‘Fear TWD,’ Ep. 202, Debates Setting Roots Vs. Setting Adrift

Fear the Walking Dead’s survivors set their course for a temporary safe harbor. Once they arrive, they meet Geary, a survivalist,who bides his time on land, determined to stand his ground where he set down roots. He fortifies his homestead and accepts his fate, but is it fair for him to accept that fate for his two small children? The central question toys with the value of setting down roots vs. setting adrift.

In the end, all survivors are destined to set adrift from their former selves, from stability. As we learned from ‘TWD,’ to set roots is to become a sitting duck.

Once again, the Dead world ponders the inevitable cruelty of the apocalypse– a motif the series can’t seem to avoid and punctuates this evening with a little girl, Willa, ripping out her weeping mother’s throat. Moments earlier, the mother, Melissa, tried to place Willa and her young son, Harry, in Madison’s care– a plan destined to fail on three fronts: Geary, Seth, and Strand.

Frankly, I’m relieved Seth yanked Harry from the yacht and spared viewers another “Oh the humanity” debate between Madison and Strand. Besides, the last thing Fear’s core cast needs is another child. Naturally, Seth blamed Madison for the rapid deterioration of his family, but was it her fault, or was it his suicide-pill-stashing father’s fault… or was it Nick hunting-for-a-high-“recovering”-junky’s fault for accidentally showing Willa where the pills were stashed?

Overall, Episode 202 lacked tension. If you blinked, you missed the most interesting aspect of tonight’s episode. As Salazar snoops on Strand, discovering some heavy fire power and uncovering Strand’s plans to head to Mexico, a secluded Strand talks on the phone, solidifying a rendezvous with a mystery person. So why tell the group his plan was to head to San Diego? Is it because he doesn’t trust his guests to keep their plans hush-hush, or does he using them until he reaches his true destination? Surely Salazar will expose Strand’s plans, so how will this new information affect the dynamics on the yacht?

In other developments, brooding Chris develops an affinity for pick-axing walkers… but who didn’t see that coming? He’s been in the throws of a grief-driven depression ever since he watched his father, Travis, shoot his infected mother in the head. Predictably, Travis is perturbed by the satisfaction the chore of clearing the fence brings Chris.

At the end of the episode, when Seth retrieves Harry, Chris watches from the yacht as Seth faces his infected mother and shoots her in the head. Chris likely contemplates his father’s actions. Could bearing witness to Seth’s unflinching reaction to his undead mother restore Chris’s relationship with Travis? Will Chris convince himself that he should have had the strength to act similarly?

Scenes from next week’s episode show that characters from the cast of Flight 462 join the Fear ensemble, which seems to be ambling around the desert. The female protagonist from the web series is seen warning the Fear crew to run. Why is the group so far inland?

What did you think of tonight’s episode of Fear the Walking Dead? You can share your insights, questions, and predictions in the comment section.

Consumer Expert Melissa O'Donnell

Teacher by day, pop culture consumer by night- Melissa lives for good stories and loves to share them with fellow TV, movie, graphic novel, and book enthusiasts. She also blogs about pop culture's influence on everything from her worldview to her relationships at undertheinfluence76.blogspot.com-- she'd love for you to join in on her journey.