Review: Into the Badlands 301 – Enter the Phoenix

Emily Beecham as The Widow – Into the Badlands _ Season 3, Episode 1 – Photo Credit: Aidan Monaghan/AMC

Into the Badlands 301 – Enter the Phoenix

Into the Badlands returns with its signature action pieces, some interesting revelations, a few reunions and a new threat that could potentially throw the region into chaos. The Widow’s quest for power leads her into an inevitable clash with Baron Chau as Into the Badlands opens its third season. After Season 2 featured the decimation of the barons the civil war between the Widow and Chau creates a river of blood.

Nathaniel Moon, minus the hand Sunny separated him from gets an offer from the Widow that he can’t refuse. Needing a new regent the Widow and Moon face off in a gravity defying ballet of swordplay that sets the tone for a thoroughly engaging episode.

Their new alliance poses a major problem for Sunny who has more than enough trouble on his hands already. Seeking a cure for his ailing son Henry while trying to come to grips with Vail’s death combined with six months in the wilderness has the former clipper filled with remorse, anger and a taste for alcohol. Add the fact that there’s a reward out for his arrest and Sunny’s problems can only get worse.

Enter the Phoenix’s pulse pounding opening moments give way to some serenity before the action ramps up again. Tilda and her merry band of bandits hijack one of the Widow’s transports only to find it carrying an unexpected bounty. Bajie’s on board, in chains no less, and after a few misfired arrows and sliced necks all is right again. With their dramatic split last season the Tilda/Widow relationship will continue to take another hit when news of the heist is reported.

Bajie’s not the only prisoner the Widow has in her iron web. M.K. is also a reluctant guest at the sanctuary, although by the looks of things he’s not exactly being treated badly. The Widow’s attempts to help M.K. reclaim his gift have come up empty and represents a few of the losses she’s incurred since she stepped up her quest to control the Badlands.

Lydia has moved on from her role as Baroness to align herself with Tilda. Lydia’s running a refugee camp and fears that Tilda’s actions against the Widow’s supply truck may potentially bring unwarranted attention to them. Things get a little complicated when Sunny shows up and takes Henry to the local healer. It turns out that the boy’s fever is a manifestation of the mysterious power once wielded by Bajie, M.K. and the Widow.

Speaking of that mysterious power, it seems that it may be more common than once thought. The new threat to the Badlands shows up as Enter the Phoenix winds down providing a few moments of hope that there may be a big bad on the horizon to fill the enormous void left when Quinn died. Great villains and compelling characters make for great drama and when combined with killer fight sequences and colorful costumes and sets Into the Badlands has all of the necessary ingredients to make its third season a success.