Amazon UK TV review: Into the Badlands Season 2, Episode 8
Sunny in uniform with a really cool sword8
Chris Bryant | On 13, May 2017
Warning: This contains spoilers.
Having spent the season navigating the outlying territories and murdering some of their most colourful characters, Sunny, Bajie and M.K., finally get a shot at reentering the Badlands, but, as always, they have to fight for it.
AMC’s post-apocalyptic epic manages to quickly incorporate the ex-Clipper and his supernatural friends into the current proceedings, with Sunny’s name and reputation being more than enough to garner him an audience with any Baron he chooses. The issue is there aren’t many of them left. With Quinn’s bloodlust only dampened by his actual lust, and with The Widow forced past more uncrossable lines in order to have her way, Sunny may have entered a world more dangerous than the one he left.
Alfred Gough and Miles Millar’s feudal drama seems unbalanced this episode, with that occasional feeling of rushed plotting creeping back in. While Into the Badlands’ style, use of colour, and jaw-dropping martial arts never fails the show, the strained pacing sometimes makes the otherwise entertaining story arcs seem uncared for, among the vibrant melee.
The ill-fitting story aside, this chapter in Sunny’s body-laden efforts to find his family takes him a huge step closer to his goal. Double-crossing and then massacring yet another group of killers, this time with the help of The Widow, the highlights lie in the striking visual moments of Sunny’s return. Sunny donning a Clipper’s uniform and the white-and-gold of Baron Chau is an arresting image.
The industrious fight sequence forms the high-point of the show, tension-wise, and, while Quinn’s controlling relationship with Lydia and Sunny’s family continue to concern, the story, at times, feels compacted into the spaces between fight scenes, leaving the actors with little to do but advance the story without any development or depth. Sunny’s standing sword-to-sword with The Widow, though, reminds us that there are only two episodes left in this second season – and he shows no signs of giving up.
Into the Badlands Season 2 is available to watch online exclusively on Amazon Prime Video UK, as part of a £5.99 monthly subscription. New episodes arrive every Tuesday, within 48 hours of their US broadcast. Season 1 is already available.