In the latest Fear the Walking Dead recap, Travis reunites with Madison but he still doesn’t understand the depths of what’s happening and the family gets a visit from an unwelcome neighbor….
By Damon Martin — Editor/Lead Writer
Patience is a virtue.
One of the things I’ve constantly said during the first three episodes of Fear the Walking Dead is to stay patient. Not because the story isn’t evolving fast enough — I’d actually argue that it could slow down even more and I’d be completely satisfied as the minutes ticked away while the world fell apart.
No, I preach patience because of the overwhelming frustration some viewers are likely having while watching the show, knowing that the undead can’t be saved, they can’t be reasoned with and they aren’t just waiting for the best antibiotics on the planet to stop whatever disease is rampaging through their bodies.
It’s tough to watch Travis wrestle with his neighbor after seeing him eat a dog alive and still he’s hesitant to suggest anything other than let’s find a way to save him. It might be even more difficult to see Travis stop his beloved Madison from finally realizing the gravity of this situation and instead talking her down because slamming a ball-peen hammer into a neighbor’s head is murder while the audience screams it’s mercy.
Patience is the key because while virtually everybody watching this show has undoubtedly seen The Walking Dead and already know the ins and outs of the zombie apocalypse, the people occupying this new series are just a few days removed from everyday life where it all seemed so normal. Imagine if you will knowing for certain that the world was flat only to have someone tell you one day that it was round instead.
Belief and certainty are two very tough things to tackle and while people like Daniel Salazar and even Madison are coming to the realization of what’s happening in a hurry, Travis is just too good to believe that people are turning into monsters who would kill him. If watching his neighbor saunter towards him after having half his face blown off by a shotgun didn’t convince Travis that things weren’t normal, maybe getting bitten himself will finally do the job…
With that, let’s recap the latest episode of Fear the Walking Dead titled ‘The Dog’:
Let’s Start a Riot!
Somewhere in downtown Los Angeles, Travis and his ex-wife Liza along with their son Chris are still huddled together in a barber shop owned by Daniel Salazar and his family after taking refuge from the growing mob outside that began to riot after an unarmed homeless man was shot by police, unaware that he was actually infected and trying to bite anyone and everyone in sight.
Chris continues to look out the window to see the riot grow larger and larger, but one set of eyes staring back at him don’t look human and he’s immediately spooked. A few minutes later, the looters make it into the building next door where they presumably set some fires because police injustice naturally means burn down the neighborhood. With the walls getting hotter and no hope that this building will still be standing in the morning, Travis and Daniel decide to open the front door and make a run for his truck, which is parked nearby.
When the door is unlocked, the looters flood into the building but largely ignore the families scurrying away because they are much too busy smashing mirrors and tearing up anything they can get their hands on. Travis, Liza and Chris make a quick getaway but the Salazar’s are quite as fast unfortunately with family matriarch Griselda a little slower than everyone else. In the midst of the run to the truck, a platform is knocked loose and begins to tumble over and just as it crashes to the ground, Griselda’s leg is trapped underneath.
She screams out in pain and Travis stops running long enough to go back to help her. He quickly loads the entire Salazar family into the back of his truck and they make a run for it together.
Griselda’s leg is a bloody mess looking like something out of a horror movie (no pun intended) so Travis decides to drop them off at a hospital before he continues home to Madison and her kids. Unfortunately, the closest hospital has been overrun by the infected while police and rioters are also flooding the same plaza. Travis has seen enough to know Griselda isn’t getting treated in that hospital so he opts to drive them home with him for the night until Daniel can reach out to a cousin, who will pick them up the next day.
As Travis weaves around the streets of Los Angeles, he watches as the usually bright and vibrant city blinks out and fades to black as the electricity grid starts to go down. The blackouts are spreading and the only flicker from around Los Angeles are the fires started as the city of angels begins to burn.
Don’t Pass Go
Back at Madison’s place, she’s doing her best to distract the kids with a family game of Monopoly as Nick and Alicia remember that this was something they used to play with their father before he died. The neighborhood where they live is eerily quiet outside of a few crashes and bangs, which makes the entire scene that much more unnerving. The electricity is flashing on and off, which makes for an even scarier ambience around the house.
A noise continues to tap at the backdoor and Nick finally decides to take a look to see what’s happening. When he opens the curtains, Nick doesn’t find a walker but instead it’s a German Shephard — covered in blood. Nick realizes that the dog isn’t wearing its own blood so where did this come from?
A moment later the dog darts to the front door and begins barking maniacally at whatever is outside. When Madison and the kids get up there they see a neighbor named Peter and he’s staring directly at the house. But it’s not a friendly stare — it’s a ‘you have flesh and I want to eat it’ stare.
Madison and the kids run out the back to another neighbor close by who Nick says own a shotgun. He knows this because he tried to steal it once upon a time.
After wandering through some kind of strange garden labyrinth with the flickering of power going on and off in the house, Nick finds the shotgun and Madison grabs the shells. These two are one second away from trying to look for a YouTube video on how to load the weapon as it’s clear neither one has ever handled a firearm so this gun might end up being more trouble than what it’s worth. As they are rummaging around the house, Alicia watches Peter walk into their house and the dog barking louder than ever at the intruder. The barks turn to growls and the growls turn to a muffled sound of a dog whimpering as Peter finds the flesh he was looking for.
The situation only gets more dire when Madison sees Travis pull up to the house in his truck. She realizes that he has no idea what he’s about to face when he gets inside so she grabs Nick and they make a run for it to get back to the house before Peter has Travis for dinner as well.
