Wouldn’t Kang Min Hyuk look adorable in a Superman costume? I only suggest this because from the look of things in Heirs, he might have just come to the rescue of a highly anticipated K-drama that has been releasing a succession of pretty on picture but dead with emotion stills. The first pictures are out of Kang Min Hyuk and Park Shin Hye having a lollipop date at the Universal City Walk and I’m totally smiling from the cuteness. For starters this is the first two of the main cast that can convincingly pass for high schoolers – they both have baby faces and age-wise Park Shin Hye is still in her early twenties. Their characters are junior high classmates that reconnect by chance when both visit LA for various reasons. Looks like Kang Min Hyuk’s character doesn’t let this opportunity pass him by and manages to hang out with his crush and tour the city at the same time. He’s a smart go-getter, that one. Whatever tangible expression of chemistry has been all the talk around here, I feel it between them in these stills. It’s a friendly chaste chemistry, but they are engaging each other and animated. While I get the critique from some drama viewers who find Park Shin Hye a tad cold when it comes to engaging her male leads for romantic scenes, I’ve always been ambivalent about it. I see it at times, but it’s not for the lack of acting ability rather it’s more like she has never fallen for a guy in real life so that unconscious need to angle towards him and draw closer isn’t deep in her bones that she can tap into anytime the camera rolls for a romantic scene.
As an actress, this tiny bit of lacking in her emotional arsenal worked perfectly for her in Flower Boy Next Door because her character could feel and love but couldn’t express it well due to past trauma. I almost want to introduce Park Shin Hye to her dream man and have her go have a heartbreaking love affair with him in real life and then see her come back and do a drama. I think acting is a skill at expression but the underlying emotions to be expressed stem from what the actor has experienced before. Need a sad scene, scrounge up a very sad memory. Need to laugh, remember something funny. The disconnect with many bad actors is they lack the skills at expressing feelings they do have. Park Shin Hye I feel has the skills but when it comes to passionate romance in particular (the heart thumping, I want to kiss you silly, let’s stay in bed for a week kind), I’ve not seen that fire from deep within her. She does well with angst forbidden love like in Tree of Life or with innocent school yard romances. But I’m still waiting for her to fursplode the screen with her passion. I love her and think having room for improvement is always a good thing. She’s come a long way since being a child star and I’m fairly confident she’ll get there one day. Whether it ends up being with Lee Min Ho in Heirs, I’ll have to wait and see. At least I know she’ll have a cute buddy in Kang Min Hyuk’s character to be friends with in the drama.