As any Walking Dead fan will know by now, all good safe havens must come to an end, particularly if there’s a secret trove of walkers being kept alive in the basement.
Yes, the Fear the Walking Dead’s first major outpost in this season’s aquatic adventure proves to ultimately be too fraught with tension and different ideals to allow any lengthy stay of peace. But in the demise of Thomas Abigail’s estate, the Abigail crew is torn apart, cast in different directions as the season takes its midpoint break.
A major catalyst of the Abigail homestead coming to a halt is Daniel Salazar. The show has been slowly planting the seeds of his past coming back to haunt him, and in “Shiva,” he’s literally confronted by a ghost of his past.
The midseason finale opens with a flashback to Salazar as a young boy, faced with the atrocities around him as he stands at the bank of a river littered with dead bodies. As a boy, he’s told to take a gun, but before what he does with that firepower is shown, he wakes up amidst the chaos ensuing after Strand shot Thomas.
Ofelia wakes up with him, and as they run away, she begins to express some discomfort. Then the real horror begins, as she peels away the flesh from her cheek in what is quickly revealed to be a dream within a dream.
Salazar is clearly starting to unravel, his normal steely exterior giving way to much more vulnerable behavior throughout the episode. Celia keeps a watchful eye over him after he discovered her not-so-secret pen of walkers, and so when he grabs Ofelia to leave later on, he’s stopped by the house’s men. Operating under Celia’s command, they pull him away from his daughter as he tries to tell her Ofelia’s mother is waiting for them at the gate and if they stay here, they will die. Salazar often has a solution for just about everything, though, and so he tries to free himself from the men with a bit of sharpened metal he kept secreted away.
He gets a good slice in across one of the men’s face, but he’s eventually subdued and tied up to a chair in a holding room, coming face to face with a death he has seemingly yet to fully accept — his wife’s.
He isn’t the only one haunted by loss, however, during the finale. Much of Celia’s actions stem from the ultimate loss of Thomas, who she looked at as her own son. She’s furious with Strand for promising to transform into the undead with him, only to shoot Thomas and remain among the living. Celia doesn’t believe Strand deserves any say in what is done with Thomas’ body (he wants to bury his beloved), and she’d rather see him and the rest of these newcomers Strand brought to her house cast out immediately.
It takes the reassurance of her new convert, Nick, to calm her. She gives them all a deadline of the following sundown to leave. That ticking clock presents quite the problem, as Travis sets out to chase after Chris, who runs away following Alicia and Madison’s discovery of him standing over their bed with a knife. (More on that in a bit.) Madison is dead set on leaving before incurring more of Celia’s wrath, though her displeasure with their host certainly doesn’t impel her to stick around, either. She asks Nick and Alicia to gather supplies before they head back to the boat. Alicia has no interest in leaving the comforts of their newfound safety, while Nick is incredulous at her claim that Celia could be dangerous. He’s fallen hard for Celia’s “religious voodoo bulls–t,” as Strand later describes it to Madison and believes he can convince Celia to give them continued salvation here.
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So Nick leaves briefly, only to return covered yet again in walker blood (he’s pulled this trick so frequently in such a short period of time I’m starting to worry he enjoys it), holding onto a transformed Luis. Most of the estate’s denizens are around to watch as Nick presents Celia with her son, whom she still calls her son, not dead, before asking him to be put with the others. Celia is still hesitant, believing Nick’s family to not fully understand the truth like the two of them do. They look at Luis and see a monster (must be something about the discolored skin and hunger for human flesh, but that’s just a guess), but she believes Nick’s family and their senseless killing to be the true monsters.
NEXT: A walk among the walkers