Ssu Jen and Ying Hsiung have a supernatural romance in HIStory 1: My Hero.

HIStory: My Hero is a Taiwanese BL drama with a supernatural twist. The protagonist is a female ghost who possesses her male classmate to spend more time with her grieving boyfriend. A unique love triangle forms as the romantic connection strengthens between the two men, but the boyfriend doesn’t know he’s interacting with his ex-girlfriend in another body.

The first installment in the HIStory franchise gets points for creativity, exploring an unusual romance that touches upon themes of identity and sexuality. Unfortunately, it struggles to capitalize on an interesting premise and rushes through the narrative in an hour’s time. Overall, HIStory: My Hero is an okay BL series that falls short of greatness.

HIStory: My Hero Summary

What is the show called?

HIStory – My Hero

When was the show released?

2017

Where was the show made?

Taiwan

What is the language used in the show?

Taiwanese

What is the show’s genre?

Supernatural

How would you describe the show?

Cute and sweet

How long is the show?

4 episodes

How long is each episode?

Around 20 minutes

Plot

Ying Hsiung and Ssu Jen live together in the same apartment flat.

Ying Hsiung used to date Lan Hsi, his rich and privileged girlfriend from a powerful family. Tragically, she dies at a young age. Although he tries to adjust to normal life afterwards, it pains him to even bring her up in conversation.

Unbeknownst to Ying Hsiung, his girlfriend has turned into a ghost. Even though he can’t see her, she can monitor his every move in the afterlife. Accompanying Lan Hsi is a quirky deity named Chang Chang, responsible for guiding her spirit after death. With some coercion, Lan Hsi manages to talk Chang Chang into giving her a second chance at life.

However, Chang Chang has transferred Lan Hsi’s ghost into Sse Jen’s body. Sse Jen is one of her nerdy university classmates, who recently died in a slip-and-fall accident. Lan Hsi is horrified to take over his body, and she has a tough time getting used to being a guy at first. Chang Chang tells her this is a trial period. The condition is that Lan Hsi can come back to life, if she secures a kiss from her boyfriend as Sse Jen.

A seemingly impossible task, Lan Hsi tries her best to get closer to Ying Hsiung under the new persona. Surprisingly, Ying Hsiung warms up to Sse Jen quickly, even offering him a place to stay at his apartment. Lan Hsi uses this opportunity to get closer to her ex-boyfriend, even though she can’t tell him her actual identity. As a result, Ying Hsiung believes he’s developing a connection with Sse Jen, a fellow male classmate.

Lan Hsi discovers a set of diaries that Sse Jen kept back when he was alive. Curious about the type of person he was, Lan Hsi reads a few of the entries. She discovers that he was massively bullied due to his nerdy appearance. She also learns that he had a secret crush on somebody, and he was just about to confess until his untimely death. Inspired by his tale, Lan Hsi becomes determined for her love to implicitly reach Ying Hsiung. She wants to get a kiss from him, even if it means he’s kissing another guy.

HIStory: My Hero Trailer

HIStory: My Hero Cast

Characters

Ying Hsiung Aaron Lai (賴東賢) Aaron Lai Instagram

Ying Hsiung is portrayed by the Taiwanese actor Aaron Lai (賴東賢).

Ying Hsiung is a university student recently in mourning over his deceased girlfriend. Although Lan Hsi doted on him, Ying Hsiang later admits that he had doubts about their relationship. Ying Hsiung used to live with his girlfriend, but lets Ssu Jen crash with him after his injury.

Ssu Jen Yun Lin Chiang (蔣昀霖) Yun Lin Chiang Instagram

Ssu Jen is portrayed by the Taiwanese actor Yun Lin Chiang (蔣昀霖).

Ssu Jen is a nerdy university student who gets bullied and picked on by his peers. When he dies during a freak accident, Lan Hsi possesses his body to stay close to her boyfriend. Before he died, Ssu Jen kept secret diary entries on all his thoughts and feelings.

Supporting Cast

Lan Hsi is portrayed by the Taiwanese actress Patricia Lin (林映唯).

