Fear The Walking Dead has been an incredibly frustrating show to watch so far. The first season of its mothership show was excellent and then it started to go downhill after that, so maybe there’s always hope that Fear… will adopt the opposite approach. The Good Man, however, finally showed us promise as it took a more action-orientated approach, giving us some good potential and a look at where things might go from here. The show also suggests with the ending that the series might not exclusively be limited to LA, and we could easily see a change in setting for future Seasons. After all, The Walking Dead went on the road a lot. As civilization starts to go slowly downhill, we might be looking at a similar case with Fear.
Thankfully, the season has only been six episodes long and has acted as a lead-in to its parent show, which is returning next week at the same time. I don’t think I could have handled an 18 or even 13 episode season, and the smaller episode count should have allowed for a more focused and better paced show, but there were some episodes which really dragged. The whole thing could have been done in three, maybe four episodes. It didn’t even need six. So if there is an increased episode count for Season 2 (I’m not sure if it’s been announced yet, I know that a second season has been confirmed however) hopefully the show becomes a little more exciting than what we’ve had so far.
The Good Man gave Cliff Curtis, who plays Travis, some great material to work with this episode in the scene with Andy, the soldier, as he beat the character to death after rescuing him, and provided an example as to how this choice affected his character. This episode once again showed us that in TWD universe, the zombies, or walkers, have never really been the main enemy for the characters, as was evident by the fact that Fear even went an episode without any at all. It’s the other humans that are the enemy. A tagline for an earlier season of TWD is “Fight the Dead. Fear the Living,” and the same thing has very much applied here, with the army proving why the military should never be trusted in apocalyptic scenarios (unless they’re directed by Michael Bay).
One of the problems that Fear The Walking Dead is facing so far is its treatment of characters, and making you care about them. There were few that I actually have grown to care about, where in comparison, by this point I was already incredibly invested in The Walking Dead’s cast. Some feel barely developed and barely feel like real characters, which is a shame, and the only ones that I’ve really become invested in are Daniel and Strand, who are interesting additions, but also not the main family on the show. That’s a real weak spot that the series needs to improve if it is to keep me watching in the second season.
The action sequences in this episode were pretty good, and tense. There was a scene where we wondered whether this would be the end for Nick’s character when he was stuck on the other side of the door, separated from his own mother. Would she leave him behind? If she had, it would have presented an interesting twist concerning her character, but for me, this was one of the stronger moments in the show, with a tense atmosphere surrounding it that made for a good set-piece moment.
The show also features a teaser of what’s in store. At the end of the episode it’s revealed that there’s a yacht to come and we’ve got to wonder how much of Season 2 will be spent at sea. It certainly offers something different from what we’ve seen from the show in the past, even if a bunch of characters on a yacht would get pretty boring if dragged out too long. Maybe we’re about to learn more about the world at sea than we previously have on The Walking Dead. Regardless of what happens though, Season 2 needs to step up in quality if it wants to keep my attention. However, it’ll be a while before it returns, whereas we can expect a return to the superior parent show next week, which I’ll be reviewing for the site. I’ll also be covering Arrow and The Flash, both of which return this week, so if you’re interested, keep an eye out on the site for when these reviews go live, as well as coverage of future Season 9 episodes of Doctor Who.