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Hazbin Hotel

Hazbin Hotel season 1

Credits

Cast

Network

Reviewer

Lauren Cook

TV Series Review

Found yourself condemned to the fiery pits of hell? You’re in luck—the Hazbin Hotel is open for business.

Granted, “luck” is a relative term here. Things aren’t so great in the realm of eternal damnation by design, and they’re just getting worse all the time. In order to solve the problem of overpopulation, the forces of heaven routinely come down to exterminate a significant portion of its residents. It’s not the cleanest solution, but it’s effective, and the angels sure get a kick out of it.

But Charlie Morningstar, daughter of Lucifer and princess of hell, has another idea. She and her friends open the Hazbin Hotel, a place where sinners can come to be rehabilitated and leave behind their evil ways. If she can redeem them, Charlie thinks, they’ll get another shot at heaven and leave the crowded inferno behind.

All she needs to deal with are her uptight dad, legions of demons who aren’t all that interested in salvation, and the endless army of angels that want to smash her into smithereens.

WHEN HELL FREEZES OVER

In some shows, adverse biblical themes lurk beneath a story’s surface, waiting until the viewer’s guard is down to rear their ugly heads. Hazbin Hotel is not one of those shows. This animated musical comedy bears its warped perception of biblical truth like a badge of honor.

The very first scene retells the story of Lucifer’s fall from heaven, with Lucifer as the wronged hero and heaven as the cruel and vindictive villain. In the world of Hazbin Hotel, demons are simply misunderstood, and angels are vicious, violent creatures who thrive on ruthlessly punishing sinners. It’s a bit uncomfortable when Adam, the first man (portrayed as a sleazy misogynist) sings, “Cause hell is forever / whether you like it or not / Had the chance to behave better / now they boil in the pot,” and we the viewer are expected to seethe and shake our heads in disapproval.

There’s perhaps something to be admired about Charlie’s dedication to helping sinners get to heaven, but when it comes at the cost of the black-and-white truth given to us in Scripture, that doesn’t last very long.

Blatant distortion of biblical truth isn’t the only problem you’ll encounter upon checking in. Animated violence, obscene language and crude content are rife throughout the dismal landscape of damnation. “Do you like blood, violence and depravity of a sexual nature?” a commercial for the hotel cheerfully asks. “Of course you do. That’s why you’re in hell!”

Don’t be fooled by the song and dance. If this reviewer was to rate their stay at the Hazbin Hotel, they would award a strong zero stars.

Episode Reviews

Jan. 19, 2024 – S1, E1: “Overture”

Charlie Morningstar, daughter of Lucifer, receives a once-in-a-lifetime chance to pitch the Hazbin Hotel, her idea for a way to rehabilitate sinners, to the head honchos of heaven. Meanwhile, her friends attempt to film a commercial for the hotel.

The episode opens with Charlie narrating the story of creation, the Fall, and Lucifer’s banishment from heaven. Shockingly, she gets a few details wrong. In this version, Lucifer was cast out simply for daring to think creatively about Earth’s creation. He offered the forbidden fruit to Eve as a gift of free will, a crime for which the vindictive angels condemned him to the fiery realm of hell.

That realm, funnily enough, is not a very cheery place. A musical montage shows off some of hell’s more eccentric offerings — an adult film theater and “Cannibal Town,” to name a few. We’re treated to some violent images of demons eating a dead body, a sinner stabbing another sinner in the eye, and fiery chaos as the angels descend to massacre the demons. (Most of these instances, it should be noted, are played for laughs.)

Sexual references and graphic images also appear throughout the episode. Angel Dust, a resident at the hotel — and an adult film star — suggests shooting pornography to advertise the Hazbin (“Sex sells, don’t it?”). He makes repeated sexual advances to Husk, the hotel’s male bartender, all of which are refused. Angel also makes constant crude references to his body and sexual activity (“This body was made to be exploited.”). Adam, the first man, also speaks vulgarly about sleeping with women. Multiple references to genitalia are made in a sexual context. A brief image is shown of an anthropomorphic dog and cat in a compromising position.

Angel and Husk both drink beer at the hotel. Angel remarks that “crack is expensive.”

The f-word is used 23 times, including in song lyrics, while the s-word is used twelve times. We hear “b–ch” four times, “d–k” five times, “a–“ twice, and “c–t” once. Angel uses the middle finger once.

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Lauren Cook Bio Pic
Lauren Cook

Lauren Cook is serving as a 2021 summer intern for the Parenting and Youth department at Focus on the Family. She is studying film and screenwriting at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. You can get her talking for hours about anything from Star Wars to her family to how Inception was the best movie of the 2010s. But more than anything, she’s passionate about showing how every form of art in some way reflects the Gospel. Coffee is a close second.

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