Why Was Moon Hyungtae Running The Alien Cult? Did Ji-Hyo See The Alien In Reality In ‘Glitch’ Series?


Humans need somebody to depend on. They need a big shadow to put the blame on, as they do not want to believe that it is their own incapabilities that are leading them to an abyss. They need that glimmer of hope at the end of the tunnel. They need to believe that one day, judgment will be served, and they will be put out of their misery. We humans have this intrinsic want to attach purpose to each and everything, especially to our own existence. It is hard to accept the fact that our mortal life is all we have got, and once we are gone, there is nothing left. One thing common among all the Cults, be it in any part of the world, is that they are well aware of these fears and vulnerabilities of individuals. They know a fragile mind when they see it. Cult leaders often know that they cannot influence everybody, so they target people who show signs of insecurity and are apprehensive about their own reality. They know that their potency is reduced in the presence of rationality. Their agenda is to brainwash an individual, and that is why they are constantly on the lookout for susceptible human minds.

Moon Hyungtae knew that human psychology is molded in a way that it craves to get definite answers. It craves to find objectivity in philosophical concepts. Moon Hyungtae, who later became the founder and pastor of the Divine Light Church, met his wife, Back Yoonsun, in a welfare center. Ms. Back Yoonsun was one of the surviving witnesses of the 1976 UFO sighting in Seoul. She had always maintained the fact that she was abducted by the aliens and that she could communicate with them. Moon Hyungtae saw an opportunity in the form of this lady who claimed to have spoken to extraterrestrial beings. He himself had no clue if life outside earth was merely a figment of imagination or reality. He created a narrative, making use of the old lady, on which he knew that a lot of weak and fragile minds would depend. He bought the land on which the welfare center was built and started using it for the purpose of the Divine Light Church. We cannot deny the fact that he, too, wanted to believe that one day a Messiah would come and guide them to their salvation. But the fact that he misguided his believers and hid the truth from them cannot be denied. He did put on a show and said a lot of things that he knew were not true. Slowly, a lot of people started following him, and he somehow started liking the power it got him. He liked how people had blind faith in his authority. He wanted to maintain that at any cost. Back then, Yoonsun spoke in obscure phrases and words, and nothing could be ascertained from what she said. There was no physical evidence for the claims that she had been making, and Moon Hyungtae knew that. But she was the pivot around whom the cult revolved. It was essential that people saw her with a lot of reverence. In an attempt to substantiate her theory, Moon kidnapped each and every plausible candidate he thought could be the Messiah and searched for a chip or any kind of evidence that could prove that they had made contact with the aliens. But to his disappointment, he was never able to find that.

He believed that Hong Ji-hyo was not the Messiah, from the very beginning, as he wasn’t able to find any chip in her brain. But he didn’t want to burst the bubble as he was scared that his believers would start questioning his credibility. So, he asked her to play along. He was ready to go to any extent to maintain his position of power. He had built a drone that used to hover in the sky and give people the impression that it was a UFO, or as they liked to call it, “The Light.” Moon Hyungtae was a fraud. He played with the sentiments of his followers. Maybe, he would have believed that there was some truth behind the claims made by Back Yoonsun, at one point of time. He was probably not the deceitful person in the beginning that he ultimately became. But he did use the dubiousness of this gray area to his advantage. He fabricated a lot of things, and probably he was also one of those vulnerable souls who wanted to attach a greater purpose to their existence. Eventually, the alien cult became a means for him to maintain his status quo and be in a position of power. He enjoyed the privilege of having ardent devotees, which in turn fueled his sense of entitlement. “The father” was infallible, and whatever he said, no matter how bizarre it sounded, the people accepted it as the eternal truth. Being in a position where he could influence so many people was intoxicating and addictive. He was not ready to abandon this addiction merely because it was not righteous to play with the sentiments and beliefs of the people.

