Series / Fear the Walking Dead

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"When civilization ends, it ends fast."
Tobias

Fear the Walking Dead is the second television Zombie Apocalypse series in the Walking Dead franchise. While The Walking Dead is an adaptation of the original comic, Fear the Walking Dead is an original story featuring original characters created by Robert Kirkman for the show.

Further distinguishing Fear the Walking Dead from its big sister series is its premise and place in the timeline. The Walking Dead kicks off two months into the apocalypse. Fear the Walking Dead shows the Zombie Apocalypse in its early days, as news reports begin to come in of a strange virus sweeping the country. What follows is the struggle of a Los Angeles family's struggle to survive during the ensuing mass hysteria and the chaos of the collapse of society as the dead begin to rise.

Fear the Walking Dead was announced in September 2013 and debuted on August 23rd, 2015 with the pilot of a six-episode first season, followed by a second season in spring/summer 2016. A web series, Fear The Walking Dead: Flight 462 centers around the events on a plane headed toward Los Angeles as the outbreak begins.

No characters from The Walking Dead are set to appear.

Has a recap page here and a also characters one which Needs Wiki Magic Love.


Fear the Walking Dead contains examples of:

  • Advertised Extra: Alex. AMC hyped up the "Flight 462" shorts, which aired throughout all of The Walking Dead Season 6, claiming that one of the characters would have a starring role on Fear. Alex did wind up being promoted to the main cast, despite appearing in a mere two episodes, having minimal impact on the plot, and getting Put on a Bus with the rest of her new group.
  • Apathetic Citizens: Zigzagged, while several citizens of L.A. react to police brutality and challenge them when they go into "move along" mode, they don't seem to notice how people are resisting direct gunshots to the heart or lungs and are still active. Word of God says that this reaction is due to the lack of modern zombie fiction in the Walking Dead universe- people are far more likely to think "guy who did bath salts" than an obscure variety of The Undead.
    • The same would likely happen in real life. Because, honestly, if people came across the police shooting innocent people in the street, which is more likely to occur in the world as they know it? They would assume police brutality, not a zombie outbreak. The riot would have also sent the crowds into mass hysteria mode: they would be so incited with anger and fear that they may not notice that the people getting fatal gunshots are still moving.
  • Armies Are Evil: The National Guard troops are not presented in a particularly sympathetic way. They sow mistrust by withholding information, abducting civilians and generally using brutal tactics. It only gets worse from there. Maddie discovers corpses of people outside of the safe zone who were seemingly shot by the military in spite of lacking infection. Travis also sees that whoever sending morse code messages to the safe zone got shot after telling Moyers about him. Later, it is revealed that they have been ordered to execute a protocol codenamed "Cobalt": put down everyone suspected of infection and then abandon California, while Los Angeles is subjected to napalm bombing. In the Season 1 finale, several troops assault Chris and Alicia whilst trying to steal their car, and others are reported to have been looting the streets after abandoning their posts.
  • Ambiguously Bi: Strand in several senses. Ambiguous, possibly only platonic flirtation with Madison, the strange relationship with Thomas Abigale falling somewhere between In Love with the Mark, Straight Gay, and If It's You, It's Okay... Word of Saint Paul from their actor might say it best: " Strand's complicated."
  • Anyone Can Die: This is The Walking Dead, after all.
    • Season 1: A number of recurring characters including Griselda Salazar and Liza Manawa.
    • Season 2: Chris.
    • Season 3: Travis.
  • Bad Boss: Lt. Moyers, who is as cruel and unreasonable to his own men (who are low on morale, supplies and sleep) as he is to the civilians they are guarding.
  • Battle Discretion Shot: Occurs frequently.
    • The military's execution of the residents inside the house signalling to Chris in the safezone in "Not Fade Away" is only seen and heard in the distance for a few moments.
    • When Lt. Moyers, Lt. Castro and the military unit go into the library to clear out walkers, the action is only heard from Travis' perspective as he listens over the radio, with the only action being seen when the team retreats out the front door of the library and throws a grenade to stall the walkers.
