RECAP: Fear The Walking Dead “We All Fall Down” [Season 2, Episode 2]

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We open to waves crashing the beach on a beautiful evening just before dusk – the kind that would have seemed so ordinary before the fall.  There is a smoking ship in the background and we can only hope it isn’t The Abigail. As two children play alone at the shore, I worry that they are about to become floating walker food.  Sure enough, the invasion begins as the first walker makes it to shore, followed by another. What we finally, and thankfully, see is a fence that prevents the walkers from reaching the children, the same kind of chain link fence that surrounded the survivors old neighborhood.  Back on the ship, Maddie is yelling at Nick over the chances he took in the water, but it turns out to be good fortune.  The ship’s log he found shows that San Diego, their believed safe harbor, was also destroyed by the military.  Strand is in denial about San Diego’s fall, and worried that the ship following them is probably military grade, carrying big weapons, given how fast it is and how big a weapon would have been needed to destroy the last ship they passed.  He makes a plan to hide the ship in a cove to lose the trackers. Travis wants to hide in the cove at Catrina Island, which has a ranger station, and, hopefully, supplies. As they dock,  Daniel refuses to leave the ship, knowing Strand wants to leave once the big ship is gone. The ship docks below the station and Maddie, Travis, and the kids hit shore. Travis does the most foolish thing he can, by calling out to see if the owners will meet with them.  The child from the shore, Harry, runs out to greet them. Travis promises Harry’s family, including father, George, that they have nothing to fear from them.

Inside the small house, Travis and George drink beer and bond over now having time for books. George tells him that he has been talking to other ranger stations and napalm is being used up and down the coasts.  He tells Travis that roughly half the country is gone and the southern border has been shut down.  Maddie and Harry’s mother, bond over both having worked with children.  She wants to know if Madison found it hard to work with other people’s children when she had her own to take care of and whether she even likes little kids?  She wants to know if Madison ever worked with younger children (and at this point I expect her to say “the same age as my children”).  Her questions are odd.  What is even odder is that there is an older child who wasn’t mentioned before now. Seth is the same age as Chris and Alicia.  Back on the boat, Ofelia tells her father that she is beginning to understand the new world, better.  Daniel feels that he and Griselda worked hard to protect her.  She shouldn’t have to know a world like this. Is he worried that she is suffering the sins of the father?  She tells him that understanding the new (cruel) world helps her understand him. Harry’s sister (who like her mother, has still not been named) is singing “ring around the rosies.” Alicia explains the nursery rhyme to her – including contagious deaths due to a virus.  Irony.  Harry shows Nick his room and action figures (with red dots drawn between the eyes).  Harry speaks matter-of-factly about what has to happen when people get sick. He says it won’t happen to him, he has power pills.  He explains to a confused Nick that if he takes the pills his family will get to stay together.


On the boat, Daniel shows his lack of people skills by confronting Strand about whether the “10 million dollar boat” is his. Strand is annoyed when accused of being willing to leave the others behind. Clearly the man needs a crew.  He is sure all will be ok for the group.  They have water, and Daniel is a natural fisherman. At the station, Travis and George are having a conversation that harkens back to Travis’ own words that “Nature Always Wins”.  George thinks the earth was fighting back and that the virus is a course correction. He thinks that being Maori means that Travis understands this better than anyone. He salutes Travis for taking his grandmother back to New Zealand to bury her and says that starting out and ending up on the same sacred land is the reason he and his family aren’t going anywhere.  George feels lucky.  He wasn’t sure what would come off the boat, but feels that he’s made new friends. As they talk together, later, Travis and Maddie exchange information. Maddie thinks that Melissa (finally named!)  purposely turned the light on, so that they could see the house from the boat. She thinks that Melissa wants to leave.  I can’t believe that they are out walking about at night.  


Nick and Alicia are back on the docked boat.  Nick is feeling bad for their children and what they’ve seen, living like it’s the end times.  Alicia thinks it could be, but Nick doesn’t buy that, it’s not the rapture.  He does think that something is off.  Don’t tell me… George wants to join nature! The next morning,while Travis is on the boat, Chris is back on shore and joins Seth on his “chores”, putting down the walkers who make it to the fence.  Swinging the pickax becomes cathartic for Chris.  Travis is sickened at the sight. He waxes on about the teen life Chris used to live.  George reminds him that they all manage now as best they can.  Travis helps him put up more fencing to protect against the tourists left in a nearby town – possible walkers who don’t yet seem to know they are there.  Surrender, survival, acceptance or denial.  There is no reason to run.  Alicia is now on shore and standing around with earbuds in both ears (Genius! She has to be the first to go.).  She ironically signs up for a bird watching tour as Nick does his Nicky thing and searches the medicine cabinets for drugs.  Willa (the finally named daughter) interrupts him just as he finds pills hidden in a small globe. She drags him off to draw before he can take them. On the boat, Strand tells Daniel that he hovers over him like death, but Daniel counters he could be a guardian Angel.  The ship tracking them is finally gone and they can set sail with the high tide. Strand shows his own mistrust of Daniel by taking the ship’s keys with him as he leaves.  


Maddie questions Melissa about the light and knows it couldn’t have been a mistake to signal twice.  Melissa watched the crew from the boat when they landed and thought that her younger children would have a chance with them.  She knows that her family is biding their time at the station.  She has cancer and knows it is only a matter of time.  George won’t leave and neither will Seth.  Maddie convinces Travis that they can’t keep leaving people behind, they’ll take the kids.  On board, Daniel is tearing things apart in the wheelhouse, finding  a locked cabinet.  He picks the lock and finds Strands’ assault rifle, papers, and maps – including one to Mexico. Strand has no idea what is going on because he is in another room, holding a photo we can’t see, on a sat phone with someone we can’t hear.  He plans to meet the individual  by sundown.  Nick reveals that he thinks George is going to poison his family, with the pills he found, prompting Maddie and Travis to act quickly.


At the seaside cottage, Melissa is surrendering her younger children to Maddie, Travis and Nick after telling the children they are going on a boat ride.  Maddie promises to keep them safe.  An angry George protests and stops. Just then Harry comes to report that Willa took a pill and something is wrong. Harry’s comments about the power pills keeping the family together are replaying in my head.  Willa bites a grieving Melissa and George sends everyone out as he sits there waiting to join them (or simply in shock).  Bringing the child on board creates a showdown between Strand and Maddie over letting him stay (Strand loses), and later Seth and Maddie.  Maddie loses as Seth, armed with a rifle, reclaims Harry.  He  refuses to believe that his father wanted Harry to go.  Walker Melissa is approaching the dock.  Ofelia wants her father to do something, but Daniel coldly refuses, saying he has a gun.  On the dock, Seth makes Harry turn toward the boat and wave goodbye as he shoots their walker mother.  Viewers are going to see that tiny little hand waving for a long time.  Real Daniel would have shot Seth, for Ofelia, not for Harry’s sake.  This is the one time I would have wanted Daniel to be himself.  Live on, Harry and Seth.


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