Fear the Walking Dead ...episode critiques

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Fear the Walking Dead ...episode critiques

Post  Banjo on 2015-08-24, 11:02

There will be only 6 episodes this season but it has been renewed for 15 eps next season.

Ep 1......it lived up to the hype. It captured the 'essence' of LA in its more 'seedy' areas. Of course the LA River 'starred' again. What would TV and movie makers do without it ?  The Terminator chases John Conner on his motorcycle down it, Ray Donovan poses along it, and "Calvin" buys the farm in it....although he's not really dead, yet, and they are going to have to figure out how to really 'kill' the Walkers.  As has been pointed out these Walkers are "fresh" unlike the rotting and decomposing Walkers on The Walking Dead, who have been around for years.  Consequently the skulls of the LA Walkers are still hard and dense and are not amenable to being penetrated by spears, knives, arrows, etc. The police at the on-ramp learned this and on the video we see them bringing down the Walker finally with a head shot.

Calvin in the LA River will have to be dispatched by means other than simply running over him, although Kim, Cliff and her annoying druggie son may just jump in the truck and leave him to stumble around the river. scratch

It's a good cast, I think Cliff Curtiss is the only Maori actor working in Hollywood at the moment but there are some in Australia and NZ.

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Kim's daughters' boyfriend plays a lot of teenage boyfriend roles, but this time he may have bought the farm early on since he didn't show up for their 'date' under the bleachers.  

Good choice for the daughter:

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I rewatched S1, ep 1 of The Walking Dead to get a feel for the 6 week period when Rick was in the coma from a gunshot wound in Atlanta, during which the 'virus' breaks out in LA. One anomaly that I noticed is that he wakes up in the hospital all alone, chaos and bodies all around. He had an IV in his arm, necessary to keep him alive while in the coma, but no one had attended to him for how long...? how could he survive for even a week without an active IV ? But he did, and met Lenny who showed him the ropes on how to survive, and then disappeared until the last ep of S5, and will be a regular in S6. two thumbs up

Good info here; Guess I'll have to try the story synch next week. two thumbs up

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Re: Fear the Walking Dead ...episode critiques

Post  Banjo on 2015-08-24, 11:59


'Fear the Walking Dead' Series Premiere Recap: Nick Faces His First Zombie
Sunday, August 23, 2015

Derek Stauffer
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

As someone who was far from being The Walking Dead's biggest fan (I hated pretty much everything after season 2), I had completely written off Fear the Walking Dead. Yet despite what the name suggests, Fear the Walking Dead is far from a lazy cash-in on the bigger show's success. There are few kinks to work out, but it feels remarkably different from The Walking Dead. The spin-off is less about the big action scenes and in-the-moment frights, and more about the anticipatory horror as we witness the beginning of the apocalypse through the lens of one (mostly) likable family.



[Video] Fear the Walking Dead: Watch the Horrifying First 3 Minutes Now >>>

Rude Awakenings

As the series premiere begins, Nick Clarke wakes up in a shirt too small to be his in a church too creepy to be in regular and intended use. He's looking for someone named Gloria, but she is preoccupied with being a zombie. Well, we know she's a zombie; to Nick, she's just a crazy person eating a dead boy's face. Hence, why he is next seen speeding out of the church and into a street, straight into the path of a car. The citizens of the busy LA street surround Nick as he lies bleeding on the pavement. The world of Fear the Walking Dead is one much different and much more populated than The Walking Dead.

Nick's mother, Madison, is trying to wrangle her younger kid, Alicia, for school when she gets a call that Nick is in the hospital. Madison, Alicia and Madison's live-in boyfriend, Travis Manawa, go to see Nick in the hospital and we're "treated" to Nick speaking for the first time. Apparently, Gloria's biggest flaw was not doing us all a favor and eating Nick's face as well because he's kind of unbearably annoying (glad to see that someone else thinks so). He's a drug addict, but he's also an aggravating drug addict. Alicia is quite over her brother's antics, but Madison is concerned. As a result, a fight quickly breaks out among the adults and Alicia.

Two Bratty Sons for the Price of One

Travis gets a call and goes outside to take it. It's his ex-wife, Liza, calling about taking their son Christopher for the weekend. Chris is equally as bratty as Nick but doesn't have the excuse of being high on drugs. Chris tells Travis that he doesn't want to come stay with him or his new family. Frustrated, Travis tells Liza to keep Chris for the weekend. I'd tell her to keep him forever.

First Hints of Trouble

Travis offers to stay with Nick, so Madison goes to work and takes Alicia to school. Luckily, the destination is the same, as Madison is the guidance counselor at the high school, and quite quickly we see Madison is just as good at her job as Kim Dickens is. When Madison discovers that a student has brought a knife into school, Madison takes him to her office. The student opens up about the news stories of people attacking one another and he thinks that soon no place will be safe. Madison tells him that's crazy talk, and if something was seriously wrong, the government would tell people. So, obviously, this whole zombie apocalypse is going to end well for Madison.

