Christian viewers are canceling their Prime Video subscriptions in protest of a new animated show, which they argue satirizes Christianity and the creation story. Some are even calling the program itself "evil".
In many ways, it seems inevitable that Amazon’s animated series aimed at adults, "Hazbin Hotel," would court controversy.
Set in Hell, the series follows protagonist (and daughter of Lucifer) Charlie Morningstar, and her titular hotel, aimed at rehabilitating the hellish denizens so that they may enter heaven.
Though the series largely focuses on Charlie and her girlfriend Vaggie, biblical characters also fill out some of the supporting cast, including Charlie’s father Lucifer, Adam, and Saint Peter.
So far, the show has been incredibly popular – setting a record for the most-ever streams of an animated series on Prime Video at 94 million.
Despite its popularity, many believers aren’t planning to check into the Hazbin Hotel.
Cancellation Threats Grow
When Prime Video posted the first two minutes of the new series on X, formerly known as Twitter, it’s possible they didn’t know the outrage they’d be courting.
While fans of the series praised the show, people of faith quickly fought back, arguing the show glorifies Satan. Many threatened to cancel their Amazon Prime subscriptions over it.
This isn’t the first time Christians have protested media they deemed blasphemous. Famously, Martin Scorsese’s 1988 film The Last Temptation of Christ drew ire from Christian viewers who found its portrayal of Christ struggling internally with his divinity outrageous, leading to protests, death threats, and even a terrorist attack in Paris at a screening of the film.
More recently, there was widespread Catholic outrage over an Irish sketch show which depicted God as a rapist, leading to many Irish Catholics to call for a return of blasphemy laws which would have made the jokes illegal.
Regardless, it seems the Christian protests over Hazbin Hotel will do little to stop the potential juggernaut series. Series creator VinziePop posted the first episode of the new series on her YouTube page earlier this month, and it already has nearly five million views – and that’s not even including streaming numbers on Prime Video.
Still, it’s opened a dialogue on how we should engage with media content we disagree with, particularly when it comes to the world of faith.
Are believers right to be outraged that Amazon would promote this type of content? Or are their concerns unreasonable?