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TV Review: ‘Fear The Walking Dead’ Season 2 Finale
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Fear the Walking Dead, Season 2, Episode 14 review Season 2 finale

Fear the Walking Dead
Season 2, Episode 14 “Wrath”
Directed by Stefan Schwartz
Written by Kate Barnow
Season 2, Episode 15 “North” (Season 2 Finale)
Directed by Andrew Bernstein
Written by Dave Erickson
Starring Kim Dickens, Cliff Curtis, Frank Dillane, Alycia Debnam-Carey, Lorenzo James Henrie, Mercedes Mason, Colman Domingo, Danay Garcia
AMC
Air Date: Sunday, October 2, 2016, 9pm

Spoilers for Fear the Walking Dead…

This Sunday brought the conclusion of Season 2 of Fear the Walking Dead, with back-to-back episodes, 2.14 “Wrath” and 2.15 “North.” Until now, we’d seen Travis separated from his son, Chris, who had decided to head back to California from Mexico with his new besties, the U.S. frat boy “Bros” Brandon and Derek. He then went on to miraculously reunited with his fiancee Madison, who had found safe haven with her daughter Alicia at a Mexican hotel, where they created a community with the existing occupants. Ofelia, who left the hotel without a trance, is making her way back to the United States in hopes of finding her boyfriend. Meanwhile, the safety over at the Colonia was compromised, and Nick warns his love interest Luciana and their leader Alejandro that the Warehouse gang controlled by Marco is likely planning an attack.

The two-part Season 2 finale begins with Ofelia, who’s still making her way back to the United States. Her car overheats, and she’s forced to kick some walker ass on the road. (Her ability to fight the undead in an entertaining way is something the show is really pushing.) Abandoning the vehicle, the determined woman continues on foot until she comes to a U.S. border fence, which has been cut into. Soon after she steps onto the U.S. side, she’s dodging bullets. I guess there’s still some home-grown border patrollers out there. She hides behind a tree and attempts to attack the gunman with her knife as he approaches her, but she’s too slow. The gun man calls her “senorita” as he disarms her. When he steps out of the shadow of the tree, we see it’s man is played by Dayton Callie, best known recently for his long-time role as Wayne Unser on FX’s Sons Of Anarchy (he was also Charlie Utter on HBO’s Deadwood). “Welcome to America,” he tells her.

At the Colonia in Tijuana, Nick sneaks out with Reynaldo to make the scheduled trade (drugs for water) with gangster Marco at the Warehouse. When they get there Marco tells them to screw off — he doesn’t need their drugs, since he’s made a deal with a rival gang that already controls the drugs in the area. Marco gets the drugs, and the rival gang shares his new “fortress” with them — that fortress being the Colonia. Marco reveals that he knows how Nick and his people get in and out, and how they use the infected as a protective army around the please. He warns Nick to leave the Colonia that same day or die. Before Nick departs, Marco shows him the bodies Francisco, his wife Ana, and their young daughter, who had been abducted by the gang when they were trying to flee the Colonia in a previous episode.

When Nick returns to the Colonia, Luciana is angered at what he’s done. He tells her, “I’m sorry I snuck away, but I’ll never lie to you.” He passes along Marco’s warning, and tries to persuade Luciana to leave with him, and for Alejandro to gather the community together to evacuate. But neither will leave. They have their faith that they are immune from death and that they are the chosen ones. Nick knows this is untrue. Nearby, one of the infirmary patients quietly dies, and then turns and starts attacking them. Nick and Luciana come out unscathed, but Alejandro is bitten, as are another male patient and a female nurse.

Later, we see the bitten male patient and female nurse going to the school bus to meet their death with the infected, where they will help guard the Colonia in undead form. While Alejandro sees them off, he does not go with them. This is because he is believed to have already once survived a bite from an Infected. It’s this miracle that keeps the people hoping and believing. It’s also what is keeping Luciana at the Colonia and why her faith is so strong. But Nick wants to make her see the truth, and to help save the people from Marco’s imminent attack, when they will all surely die.

Frustrated with Luciana’s insistence on staying, Nick pushed Alejandro to tell her the truth about his former injury: He was never actually bit by a walker; the bit came from the human boy who he had been trying to save. Luciana only thought she saw him bitten by an Infected, and seeing how it brought hope to her and their people, he never sought to correct anyone. He let them continuing believing the fairy tale, and then preached about how they were the chosen ones, in order to keep them at the Colonia to protect them. Luciana, of course, is devastated and angered by this betrayal. Alejandro is now dead to her, and she lets the dead go. Alejandro, who felt like Luciana was like a daughter to him, leaves them. Amazingly, Luciana still won’t leave! The Colonia is her home and the people are her family; she will not leave them and she will not have them abandon the home they’ve built. Her faith will keep her alive. Of course, this is preposterous to Nick, who knows that Marco will slaughter them all. They all must leave. Nick has to find a way to convince her.