    • The military's last, futile effort to stop the infection in the Season 2 premiere (via bombing the burning city with jets) is mostly heard in the background as the group flees towards the Abigail.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: After finding out Brandon and Derek "mercy killed" Chris before going to the hotel in "Wrath", Travis brutally murders both of them, and accidentally Oscar.
  • Black Dude Dies First: The only named character to die in the pilot episode is a black man.
  • Big Fancy House:
    • Chris and Alicia break into an abandoned one in their neighbourhood, and after trying on the residents clothes, proceed to trash it.
    • Victor Strand's beachside mansion seen in the season one finale.
    • Victor Strand and Thomas Abigail's fortified mansion in Baja, Mexico.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing:
    • Calvin. He is introduced in the pilot as a polite and clean cut friend of Nick's, who lives in the suburbs and vacuums his mother's minivan. This is later revealed to be a facade, as he is actually Nick's drug dealer, and later tries to kill Nick so he can't tell others about the dodgy heroin he has been selling. It is also implied he killed other clients who had adverse reactions to his drugs.
    • Jack, the young man Alicia talks to on the radio in Season 2. Although he seems like an innocent survivor in need of help and rescue, it is later revealed he and whom he pretends to be his brother and sister-in-law is working for Big Bad Connor, when they board the Abigail, almost kill Strand, and take the rest of the group hostage, later kidnapping Travis and Alicia.
    • Celia, the kind and welcoming caretaker of Thomas Abigail and his fortified estate, and the latter's mother figure, who poisons an entire parish to keep them from eliminating the estate workers - and their families - who have become undead and whom she's keeping in the estate's wine cellar.
  • Boom, Headshot: The primary method of killing zombies. Since this is the early stage of the Zombie Apocalypse, characters not always do it.
  • California Doubling: Aside from the pilot (which was filmed on location), the majority of the first season was filmed with Vancouver doubling for Los Angeles. The second season inverts this: in order to utilize the isolated beaches and a massive ocean-side infinity pool originally constructed for the filming of Titanic, production has moved to Northwestern Mexico, just across the border from California (thus creating a case of California Doubling for California).
  • Call-Back: In Season 1's "Not Fade Away", Madison says they need to put another coat of paint in the room a walker's brains were blown all over in the previous episode.
  • Canon Foreigner: The main cast have been created exclusively for this series and, so far, don't have any counterpart in the comics.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Nick has several, gained through being a heroin addict.
    • He is skilled at breaking and entering to fund his addiction. It later comes in useful when the Clark family needs to acquire a weapon.
    Nick: Okay, the Trans have a shotgun. I tried to steal it once.
    • He is very familiar with pharmaceuticals, which proves useful when the group needs to find the right medication whilst searching the airplane wreckage in Season 2's "Ouroborus".
  • Closest Thing We Got: Lisa is only a nursing student, but tells the enclosed neighbourhood she is a nurse practitioner and 'basically a doctor' so they will trust her to treat them. Dr. Exner also decides she is better than nothing, and lets her work on the military base.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Daniel slowly removes layers of Cpl. Adams arm to extract the location of his wife and Nick. It is later revealed he did the same thing during the Salvadoran Civil War, unbeknownst to his daughter.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Victor Strand. The only reason he bribes the soldiers to spare Nick is to utilise his craftiness as an addict for his own benefit, not out of a sense of goodwill.
  • Cool Boat: The Abigail. Unfortunately, its large size and capacity make it a prime target for other desperate survivors in Season 2.
  • Cooperation Gambit: How Victor Strand and Thomas Abigail ended up together. Instead of having Strand arrested for stealing his credit cards and making expensive investments, Abigail instead recruits him so they can begin to make money together. Their relationship ends up becoming much more personal, however.
  • Crazy-Prepared: Many examples. Strand, George Geary, the residents of Broke Jaw Ranch.
  • Developing Doomed Characters: In the pilot, we're introduced to Artie, the school principal, played by a recognizable actor and given a little character treatment. He's bitten offscreen and dies in the following episode.
