Hellbound: Netflix’s New Squid Game

Hellbound: between the creation of religion and interpretation

Hellbound is the new Netflix phenomenon series released on November 19. Like Squid Game, it comes from Korea and especially from a creator known to horror movie fans, Sang-ho Yeon. This is the director of the excellent Train to Busan, but also its much more forgettable sequel, Peninsula.

Anyway, with Hellbound he gives us his vision of religion and it is not very pretty as we can imagine. First of all, you should know that it is a series of six episodes separated into two different parts.

First part

The first part focuses on the inexplicable appearances of certain people. They say they see the face of an angel appear and send them a very dark message: they are going to hell on a specific date and time. Nothing like sending a wave of panic. Especially since when the time comes, huge ghostly monsters appear, defeat the poor wretches before burning their lifeless bodies.

As no one is able to understand what is happening, this leaves the field open to different interpretations by religious sects that are emerging everywhere. Starting with the New Truth that offers its version of the facts. Its founder, Jeong Jin-soo, claims to have witnessed an attack by these abominations and that he himself knows the exact time of his death.

A parallel investigation

Meanwhile, the police are trying to investigate these unexplained apparitions, but are struggling to shed light on these incidents. She can only notice the growing popularity of this new sect, which is not the only one. In fact, there is another sect called Arrowhead (arrowhead) that has its own doctrine.

With the increasingly frequent and visible attacks, the Church of the New Truth is beginning to be accepted as a religion in its own right. Especially since the public ends up learning that only sinners care.

The problem posed by Hellbound

Then come the fundamental questions of this type of series:

  • Who is a sinner and above all what constitutes a sin?
  • Is the slightest fault, the slightest deviation likely to burn us in hell?
  • Is stealing sweets from a bakery when you were little and didn’t realize the consequences a real offense?

These are the kinds of questions this very special series tries to answer. So, that’s when the series reveals its true message, which is close to the heart of many Korean creators, the class struggle. Therefore, sinners are considered second-class citizens. But we quickly learn that this is just a front for a certain swath of power-hungry society. Because in this country (a bit like in Japan), if a person is frowned upon, dishonor not only falls on him but also affects his entire family.

H2: Part Two

In 2027, after the founder of New Truth Church passed away, another pastor took his place. The latter imposes humiliating sermons on sinners who are then performed by demons in front of a large audience and are curious to see what a sinner is like.

However, a company is trying to rehabilitate them to avoid too violent repercussions in the entourage once the sinner has disappeared.

Through the eyes of a producer whose newborn baby was visited by the face of the angel of death, it is understood that the Church of the New Truth is not as transparent as it seems. On the contrary, they, who had affirmed that all sinners were guilty of something, would therefore suggest the existence of an original sin of which all humanity would be guilty as the forbidden fruit consumed by Eve in the Garden of Eden. This is what will cast doubt.

The series ends with the sacrifice of the boy’s parents who manage with their love to protect the boy from the flames of hell. So we understand that redemption is possible even if it doesn’t bode well for the future.

Theories for the second season of Hellbound

  • A sacrifice to save a soul
  • With the sacrifice of the parents of the baby who manage to save it, perhaps humanity understands that it is possible to save one person by sacrificing two others. In this case, how are we to judge those who are worthy of being saved and those who only deserve to be sacrificed? A beautiful question full of conflicts.

    2. Life in hell

    As we noted at the end, a dead character in the first part returns from hell at the end of the second. We can see that it has not aged, so does time pass in another way? Does this “death” send only to Purgatory where one is judged by an entity (the Devil?) To know if one deserves to live again or not? Again questions that deserve to be answered in a second season of Hellbound.

    3. The future of religions

    Finally, after having seen how religions have taken advantage of the situation to transmit precise messages and not always imbued with truths, we tell ourselves that they should be judged in turn at least by the justice of men but perhaps by divine justice. . Who knows?

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