Why Apple TV+’s Pachinko Is the Best Show You’re Not Watching

And Why It’s Time to Change That

Robin A Henderson
7 min readMay 20, 2022


A Korean family, two men, two women and a young girl. They’re photographed on a pink flower border.
Pachinko | Apple TV+

Pachinko is one of the greatest shows of 2022.

Soo Hugh creates, writes, and produces this gripping historical masterpiece. She adapts this multi-cultural timeless tale from Min Jin Lee’s New York Times best-selling book of the same name.

Pachinko tells the epic story of a Korean immigrant family who survives Japanese colonialism. The sprawling, majestic narrative spans four generations across South Korea, Japan, and the U.S.

From the cinematic scope to the ambitious storytelling and awe-inspiring score, Pachinko is breathtaking.

The critically acclaimed series has a 98% Rotten Tomatoes score and a 93% Audience score.

It should be a grand slam in the ratings. However, it’s yet to crack Nielsen’s weekly top ten or trend on Twitter.

Why isn’t Pachinko a bigger hit if American audiences are eager for more foreign-language content?

A rare gem is hard to find in a crowded streaming landscape.

This monumental fictionalized saga streams on Apple TV+.

While the tech-based streamer’s subscriber numbers don’t rival Netflix, the quality of its content outshines that of the streaming giant.

Netflix is slated to debut seventeen originals in June this year. Apple TV+ has only eight for May and June combined.

With over 100 streaming titles scheduled to release across all streaming platforms next month, we’re swimming in content. Who has the time to figure out what’s worth watching?

Pachinko, however, isn’t buried on an overcrowded platform.

It appears on Apple TV+’s home screen after you log in — a steady fixture on a platform that adds few new titles each month.

An award-worthy series on a prestigious streaming platform should translate into a bona fide hit.

This disconnect speaks to a larger, more systemic problem in Hollywood.

Tinseltown is obsessed with the sci-fi superhero action adventures of



Robin A Henderson

I write about inclusive storytelling in Hollywood and diverse representation in wellness.