  • Devoured by the Horde: In "The Good Man", when a large horde of walkers are invading the military base, the walkers knock down a watchtower with two guards on it. When the guards try to get back up, they were already surrounded by the walkers and they start eating them.
  • Disappeared Dad:
    • Maddy's first husband and the father of her children died before the start of the show.
    • Travis is himself a disappeared dad to his own family. His own teenage son behaves resentfully to hm for what he perceives as abandoning him and his mother.
  • Doesn't Like Guns: Travis objects when Daniel shows Chris how to operate a shotgun.
    Travis: "You know how I feel about guns!"
  • Doomed by Canon: Society itself.
  • Drama Bomb:
    • In "The Dog", Nick loses all patience with the adults trying to keep the kids in the dark with what's happening and speaks the truth bluntly.
    Maddie: Susan's sick.
    Nick: She's not sick. She's dead.
    Alicia: [freaks out over Matt, who they left sick in bed in the previous episode]
    • Similarly, in "Not Fade Away", Alicia snaps at Travis and Madison when they begin to bicker, telling them that there's no room for marital squabbles in the midst of a zombie apocalypse.
  • Driven to Suicide: Dr. Bethany Exner, though whether they went through with it isn't shown.
  • Dr. Jerk: Dr. Bethany Exner, a government doctor working with the National Guard. She seems to mean well, but is revealed to be responsible for Nick being forcibly removed from home and taken to the 'medical base'. By the end of Season 1, she really does want to help people, and is so distraught that her patients can't be evacuated she then kills them and presumably herself.
  • Eye Scream: Maddie does this to Troy to take him hostage and escape captivity at the start of Season 3.
  • False Reassurance: Travis and Maddy try this on his son Chris and her daughter Alicia, respectively. Daniel sees right through it.
  • False Utopia: One of the key themes that runs throughout Season 1.
    • Many of the L.A. residents are either ignorant or not prepared for what's happening around them. It even prompts residents that would otherwise be savvy in the real world to be brutally wrong when a mischaracterization of a crime scene causes people to start rioting, exacerbating the situation.
    • Travis also gets this in "Not Fade Away". When the National Guard takes control of the neighborhood, he goes for a jog and tries to ignore the problems around him. It takes the realization that the military is going to bomb their neighborhood and him stepping up to protect his family that causes him to shatter this illusion.
    • In "The Good Man", just before they drive out to find Nick and Liza at the military command post, they see neighbors going about their business (walking a dog and eating dinner) like nothing is wrong. Ofelia tells Madison to ignore them before they drive off.
  • Five-Finger Discount: Whilst negotiating with and bribing his military captors, Victor is able to steal the key for the cage he and Nick are imprisoned in.
  • Foregone Conclusion: Any attempts at salvaging society, treating the walker virus, or trying to learn of its origins will end in failure.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Travis is teaching his class about Man versus Nature conflict, which is essentially what a zombie story is in spite of the supernatural premise. The specific scene in question has a man put his hands in gore.
    • In "The Dog", Madison asks Liza to kill her if she ever gets infected, and to not let Travis do it as it would break him. At the end of "The Good Man", Liza reveals that she was bitten when the military base was overrun with infected. She initially asks Madison to kill her, echoing her words about not letting Travis do it, but Travis finds them before Madison can do it, leading to him shooting Liza.
    • Nick has a battered copy of Watership Down among his bedding at the abandoned church. This novel's story foreshadows much of what's to come: warnings of catastrophe, a desperate escape from a militant stronghold, and a displaced band of survivors seeking refuge from a figurative or actual ship.
  • Free-Range Children: Despite being a proven runner even before things went south, Nick is often free to wander around unsupervised.
  • Gentleman Thief: Flashbacks reveal that Strand became a combination of this and a Con Man after Hurricane Katrina rendered him bankrupt. He stole Thomas Abigail's credit cards, then used them to make expensive investments. However, he intended to make enough money to bring himself out of the gutter but also to repay Thomas afterwards, with interest.
