Revenge, a major driving force in this period piece
heirs of the earthor Los Herederos de la Tierra, is a Spanish historical drama set in Barcelona at the end of the 14th century. In an era full of inquisitions and warring kings, Héritiers de la Terre tells the story of Hugo Llor and his rise as a winemaker. Full of twists, murders, character development and romance, the series can be seen as a realistic historical account of one man’s journey through poverty, pain, power and politics.
The first season of heirs of the earth consists of eight episodes of 35 to 50 minutes each and is a sequel to cathedral of the sea also available on Netflix. Both historical dramas are based on novels of the same name by Ildefonso Falcones and are very popular.
– The Heirs of the Earth review does not contain spoilers –
Heirs of the Earth: Plot
heirs of the earth begins with a poor Hugo Llor losing his father to the sea and his mother and sister in dire circumstances after his father’s death. He then begins to work in a shipbuilding factory thanks to a nobleman, Sir Arnau Estanyol, whose son has just undertaken a journey from Barcelona to Constantinople. In an unprecedented turn of events, the current king dies and a rebellion breaks out between the queen and their son, Prince John, who will now be king.
On the fringe are the Puiges, who were driven out of Barcelona years ago by Sir Arnau. Now they have won favor with the new king and kill Sir Arnau in public execution. This begins the chain of events that lead to Hugo, who cannot stand the injustice done to Sir Arnau and his family swear revenge on the Puiges. In this quest, he joins forces with Bernat, Sir Arnau’s son, who has returned after learning of his father’s execution.
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heirs of the earth tried to cram a lot of information into its eight episodes, which makes it a bit tiring to watch. Especially if you haven’t watched the previous one cathedral of the sea, it sometimes becomes difficult to keep your interest and follow the plot. It has all the elements of a Spanish melodrama, or even a Spanish tragedy, also called the tragedy of revenge. Elements of revenge, political conspiracy, women in cunning roles and lots of bloodshed, Heirs of the Earth try to do it all in one season.
One of the important things about Heirs of the Earth is that he kept the fantasy to a minimum, we see characters that we often encounter in our own lives. From Sir Arnau, to Hugo, via Regina or Les Puiges, everyone finds themselves in the people around us, which makes this period piece quite modern.
Moreover, the will to do better and to obtain what one wants is a huge driving force in the characters of Heirs of the Earth. Whether it’s Hugo, working hard to rise from rags to riches, Regina doing her best to keep Hugo by her side, the Puiges remembering the wrong done to them and getting their revenge. The plot of heirs of the earth is guided by its characters.
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Another highlight of heirs of the earth is its costumes and sets, which are so realistic that you would feel yourself transported to a 14th-century Barcelona. Credit, in part, goes to writer Ildefonso Falcones, who said in an interview that he did a lot of research to bring his characters to life. The other half of the credit goes to director Jordi Frades, who also directed the prequel to heirs of the earth.
Additionally, Falcones was also involved in the writing process, ensuring his vision was legitimately transferred to the screen. The actors are impeccable, Aitor Luna as Sir Arnau is good if short. Hugo played by David Solans (young) and Yon Gonzalez (adult) are impeccable. Other actors also gave one of their best performances and shows of hard work.
Although heirs of the earth is an interesting drama, it sometimes loses its grip due to so many plot points crammed into small episodes. Above all, after the first episodes, a lot of information is given and so many explanations are left out. For someone who has already watched the prequel, it’s easy to catch up. But for new viewers, that doesn’t give much to remember.
For a drama that relies on its realistic plot, there is a certain superficiality in the way its characters interact, interpersonal relationships are not well established. For example, the relationship between Sir Arnau and Hugo is not well established for Hugo to go and seek revenge on his name. Hugo’s debt to Sir Arnau could have been explored further. There are many such cases throughout heirs of the earth. It seems the writer spent most of his time on the set and forgot to deal with the character arcs.
Globally, heirs of the earth is quite captivating and will definitely entertain you. Especially if you like period dramas, this is a recommended watch. Spanish dramas tend to grow once you get past the initial set up of the scenery. The scenario is very interesting and will not let your mind wander.
Heirs of the Land is available to watch on Netflix.
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