It’s understandable if you’re still suffering from the ending of Pachinko. History, a forbidden love story, and an extraordinary cast — including an Oscar winner (Youn Yuh-Jung) and one of Korea’s best leading men (Lee Min-ho) — all contribute to the Apple TV+ Korean period drama’s captivating viewing experience.
The series, which debuted on March 27, is based on Min Jin Lee’s best-selling novel of the same name. And, like its inspiration, the show was ambitious in scale and had a big budget, apparently comparable to The Crown’s at roughly $13 million per episode.
On April 28, Apple TV+ officially greenlit the show for a Season 2 renewal, which was both gratifying and unsurprising. The show has garnered positive reviews from critics, with a 98 per cent rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
“Words cannot explain my excitement at continuing to tell the incredible story of this indomitable family,” Pachinko creator, writer, and executive producer Soo Hugh said in a statement.
“I’m grateful to the incredible team at Apple and Media Res studio for believing in and supporting this programme, as well as to our devoted fans who have supported us.” It’s an honour to be able to keep working with this incredible cast and team.”
Hugh has previously stated that the series was written with long-term goals in mind. “It’s designed to be four seasons, each with eight episodes, with a departure every season that examines one significant historical event in that story,” she stated on The Hollywood Reporter’s TV’s Top 5 podcast.
Here’s everything we know so far about Pachinko Season 2, including which cast members are expected to return and which storylines could be explored.
The Plot of Pachinko Season 2
Lee’s epic narrative encompasses a wide range of plots. It’s an intergenerational story that spans from 1910 to 1989 and follows one family. The Apple TV+ series stays true to the source material, and while all eight episodes of Season 1 go deeply into the plot, there’s still a significant portion of Sunja’s life missing.
Sunja’s beginnings are shown through flashbacks in the first season, from her youth to becoming pregnant by a married Hansu at the age of 16. The final episodes chronicle her new life as the preacher Isak’s wife and their relocation to Japan.
The series’ last flashback takes place in 1939 when Isak is incarcerated and Sunja, now a mother of two, becomes a kimchi vendor to help support the family financially. Sunja’s grandson Solomon is already working in 1989, yet his attempts to land a large account fail.
His father, Mozasu, is already a successful proprietor of a pachinko parlour, and the family is no longer penniless. Sunja even gets to make a quick trip back to Busan to see an old buddy.
But there’s an entire middle section — from 1939 to 1989 — that’s left out, including what occurs when Isak is incarcerated, how Sunja builds her kimchi company, and what happens during World War II.
Sunja’s boys, Noa and Mozasu, have compelling tales in the novel that are mostly ignored in the series, particularly the events that lead Mozasu into the pachinko business. As a result, the show’s sophomore season has a lot of potentials.
Sunja alluded to Noa committing suicide in one episode, so that could potentially be explored in Season 2. Hugh has taken some creative licence with the series, changing some events and adding backstories for specific characters, but it’s probable that she’ll stick to the book’s primary narrative.
Expected Release Date
Season two of Pachinko has now been officially renewed, although considering the international scope of this project, it may still take some time to reach us. In addition, showrunner Soo Hugh has another Apple TV+ show in the works.
The White Darkness, based on David Grann’s non-fiction book, will star Loki’s Tom Hiddleston as a British explorer who attempted to reach Antarctica on foot. Hugh is co-creating the project with Black Swan writer Mark Heyman as showrunner.
Given all of this, we wouldn’t be surprised if Pachinko season two doesn’t air until 2024, though this early renewal gives us optimism that it will.
- Season 1 Release Date-march 25, 2022
Pachinko Season 2 Cast: Who Will Return in Season 2?
Youn Yuh-Jung (as Kim Sunja), Kim Min-ha (as young Sunja), and Lee Min-ho (as Koh Hansu) are all but certain to return — and they’ll almost certainly be joined by the following:
- Soji Arai as Baek Mozasu
- Jin Ha as Solomon Baek
- Han Jun-woo as Baek Yoseb
- Jung Eun-Chae as Kyunghee
- Felice Choi as Kyunghee’s mother
- Baek Isak is played by Steve Sanghyun Noh
- Naomi is played by Anna Sawai.
New faces may also appear, including younger and older versions of several characters introduced in season one.
Season 2 Trailer for Pachinko: Is There Any Season 2 Footage Yet?
Pachinko hasn’t released any new season two footage yet, and we may have to wait a while for that as well. You can watch the season 1 trailer from here.
It’s understandable if you’re still upset about Pachinko’s conclusion. History, a forbidden love story, and an outstanding cast — including an Oscar winner (Youn Yuh-Jung) and one of Korea’s top leading men (Lee Min-ho) — all combine to the enthralling viewing experience of the Apple TV+ Korean historical drama.
Season two of Pachinko has been officially renewed, albeit due to the international nature of this project, it may take some time to reach us.
In addition, showrunner Soo Hugh is working on another Apple TV+ project. Youn Yuh-Jung (as Kim Sunja), Kim Min-ha (as young Sunja), and Lee Min-ho (as Koh Hansu) are very certainly returning.