The Tattoos Of Netflix’s Physical 100

The Tattoos Of Netflix’s Physical 100

The Netflix show Physical 100 has been a huge hit with audiences. Just in case you belong to the shrinking part of the population that has yet to see it, we will refrain from any spoilers. We will just say that the premise of the show is that 100 of South Korea’s fittest people compete in various quests and are, pretty brutally, eliminated until one is left standing. Kind of like a real-life Squid Game, but with less gore and, well, death (that’s not a spoiler, is it?). 

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Given the sweaty nature of the competition, most athletes wore pretty little clothing,  many displaying an impressive array of body art. For a country that has an ambivalent relationship to both the practice and the legality of tattooing, Korea’s fittest sport an amazing amount of tattoos.

Iron man and the Lion of Nemea

One of the most stand-out contestants was Olympic gold medalist Yun Sung-Bin, who took home first place in the men’s skeleton at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang. He is known for his impressive agility (watch him do a vertical, so-called Sargent, jump if you haven’t already and get back to us) and wearing an Iron Man-like helmet, which is pretty cool when you throw yourself headfirst on a minimal metal sleigh down an ice track at 80 miles per hour. Of course, we chose to feature him because of his tattoo. 

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Yun Sung-Bin has, not unlike numerous elite athletes, opted for a lion-themed piece across half of his chest. However, while other athletes seem to choose the lion to identify with its strength, Sung-Bin has chosen a depiction of the legend of Hercules and the Nemean Lion. This was the first out of 12 labours set before the demigod by King Eurysthios. 

The lion was terrorising the hills around Nemea, with claws sharper than swords, capable of destroying any armour. It could also not be killed by mortal weapons. After a gruesome fight, Hercules, who was half god, ended up strangling the lion with his bare hands. He later wore its fur as protection. 


The black work of BBULKUP

One of the perhaps not as physically imposing but nonetheless charismatic, and, for the sake of this article, impressively tattooed contestants was YouTuber BBULKUP (360k plus followers on the platform). Some of his ink looked pretty fresh, with some impressive black work and lettering on the neck and side of face immediately visible.

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Photo from Instagram @bbulkup

When exploring further, we find that he has actually pretty much covered half his body with pretty intense black work; right side arm, torso and leg. His chest features a graphic symbol that makes us think about a more precise version of the Firefly symbol from The Last Of Us, but we haven’t been able to figure out its meaning yet. Do let us know if you recognize it.

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Photo from Instagram @bbulkup


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