So, it’s been a weird past few months. I’ve been exhausted by my job at Staples. But the retail phase of my life is hopefully over for good – since I am starting a temp job today. I expect that to take up quite a bit of time. I’ve also been doing random freelance projects here and there.
Those and just the idea of existing took priority over this blog, because a girl’s gotta eat. But hopefully I’ll be able to post a bit more consistently for the rest of the year. (We’ll see how well that goes.)
There’s been a lot of stuff I’ve wanted to watch and review. This has been a good year for animation – but I decided to go with a (somewhat) of an oldie this week…Hazbin Hotel.
The Hazbin Hotel pilot – was first uploaded to Youtube in 2019. It quickly gained popularity and in 2020 it was announced that A24 was picking the series up for production.
The pilot follows Charlie, the daughter of Lucifer, as she tries to get the denizens of Hell to come to her hotel, redeem themselves and go to Heaven…in theory, at least.
She is joined by her girlfriend and main supporter Vaggie and their test case, adult film star Angel Dust. Even though the rest of Hell mocks them, the three are given a chance of succeeding when the “Radio Demon” decides to check in to their hotel
SHORT TURNED SERIES
I think one of the coolest things about Hazbin Hotel, is that it’s going to be made into an actual series – by an actual production company. All because the pilot was so popular.
I am working with some people on producing an animated pilot. (It could also end up being a webtoon. We’re in the very early stages.) Needless to say, the idea that we could be the one in a million whose creation gets popular enough to get picked up is something that keeps us going.
It’s a bit of a pipe dream but, hey, a girl can dream.
I think Hazbin Hotel – is an excellent pilot in that it clearly establishes the setting – Hell and character motivations while laying down a foundation and formula gor the series to follow. And it leaves plenty of room for exploring the world further?
How are they going to attract the souls of Hell to come to the hotel? And will their plan actually work? What will Heaven think? Just who or what is the Radio Demon and why is he so powerful? Those are all good questions that I assume will eventually be answered in the series proper.
I can’t wait to see how these characters will grow and evolve over time, and how their attitudes towards one another will change.
For a web cartoon, Hazbin Hotel has a really good art style and some high-quality animation. The movements are nice and fluid. The musical numbers are pretty elaborate and it’s pretty much on par with something from Disney or Netflix.
I figure that musical numbers are probably the hardest thing to write and animate, especially animate…and so Vivziepop and her team doing what they do – on what is probably a much more limited budget than professional shows – is really something we should talk about more. I can’t wait to see how much more elaborate and bombastic the numbers get in the show itself.
I like how each musical number changes animation and art styles. It keeps things visually interesting and it’s just something I really enjoy seeing. The opening number “I’m Always Chasing Rainbows,” does a good job of setting up the world, visually.
The lyrics tell us about Charlie’s desires – but the visuals show us what this version of hell is like and at the end tells us all about the “cleanse” by just showing us the countdown. We get the basic idea of how shitty this Hell is.
Sure, there’s more set up as the pilot goes on (which is a good thing) – but the fact that all of this is established with no expository dialogue in he first few minutes, is something i really want to aspire to. After all, animation is a VISUAL medium.
I love how all the character designs are distinctive and different, even for the more secondary or background characters. It’s really impressive.
And the style is also very unique, not like any other show on the market right now. (Except for Helluva Boss, but that’s by the same people so it doesn’t count.
Plus this is animation for adults – and though the content is definitely raunchy – it doesn’t make sex jokes, drugs and cursing its whole identity. It’s simply there to give it flavor. The pilot has a very strong sense of identity and I think that will really help separate it from other shows when it comes out to market.
Obviously, Hazbin Hotel is filling a hole left in adult animated entertainment or it wouldn’t have become as popular as it has.
WHERE COULD IT GO
I love Viviziepop’s Helluva Boss as well. You already know that. That series has totally shattered my expectations and I would love to see an official crossover since they take place in the same world. But they’re different in themes. Helluva Boss is more about character dynamics and IMP.
Hazbin Hotel has a lot of potential for exploring the concepts of morality, good deeds, redemption and in general what it means to be a good person.
Kind of like The Good Place.
I definitely see Hazbin Hotel as slightly more serialized and more serious in tone than Helluva Boss due to its nature.
Honestly, aside from a couple of comics on the show’s website, we don’t much else about the series. Assuming the comics make it into the animated series canon that is.
We have so little to go on. Either way, I’m looking forward to it. I want to see what these characters and this world can really do.
And since it’s being produced by A24 – there probably won’t be a whole lot of censorship or attempts to make it more “palatable” to a wider audience. Cause that would just ruin everything that makes Hazbin Hotel so special.
If you haven’t checked it out – I recommend doing so at your earliest convenience.
And that’s the scoop.
Year of release: 2019
Length: 31 minutes
Creator/Screenplay/Story By: Vivienne Medrano
Writers: Vivienne Medrano, Dave Capdevielle, Raymond Hernandez
Voices: Jill Harris, Elsie Lovelock, Monica Franco, Michael Kovach, Edward Bosco, Gabriel C. Brown, Mick Lauer, Michelle Marie, Will Stamper, Krystal LaPorte, Kelly “Chi-Chi” Boyer, Faye Mata, Joshua Tomar