Set in a world centuries from now, “Into the Badlands: The Complete First Season” focused on the spiritual journey of Sunny (Wu) and M.K. (Aramis Knight), a teenage boy who harbors a unique ability, and their growing relationship as teacher and student. Both discover their true purpose and decide to explore what lies beyond the borders of the Badlands, but as their Baron Quinn continues to battle against his own family as well as his rival Baron The Widow, Sunny and M.K.’s journey to a more peaceful existence seems further out of reach.
In this new world, Barons rule each of their respective lands. Some offer protection to their people and others use them as field workers. Guns have been outlawed across the land. Each Baron also employs a group of fighters for their territory called clippers. We even get to see Quinn’s clippers in training, known as colts. Funny that the Barons look at the younglings as wild horses to be broken in. In many ways it’s a form of conditioning or brain washing to get these kids to fight for him.
The series starts out with us getting to see Sunny, in the badlands fighting off nomads who he believes have been stealing from his Baron’s shipments. Right from the beginning we get our first martial arts fight scene and the choreography did not disappoint. What was great about this first scene is the fact that the quality in the fight scene was far above what even many hollywood productions have given us in recent times. Many grip over the fact that during these scenes they all go after the good guy one person at a time instead of all at once, but you get a little of both here.
The use of colors throughout the series is hugely important to the story. They are over saturated and bright in each scene to help distinguish locations, factions and uniforms. Quinn’s group is always seen with the bright red flowers from the opium plants, and the clippers red jackets. Symbolism is another important theme throughout the short 6 episode season. From The Widow’s (Emily Beecham) butterflies, to MK and Sunny’s pendant of Azra, they are used to give us clues to the story and separate factions.
Sunny finds MK at the start of the series and finds that there is a lot more to MK then most realize. MK has a supernatural ability that he doesn’t know how to control or why he has it. Sunny quickly works out that this could be his chance to leave the badlands with Veil (Madeleine Mantock) for good. He takes on MK as his personal Colt and starts to train him. However his pendant draws unwanted attention from everyone around him. Sunny finds a connection to his past in it, while Ryder (Oliver Stark) wants to know more about where he comes from.
The short season provides some advantages and disadvantages to the series. The plus is that none of the episodes were wasted in their progression of the main story plot. The minus is that the ending felt a bit more rushed then it could have been. Either way they managed to fit in cult-style secret societies, politics, romance and conspiracy to the story. You never are really sure who has sided with whom. You learn to trust no-one.
There is still a lot of the badlands that has not been explored and I am excited to see what else is out there within the badlands and outside of it. The Blu-Ray set includes all 6 episodes from season 1. It also includes over 75 minutes of extra features mentioned below. You also get a redemption code for the digital comic for Into The Badlands, which is a must read for a little back story. With all the rich colors, and action sequences in this series, Blu-Ray is the only way you should watch it and the picture quality here does not disappoint.
Blu-ray Set Includes:
- Inside INTO THE BADLANDS
- Anatomy Of A Fight
- Building The World of INTO THE BADLANDS
- The Characters Of INTO THE BADLANDS: The Barons
- The Characters Of INTO THE BADLANDS: The Clippers
- The Master: INTO THE BADLANDS Fight Camp Episode 1
- Creating Real Kung Fu: INTO THE BADLANDS Fight Camp Episode 2
- Bringing It All Together: INTO THE BADLANDS Fight Camp Episode 3
- INTO THE BADLANDS Digital Comic