At the hospital, Nick wakes up from his drug-induced nap and tells Travis about what he saw at the church. Sober Nick thankfully is much more tolerable than Druggie Nick. Nick is worried about what he saw at the church because if it's real, then something is serious wrong with the world. If Nick imagined it, then there is something seriously wrong with him.

So in a fit of uninspired idiocy, Travis goes to investigate the church alone, an area that at best is filled with unstable heroin addicts and at worst is filled with hoards of undead flesh eaters. Travis doesn't find any zombies, but he does find ominous blood stains and raving drug addicts -- or, at least, one raving drug addict.

[Video] The Walking Dead: Season 6 Premiere Date and Trailer Revealed >>>

The Calm Before the Storm

The next morning, Travis tells Madison about the gruesome evidence. She stubbornly, if sensibly, sees a completely normal non-zombie reason behind all the blood and violence; she thinks it's just standard drug violence. The one Manawa and three Clarks then go through their days in a sequence of scenes that I'm going to call "Fear the Walking Dead attempts to make us care about these schmucks before the crap hits the fan."

Since The Walking Dead has always struggled to make its characters feel like fully realized people, Fear the Walking Dead does surprisingly well in fleshing out its character. It's pretty simple stuff. Alicia hangs out with her boyfriend, Travis teaches his English class and Madison walks the halls doing stuff (and being her perfect Kim Dickens self). Still, it's nice to see people just existing in The Walking Dead universe and not fending off the undead.

The Storm

Nick's existence is a little less peaceful. He has a new roommate in his hospital room who sounds suspiciously like a walker. Nick is apprehensive, and that fear only grows when the roommate begins to code. The doctors rush in and try to revive him, but they are unsuccessful. They wheel the new walker out of the room. In the confusion, Nick makes his escape, grabbing his newly-deceased roommate's clothes.

Madison is upset that the hospital has so easily lost her son and asks Travis to take her to the church. The experience is emotional for Madison as she has to see the disgusting and bloody place her son has been living in, but Nick isn't there. Still searching, Madison visits Nick's old friend Calvin, but he says he hasn't heard from him.

Travis and Madison spend all day looking for Nick and they end up on a highway that is backed up. In the distance, there is the faint sound of gunshots. Just when it looks like Fear the Walking Dead is going to deliver the standard zombie action scene that its big brother is so famous for, it swerves, literally. Travis pulls off the highway and speeds away from the action.

At the school the next morning, the teachers are watching news footage of what caused the back-up. There was an accident and one of the victims was of the undead killer variety. When the rescue workers were trying to revive the man, he came back to life and attacked. He was shot multiple times, but only a shot to the head made him stop. This freaks nearly everyone out and school is cancelled halfway through the day. Alicia, who is anxious because she hasn't heard from her boyfriend, Matt, in a day, is found by Madison. Madison tells her she wants to go home and stay there.

It turns out that Calvin, Nick's friend from earlier, is a big fat liar and a drug dealer. Nick meets with Calvin at a diner because he is worried that the heroin sold to him was laced with something. Calvin acts concerned about Nick's worrying, but really, Calvin is just afraid that Nick told the cops something about him. Calvin takes Nick to an alley underneath the bridge, and when Nick sees the gun in Calvin's hand, he knows what is about to happen. There is a struggle and Calvin is shot in the stomach. Nick runs away from the body, more disturbed than ever before.

Nick calls Travis for help, but to Nick's great dismay, Travis brings his mother. Nick tells them he killed Calvin and takes the two to where he left Calvin's body, but Calvin is no longer there. The three get into the car and make their way back to the street. While backing out, they find Calvin in a tunnel, all zombified.

Travis and Madison try to talk to him, but Calvin goes to bite Madison. Nick leaps into action and runs over Calvin several times in Travis' truck. Calvin is still moving, with several of his bones broken and showing. Madison asks, "What the hell is going on?" We know, Madison: the apocalypse.


Fear the Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9pm at AMC.



Is Alicia's boyfriend among the walking dead now?
Yes, he's a zombie.
85%
No, he's just super neglectful.
15%
Total Votes: 20

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Re: Fear the Walking Dead ...episode critiques

Post  Banjo on 2015-08-24, 16:22

Good review. two thumbs up



5 Reasons You Need to Be Watching 'Fear the Walking Dead'
Monday, August 24, 2015

Derek Stauffer
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

AMC's Fear the Walking Dead is a lot better than one would expect for a spin-off that took the original title and added a one four-letter word to the beginning to create its own title. It's a far cry from The Walking Dead: LA Edition that many fans feared the spin-off would become. Fear the Walking Dead is not perfect and there is at least one character that is in desperate need of an attitude adjustment/killing off. Bottom line though, Fear the Walking Dead is enjoyable and different companion to The Walking Dead. For old fans and newcomers there are more than enough reasons to check out Fear the Walking Dead but here are the top five.


