[TV] Fear the Walking Dead Season 4 (caution spoilers)

rittchard
rittchard
The second half of "Survival Sunday" gave us an enjoyable FTWD season 4 premiere. Oddly, it felt more like the beginning of a completely new Walking Dead spinoff. In some ways, this is feeling more like the show they perhaps should have made. The catch is they still wanted to preserve the elements they did like from the show, so we are getting an odd hybrid. Far too early to say whether it's going to pan out, but from what I've seen so far it looks like there's a good shot this is going to be a fun show, even surpassing the original.

I'm guessing this was originally planned as a 2-hour premiere, because otherwise it felt a little disrespectful to the FTWD cast, who essentially are just a cameo twist this hour. Instead, we get a ton of Morgan time, including scenes featuring 3 guest appearances from TWD. I suppose this was in lieu of having any farewell scenes with the rest of the cast. But as enjoyable as it was, it felt misplaced to me in a show that has had its own story and cast for 3 years. I suspect there are growing numbers of fans who only watch Fear, and the writers should really own and respect that. Again, the result really felt to me like a completely different show, like the intent was to spin off Morgan onto his own show as opposed to join an existing one.

We also get introduced to two new characters, both of whom are immediately more appealing than any of the original FTWD cast. Maggie Grace from Lost has shed her whiny teen persona and beautiful blonde hair to become a badass dark haired reporter driving a tank filled with automatic weapons and using some sweet little ninja blades for melee. Who isn't going to like that? Then Garret Dillahunt, another genre fan favorite, plays an immediately endearing cowboy-esque character with a six shooter and a cool outfit (but with implications he used to work in a movie theater). While we normally mistrust everyone we meet in these shows, both of these characters seem to just jump right into your living room and make you feel attached. It's a great achievement because in the past the only time that's happened (for me) was with pre-established comic characters like Michonne, Aaron and Jesus. I guess the casting familiarity helps a lot, but the writing did as well.

So Morgan, who was never really a favorite for me, particularly with his back and forth on kill or don't (I guess we've swung back to not killing), joins up with these 2 and it ends up making for a cool new group. Morgan's annoying features are less pronounced here so even he feels more appealing to me. And then boom, in the last minute they dump the old cast on us like cold water lol. I guess it was a surprisingly effective conclusion, and I certainly look forward to seeing how they bring the story there. I expect next week to effectively be the opposite of this one, focusing completely on the old cast and how it got to this point (which again I really would have preferred as the second hour to last night's opener).

Here's hoping for a fantastic season, I am cautiously optimistic.

Comments

  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    Are you guys watching Fear? If not I won't continue this thread.

    Assuming you are, I'll continue from last week's post. It definitely felt to me like this was at some point designed to be part of a 2 hour premiere. It did justice to the original characters and also introduced the final new character, so it would have made complete sense to have it bookend the premiere.

    It's an interesting setup, and thus far it works for me. This ep was like a flashback with flashbacks within the flashback. It's hard to tell exactly when the "present" is, because they intentionally are vague with the time. But if you follow the info that's out there, it should be roughly 2 years total from the original outbreak. Yesterday they mentioned a year anniversary in the stadium, so that leaves an interesting gap between the end of last season and where they ended up. And yet another gap/mystery as to how they ended up seemingly losing everything (including Madison) to (probably) the new bad guys, the Vultures.

    Madison's new attitude is interesting, as it's almost like the Rick that Carl envisioned, one who wants to give people a chance and not just kill or be killed. One that is working for a better future/tomorrow. But of course this is TWD so trust is obviously taken advantage of, unless you are a semi-famous actor with some "cred." If you are a cute little girl, though, people like me are immediately suspicious and guessing you are a spy (then again I also thought Enid was a spy).

    I think the Vultures make for an interesting (at least different) "adversary," though I can't help but think our heroes could/should easily just snipe them away and kill the rest. Maybe that's the point, though, that they feel the need to find a "better way." I guess it's too soon to tell if the Vultures are actually impeding them from doing things and screwing stuff up for them (like why are they collecting zombies?), or if they are really just flat out waiting for them to die. If it's the latter, they really haven't done anything except act like douches. If it's the former, it seems like they would be pretty easy to kill. So I'm not sure where the writers want to go with this. But killer Alicia was badass enough on her own last year, and now they are getting a bunch of additional badasses PLUS Morgan. To fight a pretty boy, a clown on a bike and some hippies? Doesn't seem like a fair fight.

