Pachinko, Apple TV+’s latest series, has been making waves since it launched on 25 March and it’s well on its way to becoming a fan-favorite — it’s already a critical darling (the BBC calls it a ‘dazzling, heartfelt Korean epic’, while The Guardian says it’s ‘like nothing else on TV’).
There are lots of reasons why it’s been trending, of course — but let’s start with the storyline, based on Min Jin Lee’s book of the same name.
The book tells the story of a Korean family’s journey, from the Japanese occupation in the 1920s to an exodus to the U.S., but the series version zeroes in on the story of Sunja, the family’s matriarch.
There’s no denying that the Pachinko drama cast, composed of such brilliant actors, also contribute immensely to its success (the story as told onscreen and the viewership). Yes, you’ve seen a few of them before while others are new faces.
While the show is still running and the creator said they’re planning to do four seasons of it, you’re bound to get separation anxiety once season breaks come. To fill those gaps, here’s where else you can watch the Pachinko cast.
The actress plays the lead character Sunja, whose life is a story of survival. The character fights for a better life for herself in Korea during the Japanese occupation and later with her family in the US.
The role is similar to the one she portrayed in Minari, in that the character was also a South Korean immigrant in the US. (The characters appear to share a name too, albeit spelled differently.) Discover Youn Yuh-jung as Soon-ja and find out why she bagged a number of Best Supporting Actress awards — including the one from the Academy Awards — for her performance in the film.
Kim Min Ha
The actress also plays Sunja — but the teenage version of her. Her portrayal has been receiving nothing but praises from critics. So it may come as a bit of a surprise to learn that Min-ha is somewhat of a newcomer in acting. Her first project was in 2016.
You can see her in a completely different light in the horror film The Call.
Jin Ha plays Solomon Baek in Pachinko. Prior to landing the role, he was quite active in theatre. See him singing while acting as Annas on Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert.
The actress plays Kyunghee, who quickly becomes friends with Sunja when the latter arrives in Japan. She plays the role quite flawlessly, but you should also try seeing her as Haewon in the award-winning film Nobody’s Daughter Haewon.
P.S. She’s a singer-songwriter too!
Lee Min Ho
There’s no need to introduce this actor to anyone who’s even just remotely familiar with K-drama. He’s considered as one of this side of the world’s most popular actors. His filmography is long, to say the least, so there are definitely lots to choose from. It may seem like a cop-out, but if you haven’t yet, watch his award-winning performance on Boys Over Flowers. (He won the Best New Actor at the Baeksang Arts Awards for this.)
Also, fun fact: His role in Pachinko is the first one he’s auditioned for in 13 years!
Pachinko is available for streaming on Apple TV+. New episodes are released every Friday.
Next, find out where else you can watch the cast of Backstreet Rookie.