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REVIEW: Fear The Walking Dead 2×02 “We All Fall Down”

We’re back with another review of AMC’s Fear the Walking Dead! After a somewhat lackluster season premiere last week, this show really needs to pick up the pace. I know The Walking Dead is known for its often slow burning seasons with a few explosive moments peppered in (especially at mid-season and season finales), but for a new show Fear the Walking Dead should be doing a whole hell of a lot more in my opinion. This episode is called “We All Fall Down,” which is not exactly the most original or unique title, but let’s not judge the episode on its title alone. Instead let’s go in depth and get all spoiler-y and see if this episode is a worthy entry into the Walking Dead television universe! Well c’mon, what are you waiting for? Let’s go!

“We All Fall Down” begins with a charming little scene where some kids leave presents for zombies. Hm, where have we seen this type of behavior before? Oh yeah that’s right; in The Walking Dead. Remember when Carol had to …take care of Lizzie in season five because Lizzie was getting just a little too chummy with the undead? Once again Fear the Walking Dead is suffering from recycled ideas, and all in the very first moments of an episode! We’re really going to have to see some new stuff in Fear the Walking Dead if it ever wants to set itself apart from its wildly popular parent program.

After the log book that Nick found in the bullet riddled ship wreck in last week’s episode suggests that San Diego may not be the best place to disembark, the crew of the Abigail decide to stick to the coastline in search of other possible avenues of respite. Meanwhile a larger vessel, perhaps “Jack’s” from last week has been tailing the Abigail, which has Victor kind of spooked. Soon, the group spot a light that seems to be signaling from a window and dock in order to investigate. To prevent Victor from ditching out, Daniel and Ofelia stay behind while Travis and the rest of the group approach the house, where they meet George and his family. We get some nice scenes here with Travis and George discussing the zombie apocalypse and how it may possibly be nature’s way of balancing the world, which I quite enjoyed. George also informs Travis that most of the major cities along the west coast have been fire bombed with napalm to take care of that pesky zombie problem.

There was some talk in this episode about understanding the new “cruel” world between Daniel and Ofelia, which I felt was just a little over-dramatic considering that the actual apocalypse was fairly recent and there hasn’t really been a whole lot of zombie action thus far. It seems to me that those kinds of conversations would be better saved after our characters have gone through a fair bit more, no? At any rate, that scene bugged me. Just my two cents.

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Anyway, it soon becomes apparent that George and his family are not all they’re cracked up to be. First we meet George and Melissa’s son Seth who seems to brood around with a rifle strapped to his back, and little Harry the collector. Yes, Harry brings Nick into his room where we see his sweet collection of vintage G.I. Joes that are meant to represent dead family members and neighbors! Sick! Later on Seth teaches Chris to handle himself in the zombie apocalypse with a badass pickaxe, and explains to Chris that George’s extreme paranoia is what prepared him to live in a world overrun by the undead. I always knew paranoia was useful! Before long it becomes clear that Melissa shining the light in the window was no accident as earlier indicated by George, and that she wants Travis and Madison to take Willa and Harry along with them on the Abigail.

When Nick discovers the possibility that George plans to go all Jim Jones on his own family, Travis and co. decide to intervene. In classic Walking Dead fashion, the group are just a little too late and it turns out that Willa already took her pills; whoops! With everyone in a panic, Melissa embraces Willa just in time for the little girl to do the zombie thing and wake up and take a bite out of mom! Yum! With that Travis takes Harry and the group hastily make their way back to the Abigail to get out of Dodge. An enraged Seth follows and demands they return Harry to him or he will open fire and take out as many of Travis’ group as possible before he is stopped. Of course no one does anything and Harry rejoins his slightly insane older brother just as a zombie-fied Melissa is walking down the dock towards them. Do I really need to tell you what happens next? I shouldn’t have to, but I will. Seth instructs Harry to wave goodbye to the crew of the Abigail as a diversionary tactic while he puts a bullet between Melissa’s eyes.

So again what we see here is recycled ideas being used over and over again. I get that there really might not be all that much that can be done that is very different from anything we’ve already seen on The Walking Dead, but the whole euthanizing thing is getting stale. How many times will this show expect us to be affected by scenes like this? Only time will tell. One of the more interesting and brief scenes from “Well All Fall Down” involved Victor as he makes a mysterious phone call. We’re getting little tidbits that suggest Victor is hiding something big, and I am more excited about that than anything else that has been happening so far in this season of Fear the Walking Dead. And with that, we’re back to the high seas! I will refuse to stop referring to Travis and his group as “the crew of the Abigail” until they prove to me that they are anything but that.

Let’s break it down, shall we?

Final Grade: C

+ George and Travis’ dialogue with one another was a highlight.

+ More intrigue involving Victor.

+ Some nice scenes of zombie action towards the end.

– George’s motivations for wanting to poison his family seemed kinda weak.

– We’re still seeing recycled ideas that are meant to provoke an emotional response. They will wear out their welcome.

– Where was “Jack?”

Extra Thoughts:

– “We All Fall Down” was another slow episode for this season of Fear the Walking Dead, but I still stick with my earlier premonition that the show will improve over time and show us some good stuff. After building up “Jack” as being an antagonist in the previous episode, I would have liked to see more about that but perhaps he will eventually be the big bad in the vain of The Governor or Negan. Whether that is a good or bad thing has yet to be seen, but I’m just a little nervous that he will be yet another rehash of something we have already seen before. Let’s hope Fear the Walking Dead proves me wrong. See you next week!

What did you think of this episode of Fear the Walking Dead? Was it an improvement over last week’s season premiere? Let us know in the comments section and on our Twitter page!

About the author

Robert Porter