One thing is for certain, AMC and Fear the Walking Dead’s new show runners have certainly brought a new vision and direction into what has to date been a powerful revamping of the previously troubled show. But some fans may ask at what cost and if at the end of the zombie day, is it worth it? The answer may be a resounding “Hell Yes!”
Right off of the barbed wire bat, the first half of FTWD’s fourth season has now seen the demise of not just one, but two of Fear’s original and leading characters. First we saw the self induced departure of Frank Dillane (Nick Clark), but now fans of the show are also dealing with the killing off of arguably the show’s star, Kim Dickens (Madison Clark), during episode eight of FTWD’s fourth season mid season finale entitled, “No One is Safe”.
In essence, this episode saw not just the demise of the group’s baseball stadium safe zone to a fire induced zombie invasion, but the selfless sacrifice of the group’s leader Madison, as she drew all of the zombies inside of the stadium so as to allow her fellow survivors the ability to escape. Chief among these being her two children Alicia (Alycia Debnam-Carey) and Nick, along with Strand (Colman Domingo) and Luciana (Danay Garcia).
Interestingly, the show’s new showrunners Ian Goldberg and Andrew Chambliss were recently quoted by TheWrap as saying that in the Walking Dead universe, ” . . . no character is ever safe.”
And while many fans of the show will miss Kim Dickens character, there is no doubt that her strong presence and righteous post apocalyptic morality will continue to be felt throughout the rest of season four and beyond. In his comments to TheWrap, Chambliss went on to say, “Fans will see that Madison’s death is something that will reverberate through the rest of the season . . her whole kind of philosophy, the things she died for, the belief that no one’s gone until their gone, and that you have to fight to build a place that is about more than just survival, that there’s something to carry on.” The showrunner continued on to say, “So even though Madison as a character won’t be on the show, really the ripples of everything she’s done will continue to be felt in the series going forward.”
While Madison’s death was clearly the biggest surprise of the show, her self-sacrifice must and will indeed continue to stand for something, but likewise, Lennie James’ Morgan has also brought his ‘A’ game to FTWD, with a pronounced evolution of his character, which seemed to flower again with Morgan saying that John (Garrett Dillahunt) was his friend and indicating to Alicia that the ongoing violence has to end.
Morgan, John, and Althea (Maggie Grace), along with Jenna Elfman (June), seem to be FTWD’s new moral protagonists, and have so far helped the show in a mere eight episodes to find a new, entertaining, and compelling footing within the apocalypse, that is also hopeful in a very character driven and intense way.
The midseason finale for Fear the Walking Dead was action packed, intense, and even though it was sad, it was also uplifting and ended in a positive place, which seemed to solidify a new team line up for Fear the Walking Dead, as well as the promise of a brighter future for both the show as well as its fans!