A slower episode heightened by some heart-wrenching drama and a distinct representation of cultural heritage. This is prestige and original TV.
This recap of the Apple TV+ series Pachinko season 1, episode 3 contains spoilers.
Chapter Two concluded with two major twists, one from each time period. In Sunja’s teenage years her blossoming romance with Koh Hansu ended bitter-sweet as he made his true intentions known. Whilst in 1989, Solomon was phoned by his estranged friend Hana, who has been missing for some time. Both scenes are double-edged, Sunja is deeply in love with Koh Hansu, yet he has taken advantage of this and with Solomon, he is finally aware that she is alive, but is forbidden from telling anyone of their conversation. In “Chapter Three”, these two main protagonists must deal with these revelations on their own, in silent solitude.
Pachinko season 1, episode 3 recap
Sunja explains to Koh Hansu that she is with a child and surprisingly the man is overjoyed by this news. She talks of marriage and he explains that he has a wife and three daughters back in Osaka. The merchant promises her great riches and proper education, but he cannot marry her. Sunja is heartbroken by this and newcomer Minha Kim portrays this loss of innocence with expert authenticity. She delivers a stunning performance throughout this episode, as poor Sunja is cursed with further tragedies.
Jump to the eighties and Solomon supports his grieving grandmother. Sunja’s best friend and sister-in-law Kyunghee, who she was caring for, has passed away after a long battle with cancer. Although she appears fine at first, the grief eventually starts to show. Solomon asks for her help in closing the business deal and the duo head to the stubborn land owner’s property for round two. The old ladies bond over a shared upbringing in poverty and discuss returning to the motherland. Sunja breaks down, stating it was Kyunghee’s dying wish to return to Korea one day. However, the landowner refuses to budge and Solomon awaits retribution from his bosses.
Teen Sunja isn’t fairing much better herself. A storm is pounding their humble boarding house and a stranger collapses on their doorstep. Sunja is desperate to tell her mother about the pregnancy and Koh Hansu’s refusal of marriage, although she struggles to find the opportune moment. Once the secret is finally out, only misery remains. Minha Kim continues her outstanding performance as she apologizes to her mother and the two women weep together on the floor. This is a tale of legacy and generational heartache. The writers have created something truly special here.
“Chapter Three” brings us to the end of Apple TV+’s initial release of Pachinko, with subsequent episodes debuting on a weekly basis from here on out. The first three chapters have showcased a culturally unique and exceptionally produced series that looks set to progress as the story unfolds. It is a rare cinematic feast that feels unmatched on its scale in the current TV landscape.
What did you think of Pachinko season 1, episode 3? Comment below.