The cast of DirecTV’s Kingdom (Audience Network, 9/8c) is mainly manly men. It’s set in the violent world of mixed marital arts in Venice, California and captures all the details of “urban warrior culture.” The patriarch is MMA legend Alvey Kulina (Frank Grillo, Guiding Light), who owns the struggling gym Navy Street. He has the classic–dare we say, biblical?–set of sons: Nate (Nick Jonas, heartthrob of the boy band Jonas Brothers) who is more like his father – driven to win – and Jay (Jonathan Tucker, Parenthood) who is “recklessly dissolute.”
To add more grit to the show is Ryan (Friday Night Lights’ Matt Lauria) a “formerly self-destructive MMA rising star” who’s back from a four-year prison term. While he was away, his ex-girlfriend Lisa (The Glades’ Kiele Sanchez) moved in with Alvey. It’s a perfect blend of soap opera, bible and MMA fighting. Even Sherdog “the global authority on mixed martial arts” admits to liking the show. They wrote: “Fighting verbiage is spot on; weight cutting seems tumultuous; camera angles used during the fight sequences are similar to live telecasts; the ambiance of the regional show portrayed is legitimate; and above all else, the action isn’t corny.” Kingdom airs Wednesdays on DirecTV, 9/8c.