Hell’s Paradise Episode 2 Recap: Screening and Choosing

In ‘Hell’s Paradise’ or ‘Jigokuraku‘ episode 1 titled ‘Screening and Choosing,’ Sagiri contemplates her career so far as an executioner and recalls the incident that inspired her to follow her father’s path. Meanwhile, Nariyoshi Tokugawa and his men start the proceedings to select men who are capable enough to survive in Shinenkyo and return with the Elixir of Life. However, none of the condemned criminals are aware that their struggle for life will begin well before they leave for the mysterious island.

Sagiri’s Dream And the Cruel Selection

Yamada Asaemon Sagiri recalls how she once witnessed the execution of a storyteller by her father. Before he was killed, the condemned man demanded that his life is taken while he is telling a story. Interestingly, Sagiri’s father beheads the man with such a great technique that he does not suffer any pain. He continues to tell the entire story and only dies once he has finished reciting it. Ever since that day, Sagiri has wanted to master the technique of painless executions. Unfortunately, years of hard work and dedication have failed to help her achieve the desired result. It turns out that Sagiri struggles to keep her emotions in check while executing someone which leads to painful deaths.

Yamada Asaemon Eizen even feels that she is not fit for the job and should quit as facing the executioner’s fate is not everyone’s cup of tea. Interestingly, Sagiri had been bullied from a very young age because she belongs to the Yamada clan, who are primarily employed in jobs that make money through death. While these thoughts rush through her mind, the selection process to pick criminals on death row who will go to Shinenkyo to procure the Elixir of Life has already begun. The 11th Sei-i Taishogun, Nariyoshi Tokugawa address 30 condemned men and tells them about their only chance to avoid death.

While the criminals are being informed, Sagiri is actively checking their records and is shocked to realize how dangerous these men are. That’s when she also contemplates whether she will be able to give them a painless execution by keeping her emotions in check knowing that they fully deserve what they are getting. Meanwhile, the criminals are shown to be the only survivor who returned from Shinenkyo. It is evident from his condition that he has been through a traumatic experience and is now barely alive. The visual image is so brutal that some of the prisoners do not want to go to the island.

That’s when one of them is executed by a Yamada clan executioner. The criminals are then told that each one of them will be accompanied by one executioner and only a few of them to go. In order to eliminate the others, a physical fight is allowed between the prisoners which they are allowed to kill until only 10 of them survive. Although Gabimaru does not wish to fight, some of the criminals target him after being told that he can be their ticket to Shinenkyo. When push comes to shove, Gabimaru decides to defend himself and kills every single man who was planning to attack him.

Which Criminals Are Selected to Go to Shinenkyo?

After Gabimaru the Hollow kills all the criminals who tried to murder him, Yamada Asaemon Sagiri finally has a realization. She feels that she did not need to overcome the fear of killing someone but instead gather the resolve to take on the burden of that fear and the lives that she took. This seems like an enlightening experience for the young executioner who has been struggling internally for quite some time now. While she is having her realization, the selection process for the criminals is finally declared to be complete.

It is then announced that the criminals who are selected to head to Shinenkyo are Aza Chobei the Bandit King, Tamiya Gentetsusai the Sword Dragon, Twisted Keiun the Hunter of One Hundred, Nurugai of the Sanka, Horubo the Killing Prayer, Akaginu the Cannibal Courtesan, Kunoichi Yuzuriha of Keishu, Moro Makiya the Apostate, Rokurota the Giant of Bizen, and the runway shinobi Gabimaru the Hollow. All of the ten aforementioned candidates will be accompanied by an Asaemon Executioner of the Yamada Clan. The entire group will board a ship sailing to the uncharted island in the Southern Sea. The criminal who manages to get his hands on the Elixir of Life first earns an official pardon and gains his freedom again.

Read More: Hell’s Paradise Episode 1 Recap and Ending, Explained