsters who can force you to see your worst fears when you go outside. Hence the need for blindfolds. At one of the most suspenseful points of the movie, Mallory and the kids have to navigate dangerous rapids as they try to escape to safety.
As Too Fab reports, in one of the videos uploaded for the “Bird Box challenge,” a blindfolded father leads his two children around the house — with harrowing results. At one point, the younger child slams into a wall, and looks disoriented afterwards.
In another video, you can see a group of blindfolded men walking around New York — until one seems to fall down the stairs to the subway.
There’s also a video of a man covering his eyes as he drives, which is something the characters also did in the film, depending on the car’s GPS system and sensors to lead the way.
Even the morning talk shows took up the challenge. On Good Morning America, a blindfolded Michael Strahan attempted to put make up on his co-host, Sarah Haines.
The fact that Bird Box has become a meme adds some credibility to Netflix’s claim that the film has had the best viewership of all its original films in the first week of its release. The streaming juggernaut is notoriously reluctant about sharing information about their statistics. But for Bird Box, they made an exception. In December, they reported that the film had been seen by over 45 million Netflix accounts.
While this news is good, someone getting hurt because they were inspired by the film would put a serious damper on its success. Thankfully, there don’t seem to have been any reports thus far of someone being seriously injured from participating in the “Bird Box challenge.”