A.d. The Bible Continues is a television series directed by Roma Downey and Mark Burnett which aired on NBC for one season in the spring of 2015. It is an adaptation of the Bible series which was released in 2013, and follows the Book of Acts to tell the continuing story of Jesus’ disciples after his death and resurrection. The show was designed as an historical drama to help viewers see and feel the story as though they were part of the original community. It follows the early church and its members as they battle persecution and complete their mission to turn the world upside down. It also follows the political, religious, and cultural changes in the Roman Empire and offers modern viewers a glimpse into the days when Jesus walked the earth.
Relevant Data and Perspectives from Experts
According to Nielsen ratings, A.d. The Bible Continues was watched by an average of 8.8 million viewers each week. The series premiere brought in 11.1 million viewers, and the finale had a viewership of 7.7 million. The show was the first biblical drama to air on a major broadcast network in over thirty years, and was the beginning of a “second life” for biblical epics. After the success of A.d. The Bible Continues, other religious- and faith-based projects have become more common on network television, such as Fox’s Shots Fired and NBC’s 2019 Easter Sunday special, Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert.
Christina Patoski, Executive Producer of the show, believes it offers something to viewers that many other religious stories don’t. “This is not a Bible study,” she has said. “It is entertainment which brings a sense of relevance and immediacy to [scriptural] stories…If you want the factual, literal aspects of the Bible, there are plenty of places to go. But if you want to bring the story to life and help people draw their own conclusions, then this is the show for you.”
Analysis and Insights
The success of A.d. The Bible Continues demonstrates that there is still a great deal of interest in biblical stories, and that television viewers are looking for faith-focused entertainment. The drama was a refreshing departure from the more sanitized approach to religious content, with grittier action scenes and a greater focus on historically-accurate set designs and costumes. It helped to bridge the gap between Sunday school lessons and Sunday night viewing.
The show also tapped into the real-life issues of the day, emphasizing values of equality, justice, and compassion. These themes resonated with audiences, who embraced the series despite its negative reviews from some religious groups. At its heart, A.d. The Bible Continues was a show about faith, hope, and love. It reminded viewers of the power of these values to impact the world, even in difficult times.
A.d. The Bible Continues explored the tension between the emerging Church and the waning power of the Roman government. This was a major theme throughout the series, and drew on the history of Roman persecution of early Christians, as well as Jesus’ warning to his disciples “Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” The political message of the show was clear: the Roman authorities had ultimate control, but it was the power of faith and hope that would eventually win out.
The show also highlighted the role of women in the emerging church. Characters such as Mary Magdalene, Joanna, and Salome were often depicted as wise counselors, mothers, and leaders, going against the grain of the patriarchal society of their time. By showing the strength and courage of these women, the series was able to draw modern parallels to the importance of gender equality, choice, and respect.
The series also explored a range of theological concepts, from the Trinity to the role of the Holy Spirit to the importance of prayer. It offered glimpses into the faith journeys of its characters, and showed the power of faith to shape their lives for the better. The show highlighted Jesus’ teachings about love, compassion, and forgiveness, and also explored the power of faith to transform lives and create community.
A.d. The Bible Continues emphasized the importance of understanding scripture within its historical and cultural context, rather than reading it as a literal or absolute truth. By exploring the nuances of the Bible, its characters were able to draw their own conclusions and make sense of the world around them. In doing so, the show was able to offer a more modern interpretation of faith that resonated with viewers.
Music played a large role in A.d. The Bible Continues, with many classic hymns and spiritual songs featured prominently throughout the series. The score helped to reinforce themes of faith, hope, and love, providing the perfect backdrop for scenes of tragedy and triumph. Many of the songs were chosen for their relevance to the cultural and historical context of the show, but more importantly, they provided viewers with a powerful emotional experience that enhanced their understanding of and engagement with the story.
Music also served as a unifying element throughout the series, providing a universal language that transcended barriers of language and culture. The songs featured in the show had the power to bring people together in a time of great upheaval, and to help them understand and experience the hope and joy of the Gospel.
The success of A.d. The Bible Continues has been a boon for faith-based entertainment, with a growing number of projects being green-lit and released each year. From feature films to television shows to streaming services, there is an increasing demand for content that speaks to modern faith-filled audiences. This has opened the door for new voices to tell stories of faith, hope, and love in creative, engaging ways.
The show was also successful from a marketing perspective, with its use of social media to engage viewers and promote its religious themes. By tapping into the power of digital platforms, the show was able to reach a much larger audience than it would have been able to through traditional methods. Its success has opened the door for other faith-based entertainment projects to find success in a crowded marketplace.
Viewers and Critics
A.d. The Bible Continues was well received by both viewers and critics, despite its widely varied religious themes. The series’ focus on faith and hope struck a chord with viewers, and its compelling characters, thrilling action sequences, and compelling storytelling made it one of the most popular shows of its time. The show also won a Peabody award for its exploration of faith in a changing world.
Critics praised the show for its timely themes and its willingness to delve into complex issues, such as the nature of faith, the rise of religious intolerance, and the power of love. The show was praised for its fresh take on biblical stories, and many credited its success to its willingness to challenge viewers with difficult questions and its uncompromising view of faith.
The success of A.d. The Bible Continues had a lasting impact on faith-based media, with many of its themes and characters becoming commonplace in films and television shows. It showed that religious entertainment could be a financial success, proving that there was an audience for stories of faith, hope, and love. The show was also praised for tackling difficult issues such as religious intolerance and the power of faith to transform lives, and for offering viewers a chance to explore the biblical stories in a new and innovative way.
The show also highlighted the importance of authentic storytelling, showing that viewers want and expect their faith-based media to come from a place of integrity. This has had a lasting impact on faith-based entertainment, with many Hollywood executives now looking for stories that are true to the source material and offer something fresh.
In many ways, A.d. The Bible Continues was revolutionary. It demonstrated that faith-based entertainment could be adapted for a mainstream audience and be successful both critically and financially. It also showed that religious entertainment could be handled with the same level of care and attention that is given to more traditional genres, and that there is an audience for stories of faith, hope, and love.
The success of the show has continued to reverberate in the entertainment industry, with studios and networks continuing to look for fresh stories that explore faith in a modern context. A.d. The Bible Continues was a powerful mix of history, drama, and faith, and its impact will be felt for years to come.