Sometimes a person’s past can hurt them to a terrible extent, and resolving this issue can become a huge problem. The past of a person is responsible for the changes that occur in the present too. It shapes the person’s entire well-being and lifestyle, but sometimes people allow their past to hover over their present and future. This can lead to multiple problems as painful memories resurface, and it continues to create hindrances in relationships and professional life. “Shards of Her” on Netflix is a 2022 Taiwanese psychological drama that revolves around the life of popular headhunter Lin Chen Hsi, whose life suddenly takes a different turn when she is mysteriously transferred to a different reality that’s linked to the secrets of her past. Lin Chen Hsi is a successful entrepreneur who has created her own professional identity through her working skills, but something is very off about her. She never spends any time with her colleagues, and her love life is on the verge of breaking too. Over the last three years, Chen-Hsi has been in a relationship with Li Hao-ming, but now things are not working out for both of them. Hao-ming would often try his best to meet her and arrange dates with her, but Chen-Hsi neglected his feelings and even tried to break up with him. While he was trying his best to figure out their differences, Chen-Hsi was bothered by her past. But things became even clearer when she had to face the painful truths of her life.
Chen-Hsi is bothered by her boss’s cousin Danny, who has been assisting them with finances after recently coming back from the USA. Everyone in his company loved to be around Danny, but Chen-Hsi managed to gain more attention from the clients as she always worked alone. Danny was bothered by her excellence and mocked her every time. He would sexually harass her at times, and whenever Chen-Hsi tried to voice her opinions, Danny would pretend to be a victim of her obsession. He even claimed and spread rumours around the office that Chen-Hsi was obsessed with him and often forced herself upon him. Chen-Hsi tried her best to prove her innocence, but people doubted her since Danny was good at pretending. Moreover, this job was very important to Chen-Hsi, and she didn’t want to lose it at any cost.
One night, Danny abruptly called her to the office and tried to sexually harass her again. But this time, Chen-Hsi hit him in the face and ran away. While driving on the street, Chen-Hsi was panicking as her mind was clouded with glimpses from her past. Amidst this, she was hit by a truck, and surprisingly, Chen-Hsi woke up in a different reality. In the current timeline, Chen-Hsi’s father and brother have passed away, and she is on bad terms with her mother. But in reality, both of them were perfectly fine, and Chen-Hsi met with an accident here as well. Due to the accident, Chen-Hsi suffered from brain trauma and amnesia, because of which she forgot everything that happened in her past. Chen-Hsi couldn’t figure out anything, and she deeply missed her boyfriend, Hao-ming.
As time went on, Chen-Hsi accepted that her life as an entrepreneur was only her imagination. But here, things were confusing for her as well. In this reality, the whole of Yilan County was mourning the death of Chen-Hsi’s physics teacher Hsieh Chih-Chung. There were several rumours about a girl named Yen Sheng-Hua, a nurse who worked at the hospital. She was suspected of the murder of Mr. Hsieh as she went missing after he was found dead. Someone strangled him to death, but as per the autopsy reports, his body had traces of sleeping pills. Somehow, Sheng-Hua was linked to Chen-Hsi, but none of them clarified her doubts. On the other hand, Chen-Hsi was delighted to have Hao-ming around her in this reality too. But, this time, Hao-ming was not the usual sweet-hearted man; he was a strong-headed police officer who was looking for clues to find out the real perpetrator of Mr. Hsieh.
All the fingers landed on Chen-Hsi, but she couldn’t figure out the exact reason. Every time she would get a glimpse of her past, she couldn’t figure out the truth between both realities. With time, Chen-Hsi figured out that things were going bad between her parents and her brother, Li Chen-ye, who would often leave the house at midnight. Chen-Hsi decided to find the car that was scrapped by her after her accident. The car had some of her important documents, and here she found a random number on Yen Sheng-Hua’s business card. Chen-Hsi decided to call that number, but no one picked up. Later, she understood that this number belonged to Mr. Hsieh’s wife. Chen-Hsi often tried to get more information about Sheng-Hua from her parents, but everyone denied her existence. Mr. Hsieh’s wife confronted Chen-Hsi and informed her that Sheng-Hua had seduced her husband, and now she was doing the same thing with Chen-Hsi’s father.