Lan Hsi

Patricia Lin (林映唯)

Chang Chang is portrayed by the Taiwanese actor Da-her Lin (林鶴軒).

Chang Chang

Da-her Lin (林鶴軒)

Ya Chin is portrayed by the Taiwanese actor Cason Chiang (江凱軒).

Ya Chin

Cason Chiang (江凱軒)

Cast highlights

  • Years later in 2021, the lead actor (Aaron Lai) stars in another Taiwanese BL drama called Be Loved in House. The BL romance is more prominent in that series than HIStory 1: My Hero. You’ll see the actor in plenty of steamy exchanges, along with many shirtless scenes as well!
  • Aaron also featured in another 2021 BL drama called See You After Quarantine, where he plays another gay character. Bonus: he speaks Japanese too!

HIStory: My Hero Review

Review

Drama Review Score: 6.5

C
Story

★★☆☆

Romance

★☆☆☆

Acting

★★★☆

Ending

★★★☆

Ying Hsiung gets shirtless a few times during HIStory: My Hero.

Surprisingly, I enjoyed HIStory: My Hero more during a rewatch. Compared to how I first felt about the drama from a few years ago, my opinion improved in a second viewing. Maybe the story works better when I already know what’s gonna happen, so I can anticipate all the twists and turns. I also think the series aged considerably well. Now that there’re hundreds of new BL series, HIStory: My Hero still stands out with a quirky premise, unlike the usual love story in this genre.

Despite the positive feedback, HIStory: My Hero gets a mixed reception from me. There’s a lot of plot to unfold in less than 80 minutes, so the story feels rushed and isn’t executed too smoothly. It doesn’t have time to expand upon the interesting moments, which means the series never goes deep enough in the romance or the emotional impact. Plus, some of the scenes feel clunky and could’ve benefited from better writing.

At times, HIStory: My Hero dances a fine line between BL and BG. Since Ssu Jen is controlled by the ex-girlfriend’s ghost, you can almost argue it’s a love story about a straight couple. However, Ying Hsiung isn’t aware of her presence and genuinely believes he’s developing an attraction for a man. While the series addresses the spectrum of sexuality and gender identity briefly, those moments aren’t substantial enough. There’s a missed opportunity here, making me wish these themes are explored in greater depth.

Without going into heavy spoilers, the ending comes with a plot twist, putting HIStory: My Hero into solid BL territory. The story might begin with a romance between a mourning boyfriend and his deceased girlfriend, but it doesn’t necessarily end that way. Unlike some of the steamier HIStory installments, there isn’t that much physical intimacy between the main characters. Instead, their emotional connection is emphasized. Just in case there’s any concern, rest assured the two male characters do kiss in the end.

Although HIStory: My Hero deals with deaths and ghosts, it’s a pretty lighthearted supernatural romance. The tone never feels too heavy, thanks to the offbeat sense of humour throughout the episodes. With a plot that moves along at a brisk pace, this series is easy and comfortable to watch. However, the narrative is kinda lacklustre, the relationship doesn’t satisfy my BL cravings, and the overall quality falls short of satisfying. In my opinion, HIStory: My Hero is just an okay series that can’t overcome its various shortcomings.

Story

Okay story
Ying Hsiung's girlfriend is a ghost who takes over Sse Jen's body.

I’m going to make some allowances for HIStory: My Hero, considering it only had an hour to tell a high-concept love story involving ghosts and the afterlife. The series establishes the premise as quickly as possible, which does feel rather rushed, but I understand why they wouldn’t want to spend too much time setting up the plot either. If the series was longer, I’d love to see the story pace itself better. Unfortunately, the time constraints limit the effectiveness of the storytelling.

The premise of a ghost girlfriend coming back to life isn’t entirely unique, but it seems uncommon enough that there’s some novelty to the idea. I was excited to see how the romance would unfold, especially with a clear BL twist in the mix. While HIStory: My Hero doesn’t execute the storyline perfectly, it gets some points for creativity and ambition. Overall, the story is cute and quirky enough as long as you don’t scrutinize the plot holes too closely.

