AMC’s Fear the Walking Dead
Directed by Michael E. Satrazemis
Written by Ashley Cardiff
* For a recap & review of “The Key,” click here.
* For a recap & review of “Bury Her Next to Jasper’s Leg,” click here.
Dwight and Sherry are enjoying their time together again, especially seeing even the plague couldn’t keep them apart—whether bubonic or zombie! They’re having breakfast for dinner in bed, reading the letters she wrote to him while they were apart. He talks about the man he was, and the man he wanted to be when they reunited. They’re also trying to navigate things with Virginia and her people, checking in every so often to make sure they’re not in trouble. They talk about finding a place they can go where Ginny won’t hunt them down. Is that even possible? We’ve seen that woman’s deadly reach already. But Sherry says she can’t “run away.”
When Sherry leaves the room, she disappears. Dwight’s on high alert, yet he finds himself quickly overcome by people in blank white masks. He comes to somewhere in the sun. More masks. He manages to get one man down, pulling off his mask and grabbing his gun. That doesn’t quite help. There are more people wearing masks and wielding guns, standing around the edges of an empty pool pointing their weapons. Sherry soon comes out of the crowd, pulling off her mask—hers has eye shadow and lipstick, looking eerily like BTK’s mask; it seems like the women generally have these, and that’s kind of silly, giving a shit about gender in the post-zombie apocalypse wasteland. These people are “Virginia‘s outcasts.” Sherry and this group have been working to take Ginny down. Although the others in the group are a little… hostile. They’ve got Al hostage, too. They want to know where to find Virginia, even though Dwight has no clue. Things are going sideways fast when a guy called Rollie (Cory Hart) pulls off his mask and stops things. Remember him? He and Dwight met along the road, and Dwight refused to kill him when he could have easily.
Rollie and their group want to destroy her SWAT truck—they keep calling it a van, but I refuse! It’s a truck! Anyway, Al convinces them it’s better to steal it, not blow up. And so we get one of THE BEST SEQUENCES in The Walking Dead universe so far, as the group Sherry’s with, alongside Al and Dwight, use horses to pull off a Wild West cowboy heist substituting the SWAT vehicle for a train. The guy driving the truck uses its guns, but the horses allow Dwight and the others to get close safely.
Dwight hops off his horse and onto the truck, holding on for dear life while the driver swerves to shake him off. He hangs on long enough to inside, but then it’s a brutal fight with the driver. He kicks the guy out and gets the vehicle stopped, then the others on horseback turn up. The guy nearly gets away, having seen Dwight’s face. Luckily, cowboy Morgan is in town and he’s lassoed the fleeing man for his friend.
Al, Dwight, and Morgan catch up on things. Morgan asks them about Grace, but they know nothing about her; he’s convinced they’ll find her, and the rest of the friends, once more. Meanwhile, the masked group have one of Ginny’s men as their hostage now. They’re still pretty hospitable towards Dwight and Morgan, as well as Al, considering all they did for the group. Morgan tells all the rest about a place he found, somewhere Virginia cannot reach them. The group don’t want to run, they want to destroy and kill her. Morgan’s “all life is precious” comes up against the group’s insistence on destruction. He worries about his friends and other innocent people who could be caught in the crossfire. He begs them not to do anything drastic until he can be sure his place is ready for people.
This puts conflict in Dwight’s way. He trusts Morgan, and he owes a lot to him, too. Sherry’s more concerned with killing Virginia. Both sides have benefits, though I can certainly understand Sherry/her group: Virginia is, effectively, a fascist, a dictator, and there’s nobody safe out there while she and her people are holding so much power. Easy to want to run off, to go somewhere Ginny can’t reach. More effective in the long run, for the benefit of all, to rid the world of someone like her.
Dwight, Rollie, and Sherry ask the hostage driver where Virginia will be going next. The man says he doesn’t know. So they toss a load of blood and guts on him, then they call in the angry dog as pressure. The guy gets mouthy until Dwight pulls off his mask, getting more serious. He continues to talk shit, and the dog’s snarling in his face. It all comes to a boil when Morgan interrupts, disturbed by how things are unfolding. He’s also mad, he doesn’t want them to move on Virginia yet. He and Dwight have a private argument, the latter unsure of these new promises Morgan’s making about a supposed safe place. He doesn’t think anything will change unless Virginia’s dead. He’s been through similar terrors with Negan and obviously doesn’t want to go back. And so he calls back to Lawton, beginning a plot to hopefully ambush Ginny.
“We all want our own lives
under our own rules”
While Dwight and the rest are plotting, Morgan and Al are preparing to steal the SWAT vehicle. The three of them end up in an argument soon enough. Al and Morgan try to convince him of their ways, only to be ambushed by the group holding guns on them. This forces the pair to stand down. What a mess! Everything gets messier when Sherry decides to force Dwight into captivity with Al and Morgan, believing she’s preventing him from becoming who he once was when he was a Savior. Goddamn, man. You can already tell this plan’s going to backfire seriously.
Sherry and the group ready themselves for Ginny’s arrival. Dwight gets himself free, sneaking back to his wife. He wants to save her from making an irreparable decision. But, also, Virginia hasn’t come along for the ride, anyway. That ruins the big plan. Dwight urges Sherry that killing these people now will just put a whole lot of others in jeopardy. And thus Ginny’s people leave with Sherry deciding not to pull the trigger. When it’s over Sherry blames Dwight for making the decision hard. Later, they talk. The trauma of Negan and what it did to them and their lives still lingers; it’ll never quite go away, either. Their conversation devolves until Sherry tells Dwight to leave.
Dwight, Morgan, and Al talk about what’s next. The other two assure Dwight he and and Sherry will be okay. Right now, Dwight’s got to cover for Al with Ginny. That means making a corpse to stand in for her to leave behind, then Al and Morgan hit the road together. The trio get going again, meeting up with the people Al and Dwight met at the plague-ridden building. This will be part of the new population where Morgan’s building up a new community. Dwight’s back to leaving symbols for Sherry, resting his hopes on fate.
One of my favourite episodes of this season. Hopeful, but also with tragic stuff going on surrounding Dwight and Sherry’s relationship. Lots of exciting things happening. Love to see more groups, and not necessarily always more villainous groups. Adds lots of complexity to the show’s internal universe, giving us a variety of characters, as well as more diversity among them.