The Colonia story continues in the finale episode, 2.15, so for now, let’s turn out attention to Madison and Travis over at the hotel. In their hotel room, Madison tries to console Travis, who is blaming himself for losing his son Chris to the Bros., and for failing to keep his son safe, which was a promise he made to Chris’s mother Liza, his ex-wife. Madison tries to explain that this is a new world, and that Travis protected Chris as best he could under the circumstances, and that his son is probably better off being with people who understand him. But as for Travis, Madison says he belongs there with her, with civilized people who can build a community together.

Later, Alicia comes to see Travis, and he apologizes for not keeping her safe from Chris and for not believing her when she tries to warn him about his son. She in turns is sorry for pushes her stepbrother-to-be away. “He’s sick,” Travis tearfully says about his teenaged son, exonerating Alicia of any wrongdoing.

Meanwhile, Madison is downstairs at the makeshift infirmary where the original hotel residents are tending to the sick and injured refugees that arrived at the end of the previous episode (after Madison turned on the bright red hotel sign, sending out a beacon meant for Nick that instead brought in everyone else in the surrounding area, including Travis). There, she sees two young men who turn out to be Brandon — who now has a dislocated shoulder — and Derek, the American frat bros. From their story, she gathers that these are the guys that Chris had left with. They tell her that they were on their way back to the U.S. when the person driving their car crashed it. That’s how Brandon got injured. But what about the driver? They say he was a 16-year-old who they didn’t know didn’t have a license, and that he died in the crash. Madison knows that has to be Chris, but how to tell Travis?

Instead of doing directly to Travis, Madison goes instead to her friend and confidante Victor Strand. Does she tell Travis is son is dead, or does she keep it from him in order to keep his hope alive? She decides to keep the news from Travis, claiming it will “kill him,” and instead has the bros exiled. But Travis hears the commotion and recognizes Brandon and Derek in the crowd. He runs to them asking about Chris’s whereabouts. There goes the secret exile plan. They bring the two young men into a room, where Travis interrogates them. They claim that Chris must have fallen asleep at the wheel, causing the crash, and that the teenager died after he went through the windshield. Something about their story is irksome to Travis, so he pushes some more until they confess. We see in a flashback sequence that the inexperienced driver fell asleep at the wheel, and crashed the pick-up truck, causing it to overturn many times. Injured behind the wheel, Chris crawled out of the vehicle onto the road, where Brandon and Derek, who have a policy to eliminate any dead weight, shot him in the head, killing the boy.

This, expectedly, sends Travis into a blind rage. Travis locks out Madison and the others from the room, and knocks out Oscar when he gets in the way of him beating the living shit out of Brandon and Derek. The injured Brandon doesn’t have a chance, but Derek gets in a few hits, but in the end, Travis beats them to death, all while the others scream to him to open the door, and Madison implores him to stop. Can’t say I blame Travis for what he did, but what he doesn’t know is that the hotel has rules against violence — rules that were decreed by Madison herself. Once they get the door open, Madison tries to get to Travis, but the others apprehend him first, and even though she pleads for her fiance, they go and lock in up as is now protocol. Next up for Travis: exile, but Madison can’t let them just turn him out. She pleads with Elena not to turn him out, but Hector is enraged and wants to kick Travis out right away. Alicia tells Madison the only thing they can do is all leave together — it’s the only way. Madison convinces Elena to let all three of them leave in the morning. Travis, now a murderer, wants Madison to understand who the man is that he’s become, but she says she already understands, and that she too has killed for her children. She reveals to him that she locked Celia in with her dead to protect Nick. So, she can understand why Travis did what he did, and that he’d likely have to do it again, and so will she. And she can face what’s out there and what needs to be done if he’s with her. “I’m here,” he tells her, and they hug. Well, looks like they’re relationship is back on track at least.