It’s Not Peter Anymore
As Madison and Nick race back to the house to save Travis from becoming a man-wich, Alicia runs through the weird garden again to find the shells for the shotgun they left behind.
When Travis makes it to the back of the house, he finds Peter munching down on the poor dog and at that moment the lights flicker back on again and the neighbor from hell realizes there’s fresh meat standing right behind him. Peter lunges at Travis and the two begin to struggle as Madison and Nick make it back to the house.
Travis is trying to reason with Peter, which we all know doesn’t work (remember patience) but thankfully Daniel understands at least on some level what’s happening so he grabs the shotgun and takes off part of the neighbor’s head to stop him. Even with half his face ripped off, Peter keeps coming until Daniel puts the barrel of the shotgun point blank and pulls the trigger and as the blood splatters across the house, Chris quickly exits and begins to vomit.
Next door, Alicia finds the shells but also sees that Susan — the neighbor who lived there — was actually home the entire time but she was already dead. Susan pursues Alicia through the garden-maze and nearly gets her if not for being fleet of foot and making it back to the fence that separates the two houses. Chris grabs Alicia and pulls her back over when she’s trapped on the fence, but all he gets for his trouble is an elbow in the face. Alicia is becoming less and less likable with everything she does.
Susan just stands at the fence trying desperately to reach the flesh on the other side and it’s clear that whoever she was before now is gone and all that’s left is a creature hell bent on biting through whatever she comes in contact with.
As shocked as everyone seems after watching one neighbor get his head blown off and another scratching and clawing against a wooden fence trying to get to them, Nick finally breaks it down in the simplest way possible.
“She’s not sick. She’s dead”
Alicia realizes with her brother’s words that this is the same thing that’s happening to her boyfriend Matt and before long he’ll be clawing at someone else’s door trying to get in.
Madison is ready to get the hell out of Dodge tonight, but with Griselda injured and the streets darkened with who knows what lurking out there right now, Travis convinces her to stay until morning and then they will all pack up and leave.
The Salazars are staying in one of the upstairs bedrooms where Ofelia finally questions her father’s plans after his call to a cousin who will pick them up in the morning. She reminds Daniel that he told her a long time ago that their entire family is dead after they were able to escape El Salvador. Long story short, Daniel doesn’t trust anybody and believes they will be better off alone, far away from this bickering family without a single member with the guts to pull the trigger when the time was right.
Downstairs, Travis and Liza share a heart-to-heart while she gives him some bad news about their new friends, the Salazars.
With Griselda’s leg broken and a piece of the bone sticking through the ankle, it’s only a matter of time before the wound gets infected. That infection will then seep into her blood and then her blood will reach her organs and well it’s pretty clear what happens from there. Travis isn’t ready to give up on her yet just like wasn’t willing to give up on his ex-wife while they were still married and he was convinced she could do anything she wanted. A few years later Liza is almost a nurse but it cost them their marriage as a result.
While Travis buries Peter in the backyard, Madison stops by the kitchen for a quick conversation with Liza as well. She’s not looking to stake her claim to Travis or tell Liza that she needs to get lost. No, Liza has to promise that if Madison ever turns into one of these undead things, she will put her down because doing that would just be too much for Travis’ fragile psyche. Daniel has already called Travis weak and it seems his girlfriend thinks the same.
The next morning as everyone packs the cars and gets ready to leave, Nick is wandering the neighborhood trying to score drugs because his ration of pills just isn’t getting the job done. Meanwhile, Madison stands in the backyard with her hammer cocked just trying to find the gumption to slam it into Susan’s head as the mindless zombie is still standing at that fence trying to claw her way through. Travis sees what’s happening and he runs out to stop her from doing the unthinkable.
What if Susan could be saved?
What is Sudan can be cured?
Killing her, according to Travis, is one act that Madison can never take back and she’ll always regret. Eventually, Madison relinquishes the hammer and returns to the house. The kids get packed into the truck and a car and begin circling out of the house and away from Los Angeles. The Salazars stay behind waiting for this ‘cousin’ to arrive.
Just as Travis turns down one street, Madison looks the other way and sees Patrick — Susan’s husband who has been away on travel — returning home. Madison can’t bear to think that she could just drive away while allowing Patrick to walk right into the jaws of his undead wife. She whips the car around and goes screaming after Patrick as he approaches the house and Susan appears with bloodlust in her eyes.
Patrick is shocked, but Susan is nothing except driven by instinct. She quickly latches onto her husband and he groans in pain but a second later a shot rings out and Susan’s head snaps back, a spurt of blood shoots forward and she falls dead to the ground. As Madison turns around, she finds that the military has arrived and they are cleaning up Los Angeles one block at a time.
Susan was the latest casualty and her husband Patrick would be taken in for observation after he came in close contact with his wife.
Travis tells the military garrison about his family — both extended and otherwise — as the soldiers begin a house by house search. The ones where no infected were found are marked by one kind of paint — those who didn’t survive are marked with another.
A wave of relief washes over Travis because the cavalry has finally arrived and he can finally rest knowing that this bad dream is truly over. Sadly what Travis doesn’t realize is that this is one nightmare he’s never going to wake up from again.
Did anyone else notice the plane flying overhead during one scene as Nick looked up in the sky? Maybe that’s the same plane that will appear in a 30 minute special that will air during The Walking Dead season 6 with a character emerging from the flight and joining Fear the Walking Dead season 2?
Fear the Walking Dead returns with a brand new episode on AMC next Sunday night at 9pm ET. Only three more episodes to go in this freshman season!