The Season 2 return of AMC’s Fear the Walking Dead begins and ends with the journey of Nick Clark. And that journey is explained, in part, by flashbacks to the very first infected character we met in Fear: Gloria.
Spoiler alert: This article discusses the Season 2 return of AMC’s Fear The Walking Dead. Please proceed with caution if you wish to avoid spoilers.
Many fans of The Walking Dead will be familiar with episodes that focus on just one or two characters, so for the Season 2 return of Fear, Nick’s journey is nothing new. Some fans love the welcome quiet that comes from an episode that breathes life into a previously two dimensional character. For other fans, it is an unwelcome distraction from the action. However, to have Episode 8 of Fear the Walking Dead start and finish with the story of a single character works. After all, in the mid-season finale of Fear, fans saw Nick (Frank Dillane) take a huge risk by branching out by himself into the unknown landscape, a decision — even for Nick — that seemed foolish to say the least. The Season 2 return helps viewers understand Nick’s behavior.
In Episode 8 of Fear the Walking Dead, Nick traverses the barren landscape in his search for a group of people similar in beliefs to those of Celia Flores (Marlene Forte), a woman Nick made a bond with in the first half of Season 2 until she died. Nick feels an affinity with the infected. For the longest time, as a junkie, he has probably felt a kinship to the dead. And now that they literally walk among the living, this connection is understandable.
Some of this reasoning is explained about Nick via flashbacks in Episode 8 of Fear The Walking Dead. And, for fans of Gloria (Lexi Johnson), the very first infected character we got to see in Fear, getting to see her alive is also a welcome treat.
In a flashback, we find out Nick met Gloria while they were both in rehab. During that time, Nick found out that his father has died in an accident, thus ruining any chance he would dry out for a good long time. As Fear‘s showrunner, Dave Erickson, pointed out in an interview with Entertainment Weekly however, the loss of his father is not the catalyst to Nick’s problems.
“The death of his father didn’t make Nick an addict. That’s something that’s in his wiring, but I don’t think he was shooting heroin at that moment. I think he was drinking, he was smoking. He wasn’t necessarily injecting, and I think that loss sort of did push him over the edge. Would he have gotten it together if his dad had stayed alive? Maybe, but I think that is definitely a turning point for him.”
These flashbacks to Nick and his relationship with his parents help the viewer understand that Nick never knew his father — even before he died, and that is likely the root of his problems rather than his father’s actual death.
“From Nick’s perspective it was an accident that his father is gone. I think the bigger challenge is the fact that he didn’t feel like he knew his father before he went, and that’s something he’s been struggling with ever since, which is what he articulates when he talks to Gloria in that first rehab scene.”
During Episode 8 of Fear the Walking Dead, Nick comes across many challenges. He gets beaten by a protective mother, attacked by dogs and nearly dies of thirst. However, by the end of Episode 8, he has found a community similar in beliefs to Celia’s. But, can this community help Nick sort out his problems from the past? Only by tuning into Episode 9 of Fear the Walking Dead will all be revealed. However, according to Frank Dillane, Nick may have found a place to belong in the village of Colonia — if only for a short time — according to an interview he did with AMC.
“Nick has certainly found a safe place for the time being – but this is the zombie apocalypse, obviously! I think we all know what happens to safe places.”
Season 2 of AMC’s Fear the Walking Dead returns Sunday, August 28, with Episode 9 (entitled “Los Muertos”) at 9 p.m. ET.
The official synopsis for Episode 9 of Fear the Walking Dead is below.
“After the fall of the compound, Madison, Strand, and others forge a tenuous path forward. Meanwhile, Nick is recruited for a perilous assignment.”
You can also check out the preview for Episode 9 of Fear The Walking Dead below.
What did you think of the Season 2 return of AMC’s Fear The Walking Dead? Let us know your thoughts and theories by commenting below.
[Photo by Richard Foreman, Jr./AMC]