    Anyway, still looking good so far!
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    Are you guys watching Fear? If not I won't continue this thread.

    Assuming you are, I'll continue from last week's post. It definitely felt to me like this was at some point designed to be part of a 2 hour premiere. It did justice to the original characters and also introduced the final new character, so it would have made complete sense to have it bookend the premiere.

    It's an interesting setup, and thus far it works for me. This ep was like a flashback with flashbacks within the flashback. It's hard to tell exactly when the "present" is, because they intentionally are vague with the time. But if you follow the info that's out there, it should be roughly 2 years total from the original outbreak. Yesterday they mentioned a year anniversary in the stadium, so that leaves an interesting gap between the end of last season and where they ended up. And yet another gap/mystery as to how they ended up seemingly losing everything (including Madison) to (probably) the new bad guys, the Vultures.

    Madison's new attitude is interesting, as it's almost like the Rick that Carl envisioned, one who wants to give people a chance and not just kill or be killed. One that is working for a better future/tomorrow. But of course this is TWD so trust is obviously taken advantage of, unless you are a semi-famous actor with some "cred." If you are a cute little girl, though, people like me are immediately suspicious and guessing you are a spy (then again I also thought Enid was a spy).

    I think the Vultures make for an interesting (at least different) "adversary," though I can't help but think our heroes could/should easily just snipe them away and kill the rest. Maybe that's the point, though, that they feel the need to find a "better way." I guess it's too soon to tell if the Vultures are actually impeding them from doing things and screwing stuff up for them (like why are they collecting zombies?), or if they are really just flat out waiting for them to die. If it's the latter, they really haven't done anything except act like douches. If it's the former, it seems like they would be pretty easy to kill. So I'm not sure where the writers want to go with this. But killer Alicia was badass enough on her own last year, and now they are getting a bunch of additional badasses PLUS Morgan. To fight a pretty boy, a clown on a bike and some hippies? Doesn't seem like a fair fight.

    Anyway, still looking good so far!
  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    I'm watching but I have not seen last night's episode yet. I'll check back in once I do.

    Based on the first episode, which was more of a bridge for Morgan to transition to this show, I did like it. Only thing that bugged me was how stupid Morgan, the reporter and the Dory were at the end stopping the armored truck to help a single woman on the road by herself. None of them were smart enough to see a setup that far away?
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    Caution: spoilers for last night's episode (maybe not needed but just in case thought I'd throw in a reminder/spacer)

    So.... what seemed like just a "normal" follow up episode in the series turned into something more by the final moments. I'm still processing a bit, as it definitely caught me by surprise in a way that neither show has in quite a while.

    Most of the ep is quite enjoyable in a generic sort of way. We finally get some fun interaction of the new and old cast, and in spite of all the posturing, soon enough they are (more or less) working together.

    The flashback story continues on with Madison and Nick going out for a food run and being dogged by the annoying bike dude (who is the Vulture leader brother I guess, though it hasn't been explicitly said on the show) and traitor girl. Nothing too thrilling here, or so it seemed.

    Morgan and Nick get to revisit some plot points from TWD about killing or not just before they run into that same duo, leading to the disastrous conclusion. In some ways I really liked what they did, because just as I was starting to get annoyed by what I thought was going to be a rehash of Morgan's kill/no story, and just when you think it's going down the predictable path of Nick learning lessons from Morgan and the Art of Peace, boom! They go and off one of the few remaining original characters in a fairly shocking way (death by cute traitor girl). Now I've wanted Nick to die pretty much from episode 1, but now that it happened, I really feel kind of bad. I also wonder what led him to being so hell bent on killing the brother dude - did he kill Madison already? She and Dharma are oddly missing from the group, and I don't think Nick would care that much if he had offed Dharma.

    I guess I'm ultimately just bummed about it. With so few originals, it didn't occur to me they'd kill one (or maybe two???) off so soon in the season. Given the format, I guess he'll still be a big part of the show in the flashbacks so it's not too bad, but it does suck that he won't get any further interaction with Shannon or cowboy or Morgan. I was looking forward to that.

    So kudos to the writers for keeping us on our toes. But poopoos on them for doing it at the expense of some good potential storylines.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    Okay, I caught up with last week's episode and then watched last night's. I hate to say that I am not liking this season at all. It reminds me a bit of season two of Walking Dead where they hung out at Herschel's farm doing nothing for the entire season. Clearly, this season has Scott Gimple's fingerprints all over it and I really dislike his vision of Walking Dead. The last two episodes of Fear have used the tired cliche from the original show of frequent flashbacks and over wrought melodrama. Ugh. I am so tired of flashback sequences. Clearly something catastrophic happened at the baseball stadium that forced everyone to scatter, with no sign of Madison either. So it's a slow grind backtracking the events via flashbacks to spell out the events.

