Saturday, January 28, 2023

Netflix’s “Hellbound” Swiftly Tops Charts


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Story by Colby Turner | Contributing Writer

Photo Courtesy of Netflix

Netflix dropped the six-episode dark Korean drama “Hellbound” on November 19, and since then it has topped numerous charts in countries all over the world. “Hellbound,” rightfully named, was directed by Yeon Sang-ho, who also directed the wildly famous “Train to Busan” featuring actor Gong Yoo, who many recognize now as “train guy” from “Squid Game.”

The drama features the recently popular genre of dark science fiction, and it lives up to the genre without fail. In “Hellbound,” we are introduced to a world that is about to face one of the wildest wake-up calls one could ever expect. Early on, it is learned that people are given decrees of their death date in time, for what is assumed by all is because of those peoples’ sins, which is subsequently carried out by three gigantic monsters that can only be described as grotesque and evil. 

After the first Hell sentencing, we meet Chairman Jung Jin-Soo, a religious fanatic who established his church, The New Truth Society, after seeing the gigantic demons for himself in the wilderness. In his church, he urges people to seek righteousness in order to avoid these soul-hunters. 

At the same time, Min Hye-Jin is introduced, a lawyer who works for a firm that has the goal of protecting people being targeted by the The New Truth’s violent sister-group called The Arrowhead. 

The interesting thing about this show is that it is told in two parts, with the second half being four years in the future. In the future sections, the audience is able to see how this new world has affected the world that was already known. In this new reality, people directly out themselves as ‘sinners’ in effort to avoid damnation, and televised executions have become a norm.

The past and future sections also include different ‘outsiders’ and their storylines; in the past, the story revolves around a widower detective and his daughter and their doubt and support for the church, respectively; in the future, the center of the action revolves around a couple who just had their first baby, and a surprising discovery that will change their lives forever. 

“Hellbound” is filled with a rollercoaster of emotions, but the one that the audience feels the most by far is frustration. Every single time a conflict happens, the outcome is usually opposite of the expectation or desire of the viewer. The ending of the show completely shellshocks and leaves the viewer wondering what will come in season two. 

Director Yeon Sang-ho knew what he was doing when he created “Hellbound,” a title that gives a new meaning to the term “cult classic.” With the recent release, not much information has come out about a second season, but it would be quite disappointing to not see the story continued after the ending of episode six. 

The show, like Netflix’s “Sweet Home,” is an incredible example of web-comics being turned into live action television shows, and it did not disappoint at all. Overall, the show was an incredible addition to Netflix’s lineup of dark science fiction, and it was a good follow-up to watch after “Squid Game.”

To contact Lifestyles Editor Ethan Pickering, email

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