I adore the lyrical, tinged with melancholy vibe of The Heirs. It feels more like Worlds Within than a typical Kim Eun Seok drama - the dialogue is still there, but the story is given plenty of room to breathe and it’s gorgeous. I could happily spend 20 episodes watching Tan and Eun Sang interact and talk about nothing and get caught in each other’s eyes.
The chemistry between Lee Min Ho and Park Shin Hye sizzles - it’s not necessarily a ‘rip your clothes off a make out against the wall’ type of chemistry but it’s a fairy-tale, haunting, lost-in-each-other one. I have not seen Park Shin Hye spark like this with her leading man since Tree of Heaven in 2006.
I especially love how often Tan is shown looking at her, engrossed without planning to - the little beats and moments of it are lovely. Actually, the whole set-up reminds me a little bit of Secret Garden (my favorite KES drama and my top 10 of all time) - introspective, gentle Tan is nothing like Hyun Bin’s eccentric, abrasive character, but there is the same sense of a prince in a tower, isolated from the world, coming down and being drawn out by the heroine (SG referenced the Little Mermaid a lot, but as the show went on, it became quite clear that it was Hyun Bin who was the little mermaid who wanted to join the human world, and not Ha Ji Won’s fearless stuntwoman. And I am getting the same sense here. Tan’s isolation is so total, but it’s about to end).