The Inheritors (The Heirs) (2013) (TV Series): A Spotlight

A Potpourri of Vestiges Guest Post

By Pratikshya Mishra

The Inheritors (aka The Heirs), Poster, Korean TV Series
Coming from the writers of ‘Secret Garden’, ‘The Heirs’ is an ambitious venture and the most anticipated Korean drama of 2013, with some of the best cast. Lee Min Ho and Park Shin Hye play the lead characters Kim Tan, the rich yet kind hearted guy, and Cha Eun Sung, the poor yet no nonsense girl. The series of twenty episodes is shot in California, USA, and Seoul. It is the story of 18 year olds who are groomed to inherit their parents’ businesses; but mostly focuses on Kim Tan and Cha Eun Sung’s love story.

This is a world where families are ranked according to their wealth. A world of give and take. A world of business. A world of greed. Money is the only criterion for deciding love and friendships. Whom to talk to, whom to dine with, whom to study with and whom to marry to; the deciding factor in every case is the number of stock and share holdings. And the one who gets the lowest rung in the ladder has to face bullies, back-biting, and humiliation. In this scary world where empathy is an endangered trait, two persons dare to love each other despite their social and class differences. Kim Tan and Cha Eun Sung. And real friendships actually thrive, which is a rarity.

The Inheritors, aka The Heirs, Romantic Scene, TV Series, Lee Min Ho and Park Shin Hye play the lead characters Kim Tan and Cha Eun Sung
A Still from The Inheritors
But surprisingly, the unkindest of the lot are the ones who are deprived of love and care since early childhood. They show off their family’s high status and riches through harsh behaviors and bullying, but inside they are just another pitiable, tortured soul. One of them has luckily survived a suicide attempt, another is having a hard time dealing with his mother’s absence and his father’s multiple infidelities. All that glitters is not gold. In the end it’s just a pathetic, yet the most coveted world.

Kim Tan shoulders the burden of being an illegitimate child of the first ranker of their world. Growing through the secrecies and maintaining them; protecting his biological mother from the rest of the family; trying to improve his relationship with his half brother, which only worsens with time; his world is a broken one, right from the start. Cha Eun Sung is trapped in a web of lies, which she took shelter in to protect herself and survive in this world where no place is rightfully hers. And she does multiple part time jobs to make ends meet, and be of some help to her handicapped mother who works as a house maid for Kim Tan’s family.

The Inheritors, aka The Heirs, Collage, TV Series

The acting skills are commendable; the actors being some of the best names in the present day industry. You feel every emotion they portray - love, anger, pain, embarrassment, humiliation, or helplessness. Every character has a layer hidden under another. Sometimes it’s pain and a yearning for love and care hidden under a garb of rudeness and pride - Rachael; or brotherly love succumbed under the weight of forced hate - Won, Kim Tan’s brother; and sometimes it’s unrequited love finding solace behind a tough and bossy exterior - Young Do. Certain characters play comic relief at stressful times, cute Lee Bo Na is one of them. Her sweet incessant banters are enough to make one smile. Complicated relationships add to the great storyline.

The music and the back ground scores are very good. ‘Biting my lower lip’ is a touching number, that speaks of a girl’s feelings who is in love for the first time. The American Korean, Esna’s voice adds magic to the beautiful lyrics. ‘I’m saying’ by Lee Hong Ki, ‘O Everybody tell me’, and ‘Serendipity’ by 2Young are very peppy and catchy tunes. You can’t help but hum with them, even though you don’t understand a word without subtitles. ‘Love is’ and ‘In your eyes’ enhance the emotional quotient. It’s sad that Park Shin Hye (who plays the role of Cha Eun Sung, the lead character), who is a very talented singer, herself hasn’t contributed much to the song list.

The Inheritors, aka The Heirs, TV Series
A Still from The Inheritors
The best thing about ‘Heirs’ is that the story resonates in your mind. Even days after you are finished with the series the characters talk and the scenes play on in a loop in your thoughts. Every touching dialogue, every stance and every stare is already etched clearly. And the songs reverberate day in and day out, in your head. It’s straight from the heart, addictive, and after it ends the hangover is excruciating. You’ll miss all the characters. Though the ending is not a complete one, it’s satisfactory. Some details are left unsaid, and some stories untold. What happens next in their lives is left to the audience’s assumptions, thus leaving the option for a second season open.

Readers, please feel free to share your opinion by leaving your comments. As always your feedback is highly appreciated!

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About Author - 

Pratikshya Mishra, Guest Writer at A Potpourri of Vestiges

Pratikshya Mishra, currently pursuing BTech in ECE, has a passion for watching movies and sitcoms of diverse languages. She is an avid reader of novels, especially of mystery, detective, YA and historical fiction genre. She blogs at Magic Moments. The thoughts expressed by her are personal.

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