  • Government Conspiracy: The constant helicopters and sirens, and at least one police officer stocking up on water also indicate the government authorities know more than the public, who are kept ignorant of the walker threat because there's absolutely zero media coverage.
  • Helicopter Blender: In "The Good Man", a zombie-bitten soldier is running around in a panic when the military is evacuating their base as it's overrun by the dead, and runs straight into the tail rotor of one of the helicopters waiting to lift off.
  • Improbable Aiming Skills: Luis is able to gun down two pirates who board the Abigail in rapid succession, from a fast moving speedboat, a considerable distance away, being piloted by Nick.
  • Ironic Echo: Strand's comment to Nick after saving him from being taken away by the National Guard: "I didn't save you, I obligated you". A flashback in Season 2 reveals that Strand was told the exact same thing by Thomas Abigail, the man he stole money from after becoming bankrupt, after Abigail decided not to press charges but instead recruit Strand to work for him.
    • Madison calling The Nation a group of savages, but she stops herself before actually finishing the sentence. However, in an amused indignant tone Jeremiah finished the sentence for her. The irony probably not lost on her considering she called Jeremiah out for the same reason.
  • Just Before the End: The setting and the appeal of the series, although almost nobody knows it in-universe.
  • Karmic Death: The entire National Guard platoon, who locked hundreds of civilians into a stadium to be devoured or turned by walkers. By the end of Season 1, most of the soldiers responsible are eaten by those same civilians.
  • Kick the Dog: Lt. Moyers, the commanding officer of the National Guard, mutters a threat to shoot everyone in the safe zone after they ask too many questions. In his next scene, he's too busy driving golf balls into an abandoned neighborhood to listen to Travis's concerns.
  • Kill It with Fire: The purpose of Operation Cobalt. It's effects are shown at the start of season 2, where it is revealed that LA, San Francisco, San Diego, Portland, Seattle and Vancouver have been firebombed by the military.
  • Lack of Empathy: Strand has this in droves, although it proves to be useful in the desperate situation the group is in. When faced with a boat full of refugees in Season 2, he refuses to let them board, claiming his "mercy quota" has been filled. He later cuts the rope that was keeping Alex and Jake's raft attached to the Abigail, dismissing them as "dead weight".
  • Limited Wardrobe: For the next 3 episodes, despite staying in his mother's home for nine days, Nick is still seen wearing the clothes he stole from a dead man in the hospital in the pilot. The group later averts this in Season 2, as many of them scavenge for fresh clothes at the airplane crash site.
  • Meaningful Name: Strand's boat, the Abigail is revealed to be named after Thomas Abigail, his partner and business associate who is likely the true owner of the boat.
  • Mercy Kill: After finding a survivor in the Flight 462 wreckage, Chris tries to help him up, only to discover the man has a severe spinal injury. With the survivors blessing, Chris then kills him with a blow to the head.
  • Mildly Military: The National Guard unit led by Lt. Moyers acts rather non-military, golfs instead of handling problems handed to them, have low morale and poor dicipline, use incessant radio chatter, and don't work out a proper rotation of rest if soldiers are awake for 50 hours while their CO is using his free time to golf. Any real military officer would have kept the safe zone properly protected, guarded and happy. There are also the problems with the military and the government keeping as tight a lid on the zombie outbreak as possible, leading to more infected and the situation going out of control. Lack of artillery or air support during their campaigns is also rather strange, as well as their ROE (rules of engagement) consisting of killing everyone outside a safe zone and no transportation of healthy civilians out of a combat area.
  • Militaries Are Useless: The National Guard prove remarkably incompetent throughout Season 1. It is especially pronounced in its finale, in which a mass of zombies attack their fortifications. The panicked soldiers fire on full auto in spite of needing headshots to kill zombies. Even against stationary zombies amassed at their fences, their gunfire has almost no effect. They're quickly overwhelmed.
    • A Coast Guard spokesman on the radio actually asks forgiveness for this trope applying in the wake of the burning of L.A., ashamed that they can't save anyone.
