Three episodes into the second season of Fear the Walking Dead, and we’ve learned a few things. Namely, we’ve learned that somehow everyone that this group encounters knows plenty about what to do in the apocalypse. We’ve learned that Strand, who is another overly-educated character, has plans, but doesn’t get any respect for saving the group. And we’ve learned that a web series can be more engaging than most of the rest of the show, but only as long as those characters never actually set foot on the show itself.
Okay, so maybe that’s not completely fair. However, it isn’t much of a stretch to think that people watch The Walking Dead because they want to see how people survive through this apocalyptic world, and people watch Fear the Walking Dead because they’re honestly hoping to see how tragically the main characters all get killed off. This is a group of people who almost seem to take a joyful stance towards making incredibly bone-headed decisions, and they really are just like an Ouroboros of stupidity.
Madison has a real problem understanding that Strand and his boat are the reason that her family is still alive to make some of the foolish mistakes that they do, as is evidenced by her constant battle with him over what they should do and where they should go. She’s also got a bit of a memory issue, at least with relation to the fact that the group knew they were being pursued. Consequently, when the boat stalled out, Madison was more than content to wait until daylight before even investigating what had gone wrong. Dead in the water could have taken on an entirely new meaning with a few wasted hours.
Alex is a character from the recent web series, and that series showed us that she, as is almost required, somehow knows too much about what’s going on. Now, that knowledge doesn’t really come into play when it comes to dealing with a plane crash, but it should have reared its head with regards to Jake. Great, she feels responsible for depriving his mom of a seat on the plane, but does that really mean she should be struggling against hope to keep him alive, to the detriment of other, able-bodied, non-burn victims? Knowing what’s going on, she should have left Jake in the water.
And now begins a cavalcade of stupidity. During the trip to the wreckage, with the hopes of finding supplies, Daniel made it clear that the kids should stay where they could all see each other. Chris immediately took this as an opportunity to wander off on his own. Even worse, when he found part of the cabin, still with walkers and a lone survivor, Chris felt that he needed to engage in the situation. He was almost unable to get away, but also had to perform a mercy killing. He’s still dealing with th death of his mother, but he seems to be intentionally following a darker path.
So Chris wandered away. Daniel went to find him (albeit by going totally the wrong way). Instead of actually staying with Nick, and utilizing numbers to their advantage, Alicia wanders off, too? Yes, she was actually able to find Chris, amidst the wreckage, but she should never have left in the first place. Then, while trying to escape the horde of walkers coming over the hill, Alicia could have immediately helped push the boat into the water. No, she has to hug Nick because he’s fine. It’s not like you’ve got a short trip back to Strand’s vessel… hug your brother then.
Speaking of Nick, he has his own share of dumb moments. He doesn’t stop Alicia from wandering away. He’s still somehow a walking pharmacologist, all handwaved in the concept of, “well, he did drugs, so…”. But when he hears the sound of a walker nearby, Nick goes to investigate, thereby ensuring that NONE of the landing party is where Daniel left them. He then goes to peer over the edge of a drop-off, spying a walker buried to its waist (in what was a pretty gruesome, yet cool, bit of visual effect with the crabs). Now, a smarter person would have leaned over a bit back from the ledge, but not Nick, who stands right at the edge. He also is so engrossed in the crabby walker, he doesn’t notice the land slipping away under his feet, dropping him in the line of fire. Somehow Nick is able to fight his way through, and learns about the camouflage trick, but the entire thing was avoidable, and caused by Nick taking leave of his senses yet again. He even ruined that nice, slightly dirty pilot’s shirt.
That wraps up this week’s episode. Next week clearly promises even more action, and more strong decision making. These are the hallmarks of what has made Fear the Walking Dead the show that it is, and it’s what brings us back. Or, again, we’re just keeping fingers crossed that someone bites the big one.