1. Kim Dickens

I've been in love with Kim Dickens as an actress since I first saw her on Friday Night Lights as Matt Saracen's mom. She's been a bit of a prolific character actress in the subsequent years. She's popped up in supporting roles in many a TV show and movie, most recently as the head cop in Gone Girl. Fear the Walking Dead though had the good common sense to place in the starring spotlight as she is the female lead if not THE lead of the show.

Dickens breathes a lot of life into a character that in other hands could be frustratingly boring and naive. Her character, Madison Clarke, doesn't believe the apocalypse is upon her for the majority of the pilot and it's an opinion that only gradually begins to change in the final moments. It is a hard spot for a character to be in on a prequel because the audience that zombies are real and they are about to destroy the world. It doesn't matter that Madison is completely rational and logical in her belief. She could come off as a complete idiot but Dickens doesn't play her that way. There's just an innate intelligence and savviness to her character that is a very welcome from The Walking Dead's Rick Grimes. Rick has always been more scrappy fighter than a careful intellectual and Madison is very much the latter.

Fear the Walking Dead Series Premiere Recap: Nick Faces His First Zombie>>>

Andrew Lincoln has done some very good work on The Walking Dead but I've long grown tired of Rick's gravely whispers and dramatic speeches. It's certainly possible that once the apocalypse hits Madison will become just as monotonous as Rick but for now I'm much more interested in her character and her journey then I've been in Rick's for quite some time. She feels like a very different person than Rick (pre- or post- apocalypse) and that's refreshing for a spin-off. Fear the Walking Dead is not a simple copy-and-paste follow-up.

2. The Family Dynamic

Family is an obvious theme that runs through The Walking Dead but those bonds are formed through spilled blood and battle. The family on The Walking Dead also just kind of exists out of convenience. With the exception of a few important relationships the survivors of The Walking Dead don't really seem to like one another, they just survive together. So far all the major characters on Fear the Walking Dead are connected through one large blended family. As such there seems to be a much more tangible connection between them in one episode.

feartwd.jpg
There is that instant connection for the audience about what these people mean to each other. Fear the Walking Dead doesn't break the mold by any means. These are pretty standard family archetypes (moody teenager, caring step-dad, bratty pre-teen, etc.) but there is comfort in that familiarity. Especially since there is the obvious promise of the dynamic being challenged by this new dangerous status quo.

3. More Diversity

The Walking Dead has been heavily criticized in the past saying that they have a problem keeping minority characters alive. It seems to be an unwritten rule that only one African-American character can exist in the group at a time. Fear the Walking Dead feels very much like a reaction to that criticism. Cliff Curtis' character (the male lead) Travis Manawa is Maori, his ex-wife is Latina and the two also have son. There also looks to be more members of Travis' family introduced by season's end and other characters of diverse backgrounds. That is if the IMdb account for Fear the Walking Dead is accurate and we have no reason to believe it's not true. That's just the main cast. There are a number of extra and featured extras that are from a number of different ethnicities.

Fear the Walking Dead is not immune to controversy though. There has already been a bit of a stir around the pilot considering two African-American characters, Calvin and Matt. One was discovered to be a secret drug dealer and was killed off by episode's end. The other is missing and probably presumed dead. For obvious reasons neither of these are ideal.



Fear the Walking Dead isn't suddenly some bastion of racial diversity and balance but it's not as if the aforementioned Calvin and Matt are the only persons of color on the show. It's a real problem that they appear to be the first characters of note who've been killed off but Fear the Walking Dead will be an undoubtedly bloody and deadly ordeal. The point is that Fear the Walking Dead is making an effort to have a more diverse cast and for that they should be applauded. It makes the threat feel more global and makes the zombies feel less inherently racist because they aren't targeting people who are from apart of a minority. White privilege should not continue to exist in the end of the world.

4. The Prequel of It All

While some fans might see this as a negative I actually think Fear the Walking Dead being a prequel is the show's greatest asset. I understand Robert Kirkman's original intention behind the comic and TV series. He wanted to explore the idea of what happens after the horror movie credits roll. How do people survive when the worlds already been destroyed? It's an interesting idea and one that has obviously connected with people but there is also something inherently off-putting about that idea.

The audience is immediately thrown into a world that is so unlike their own and that's hard to connect with on a lot of levels. Without the constant use of flashbacks we never got a good sense of what people were like before the apocalypse on The Walking Dead. Rick isn't the only character to go through a journey but he is the only character that we followed from the very beginning of his transformation.