  • My Beloved Smother: Maddie, driven from guilt, tries to keep tabs on her adult junkie son and is willing to keep putting him back in rehab in the hope that it takes this time.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Alicia wears mostly shorts showing off her legs, then there's the scene where she plays dress up at the abandoned house of her rich neighbors.
  • Nature Is Not Nice: George Geary, the survivalist the group meets on Catalina Island, believes the outbreak is natures way of culling humanity.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!:
    • Madison considers "killing" Susan, one of her neighbours who has become a walker. She fears what would happen if Susan's husband Patrick returns home and is attacked by her. However, Travis stops her, which results in Patrick almost being bitten when he actually does come home.
    • In the Season 1 finale, Travis goes against Daniel's wishes and lets Cpl. Adams free, believing he will not be a threat. He later turns up at the army base and tries to kill Daniel and Ophelia.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Travis delivers one to Cpl. Adams after Adams breaks his promise to run away and returns to shoot Ofelia.
  • Number Two: Luis Flores, Thomas Abigail and Victor Strand's right hand man and muscle.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Travis the pacifist delivers a brutal and frenzied beating of Adams after the soldier shoots Ofelia. Travis obviously feels guilty for letting him go the first time.
  • Ominous Owl: The one carved on the tree in the hacianda ,similar to Luis' medallion.
  • Prequel/Interquel: This series starts during the two months that The Walking Dead's Rick Grimes was in a coma, when civilization had just begun to collapse.
  • Police Are Useless:
    • During the riot in L.A., an infected riot officer is seen brutally attacking a colleague on the ground. Despite the large police presence, no other officers notice what is happening.
    • The National Guard unit protecting the suburb keeps the walkers out and gives rations, but it's not particularly helpful in explaining what's going on, and cares very little about the mental state of certain residents.
  • Police Brutality: After the L.A.P.D. gun down two infected people in broad daylight, the public misinterprets it as simply trigger-happy cops shooting unarmed civilians, and begin a protest that later spirals into rioting.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: The people at Brokejaw Ranch are sexist and have a whites only policy.
  • Poor Communication Kills:
    • A rather large theme of the series, as word about the infection is slow to spread. At first, it's implied that the government is actively trying to cover it up, but as the scene with the Cruz family demonstrates, many people simply just don't pay attention to what's happening around them.
    • On a more personal level, Nick, Madison, and Travis' constant reluctance to actually tell the rest of their family about what is going on. This leads to situations that put all the main characters in potential peril. Alicia in particular is left in the house unsupervised to watch Nick without any knowledge of the walker virus. It's largely only a factor of fortunate timing that being kept in the dark didn't lead to her taking actions that would get her killed or bitten.
    • The National Guard seems to think that the people under their protection don't deserve to be properly filled in on what they are doing.
  • Pre-Mortem One-Liner: Said by Daniel to some National Guard troops, just before he leads a herd of walkers towards the gate.
    Soldier: Don't make me shoot you, old man.
    Daniel: You should save your bullets...
  • Quick Melee: When Nick is running away from National Guard troops, one of them stops him by hitting him in the face with the butt of his rifle.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • Tobias tries to stab a recently infected walker in the head with his knife. The knife bounces right off the skull, rather than going through it, as unlike in the main series, the body has not had ample time to decompose and become weaker.
    • Nick tries to pass himself off as sober, which fools his family, but when a doctor comes along, she quickly deduces that he's not going through withdrawal.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Captain Castro. Despite pulling rank and acting hostile towards Adams, he is shown to be equally tired of Lt. Moyers antics and is relatively helpful to Travis.
  • Riches to Rags: A flashback in Season 2 reveals that Strand was a wealthy property owner, until all his buildings were destroyed in Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
    • He is shown to bounce back, as he enters a hasty financial partnership with Thomas Abigail, a man who he initially stole money from after becoming bankrupt.
  • Ripped from the Headlines: The riot against police brutality on a minority has obvious shades of the Ferguson riots and growing controversy over police brutality, even though the series takes place in 2010.