    Two specific things I really dislike:
    1. The character they killed off was one that really should not have been killed. He was up to now one of the more interesting and complex characters from either show and to randomly kill him was such as waste.
    2. The rival group, the Vultures, are about the least menacing adversary you could ever see, which means there is absolutely no tension at all. I guess killing the main character they did last week was supposed to give our group the motivation to go after them but I don't buy it at all.

    Such as shame. The show had so much potential but now that Gimple and Nicotero seem to be getting more involved, it's going to get stale quickly, just like the original show.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    I dunno, I kind of liked last night's ep. I realize it's not as plot forward driven as many people prefer, but personally I enjoy seeing how the pieces of the puzzle fall into place while getting tidbits of the main plot going (I guess it should have been obvious but I was genuinely surprised at the double Dharma reveal; I am skeptical that she's really dead, though). Of course I was a fan of Lost through thick and thin so I am pretty tolerant of this kind of slow-boil, small reveal, writing.

    On last week's Talking, they tell us that the actor playing Nick had asked out of the show last year. The question is why not just let him die in the dam explosion, which would have been a more dramatic and perhaps fitting death. Plus the way they've drawn up this season, it seems like the actor still needs to be in the majority of episodes in the flashbacks to get him to the point where he has gone psycho killer. They try to explain it like he was upset about losing the spy girl, but that really doesn't cut it given they spent all of two weeks together. Much more plausible is that they killed Madison (and maybe Dharma) in some gruesome way, and he's lost it because of that. But it's hard to imagine they'd lose their two biggest name actresses, unless my other theory that Morgan's salary was too expensive is true lol.

    I'm actually very interested/curious to see how they play this out, especially given how lame the Vulture weenies (pun intended) appear to be. It's hard to imagine a scenario created by the weenies that would make them all seem so desperate. Aside from that, I also really like the Cowboy and Lost what's her face, so I'm kind of fine with them taking over the show in the long run. I've never been a big Morgan fan, but I like him better with this group so far. It just seems like a slap in the face to the show's original fans if they kill both Nick and Madison this season.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    Pretty much a stand-alone story, last night was either something you love or hate, depending on what you like in your Walking Dead universe episodes. Personally I loved it.
    This one featured Cowboy and Dharma's backstory in a wonderful, romantic yet action packed ep. Garret Dillahunt has really created an instantly adorable character. He's like Rick 2.0, only remade as a sweet but sexy gunslinger. You can't help but root for him, and after watching that episode, I can't imagine the writers would really kill Dharma off before they are allowed to reunite. If so, they are mean-spirited jerks lol.

    Unfortunately for viewers who are more plot-oriented, the main storyline and almost all of the other characters get basically no movement. Again, like Lost, this is a character-focused style you either like or hate.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    Ooops sorry about the crazy multi-posts! I guess I REALLY loved that episode!!!!
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    OK.... so wow. The season's really ramping up as it heads to the mid-season break. Last week's beautiful little love story was perfectly timed to get you more invested in Dharma before this week's "reveals". Not only did she help bring about the deaths of an entire community (though I have to say if just a single internal zombie cascade took everyone out, they probably would never have made it long), but she also seems to have joined up with the Vulture gang? WTF? And where the f is Madison? The actress a few weeks ago alluded to the season being kind of a mystery, and I think this is what she was referring to. Clearly they are hiding her fate in the present a secret, and based on all the "clues" it seems like she might have been killed by the brother vulture that Nick killed. Still it could all be a misdirection, in which case they will need a really good backstory to justify everything else that's happened.

    I'm definitely liking this season - but then again I never really liked the original core cast much anyway, so it's almost like a completely new/different show now. In some ways it feels more like a second spinoff than it does a new season of Fear.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    I haven't seen the latest episode yet, but I at least wanted to say that I really liked the "love story" episode from last week. Garrett Dillahunt has got to be one of the most underrated actors ever. The character of John Dorie is just really well written and is the best thing about this season so far.