Fear the Walking Dead is different. We will literally see the world become destroyed. We will know what these people were like before the zombie doom hit and how it changed them because it will be shown on screen. This is much more valuable in a visual media than just starting the story as people have already begun to change. There is promise for the transformations to be much more satisfying on Fear the Walking Dead. I can't say the characters are immediately likable or their personalities are all attractive but there is this overbearing sense that the change in the world will change them.


This sense dramatic irony is very effective on Fear the Walking Dead. The audience knows what is coming for these characters and it is a different type of horror than we're used to with zombies. It's anticipatory and filled with dread. It's not quite as intense as the dramatic walker battles that you'd expect having watched multiple seasons of The Walking Dead but it still works. The coming cataclysm is looming in the background getting closer with every second instead of being right around the corner.

5. The New Setting

I always find urban and metropolitan areas to be more interesting settings for a horror movie than rural areas. Maybe it's because I feel uncomfortable in the cramped quarters of a city but it feels like an area riper for zombie destruction than anywhere else. Fear the Walking Dead being set in LA does nothing but excite me in a terribly dreadful way. There is a knowledge watching events unfold and seeing the teeming mass of people that this will end terribly and quickly. When the zombie apocalypse hits it will hit hard and it will so hard for anything or anyone to stop it.

On The Walking Dead the walkers are pursuing the survivors and inevitably they'll need to flee their refugee but the survivors are also in the rural south. There's drama in walker attack and the subsequent escape with the uncertain of the open elements but the key word there is open. The survivors of The Walking Dead have a great expanse of land to flee into and the survivors on Fear the Walking Dead won't have that luxury. The idea that the characters of Fear the Walking Dead will eventually need to run but might not have somewhere to run to is that great dreadful horror that is vital to horror movie or TV show. It's kind of thrill that is morbid and dark but it is also the lifeblood of horror and it's ingrained from the very start in Fear the Walking Dead.

But what do you think? Are you interesting in watching Fear the Walking Dead? Did you already check it out and we're unimpressed? Or have you reach maximum zombie fatigue and nothing or nowhere is going to change your mind about it?

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Re: Fear the Walking Dead ...episode critiques

Post  Banjo on 2015-08-31, 15:41

With two episodes under our belt we can now note several differences between the early episodes of TWD and FTWD. In TWD Rick quickly meets someone (Lenny and his son) who already know what has happened and how to deal with it, ie, kill Walkers whenever/wherever possible. His 6 weeks in a coma has bypassed the original uncertainties and chaos.

In FTWD we see those uncertainties and chaos beginning to play out and the major characters have varying levels of success in coping. Madison's daughter has a death wish , whether she knows it or not, she doesn't, and unless she wises up quickly she won't survive. Madison is slightly better at grasping what is happening and can at least deal with it, ie, the fire extinguisher bashing the Walkers head in the school.

Unlike on TWD where they quickly learn that guns are the best defense/offense against the Walkers, the characters on FTWD make no concerted effort to acquire guns and even, inexplicably, don't even own them in their homes.

While the riot scenes may be quasi-possible in the sense that they are solely the result of seeing the police shoot Walkers, we know from recent events in the real world that large and concerted riots happen "best" when there are stores and goods to be looted. No such activities seemed to be going on near the barber shop, nor were they evident when the kid was filming the action. Later of course when society breaks down further the "advantages" of looting food, weapons, TVs, etc. will become obvious, followed fairly quickly by a total breakdown where TVs aren't of any use.
The fact that the first two quasi-major deaths are black guys isn't as sociologically important as some would maintain. Later on there will be enough casualties between the races to 'balance out' if anyone thinks it important to keep score. TWD shows how this works...



'Fear the Walking Dead' Recap: Madison and Travis Prepare to Leave LA
Sunday, August 30, 2015

Derek Stauffer
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

The series premiere of Fear the Walking Dead was all about the slow build. It lived on the creepy anticipation of the coming apocalypse. The second episode, "So Close, Yet So Far," says "to hell with all that" as society begins to fall apart in no time flat. Fear the Walking Dead goes from zero to 60(-thousand) real quick. In the premiere, no one seemed aware of the mortal virus that was gripping the city. If they did find out, though, they were relatively unconcerned.

It turns out that in the world of Fear the Walking Dead, Los Angeles must be a hotbed of doomsday preppers. With the slightest hints of the coming doom, people begin to lose their minds real quick with looting and fleeing galore. The end result is that the second ever Fear the Walking Dead is a more exciting but also more illogical installment than the first.



Whatever Happened to Matt?