But there’s the catch, poor Oscar is still unconscious and his brother, the doctor Andres, is trying to elevate the swelling on his brain. It’s not looking good. After a while, Oscar passes away and a distraught Andres confronts Travis, wanting to kill him on the spot, and Hector is happy to help. With a gun held to his head, Travis asks that they take him outside so that Madison and Alicia don’t have to witness his death, but then Alicia steps in and knifes Andres, who she had been close to and acted as a nurse to in his infirmary. “Sorry,” she mournfully tells him, but she had to do it to save Travis — he’s her family. Before anyone can retaliate, Strand bursts in with a gun and gets the room cleared so that Madison, Travis, and Alicia can grab their things and make a run for it now! Madison tells Strand to come with them, especially since he’s now been shown to be on their side, but he refuses. He stays behind and hands his gun to Madison. It’s clear he’s going to stay behind to buy them some time to make a getaway.

Back at the Colonia, Nick must find a way to get Luciana to leave and get the people evacuated, but his new girlfriend has other plans. She wants to allay the people’s fears, so she cleans Alejandro up and makes him presentable so that he doesn’t look like he’s at death’s door, even though he certainly is. And then she sends him out to preach to the people to keep their faith. While Nick packs up to leave, Luciana tells him he should “run” like he always does, but that “Were gonna meet our fate.” Once he’s outside the compound, Nick hears the sounds of a helicopter overhead, and sees it in the sky through his binoculars. Now this changes things!

That night, Nick returns to the Colonia, where he goes right to Alejandro, who’s getting sicker by the minute. He tells of the chopper, which had landed down at a refugee camp not far from there to the north across the U.S.-Mexico border. As he helps the infect man get his painkillers chopped and freebased for an injection, Nick explains to him that he must tell Luciana to go, otherwise she’s never go. He says that Alejandro’s life is already over, but he can still be of help and save his people. Alejandro warns that with leadership comes a heavy weight, but Nick asserts that he and Luciana can handle it. As Alejandro passes out from the painkillers, Nick assures him that he will die a beautiful death.

The next morning, Marco and his men arrive to the Colonia, ready to slaughter is occupants and overtake the residence for themselves, but the place is empty. In their excitement at “winning,” the men shoot their machine guns into the air. (Listen, I don’t give a shit how fucking happy you are, why would you waste ammo like that and draw attention to your location?!!? Stupid assholes, they’ll get theirs.) Little do they know that the nearly dead Alejandro has commandeered the school bus that separates the army of the dead from the Colonia. With his last own of strength, the former leader buys time for his flock’s escape and gets revenge on their enemies by crashing through the gate, allowing all the infected to invade the Colonia. Marco and his men, even with machine guns, are quickly overcome. Take that, assholes! Meanwhile, outside the gates, Nick and Luciana lead their people North to safety.

Later that day, Travis, Madison, and Alicia arrive to Marco’s warehouse to look for clues of Nick’s whereabouts. Madison had gone there previously with Elena to make a trade, and had seen Francisco and Ana being interrogated about the location of their Colonia. Madison had also learned that an American boy with stringy hair had been there, and she pieced together that Nick must have settled at this Colonia. Upon their arrival, they find that the warehouse, which had previously housed around 100 people, had been completely abandon, except for the dead bodies of Francisco and Ana, and their little daughter. They rifle through the dead family’s pockets and find an address. (My two cents — these people have been interrogated for how long, and no one searched their pockets?)

Madison, Travis, and Alicia go to the address, and come upon the moat of the infected that surrounds the Colonia. She scans the faces for Nick, but he’s not there. We see that Marco and his men have now joined the army, while the Colonia is abandoned. Alicia, ever the nurse, finds the dying Alejandro on the school bus, and tends to him. Madison asks the man about Nick. When he sees her, he calls her in Spanish “ángel.” He asks if she’s Nick’s madre. Yes, she is. With his last breath, Alejandro says “border” and “He saw something.”

And to the border is where Nick and his group are headed. We see them make it to the U.S-Mexico border checkpoint, and Nick tells Luciana that they’re only a few hours away from the U.S. refugee camp, as he can see the helicopter through his binoculars. It seems like they will soon find salvation once more. But just then, men with machine guns appear and start shooting, one hitting Luciana. The Colonia people with guns engage in a shootout, while the weaponless run screaming for their lives. Nick tries to help Luciana up, but they are knocked down by two of the gun-toters. As the couple is detained and kicked down by their captures, we see Madison back on the bus with a knife getting ready to put it through Alejandro’s brain so that he won’t turn. The episode ends on Madison holding a bloodied knife.

Photos

Video

Fear the Walking Dead: Next on: ‘Wrath’ Episode 214


Next on Fear The Walking Dead on AMC.

[Photo Credit: Peter Iovino/AMC. Used with permission.]

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