    If they had the balls to kill off Madison this season, wow would that be a radical shift for the series. The entire family unit would be left with the daughter Alicia and a couple of secondary characters. Speaking of which, did Reuben Blades' character die last season? I don't even remember.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    This season continues to be pretty enjoyable for me. I never could have predicted they might essentially turn half the cast against each other. I mean seriously, they could have all killed each other last night lol. What the heck???? And the build up for the final sequence was really cool. The craziness has made for some great dramatic sequences, but you really can't spend too much time thinking about it or you will find much of it completely unreasonable.

    The Vultures concept is still rather odd and hard to accept. I think the writers want their perspective to come across as reasonable, but they don't seem to be offering any sort of viable alternative. I guess it's to join their vulturing ways, but they don't really make much of a case for it being better than having a home base to protect. And on top of that, they somehow have the resources to keep thousands of walkers in check?

    I'm really hoping they (more or less) tie up this portion of the season next week and proceed to something new/different for the back half. But to get everything to that point would mean a lot of huge story reveals next week, so hard to say if they will go that route or try to milk it longer.

  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member edited June 11
    rittchard wrote: »
    I'm really hoping they (more or less) tie up this portion of the season next week and proceed to something new/different for the back half. But to get everything to that point would mean a lot of huge story reveals next week, so hard to say if they will go that route or try to milk it longer.

    (Warning: I know the main thread already says spoilers but I will just repeat I am not using spoiler tags for spoilerish info.)

    An intriguing mid-season finale that really (more or less) completes the re-defining of this show, for better or worse. Pretty much what I've talked about in my comments has, to my surprise, more or less come to pass. They finally confirmed (more or less) what's been teased all season, that Madison's death was the trigger that turned the original Fear cast to the dark side.

    (Side note: one major disadvantage in today's world is writers/actors are faced with an odd dilemma in these situations. The way the episode was filmed, it appeared Madison died for certain, but they don't actually show her in flames or head chopped off or even bit. In the old days this would leave plenty of room for speculation and fun trying to come up with how she might have survived. But in today's world, the actress has already tweeted "confirmation" that she has left the show. This is not to say they couldn't always find a way to reverse it, but pretty much it closes the door in a way that's more final than it should be.)

    Back to the episode. I liked a lot of the things they did, particularly the bookend with Madison meeting Al and getting to tell her story. It's interesting the way they play with the timelines and flashbacks so you're never really 100% sure what/when you are viewing until and unless they choose to reveal more. There's still a pretty significant chunk of time missing between last season's finale and when Madison meets Al and eventually finds the rest of the cast. Hard to say whether they will bother showing us more of that or not. Anyway, Nick going psycho on the vulture who let loose all the zombies was clearly well justified after seeing what went down in the stadium. What's not so justified is the little bitch shooting Nick knowing her evil "uncle" had caused the death of everyone in the stadium who took her in. Also the entire crew's overreaction to Dharma, who as far as I can tell just tried to escape and live. I guess it looked like a betrayal but she didn't do anything that specific that she should be hunted down. And crazy Alicia almost killing Al (who oddly just seems to shrug it off when people almost kill her) by sticking her head in the middle of all the zombies seemed totally egregious (though really cool to watch). Then there's the other two, who just seem to be drones and shooting at whoever Alicia tells them to. A lot of it is pretty nonsensical and inconsistent. But... the important thing is John Dorie survived (I swear if they killed him I'd quit the show) and reunited with Dharma. Morgan got some nice moments talking down Psycho Alicia. Al's stupid movies finally served a semi-useful purpose in tying the stories together.

    I'm not thrilled with losing Madison, as I really liked her interaction with Victor, which formed one of the major backbones of the show. I also felt like there was more they could have mined between her and Alicia, and I would have really enjoyed seeing her clash (or not) with Morgan and John. But the good thing is it leaves a gap in leadership, so that should be something interesting to see as to who fills that role in the future. As I said before, this show now really becomes more of a second spinoff to TWD that just happens to have a couple of characters from Fear. It's an interesting mix, particularly adding that little bitch Charlie, and the fact that half the cast has actively tried to kill the other half.


    TLDR: a cool episode brought down by some poor plot points and the loss of the show's original star looks like it may reboot the show into something significantly different going forward

  • Blackjack
    Blackjack
    GT Member edited June 17
    I really warmed up to the sort of 'soft reset' of this show this season and enjoy the new characters.

    I'm not crazy about losing Madison but I did appreciate the way the writers gave her a strong, heroic sendoff to her character, going out on her terms <3 ; as opposed to, ya know, having her skull sausage-meated by Negan's bat. :p

    The actress was on Talking Dead after the episode, and you could tell both that she appreciated the way her character's end was handled, but also that she loved doing the show and the different directions it was heading and had no desire to leave the show.