Ignoring her mother's orders from the pilot -- she is a teenager in a horror setting after all -- Alicia doesn't go home. Instead, she goes to her missing boyfriend Matt's house to find the door ajar. Inside, things are even worse. Alicia finds Matt sick and breathing heavily on the floor. She calls Madison and, with Nick in tow, Madison and Travis meet Alicia at Matt's house.

Madison wants to leave the house immediately. She wants to take Alicia home so they can all leave Los Angeles. Madison wants to go to the desert, until they figure out what is going on, and be somewhere safe. Alicia doesn't want to leave Matt, but Matt tells her to go on without him. While Alicia is out of the room, Travis finds a zombie bite on Matt. So that's two black characters dead in two episodes on Fear the Walking Dead. Some things (sadly) never change.

Splitting Up the Family

Travis can't get a hold of his bratty teenage son, Chris, because he is being a bratty teenage son and ignoring his father's calls. Travis leaves Madison to find Chris and his ex-wife, Liza, so both families can be involved in this mini-exodus. Travis tells Madison that if he's not back in time, she should leave without him. Madison promises to stay. I've watched enough horror movies to know that either way, this promise is going to end terribly.

After Travis leaves, Nick immediately goes into severe drug withdrawal because it's dramatically convenient, not logical. Madison can't reach the doctor for medicine to help Nick through it. She decides instead to break into the nurse's office of the closed high school. While she's there, she runs into Tobias. He's the creepy doomsayer student from the premiere who wants his confiscated knife back from the school.

Travis finally arrives at Liza's house, but Chris is not there. Chris is in the city participating in a very heavy-handed protest. The LAPD have shot an unarmed homeless man (read: zombie) and it has caused an uproar. Chris won't leave because he's part of something important there. In actuality, he just vacantly wandered onto this street with a camera in his hand. This kid just gets more insufferable by the second.

Fear the Walking Dead Series Premiere Recap: Nick Faces His First Zombie >>>

Zombies: 0, Madison: 2?

Madison and Tobias search around the school. Tobias raids the cafeteria for food and gives Madison a dump of exposition crap. He tells her what will happen when society collapses and what they all need to do to be prepared and to live. Effectively, he recaps the last five season of The Walking Dead. This speech apparently goes in one ear and out the other for Madison.

Even though she has been preaching about escaping the city -- a very smart decision -- Madison does something unspeakably stupid. Tobias and Madison hear a walker on the school's sound system and try to run out of the school. Or they do, until Madison discovers what must be the zombie in question, the principal. Madison stops and tries to reason with the undead administrator. Madison tells him that they'll get him help and he'll be okay. Of course, the principal attacks her, and Tobias comes to the rescue. Tobias is, unfortunately, quickly overwhelmed. Madison grabs a fire hydrant off the wall and beats in the principal's skull. This act of awesome just barely makes up for her previously overwhelming stupidity, barely.

Safety and Separation

Liza and Travis find Chris at the police protest and manage to "convince" him to come with them by dragging him away. While they are pulling on their son, another zombie stumbles through the police barricade. The walker is shot by one of the officers and all kinds of hell break loose. There is a crazy amount of looting, screaming and running because no looting, screaming or running was shown before now. Travis, Liza and Chris find a barber who is closing up shop because of the looting. Travis begs to be let inside. Inside the building, the barber's wife spots the three and tells her husband to let them enter. The former family unit is now in this barber shop/house with a current family unit, the barber, his wife and their daughter, Ofelia.

Madison arrives back home and quickly goes into the bathroom. She tries to wipe the blood off of her jacket and breaks down in tears. Travis calls Madison and tells her that he's safe and with Liza and Chris. He wants Madison to take Nick and Alicia to the desert now. She refuses to leave him behind, but Travis says he'll catch up. Of course, in the middle of their conversation, the phone cuts out. It would be incredibly cheesy and cliche if Kim Dickens and Cliff Curtis didn't act the hell out of the scene.

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Re: Fear the Walking Dead ...episode critiques

Post  Banjo on 2015-08-31, 16:46

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Re: Fear the Walking Dead ...episode critiques

Post  Banjo on 2015-09-14, 15:47

The one thing we can see so far, is that everyone in the family is pretty much brainless when it comes to thinking tactically. Only the barber shop owner knows what must be done and if it weren't for him Travis would be 'dead meat', ie, a Walker.  Of course Maddie knew that she would have to bash her baby sitters brains out but trying to do it through that slot in the fence with only a ball peen hammer would have been tricky.

Meanwhile tell the drug addict son that he now goes cold turkey, toss the pills and stop enabling him. Also, watch the daughter carefully. This is no time for teen-age angst to be pampered.  