Chen-Hsi’s father would often stay at the orchard and didn’t visit them for three months. Chen-Hsi decided to search for more details and found the hospital’s map in her father’s room at the orchard. Before she could figure out anything, Chen-Hsi was followed by Hao-ming, who was looking for the same information. She decided to confront Lin Chen-ye about this, but he refused to give her any information. Chen-ye assured Chen-Hsi that her imagination was playing tricks on her mind. The next day, Chen-Hsi’s mother decided to follow her father, and here it is discovered that he was protecting Sheng-Hua. She confronted both of them, and Sheng-Hua decided to run away. While Chen-Hsi’s father was looking for her, Hao-ming secretly kept an eye on Chen-Hsi’s father. But he was struck by an iron rod. On the day of Mr. Hsieh’s murder, the hospital had a van around the area. The dashcam footage of this van revealed that Chen-Hsi’s father visited Mr. Hsieh on the day of his murder.
While visiting Mr. Hsieh’s house, Chen-Hsi recalled some memories from the past, and here she was surprised to know that she had apologized to Mr. Hsieh and his wife for her father’s rude behavior. But Me Hsieh’s wife blamed Chen-Hsi and Sheng-Hua for wrecking her marriage and seducing her husband, Mr. Hsieh. Chen-Hsi stormed her way to the house and angrily confronted her mother and brother about the same, but they denied her requests. Chen-Hsi decided to leave the house, and while Chen-ye tried to stop her, Chen Hsi lost her balance and slipped on the floor. She hit her head on the table and recollected all the memories from her past. In high school, Chen-Hsi often visited Mr. Hsieh’s house for extra physics lessons. But she was uncomfortable with his touch. One day, Chen-Hsi visited his house and was drenched by the sudden rainfall. But instead of helping her, Mr. Hsieh raped her and forced her to keep it hidden.
Chen-Hsi was traumatized by this incident and decided to share it with her parents, but they didn’t believe her and blamed her for everything. Mr. Hsieh and his wife visited Chen-Hsi’s house and coerced them to drop the case. Chen-Hsi was heartbroken by this revelation, and later she realized that Sheng-Hua also suffered from the same issue. She couldn’t help Chen-Hsi since Mr. Hsieh tutored her free of charge. Chen-Hsi broke off all ties with her as Sheng-Hua didn’t stand up for herself and Chen-Hsi. Well, in the present timeline, Sheng-Hua turned herself in and took the entire blame for murdering Mr. Hsieh. Chen Hsi and Sheng-Hua met each other and cleared their differences. But Hao-ming figured out the truth and determined that Chen-ye was the true culprit. Sheng-Hua fed Mr. Hsieh sleeping pills, but the dosage was not enough to kill him. Both Chen-ye and Chen-Hsi’s father tried to kill him, but Sheng-Hua stopped Chen-Hsi’s father from committing the crime. But she couldn’t do the same with Chen-ye.
Back at Mr. Hsieh’s house, Chen-ye decided to attack Mr. Hsieh’s wife but got stabbed by her instead. Chen-Hsi figured out the truth and followed her brother. But Mr. Hsieh’s wife tried to kill her and blamed the girls for her husband’s mistake. Even though Hao-ming saved them, he instructed Chen-Hsi to escape, and suddenly, Chen-Hsi discovered the entire truth. The reality in which Chen-Hsi was currently living was her imagination. She wanted her life to turn out this way, as she expected her family to stand up for her. But in the original reality, Mr. Hsieh is still alive, and Chen-Hsi broke off all ties with her family. Her father and brother passed away a long time ago, and she didn’t visit them. Because of her traumatizing past, Chen-Hsi suffered from the problem of dissociation and found herself in absurd locations.
Sometimes Chen-Hsi would find herself in the middle of the road. She couldn’t move on from her past and always held on to it. This was the main reason that Chen-Hsi tried to push Hao-ming away. She didn’t want him to suffer from the painful fragments of her past. Chen-Hsi came back to her reality and decided to confront Sheng-Hua in the present. She was Danny’s wife, and Chen-Hsi wanted her to help this time. Both of them were suffering because of the same person. Danny often abused Sheng-Hua and even cheated on her. On the day of Chen-Hsi’s assault, Danny recorded everything on his mobile, so Sheng-Hua stole the footage, and Chen-Hsi finally got justice. Chen-Hsi and Sheng-Hua reconnected, and she was finally moving to the South to live her life without Danny.
Chen-Hsi reconciled with her mother and her boyfriend, Hao-ming. While Hao-min attended classes to learn more about the survivors of sexual assault, Chen-Hsi took therapy to resolve her problem of disassociation. Things were finally getting better between Hao-ming and Chen-Hsi, but still, she needed her time, and Hao-ming was ready to wait for her. In the past, Chen-Hsi was young and naive and didn’t expect the world to be so cruel. But this time, Chen-Hsi was a strong and independent woman, and she finally decided to fight back. “Shards of Her” is all about the lives of people who suffer from traumatic, painful experiences but find a way to step out of them. It signifies a strong message that any problem can be solved, and no matter what happens, things will get better one day!