Since the midseason premiere, Fear the Walking Dead has been setting the stage for something — something presumably dark. With all the walkers seemingly cleared from the hotel, the colony poking the bear of the dealers guarding the warehouse, and Travis finally seeing what his son truly is, events have been stacked like a batch of TNT. This week, a match is lit and it’s only a matter of time before everything the survivors have built will explode.
Dramatic enough for you? Let’s get started.
While the colony envisioned itself to be this idyllic Eden with the wasteland of the dead beyond, there’s still something we can’t put our finger on. Francisco, one of the men who helped bring Nick into the fold, knows what it is, and we see him racing to leave with his wife and daughter.
The three sneak through the vacant streets and beneath the perch of a sleeping guard, slip past a woman cradling her crying baby, and escape through a hole in the wall. Francisco’s little girl is scared, but her parents say they must leave because it’s not safe anymore, and remind her to keep calm and quiet while they do so. To ensure their safe passage, they make their way to the bus so Francisco can lure a walker inside and use its blood to mask their scent.
An ongoing issue with FTWD is this technique has somehow become this magical walker repellent — the slogan can be something like, “slather it on and walker begone.” It’s become this lazy and repetitive means of allowing characters to escape hopeless situations, which kills half the fun. Also, there are reasons why characters in The Walking Dead don’t do it that often, the main one being it doesn’t last that long and changing weather can drastically diminish the effectiveness.
Rant aside, Francisco’s family uses this approach and are able to weave unharmed through the walkers beyond the bus. He reveals they’re headed to another settlement called El Descanso (“The Break”), but their escape to freedom is interrupted by Marco, the leader of the dealers who’ve taken over the warehouse. Spotting them from the road, Marco and another armed man get out of the truck and accost them. Marco clearly wants to figure out where the colony is. Worse, he recognizes Francisco from the warehouse when he came to trade Oxy for supplies. Unable to get information out of him or his family, he takes all three in the truck as captives.
Afterwards, we pick up with Ofelia. Victor’s prediction that she took the truck from the hotel was right. We see her now pulling up to a taco joint on the side of a road. She looks different: Her once-frazzled appearance is slicker with a tight ponytail and black bomber jacket. She goes to the trunk, which is full of supplies, and takes out a hammer. Entering the restaurant, she bashes in the head of a walker and taps her weapon against metal to draw out any remaining threats.
Ofelia walks to the back of the joint and gets lost in the sight of the calming ocean waves. The scene segues into a memory of her in Mexico with her ex-fiancé. You might recall her explaining in the hotel that they broke up when he accepted a new job, while she decided to stay home to care for her parents. The memory is of the moment he proposed by hiding a ring in her drink. He wants her to come with him when he moves, saying her parents are stronger than she thinks — that, as it turns out, was an understatement. He resolves to ask Ofelia’s father for her hand in marriage, though she jokes, “If you ask for my hand, he’ll take yours.” The memory lingers as Ofelia looks over a map of the area and siphons gasoline from another car to fill up the truck.
NEXT: A surprise attack