    I realize it's just the way Kirkman's comics work but the whole "characters can't grow and the show can't move unless someone fans like dies on a regular basis" still to me is ultimately going to grind down any show into characters long-time fans don't know and don't care about. I hope Fear doesn't get carried away with the Grim Reaper aspect of it all.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    I am very skeptical about the way characters are killed off. The producers always give us the standard "whatever moves the story" line but I think half the time it's bullshit. I suspect behind the scenes it's a much different story, and probably very different in each case, more than likely involving contracts and negotiations more than anything else. I find it really difficult to believe they decided to kill both Nick AND Madison at essentially the same time. They already said the actor who played Nick had asked off. As much as I like Kim Dickens, I can't believe she was unaware of what was going on. They added two semi-famous blond actresses into the cast, so that was pretty much an obvious sign. The question is whether it was some sort of power play from the producers or just hedging their bets because they didn't know if she would stay. I guess it doesn't matter in the end, but I do hope that longer term the producers don't keep messing with the cast and killing characters off just because they can. I'm still bitter about Carl and I still say that was a mistake, likely also some sort of contract issue (possibly with his dad).

    On a side note, did you hear about Chris Hardwick? I guess his ex accused him of abuse so he is getting cut out of a bunch of stuff. Don't know if he'll be returning to Talking Dead or not now, which is really a shame. He seems like such a sweet guy, it's really hard to believe what he was accused of but I guess you never know.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    I don't think it's random coincidence that the wild and radical departure this season has taken, along with the dynamic in the way characters are killed off, happened when Scott Gimple took over as series producer. He's been terrible for the evolution and direction of Walking Dead. The real test is how the original series plays out since Gimple is no longer primary producer of that show.

    The stuff about Hardwick is sad. He does seem like a nice guy but sometimes the public persona is very different from the private person. His ex, Chloe Dykstra equally seems like a sweet person and very down to earth, from the shows I've seen her on (Heroes of Cosplay on the the SyFy channel for example). It's kind of telling in Hardwick's published response that he didn't come out and deny her claims and even turned it around by accusing her of cheating on him.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member edited June 19
    The stuff about Hardwick is sad. He does seem like a nice guy but sometimes the public persona is very different from the private person. His ex, Chloe Dykstra equally seems like a sweet person and very down to earth, from the shows I've seen her on (Heroes of Cosplay on the the SyFy channel for example). It's kind of telling in Hardwick's published response that he didn't come out and deny her claims and even turned it around by accusing her of cheating on him.

    Yeah this is one of those cases that really should not play out in public. Maybe it's my fan crush on him, but I have to say it looks like he's getting wrongfully persecuted/punished in this case. Real relationships are incredibly complex, and it's not difficult to write something that is truthful from a certain perspective, yet sounds terrible on paper. In fact I could do the same thing right now about my current relationship, and I could frame it in a way that sounds like I am being "abused" - when the fact is I share just as much responsibility for the way things play out on a daily basis. And I guarantee my partner could probably say the same thing about me. And yet the negative part is just one small part of our overall relationship and history. If we were breaking up, it's easy to focus only on the worst, most negative and ugly parts of a relationship, which is not fair or realistic.

    In this bizarre #metoo age it feels like men are no longer getting the benefit of the doubt, things seem to be going too far to compensate any time a woman makes an accusation. Everyone is just assuming the men are 100% at fault. I have no doubt there are a ton of bad men doing bad things, but I also feel like some of these cases are not nearly so clear cut. This one to me feels like it's right on the borderline and it's a shame they jumped out and fired him all over the place so quickly. Because that gives the impression they've done sufficient investigation into ALL of the details, when I suspect that's not the case.

  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    ....and we're back!

    Last week they aired a regular Walking Dead Season 9 preview, which was kind of interesting. It was actually a Talking Dead but without Chris Hardwick. Apparently he is back this week, but I haven't watched it yet. If I calculate correctly, we should have non-stop zombie action all the way through November-ish. 8 episodes of Fear leading into the TWD premiere on Oct. 7. Good news for zombie fans. They talked a bit about Rick's departure; hopefully it will meet the standard they claim they made for it. And they made it clear that there would be a year and a half time jump, plus start the Whisperers plotline from the comics. It all sounded promising.