My hero
Ying Hsiung's name translates to 'Hero' in Chinese.

Ying Hsiung’s name (麥英雄) literally translates to ‘hero’ in Traditional Chinese, which explains why this series is named “My Hero”. In addition, the title also refers to the reason why Sse Jin fell in love with Ying Hsiung in the first place.

From Sse Jin’s perspective, Ying Hsiung is his hero who rescued him from the school bullies. It was the bullying incident that brought Sse Jin and Ying Hsiung closer together. They had an opportunity to know each other better, where they developed a connection from there. However, neither of them would act upon their feelings, unsure if the other person would reciprocate.

It was only after Ying Hsiung read Sse Jin’s journal that he realized they both feel the same way about each other. Once Ying Hsiung knows the attraction is mutual, he’s prompted into confessing his love. At the end of the series, the two of them happily get together. It’s almost like a fairytale ending, as the damsel in distress gets swept off his feet by his knight in shining armour.

Romance

BL romance
Ying Hsiung and Ssu Jen developed a romantic connection before Lan Hsi took over his body.

Yes, History: My Hero is a BL series. There’s a covert romance between the two male characters, particularly towards the end. I feel the need to clarify this point because the lines get blurred with a female love interest in the mix. The definition of what’s considered BL tends to be up for interpretation, but we have to draw the line somewhere. If this drama was strictly about a ghost girlfriend reconnecting with her boyfriend in a man’s body, I wouldn’t consider it as a BL.

However, the twist in HIStory: My Hero is that Ying Hsiung and the real Ssu Jen already had feelings for each other before Lan Hsi possessed his body. In the diary entries, Ssu Jen reveals that he had a crush on Ying Hsiung, believing these feelings are reciprocated. That’s why Ying Hsiung seemed so receptive to Ssu Jen’s advances during the series. Not because he could “feel” his ex-girlfriend’s presence, but Ying Hsiung already had these budding feelings for the actual Ssu Jen long ago.

There’s a tragic irony to Lan Hsi’s journey. All along, the poor girl thought she was connecting with her boyfriend on a romantic level, transcending through the boundaries of gender. It turns out that no, he’s actually attracted to the guy instead of her. If anything, her actions only pushed the two of them closer together, making her boyfriend accept that he’s in love with another man.

BG romance
Ying Hsiung would get flashbacks of his ex-girlfriend while he's with Ssu-Jen.

Although there’s a BL romance in HIStory: My Hero, it focuses mainly on the BG relationship instead. Ying Hsiung may be attracted to the real Ssu Jen, but he spends most of his scenes with the fake Ssu Jen, who’s his dead girlfriend in disguise. As a result, any of the cute couple scenes that we see between Ying Hsiung and Ssu Jen aren’t really BL. While we see the two male actors interacting, their romantic moments are actually between a female character and her boyfriend.

Not that there’s anything wrong with Lan Hsi and Ying Hsiung having a romance, but understandably you don’t want the BG relationship to be the bulk of a BL drama. I’m left with mixed feelings about the complicated love triangle in HIStory: My Hero. On one hand, I do think it’s an interesting angle to approach a romance. It’s interesting to see the POV of the dead girlfriend as she tries to recapture her boyfriend’s love.

On the other hand, BL Watcher just wants to watch BL content, dammit! At the end of the day, I don’t care about the girlfriend, not when there’s a much more urgent BL romance that needs development. Give me some guy-on-guy action now! 😤

Acting

Decent acting
Ssu Jen gets bruised by his bullies, but smiles when Ying Hsiung rescues him.

The acting in HIStory: My Hero is decent. I think the actress playing the ex-girlfriend (Lan Hsi) is good in the few scenes where she appears. I also think the actor playing Ssu Jen (Yun Lin Chaing) has a versatility to him as well. However, he’s limited by the story, which doesn’t give him enough materials to work with.

In a longer series, all the actors would have more opportunities to showcase their acting capabilities. I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt and believe they carried their roles pretty well. Overall. I have no problems with their performances.

Ending

Both happy & sad ending
Lan Hsi is heartbroken when she realizes her boyfriend is in love with someone else.

