The series premiere of AMC’s “Into the Badlands” on Sunday, November 15th delivered 8.2 million viewers for AMC. Of those 8.1M viewers, 5.1 million were adults 18-49. Currently, the drama ranks as the #3 cable series launch of all time among adults 18-49 and adults 25-54.
AMC is now home to the top four cable series launches of all time among adults 18-49 in live+3, with “Fear the Walking Dead” at #1, “Better Call Saul” at #2, “Into the Badlands” at #3 and “The Walking Dead” at #4. Three of these four premieres were in 2015.
“We wanted ‘Into the Badlands’ to be a fun, ‘grab your popcorn, lean back and be flat-out entertained’ experience,” said Charlie Collier, president of AMC, SundanceTV and AMC Studios. “Thanks to co-creators and showrunners Al Gough and Miles Millar, our fantastic team of executive producers and a tough, talented and tireless cast and crew, we now live in a world with artfully crafted and visually stunning martial arts fight sequences unlike anything else on television. Here’s to five more weeks of high-flying, genre-bending action.”
If are new to the series, the show takes place far into the future. Our society was destroyed by both natural and man-made catastrophes and billions were killed. The survivors made their way back to the fields, where they foraged and farmed. Over time, a feudal society emerged in what was once the American Midwest, where the strongest and most brutal rose to wealth and power on the backs of the many. This area is now called the Badlands, and is uneasily divided among seven rival Barons.
Each Baron enforces their iron rule with the aid of loyal armies of trained assassins known as Clippers. Clippers begin their rigorous martial arts education as children, when they are known as Colts. Each Colt is selected and mentored by a senior Clipper, who oversees the youth’s training. Clippers enjoy status and comforts the general population can only dream of, and they are willing to sacrifice their lives in service to their Barons.
Few Clippers ever live to see their 30th birthday, but Sunny (Daniel Wu) is no ordinary Clipper. He was a starving orphan when he arrived at The Fort, the walled compound belonging to Baron Quinn (Marton Csokas). Young Sunny demonstrated lethal proficiency in martial arts and made his first kill when he was nine years old. As a Clipper, Sunny rose swiftly through the ranks to become Quinn’s Regent (Head Clipper) and most trusted advisor. He has notched over 400 kills and has a well-earned reputation as a merciless assassin.
For decades, Quinn has been unchallenged as the Badlands’ most powerful Baron. No one has crossed him and lived to tell the tale. But there is a rising suspicion among his rivals that he is growing vulnerable. The territory’s newest Baron, The Widow (Emily Beecham), has begun staging brazen attacks on Quinn’s transport vehicles and is testing his appetite for a fight.
One of those attacks leads Sunny to M.K. (Aramis Knight), a teenage boy who has survived a deadly ambush on a shipment of Cogs (slaves) bound for The Fort. Sunny soon comes to understand that the teen harbors a dark secret and has a hefty bounty on his head. As The Widow continues her campaign against Quinn, the destinies of the stoic assassin and the impetuous teenager become intertwined. Sunny selects M.K. as his Colt, a decision that will profoundly affect both their lives. In their evolution as teacher and student, each will discover his true purpose; together, they will embark on an odyssey that could mean the difference between chaos and enlightenment for everyone in the Badlands.