If they make it as far as San Bernardino I'll be surprised.  Rolling Eyes

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Now this is right on. Leave it to TWD fans to see clearly what the danger is.  two thumbs up

And did you notice the airliner flying over banking oddly on approach ? That will be the plane where there is only one survivor from an onboard Walker attack. I think they said it will show as an online 'bonus' episode. Not sure when.... two thumbs up

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Re: Fear the Walking Dead ...episode critiques

Post  Banjo on 2015-09-14, 15:57



Sunday, September 13, 2015
'Fear the Walking Dead' Recap: Madison is Under Siege in Her Own Home

Derek Stauffer
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

The third episode of Fear the Walking Dead, "The Dog," is more of the same. This simply means that the things the series does well, it continues to do well, specifically the special kind of horror the show always contains because of its prequel nature. There are extra layers of tension as the characters watch their world begin to crumble. We know this terror is just the beginning of something much worse.

Still, Fear the Walking Dead continues to stumble where it has always stumbled: characters make idiotic and life-gambling decisions. The teenagers swing from "angsty" and unbearable to slightly less "angsty" and slightly more bearable. People are frustratingly naive about the end of the world, seeing zombies as a temporary sickness.


Fear the Walking Dead Recap: Madison and Travis Prepare to Leave LA >>>

Escape from LA

The rioting outside Salazar's shop is reaching a fever pitch. It gets so bad that the next-door neighbor's house is broken into and the intruders set a fire. With no other choice, the Salazars and Manawas flee outside and onto the street. They fight their way to Travis' truck, dodging the horde of looters and new zombies. In the escape, Mama Salazar, Griselda, is caught under a falling scaffolding and her foot is severely injured. Everyone grabs her and they get to the truck, barely getting out of the city.

Travis tries to drive them all to a hospital to get Griselda some help. When they arrive, they are barred from entering. The building is under siege from SWAT members as zombies are shuffling out of the front door. Daniel tells Travis to take them to his home instead. This ends the escape sequence, aka the most exciting, harrowing and haunting thing to ever happen on Fear the Walking Dead. Admittedly, though, the bar wasn't incredibly high.

Monopoly and Murder

At the home in question, Madison is trying to get Alicia and Nick's mind off the end of the world by playing Monopoly. It's a cute scene, but I can think of no board game more likely to spark tension, debate and violence than Monopoly. The Clarks seem to enjoy it, though, even as they worry about Travis.

In fact, everything is going great until the power goes out. The family begins to hear creepy sounds outside their home. They all get very nervous, but Nick is especially paranoid. Nick tells his mother that they have to tell Alicia what is really going on, specifically that the dead are rising. Madison refuses because it's not The Walking Dead franchise if people aren't keeping needless secrets. The sound is discovered to not be a zombie, though. Rather, it's a dog barking and scratching at the door.

Nick lets the animal in and then he spots a zombie outside. Instead of staying in their secure home, they all leave. They go to the neighbor's to "borrow" a shotgun for defense because it's not The Walking Dead franchise if people aren't stupidly endangering themselves. That's not dumb enough for the three Clarks. The family not only leaves their safe refuge, but they leave the door to the home hanging wide open.

They watch from next door as the zombie enters their house. The walker kills and eats the dog inside. Needless to say, the Clarks are dead to me. Endanger yourself and any other humans as much as you want, but when you let a dog die we got a problem. The dog's death makes Madison decide that now is the time to stay put in a home. Of course, Travis pulls into the driveway seconds after she says to stay put. Madison, Nick and Alicia rush out of the house carrying their new shotgun to save him.

Travis walks into the house and sees the zombie almost immediately. Instead of running, he tries to reason with the undead thing eating a dog on his family room floor. The zombie attacks Travis, and not even Madison showing up with a shotgun can stop it. Daniel, however, strides in, grabs the shotgun and shoots the zombie twice in the head. Daniel just became my favorite character of all time. What did I tell you ??

5 Reasons You Need to Be Watching Fear the Walking Dead >>>

A Departure and an Arrival

Now that things are relatively safe, Travis convinces his family that they have to wait until morning to leave. Daniel tells everyone his family will being leaving separately. Daniel's cousin should be here to pick up him, along with his wife and daughter. It turns out that this is a lie.

Ofelia confronts her father later, asking him what cousin is picking them up. Daniel told her that all his family is dead. Daniel tells Ofelia that this house is safe and Griselda needs rest. Ofelia tells him that her mother doesn't just need rest; she needs help. She needs help that Travis, Madison and the medical nurse Liza can provide.

During the night, Madison discovers that her friend and neighbor Susan has also turned into a zombie. The next morning, Madison debates putting a hammer through Susan's skull. Travis stops her, telling her that she doesn't know if Susan is really dead. Daniel watches from inside and calls them weak. Seriously, Daniel should be on every show quietly judging people from the wings.