HIStory: My Hero has both a happy ending or a sad ending, depending on whose perspective you prioritize. From a BL perspective, the ending is a joyous occasion. Both Ying Hsiung and Sse Jin confess their love for each other, resulting in a kiss during the final moments of the episode. The real Sse Jin also returns back to his body after the kiss. He’s the real winner here, getting both the man and his mortality back.

On the other hand, HIStory: My Hero has a tragically sad ending if you view the story from the girlfriend’s perspective. Other than the glaring fact that she’s DEAD, Lan Hsi also realizes that her boyfriend is in love with another man. He was her raison d’être, the main driving force of why she wanted to come back to life instead of moving to the afterlife. She assumed they had some epic love story, one that could defy gender and sexuality.

Instead, it must be devastating to know that Ying Hsiung had developed feelings for someone else. She was still clutching onto the old romance between them, while he moved on to a new relationship already. Her hopeless expression in the end was actually a pretty sad moment. It dampened the happiness that I felt about the BL couple getting together. 😥 Of course she’s also kinda homophobic, so my sympathy for her character is very limited. 😏

Ending explained
Ying Hsiung and Ssu Jen kiss in the ending of HIStory 1: My Hero.

The love triangle is resolved by the end of HIStory: My Hero. The ending reveals that Ying Hsiung’s love for Sse Jen overpowers any lingering feelings for his girlfriend. Even though Lan Hsi succeeds in getting a kiss from her boyfriend, she isn’t the one who comes back to life. That’s because whom Ying Hsiung loves isn’t actually *her*. He has feelings for the real Sse Jin, not the fake Sse Jin with Lan Hsui controlling him.

When the two of them kiss, Lan Hsui gets ejected from the body and Sse Jin returns to life. The magic spell worked exactly as Chang Chang said it would, except it applied for Lan Hsui’s love rival instead of herself. With true love’s kiss, the deceased is supposed to come back to life. Sadly for Lan Hsui, she is not Ying Hsiung’s true love.

Lan Hsui’s last line is a bitter acceptance of her cruel fate: “In relationships, the one who is not loved is the third wheel.” Even though Lan Hsui used to be the girlfriend, she’s now considered the third wheel in their relationship. Seeing them kiss in front of her is a pretty solid confirmation that Ying Hsiung doesn’t love her as much as he loves Sse Jin.

Analysis

Who is the best character?

Answer

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Is there any nudity?

Answer

The HIStory franchise is known for its steaminess, a trademark found commonly in the other seasons. However, HIStory: My Hero doesn’t have Not that the lack of PDA stops the lead actor (Aaron Lai) from showing as much skin as possible. Yes, his hotness is so notable that I must highlight it in my series review. He’s like a walking specimen of peak physical fitness, so don’t pretend you can ignore his biceps, thighs, pecs, torso, and butt.

Are there any triggers?

Answer

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What’s the best part?

Answer

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What would you change?

Answer

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HIStory: My Hero Episodes

Episode Guide

HIStory: My Hero has a total of 4 episodes. Each episode is around 20 minutes long. This is a short BL drama, and you can finish the entire series in around 80 minutes. HIStory: My Hero aired its first episode on February 14, 2017 and ended on February 17, 2017.

Episode 1

★★☆☆

Episode 2

★★☆☆

Episode 3

★★☆☆

Episode 4

★★★☆

⭐ Best episode

Episode 4

The two main characters kiss in the HIStory 1 My Hero ending.

The final episode is probably my favourite in HIStory: My Hero because it’s the most explicitly BL. All series, I’ve been waiting to see some romance between the two male characters (as opposed to the male lead and his ex-girlfriend). This episode finally gives me what I want. Granted, the BL moment only happened in the final few minutes of the episode, but I’m easily satisfied. 😅

💕 Most romantic episode

Episode #

😭 Tearjerker episode

Episode #

😡 Most triggering episode

Episode #

💋 First kiss episode

Episode #

👨‍❤️‍💋‍👨 Episodes with intimacy

Episode #

💪🏻 Episodes with skin

Episode #

HIStory: My Hero Online

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