  • Sharp Dressed Man:
    • Victor Strand wears an immaculate black suit despite being placed in a military internment camp. When he gathers supplies to face the zombie apocalypse, he can be seen packing dress shirts and ties.
    • Thomas Abigail (Victor's partner) wears even nicer suits.
  • Shown Their Work: At the end of Season 1's "The Dog", National Guard troops are seen spray painting official FEMA markings on houses in the Clarks' neighbourhood. Similar markings are seen on houses in the neighbourhood Nick goes to in Season 2 to meet with Strand's contact.
  • The Sociopath: Victor Strand to an extent. He shows little empathy leaving behind hundreds of imprisoned civilians when he and Nick escape, and seems to enjoy taunting Doug until he breaks down and is taken away by the soldiers.
  • South of the Border: In Season 2, Strand reveals that they are headed to Mexico, as he has a fortified house in the hills of Baja California.
  • Spoiler Opening: In "Ouroboros," Michelle Ang is credited as a series regular, hinting that Alex will be back from being set adrift before too long. She comes back two episodes later.
  • Straight Gay: It is revealed in Season 2 that Victor Strand is in a relationship with a man; Thomas Abigail for whom he named their boat.
  • Suicide Pact: George Geary, the survivalist ranger on Catalina Island is revealed to have made one with his family. His wife is against it, and urges the group to take their two young children to safety. However, their young daughter takes her pill early, dies and reanimates, infecting her parents and leaving the two surviving sons - a teenager and a child - to an uncertain fate on the island.
  • Swiss Cheese Security: Madison gets out of the fenced area, using bolt cutters and with little problem.
  • The Dog Bites Back: It's implied that Lt. Moyers is killed by his own men (who he had been treating like crap) when they enter a library overrun with walkers. The soldiers then proceed to abandon their posts to try and find their families.
  • Time Skip: Of nine days between "The Dog" and "Not Fade Away", in which time the Clarks' neighbourhood has been fenced off as a 'safe zone' by the National Guard.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Travis, by the end of Season 1. He goes from being a pacifist who hates guns, to actively wielding a shotgun when the group breaks into the military base. He also beats Cpl. Adams almost to death after the latter shoots a member of the group.
  • 20 Minutes into the Past: The series premiered in mid-2015, but is set in 2010 (the same year the first season of The Walking Dead was released and takes place in).
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: As people riot in downtown LA, some people are being eaten on the ground by walkers. No one notices.
  • Violence Is Disturbing:
    • After Madison is forced to kill an infected Principal Art Costas after he tries to attack a student, she goes home and breaks down crying in the bathroom.
    • After Daniel blows a walkers head off with a shotgun, Chris promptly runs outside and throws up, visibly disgusted.
  • Wham Shot: In "Not Fade Away", after being skeptical about the supposed light signals coming from outside the perimeter, Travis decides to try and see them himself. He does, but not before they are replaced by muzzle flashes and sounds of distant gunfire.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?:
    • We never find out what happens to Tobias, who is second only to Daniel as the most savvy character of the show. However, the showrunners have confirmed that Tobias is still alive.
    • The fates of those people taken away by the military, such as Patrick and Doug, are never shown. However, it is heavily implied in "The Good Man" that anyone who was dragged out was killed and cremated, including the deceased Griselda Salazar.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: In the Season 2's "Shiva", Nick decides to split off from the main group (correctly) pointing out that they have a tendency of destroying every safe haven they have come into contact with.
  • While Rome Burns: The commander of the National Guard is more interested in using an abandoned neighborhood street as a driving range than listening to Travis's concerns.
  • Wounded Gazelle Gambit: How a group of hostile survivors are able to board the Abigail in Season 2. One of them is pregnant, so cuts the top of her leg to make it look like she is miscarrying, resulting in the group immediately taking them in. Once aboard, they disarm the group and take control.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: The Salazars' barber shop, which also doubled as their apartment, is looted and destroyed in the riots. The Salazars are also refugees who fled from El Salvador (presumably due to the Salvadoran Civil War).
    • In the Season 2 premiere, the group is forced to flee Los Angeles as it is firebombed by the military.

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