The cars are packed and the Clarks and Manawas start to leave. Madison stops when she notices Susan's husband, Patrick, coming home. She parks the car and runs after Patrick, telling him to stay away from his wife. He either doesn't hear her or care because Patrick goes toward Susan. Meanwhile, Susan is lunging at the oblivious Patrick, ready to bite him.

It is at that moment that the military suddenly appears. They kill Susan and surround everyone else. The neighborhood is now under military control. Travis thinks that this means they are safe. Of course, Daniel believes this military coup spells doom.


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Re: Fear the Walking Dead ...episode critiques

Post  Banjo on 2015-09-21, 13:26

With only 2 eps left in the first part of S1 we know that things aren't going to be resolved. One thing that 'intrigues' me is whether the military troops are CA National Guard or regular U.S. Army. It makes a difference for this reason; Although only 9 days have gone by since the start of the 'apocalypse', eventually if the troops are NG, they will start to want to leave their duties in LA and go back to their homes to see how their own families and loved ones are doing. This will happen fairly soon when they realize that what is happening is widespread and not limited to LA, meaning that their own families are in danger. Their leaving and going 'home' will of course contribute to the overall collapse of society but it is an unavoidable outcome in that situation. We never see that outcome in normal NG deployments in natural disasters/riots/etc. because the families of the NG troops are not in danger so they have no reason to go home.

If the troops are regular Army then the situation is a little different in that the troops are already used to being away from their families for extended periods and this LA duty is just another "job".  However if and when the overall situation, spreading beyond LA, becomes known to them they will have the same attitudes about staying as the NG troops. But, the Army command structure will try to keep the true extent of the situation from them for as long as possible. Also, the command structure and the officer leadership of the troops directly on the scene (we see the LT. interacting with the citizens of the fenced in area) can in some instances be less than 'optimum' (to be charitable) because in those situations the 'best' troops are often not the ones assigned to the 'job' because it doesn't involve actual combat......so that's the situation as we see it now.....stay tuned....
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'Fear the Walking Dead' Recap: Things Fall Apart as the Families Get Split Up
Sunday, September 20, 2015

Christine Petralia
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

Any fan of both The Walking Dead and Fear the Walking Dead probably yells at the television whenever Fear the Walking Dead comes on. We all know what's happening and we just want everyone to be okay or at least turn into bad-asses like Rick and Company. But it's clear that it's going to take a long time for Madison, Travis and their blended families to get there. And that's fine with me. Not so 'fine' for most fans since there's no reason for it.

In this episode, "Not Fade Away," Madison and Chris really start to question what's going on outside their now fenced-in neighborhood. The military and government are keeping information at a minimum as they try to keep order in towns that aren't infected. And two families are split up as the government sends in medical help to the area.


Fear the Walking Dead Recap: Madison is Under Siege in Her Own Home >>>

What's Beyond Those Walls?

It's a question that's often asked on The Walking Dead: what's beyond those walls? And we get a glimpse of that in the early stages of Fear the Walking Dead. It's been nine days since the military moved in and fenced off the neighborhood where Madison and Travis live. Some try to go about their days as if things are normal, but soon everyone gets antsy.

Chris heads to the roof and keeps a video diary of the events. As he's panning the area outside the city, where the government has claimed that everyone is dead, he sees a home in the distance flashing a light in the window, possibly for help. Travis doesn't believe him, but Madison starts to wonder. She brings her concerns to Travis too, but he doesn't want to hear it. She questions what the government's real intentions are, why the phones aren't on, etc. Basically, all those questions conspiracy theorists ask.

She decides to venture out on her own, cutting a hole in the fence. This, of course, bothers me because we all know you should never go outside the walls in the zombie apocalypse. What she finds is what you'd expect: memorials, missing person ads, abandoned homes and dead bodies everywhere. (This is an anomaly that wouldn't exist in a 'real' apocalypse, at least not at such an early stage. They would make an effort to remove the bodies to a central 'disposal site'.) What concerns her, though, is that some of the bodies were shot but not sick.

When she returns, she has a heart to heart with Daniel, who's wife, Griselda, is not getting any better. Daniel is, perhaps, the only one who realizes what's happening.(Very true. why this is, isn't explained but it may be because of his previous experiences, somewhere. ) He warns Madison that when "it happens," it will happen quickly and she needs to be prepared. He also tells her to protect her son and keep him close.

Is Help Really on the Way?

As everyone keeps wondering what the hell is going on, the government sends in rations and supplies for people. Soldiers are required to perform mandatory health screenings on everyone within the fenced-in areas. Lt. Moyers, who looks to Travis as the "mayor," informs the town that it is one of 12 safe zones in the area, so everyone needs to sit tight and ride it out. Many question when medical supplies will arrive to help those who are sick and in need, though. Moyers and the soldiers promise that it's on the way.

