As ‘Heartland’ enters its 14th glorious season, we take a look back what made the show become such a whiff of fresh air.
‘Heartland’ has become one of those television series’ that can be watched by entire families sitting together in the living room, sharing a few laughs and tears. Beauty, however, is very subjective. This is a show without a coherent story, and oftentimes it’s so slow, that it may bore some viewers. But thankfully, those moments are very few and through most of its runtime, the series keeps the audience emotionally invested in the action centred on the horses.
Let’s see, what makes the show great despite a lack of solid storyline and action.
- ‘Heartland’ plot and review
- Our favourite horses on ‘Heartland’
- Why ‘Heartland’ works despite an apparent lack of a coherent story
Lauren Brooke’s ‘Heartland’ book series formed the basis of this series, which premiered to just above average ratings in 2007. Tracking the lives of two sisters, Amy and Louise Fleming, the series is based in Alberta, Canada, as we flow through the tale of family bonding as the sisters get to spend all their time, and they have ample of it, with their father, grandfather and a farmhand on a family ranch. The basic premise of the show revolves around the little everyday dramas the family indulges in and how they overcome it, to eventually become stronger as a unit. In March 2015, the series aired its 139th episode, making it the longest-running one-hour drama. Till now, the series has been running for 14 seasons and had aired 218 episodes in total. Many factors have contributed to the show’s international success.
Our favourite horses on ‘Heartland’
Now, if we have to talk about what’s so great about the show that has gotten half the world hooked on to it would be the meticulously placed human drama and internal conflicts. However, there is one thing that has worked strongly in favour of the creators, and that is all the gorgeous horses that have featured on the show since its inception. That wouldn’t be an overstatement if we say that horses are the backbone of the show and they play a crucial part subtly (and non-subtly) through the development of all the story arcs on the show.
We are here to talk about some of those beautiful creatures that have held our heart in a solid grasp.
Spartan is Amy’s horse, rescued by her in the very first episode from a certain Mr Mallen. Amy also has a special connection with Spartan as it reminds her of her deceased mother. The show perfectly captures the beauty of the dark brown stallion.
Phoenix is Georgie’s companion and probably the most beautiful horse on the show. Used mostly in the western settings, Phoenix made his debut on the series in the 6th season and has since become an integral part of the narrative.
Who doesn’t like the visuals of Uncle Jack climbing on Buddy through the wilderness? Buddy was rescued by Georgie and Amy and has since been a part of the show as the cattle horse.
There are many other beautiful horses such as Storm, Shorty, Pegasus, Kramer and Pal, which make the show worth watching. In the series, everyone is talking about the horses, sharing warm stories and making up a lot of stuff, all about the horses. Apart from the fact that all the horses look great on camera, they also provide a certain ‘earthiness’ to the whole series and that works greatly in its favour. However, that said, the story and the character development in the show has been fantastic it might still work without a horse in almost every frame of the series.
Why Heartland works so good despite the lack of story
The show works for a number of reasons, and horses are just an added bonus. While horses are only plot devices, they play a crucial role in setting the tone of the story. So while it may sound like a cliché statement to make, horses bind the characters together. What further adds to the ethereal beauty of the show is the landscape the show is set in. Away from the great American wild-wild west, ‘Heartland’ is set in the rocky lands of Alberta Canada, and amidst the great plains and dark rocks, we see our characters slowly moving about their lives, talking, sleeping, and eating with their majestic horses.
As the 14th season of Heartland is underway, we are still hooked to the show and we would like to know your views on it. Tell us in the comments below which is your favourite horse on the show, and why.