    Now onward to Fear. Last night's premiere was pretty lackluster. The pacing was kind of slow and aside from Morgan, everyone was just kind of morose and dragging their feet. They interjected some hilarious Zombnado/storm action but other than that, just kind of an odd episode. In some ways, I did enjoy the pace, as I think people may have needed to recover from the aftermath of the two major cast deaths in the first half of the season, plus John getting shot. The "old" cast members are like walking dead themselves, muddled in depression, except for Alicia who is desperate for some sort of closure. I liked that plotline the most.

    The big storyline is Morgan decides he wants to go back to TWD and invites everyone along. Only Al agrees to go with him. This is actually an intriguing concept and honestly it doesn't quite make sense to me that all these aimless, listless people don't take him up on it. Sure it's a long and scary journey, but what do they have to lose? I wish they had spent a little more time with Morgan explaining to the group that there was a full community out there that he trusted, pretty much exactly the kind of thing that Madison wanted to build. I suppose maybe they don't believe him or don't want to get their hopes up, but again they don't seem to have much of an alternative.

    In any case, of course they get sidetracked by the storm, and the stupid little girl Charlie that they should have just killed. It looks like a lot of this season will be based around what to do with this traitorous little wretch. But oh she's just a kid. Uh yeah, but she's also the kid that shot Nick dead in cold blood. Bring her to Carol and show her the flowers.

    It's hard to tell where they are heading based on that premiere. I would love it if they took the show on the road and eventually crossed over with TWD, but that doesn't seem like it would work in the long run. Even the previews didn't seem to indicate some sort of new villain, so I'm really curious about what they will do.

  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    I really hate this season. This show was so interesting season 1 to 3 but everything they build during those seasons have been pretty much thrown out. It's a colossal move killing off Madison because she was the focal point of the show and now without her, they are literally an aimless group of burned out people. So far everything this season feels like a gimmick. The constant flashback/flash-forward is ridiculous. It completely kills the flow of the story and confuses viewers week to week. And to cheapen things further, Madison's death was portrayed as a flashback.

    The only characters I feel invested in now are Morgan and John. John is the one thing that keeps me watching because he's a really interesting personality. Morgan deciding to go back to Virginia is just one of the WTF decisions that makes no sense. Again, more gimmicks. The little girl, Charlie, is useless and annoying especially since she has created so much trouble going back and forth between groups. Her running away just makes me think "good riddance". Same with Laura/Naomi/June. Good god, will she just make a decision and stay with someone for once? Again, her constantly running away has just been a pain in the ass.

    I could keep bitching but what's the point? So much potential just trashed in horrible, random, gimmick season. Scott Gimple should be fired and kept away from the Walking Dead franchise forever.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    lol ouch Jimmy! I pretty much consider this a new spinoff show that happens to feature a few FTWD characters. Definitely Morgan and John make the new show watchable, and I think Dark/Crazy Alicia still has some potential. Drunken what's-his-name has always been a wild card, but his best scenes were with Madison so without her, I'm not sure what purpose he serves. I like the actress that plays Nick's girlfriend, but honestly they could just off her too at this point and it would have almost no impact. Al is like you said a gimmick character, and I hate her dyed black hair. I vote they bring back the bitchy blond Shannon from Lost version of her lol. I'm OK with wishy washy Dharma so far, even though she doesn't seem worthy of John. I guess they needed some plot gimmick so that they couldn't just be happy together.

    I still wonder (as I did before) what came first, Nick and Madison deciding to leave or the cast overhaul. What I imagine is they announced a crossover character coming to boost ratings, and perhaps Madison felt like it was an insult like she couldn't carry the show herself. Then with the casting of two more semi-famous blond actresses, it's almost like they were sending her a message. Or maybe she asked for too much money to continue, who knows.

    Anyway, back to this week's episode. I found it kind of boring and annoying. I guess they are doing the "focus on a couple of characters at a time" thing. I didn't buy into Alicia forgiving/accepting Charlie so quickly, but I suppose I'm glad they got it over with. Obviously it had to happen at some point, I just thought it would take something a little more dramatic over the course of the season.

    The coming episode featuring Morgan looks like it should be better, particularly since they are introducing some new characters. Hopefully it will be an interesting new subplot.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    According to what's been reported, the actor who played Nick asked to be written out of the show. Kim Dickens (Madison) on the other hand was completely blindsided by the killing of her character. She understood the decision but was still sad that she had to go. There was no reported bad blood between her and the producers that anyone was aware of. My guess is that when Gimple took over, he decided for whatever reason, that the show needed some major changes. Maybe he felt like the format was resembling the main show too much. Who knows. What he fails to understand is that even if the show seemed similar to the main show, as long as the characters were well written and interesting and the location was uniquely different, which Mexico was, then it was still a good show. Sometimes changing things up just for the sake of change is not necessarily a good thing.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    That's interesting, Jimmy, thanks for the info. If they really thought writing Kim Dickens out of the show was the right choice, they were just idiots. Not that I loved her character so much, but she really held Fear together for me. Without her it really is a different spinoff show, for better or worse. I also think they missed a great opportunity to have her interact with Morgan, but oh well.

