Following the ratings success of The Bible mini-series on History, NBC ordered a sequel — AD: The Bible Continues. Has this mini-series been the answer to the network’s prayers? Will they want a second season?
Produced by Mark Burnett and Roma Downey, AD: The Bible Continues tells the tale of the later chapters of biblical history (following the Crucifixion of Christ). It focuses on the disciples who had to go forward and spread the teachings of Christ to a world dominated by political unrest. The cast includes Juan Pablo Di Pace, Adam Levy, Richard Coyle, Vincent Regan, Greta Scacchi, Babou Ceesay, Chipo Chung, Emmett J. Scanlan, Jodhi May, Joanne Whalley, Ken Bones, Kevin Doyle, Helen Daniels, and Fraser Ayers.
The series debuted on April 5th to a respectable 2.33 rating in the 18-49 demographic with 9.68 million viewers. Unfortunately, the numbers saw severe drops in weeks two (falling 28%) and three (falling 31%) and the rating have kept coming down nearly every week. AD has hit series lows of a 0.7 rating in the demo and little more than four million viewers.
Though this was billed as a mini-series, the producers have said that their writers have been working on scripting season two. Just in case the network wants a second season, they need the additional lead time to have episodes ready for next Easter.
Still, based on the ratings, there doesn’t seem to be much reason for NBC to order a second season of AD. They could make the show an annual event but the audience numbers really aren’t big enough for a network.
Burnett and Downey could however choose to take the project back to cable where The Bible was a big success for them. That also did very well with DVD sales. In today’s ever-shifting marketplace, they could find enough outlets to keep producing Bible-based series for years to come without being on a network.
What do you think? Would you like to see a second season of AD: The Bible Continues on NBC? Would you watch it elsewhere?