It is said that your strongest ally has the potential to turn into your greatest adversary. Younggi, a.k.a. Sister Abigail, daughter of Direct Kim, was an ardent devotee of the cult. She believed that the power of ascension would be given to mortals by a Messiah. She believed in the concept of everlasting life and salvation. She was ready to abandon her “carbon body” and embrace the light. But she was deeply hurt when she saw that the Holy Light was nothing but a manned drone. She decided that she would kill “The Father,” who had had to believe in all these lies. She was about to shoot him when her real father, Direct Kim, came and hit Moon Hyungtae with a car. Kim took the gun from his daughter and shot the pastor of their church multiple times.

Though there was a lack of physical evidence and Ji-hyo, herself, was dubious about what she saw, there were many subtle indications made in the series, “Glitch,” that told you that aliens did exist in reality. Firstly, Back Yoonsun, after the memorial ceremony, was sitting all by herself in the backyard. She saw something in the sky and said, “Tayo,” a word that she was seen repeating earlier in her home too. Ji-hyo and Heo Bo-ra were transported somehow from the podium, where the memorial ceremony was being held, to somewhere amidst the forest in an unexplainable manner. In the end, we also see the needle of the transmitter fluctuating in Ji-hyo’s room, and finally, in the great reveal of the series, her boyfriend, Lee Si-kook, also witnessed the mammoth green-capped alien that had haunted Ji-hyo from the very beginning. Based on these indications, it could be speculated that whatever Ji-hyo witnessed in her childhood was not mere hallucinations, as Moon Hyungtae had told it to be. She was not suffering from schizophrenia, and Back Yoonsun could actually communicate with the aliens. But let’s look at the parallel theory too and try to find if there was any merit to it or if it could ascertain that what Ji-hyo experienced was nothing but a made-up reality. It could be possible that Ji-hyo, her boyfriend Lee Si-kook, and Back Yoonsun would be suffering from dissociative identity disorder (though we highly doubt that). All three of them had memory loss and couldn’t remember exactly what happened when they were abducted or when they had an encounter with the aliens. It could be true that during her hypnosis, Ji-hyo remembered everything only because Moon Hyungtae had told her about the same earlier.

In the climax of the series, “Glitch,” we saw that at the memorial ceremony, a gas was released in the air, which caused a lot of people to lose their senses. If we go with the narrative that there were no aliens, then an argument could be made that due to getting intoxicated by the gas, Ji-hyo and Heo Bo-ra themselves walked into the forest but didn’t realize it and later felt that they had been transported there by some magical power. Maybe Ji-hyo’s mind was playing tricks on her, and she was suffering from a mental disorder. It could be said that the transmitter was just acting strange because of some other electromagnetic pull and not because of the presence of UFOs. But then, seeing the inclinations of the series per se, and also the subtle hints that it leaves time and again, we want to believe that there was the presence of aliens, though they made their presence felt only to a handful of people. After Memorial Day, one group said that they actually saw the aliens, while the other group said that it was just a hallucination due to the poisonous gas. Why they didn’t get captured on camera and why the others didn’t see them or feel their presence is still a mystery.

Maybe the series, “Glitch,” wanted to tell us that the existence of aliens is analogous to our beliefs. If we believe in something, our minds will start giving us reasons and weaving a plausible theory to back it up. But if we decide not to believe in something, we will have an ample number of rational explanations to prove its legitimacy. Ji-hyo was now unaffected by the presence or absence of aliens. She had made peace with herself. She had accepted her past. She had decided to put her faith in herself. She was ready to embrace the uncertainties of life and not waste even a moment mourning what was not in her hands.

See More: ‘Glitch’ Ending, Explained: Did Hong Ji-Hyo Witness Aliens In Her Childhood? Was The UFO Real?

- Advertisement -
Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Sushrut Gopesh
Sushrut Gopesh
I came to Mumbai to bring characters to life. I like to dwell in the cinematic world and ponder over philosophical thoughts. I believe in the kind of cinema that not necessarily makes you laugh or cry but moves something inside you.

Must Read

DMT Guide

More Like This