    Speaking of Morgan, this week's Morgan-centric episode was kind of a head scratcher. It started off a bit boring for me, but then kind of jumped around all over. They introduced multiple new characters, moved Morgan all over the place, threw in some random humor, and spent a lot of time talking about beer.

    The first two additions were Mo Collins (from Mad TV) and Daryl Mitchell (I know him Galaxy Quest; apparently he was in an accident and his legs are paralyzed so he's in a wheelchair). Adding two comedians probably seemed like a good idea to lighten the mood but given the series' seeming lack of direction at the moment, it just kind of confused me. So Morgan is conveniently (?) bounced to Mississippi, covering maybe half the trip to VA in a few seconds of screen time. But then after some shenanigans he decides he has to go back to Texas again? Then he tells three strangers about Alexandria, but kind of waffles with that too. They proceed to VA but then come back as well. Apparently there is unlimited fuel and everyone can drive hundreds of miles in a few seconds. And he manages to get the attention of some other psycho as well. I have no idea how many days were supposed to have passed during this episode.

    As a stand-alone episode, I thought it was kind of entertaining. Morgan trapped on the bus had echoes of Rick and Glenn and other scenes we've seen before, and I liked Pyro's introduction sequence being chased with a sack on his head. The other new characters show potential, but thus far Daryl feels a little like stunt casting - ooh let's have a handicapped guy, just because.... you have to wonder how any of these three have survived this long. All of it, though, including the core storylines, felt more like they belonged on TWD. If they are heading toward some sort of integration, I suppose it makes sense to move the show like this. But if not, it just seems odd and distracting, and kind of a disservice to Fear fans.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    I have not seen the latest episode, but just from your description it sounds like a total shit show. Unbelievable. I have to admit that I was an episode behind and had not yet seen the Alicia episode until last night but interestingly, it was probably my favorite episode of the season so far. I don't think it is any accident that the episode had no stupid flashbacks and timeline hopping and instead focused on two characters in a mostly deliberate manner. The acting by the two girls was as strong as it's been on the entire run of the series which was mildly shocking to me since this season has been so abysmal up to now.
    I'm not looking forward to the latest Morgan-centric episode but I guess I should just slog my way through it to get it over with. The whole notion of having a wheelchair bound character on Walking Dead is so implausible. You'd think that anyone with a physical mobility issue would be dead pretty quickly in this universe, but hey, why think about reality and logic when it comes to Walking Dead? It gets in the way of storytelling I guess.
  • naednek
    naednek
    GT Moderator
    ya last night's episode was a head scratcher. The whole season is. I'm wondering if the decision for Rick and Maggie to leave forced a change to where Fear goes. Is Morgan going to be the main actor, is that why all of a sudden he wants to go back?
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    naednek wrote: »
    ya last night's episode was a head scratcher. The whole season is. I'm wondering if the decision for Rick and Maggie to leave forced a change to where Fear goes. Is Morgan going to be the main actor, is that why all of a sudden he wants to go back?

    Yeah it almost seems like they are getting ready to cancel this show and merge them, but I checked and it was already renewed for next season. So maybe they'll have a change of heart and settle down somewhere else. Maybe close enough to do the occasional crossover. Of course since Morgan can apparently walk/run hundreds of miles I suppose any location is fair game lol.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    This Sunday's ep I thought was an improvement over last week's. The focus was on Dharma and Al, some of it a bit aggravating, but a slight twist at the end made the episode work for me. We get a little more glimpse into the "villain" - some crazy chick who's like a cross between Michonne and The Governor. But if she's alone I don't see how she poses a threat to our gun crazy crew. Heck even that stupid Charlie could probably take her out with one shot.

    Anyway, hoping John Dorie comes back quick (which he should be next week). Also should be featuring a giant alligator of some sort!
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    A nice ensemble episode, with a fun dose of John Dorie and Victor, who seem to have been randomly paired up and trapped on an island. I wish the writers would remember that Victor is supposed to be gay (or at least bi), and play up some attraction to John. I mean there's no way a gay man wouldn't be at least somewhat attracted to him, come on! Victor really seems to serve no purpose without Madison around, and I don't know what they can do to fix that.