Moyers recruits Travis to talk to a freaked-out neighbor, Doug. But despite Travis' pep talk, Doug tries to flee. Soldiers find him crying by a fence and take him to a government facility for help.

Meanwhile, Ofelia, Daniel's daughter, is hooking up with a soldier to try to get meds for her mother. Within a day, though, a government doctor, Dr. Exner, comes into town and examines the ill, including Griselda. Exner informs Liza, who has been helping care for the sick people, that there is a facility about 15 minutes from the town that's safe and they can help those who are sick. Liza foolishly tells Exner about Nick and his addiction.

Later on, as Daniel prepares to leave with his wife as she gets help at this facility, soldiers inform him that he can't go. They say another name is on the list to go: Nick. All families flip out as Nick tries to flee. He can't outrun the armed guards and he's escorted into a military vehicle. As Exner gets into the truck, she asks Liza to come with her to help at the facility.( Why a drug addict seems to be a priority to be taken away, at least for Dr. Exner, is mysterious at this point. Are they trying to "weed out" the "weakest members of society" ?) She hesitates and then jumps in. Perhaps she really wants to help people or perhaps she feels really, really guilty about giving up Nick's addiction and splitting up their families. Either way, all three families are split up now, and no one knows where they are going.

5 Reasons You Need to Be Watching Fear the Walking Dead >>>

The Light Goes Dark

After Nick is carted away, Madison blames Liza and storms out on Travis. Alicia goes to hide and re-read her neighbor Susan's suicide note she found earlier in the week. And Travis heads to the roof to find out if what Chris saw was true. Earlier in the day, he told Moyers about the light, but Moyers assured him that everyone outside the fence was dead. As Travis squints to see the light in the distance, he suddenly sees gunfire inside the home and then it goes dark.

Now's the Time to Run

We all know this is the time that all families need to just pack up their stuff and try to escape. Sitting tight inside a fenced-in area doesn't do any good for the folks on The Walking Dead, but again, these are things Madison and Travis will have to learn on their own. I like that Madison and Chris are questioning everything. However, I wish they'd do more to prepare for what's ahead. The only person so far who seems to know what's coming is Daniel.(Ditto) Well, him and Tobias, but that kid is probably locked away in his bunker by now.

I'm curious to see what's going to happen now that the families are split up. Will they truly try to leave to find their loved ones at this mysterious medical facility? Will the government try to stop them? Will Madison forgive Travis for bringing his ex into her home now that Liza has ratted out Nick? So many questions and just two episodes left!

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Re: Fear the Walking Dead ...episode critiques

Post  Banjo on 2015-09-28, 16:44

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This review is a week old and after last night's episode I don't think it's too accurate about Madison becoming the 'next' Governor type character. But what last night's episode did show is what I mentioned last week in that the military presence and discipline is beginning to break down. The troops are apparently Regular Army rather than  National Guard but even so we saw that several troops are bugging out and returning to their families. Also the Lt. in charge (before he apparently bought the farm in the raid on the school) had an attitude toward the civilians and his troops, which they perceived accurately, that his leadership qualities were such that their mission was doomed even if he had survived. Once the the troops lose respect and confidence in their officers it's all over in any situation, zombie apocalypse or not. The French have a word for it: Esprit de Corp, when it's lacking....forget it...tongue

So...with next week being the last ep of the season we might see the family starting to try to leave LA, but I doubt it will get very far, leading to some sort of cliffhanger. And the statement from the Lt. that all the Army troops were leaving the LA basin "tomorrow" after carrying out a "humane termination" of all the remaining normal civilians,   gives a clue as to what the cliffhanger may entail. Of course mass killings of civilians is nothing new with plenty of historic examples so the writers had to be careful how they handled it. We'll see.....
scratch

Of course the practicality of such a 'project' is questionable given the number of available troops and the number of still normal civilians spread all over the LA basin.  And to not put too fine a point on it, the Nazis tried this against the Jews when they first invaded Poland, using Wermacht troops to 'mass-shoot' Jews, and it didn't work for very long because of the morale problems among the common soldiers being ordered to do such a thing.  

Last night's review is up to date, I don't recall that the barber specifically mentioned El Salvador as being where he witnessed the dictatorial actions of the regime, but at any rate he's about the only one at the moment that realizes how things are going to go down.

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Re: Fear the Walking Dead ...episode critiques

Post  Banjo on 2015-09-29, 16:13

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Re: Fear the Walking Dead ...episode critiques

Post  Banjo on 2015-10-01, 16:56

Just because a producer says the season finale "will be the deadliest yet" doesn't mean that any of the characters on this list will be one of the victims. But if there must be one then I would miss Nick or Chris the least and so would the show.

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Post  Banjo on 2015-10-26, 11:21

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