Analyzing The Concept of Unforgiveness in Hell Girl

Jigoku Shojo or Hell Girl is an anime that deeply explores anecdotes of people holding grudges against each other and sending the perpetrator to hell for multiple reasons, sometimes even for what seems like trivial reasons. For instance, a school girl chooses to send her bullies to hell thanks to the website from which Hell Girl appears and invites her to pull the string off a Voodoo doll. Hell Girl gives all her clients the free will to decide whether to pull that string or not, i.e. the choice to send them to hell or not. As such, this is a depiction of how humans carry emotions like hate and resentment within their heart when they go through some kind of unfairness. The show does not only include victims choosing to send their enemies to hell though. It also involves characters misunderstanding situations and misjudging someone as causing some sort of disturbance and they send them to hell while they are innocent. This entails how humans’ sense of justice can be distorted due to many factors. This anime is thought-provoking in that occultic elements and events can be analyzed to investigate how they work towards the representation of human unforgiving tendencies against the ones who they feel have wronged them. An interpretation can also be made to invoke spiritual beliefs on the theme of forgiveness as in how not forgiving someone eventually leads the victim to hell as well. From this, a discussion can be developed about the meaning of real forgiveness beyond the anime.

  • On top of showing how good, evil, and morality are played with outside Judeo-Christian and Western frameworks, it also does a good job showing just what it means to really forgive...and why some fall short of doing so, to their own detriment. Certainly worth pursuing. – md01957 2 years ago

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