    The other useless character (Nick's GF, I can't even remember her freaking name) got some needed screen time and a decent plotline for once helping what we learn (although I think it was pretty obvious from the getgo) is the truck driver who has been helping people. So I guess this is supposed to be ironic, or karmic, that she ends up finding and helping him. This part of the ep worked out pretty well, and was fairly enjoyable, but honestly they could have inserted any one of the characters for it.

    A couple of good scenes with Morgan and the new crew, but most importantly they didn't torment us with more wasted time and it's nice to have the majority of the cast back together.

    Unfortunately it didn't quite work out with John and Victor, but hopefully they won't draw it out much longer.

    All in all I enjoyed this one a lot more than the previous few, maybe because of John, or maybe just because they showed a little plot advancement.

    The new villain lady is still a mystery to me in terms of how she is supposed to be threatening to Morgan.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    I am really getting frustrated with this show. What could/should have been a fun and semi-nostalgic with fun reveals and villain backstory turned into pretty much a mess. So many things irritated me this episode just due to inconsistency, redundancy/retreads and flat out bad choices in writing/implementation. I don't really know who to blame for it.

    We start out with the new villain's backstory. Was she a voodoo wielding priestess? A conjurer of the undead? Noooooo, turns out she was just an ordinary wife whose husband was apparently in the EXACT SAME CRASH POSITION as the dude (Polar Bear) from last week. Was this supposed to be irony? Or just lazy writing? So no one stops to help her, boohoo. Her husband was dead no matter what. I thought this might have occurred a long time ago but apparently it was not too long ago, the timeline was not clear. So he dies, she buries him and then goes crazy over what seems like days but they say on TD was just a night. WTF. So in the middle of the motherf-ing apocalypse, your loved one (shock) dies and that turns you from an english teacher into a homicidal maniac? As origin stories go, this was on the level of a Batman villain from the old TV series. The worst part is her shtick is completely non-sensical. The fact that she has a zombie on a stick doesn't make it 10 times more powerful does it? They make it seem like it's supposed to be so badass, when really she's just an ugly old trash third rate version of Michonne. But she has no special training that we are made aware of, just one goddamn zombie on a stick. Oh sorry, it also has writing on its face, I guess that just freaks people out. For whatever reason everyone she comes upon seems like they forget all their survival skills and become instant morons. The fact is if she didn't happen upon Al's truck she would be worthless, Morgan should be able to take her down in two swats. But OK, she gets the truck so she presents a bit more of a threat (even though you have to wonder how an ENGLISH TEACHER with no training knows how to operate a tank and all the weaponry in it). But when they have her standing right in front of them, our entire team can't seem to deal with her. Even after she gets shot by Wheels, they still just stand around like morons. She gets away, and then like 6 or 7 walkers come out to play and suddenly Morgan is panicking? He's killed hundreds and now he can't handle like 10 of them with help? ARGH!!!! The episode continues with inconsistent things like zombies that never give up and can apparently maneuver through any number of obstacles, stairs, etc. I like that they chose an indoor setting that made sense to go to (hospital) but it felt very much like a retread that we've seen before. I suspect someone wanted to "echo" old episodes from TWD and thought they were being creative, but it again just felt lazy to me, particularly when they end up on the roof.

    Even the "twist" with Pyro getting bit seemed a bit obvious, I felt like I'd seen it before multiple times. The only thing that could redeem it is if he somehow survives. That could be interesting.

    Then there's subplot Alicia and Charlie. Suddenly Alicia is all in on forgiving her brother-slaying little munchkin and wants to fulfill her dream of getting to a beach. I gave this plotline a pass because I knew it might somehow lead them to John Dorie. Which it did, but we don't actually get to see anything but his hat (cleverly lost in last week's episode).

    There's only two episodes left. Presumably the remaining outside members need to meet up with the guys trapped in the hospital (the preview shows Charlie with Wheels), save them, and maybe take out the crazy lady.

    It's really frustrating because this cast deserves better, and so do the fans that stuck by it.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    It's is mind-boggling how much the writing has gone down the toilet, and as I've said previously, I place all the blame on Scott Gimple. As a producer, he is complete trash and has done so much to destroy the quality of both WD shows on his watch. It'll be interesting to see how much Walking Dead will change now that Angela Kang is the producer. I bet that show becomes a lot more watchable under her control.
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