WGN has found its flagship, its highest performing original series to date, “Underground.” When the show was launched last night, it was able to garner 1.4 million viewers. Why is the series so successful?
The fresh WGN America series “Underground” speaks of a traditional slavery story. Director Anthony Hemingway revealed, “We wanted to in every way defy expectations,” when asked about the successful Wednesday night premiere, reported NBC News.
The show does, in fact, relay a unique story surrounding the unfortunate discriminatory events that occurred in a Georgia Plantation back in 1857, providing an in-depth look at how black Americans planned to escape their fate as slaves from their white masters.
The show tells the story of a couple of black Americans who wanted out of slavery, trying to escape through the Underground Railroad. One of the individuals is Rosalee, portrayed by Jurnee Smollett-Bell.
During an interview at the Sundance Film Festival last year, Smollett-Bell was asked about her take on the show’s plot. She said, “I read about our stories and I always ask myself, ‘Well, what about the people that fought back?’”
She added, “I have this desire to see us portrayed differently and to see us be revolutionaries… For me, this was an opportunity to explore the boldness that I come from.”
A co-star of hers, Alano Miller, shared his views on the franchise and said, “For me, ‘Underground’ is a celebration. It is about people taking ownership. It is about our first civil rights movement.”
What’s more surprising is that renowned musician, John Legend, was actually an executive producer of the show. He was the one who took an active role in formulating and managing the show’s soundtrack.
According to Deadline, “Underground” was able to land 2.5 million viewers, lodged as the best total-viewer opening for an original series from WGN on its first day of viewing. In fact, the audience comprised mostly of adults.
Be it the artistic input of John Legend or the plot, “Underground” has dominated viewers’ tastes, which shows that it’s definitely a show worth watching. Catch an all new episode of “Underground” on WGN this March 16 at 10 in the evening.