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The 'Hellbound' question

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30.11.2021
By Jason Lim

What happens when a true-to-God (pun intended), undeniable miracle occurs on live social media, witnessed by both those onsite and online? How do people react to the truly unexplainable? More interestingly, how does the whole society react when the supernatural becomes real? Those are the underlying questions that I found so fascinating in "Hellbound," South Korea's latest blockbuster series on Netflix.

Originally, I thought that "Hellbound" would be another CG-driven, action-packed drama with heroes fighting against demons in a good vs. evil narrative framework. Simple, nice, and satisfying. I soon realized that this was much deeper and more disturbing than that. The hell demons were tangential to the story. This was about how a society adapts to a fearsome, supernatural miracle simultaneously witnessed by everyone.

We all know that humans have a need to explain things within certain framework that we can come to terms with. Most religions and spiritual traditions rose out of this need. Whole sociocultural structures were created based on explaining and influencing the turning of the seasons, the frequency and timing of rain, the dangers of the seas for the fishermen, and all the other overpowering natural phenomena that affected our ancestors' lives with cruel capriciousness.........

© The Korea Times


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