HBO is Releasing a 'Hellraiser' TV Show

The 1980s gave us some of the best horror icons of all time. People like Freddy Kreuger, Jason Voorhees, and Chucky all came out of this golden era. However, one of them that is always in the conversation for most memorable is the Cenobite known as Pinhead from the Hellraiser series. First introduced onscreen in the 1987 film Hellraiser based on the Clive Barker novella The Hellbound Heart, it has memorable characters, an interesting story, and special effects that still hold up perfectly after 33 years. The film and its first sequel Hellbound: Hellraiser II, are both considered classics of the horror genre. The law of diminishing returns hit the series hard, however, and Pinhead was forced into the world of direct to DVD films with stories taken from unrelated scripts that shoehorned Pinhead in for a few minutes, and directed by Alan Smithee, the name that directors use when they do not want to be credited for a movie, all to the tune of ten total films. While some people thought that the latest film in the franchise, 2018's Hellraiser: Judgement, was not the worst thing that happened in movie history, it was clear that, like the Alien and Terminator franchises, there had not been a truly good Hellraiser film since the second one. 

Well, that might be changing. Pinhead will be back in an upcoming Hellraiser TV show. We are undeniably living in a golden age of television. The last twenty years have given us some of the best TV in history, with such masterpieces as The Wire, Breaking Bad, the majority of the seasons of The Sopranos, and the first seven seasons of Game of Thrones. One of the advantages of TV, especially for a studio that has the resources of HBO, is that they can expand and explore aspects of a story and a universe that a two hour movie simply cannot. It is one of the reasons that The Mandalorian is so beloved. It is expanding the Star Wars saga in ways that we would not have been able to otherwise.

And it has nothing to do with the Skywalkers, and it has Baby Yoda in it. 

As stated above, Hellraiser has a long, rich history in the last 33 years. Beyond the movies, there have also been graphic novels and books dedicated to the mythos of the Cenobites and the wacky adventures that they get up to. 

It is admittedly really early in the process, down to not having actors or a release date, but there are some promising signs, especially with the information that Clive Barker, the writer of the original novella as well as writer and director of the original film, will be appearing as executive director of the series. This is good news, as nobody truly understand the depths of the story and characters as much as the original creator. Barker himself said he is:

“delighted the Hellraiser mythology is seeing a new life. It’s time the stories went back to their roots. I’m eager to bring to a new audience the most powerful and ancient elements of horror: the darkest evil invading our human lives and how we must find in ourselves the power to resist it.”

Considering that a story is already being written for the show, that bodes well for what we will see. 

Now, as stated above, there is not a release date for the series yet, and we are unlikely to get one anytime soon. The series has a long way to go to pull everything together, and the COVID-19 pandemic could throw a wrench into everything and push it back, as it has for an untold amount of projects. Depending on how long it goes, we might not even see it until 2022.

Hellrasier has seen a lot of ups and mostly downs over the past three decades, but there is hope that this could breathe new life into the series. The pilot is being directed by David Gordon Green, the director for 2018's new Halloween that famously decanonized every film except for the original. One of the writers is Michael Dougherty, who wrote and directed the underrated Halloween masterpiece Trick 'r Treat. This series has some serious heavy hitters in the horror genre behind it, so the potential is there for a truly special series that old and new fans alike can love. With the budget of HBO behind it, we can get truly creative monsters and imagery to satiate fans. More of this

And less of this.

His camera is a laser gun and can also be a stabbing weapon

or this

... huh?

or... whatever this is.

Yes, he can shoot CDs out of his head like ninja stars. Why do you ask?

With all of that as the history of the Hellraiser films, the TV show cannot come soon enough.