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REVIEW: Fear The Walking Dead 2×05 “Captive”

We’re back with another review of Fear the Walking Dead! After last week’s build up we were once again let down with a slow, slow episode. Except for the end, of course. Fifty minutes of boredom and a brief moment of action. That’s how I would describe “Captive,” this week’s episode. At least some story threads are starting to come together and we’re learning a little more about Connor and his crew. Still not very exciting though. Alright then, let’s get started, and as usual be on the look out for spoilers.

“Captive” starts off with a quaint little scene in which Connor is getting to know Alicia. To do this he offers her a steak (classy) and lets her watch some sweet snowboarding videos on a television (HD no less). This meeting is short lived however, and as soon as Connor leaves, his pregnant cohort takes Alicia’s steak dinner all for herself (and for baby); how rude! Jack then tells Alicia that in order to stay in Connor’s good graces she will have to make herself a useful asset to his team. To this end, Jack trains Alicia to use the radar system to track seafaring vessels that are nearby. Something that is really starting to bug me these past two episodes is the way in which Jack talks about Connor. “Connor this, Connor that.” Jack behaves like a cartoon villain’s brainless sidekick and I do not think that works very well for a show like this. Or any show with real, human actors for that matter. Just my opinion.

Meanwhile we see Travis being held captive in a cage somewhere on Connor’s boat. Well, to be more specific Connor’s “boat” is more like a barge, but let’s not get caught up in semantics here. And remember that woman in the life raft who was cut loose by Victor a few episodes ago? Well she’s back and she’s pissed. In fact, we learned that Alex (the aforementioned woman) was picked up by Connor and his crew shortly after she was stranded by Victor, and that she was the one who sold Travis and the rest of the crew of the Abigail out to Connor. You know what they say about Karma, right? That’s what Travis is faced with in this episode, but he manages to make a strained connection with Alex when they share stories of being forced to euthanize someone close to them in the wake of the zombie apocalypse.

But enough about Connor and his fancy life of television and steak! Back on the Abigail we get Daniel tending to Reed’s wounds as Reed attempts to threaten the crew of the Abigail. Daniel doesn’t buy it however, and we all know what a badass Daniel is (remember that torture scene from season one?). Madison and Daniel then hatch a plan to use Reed as leverage to get Travis and Alicia back from Connor, which Louis objects to since he is in a rush to get to Baja. Shockingly, Victor overrules Louis and agrees to give Madison and Daniel the time they need to confront Connor and make the hostage trade-off. Perhaps Victor’s recent brush with death in last week’s episode has given him a newfound sense of compassion, but there is also the little issue of Louis only having enough money to take two people across the border. Hmm, I wonder what will happen when they show up with a boat full of people?

The plan seems to be well constructed and fool proof until Chris, who had been guarding Reed, decides to go ahead and shoot Reed in the face (but not in the head/brain), killing him. Chris explains that he had no choice in the matter since Reed was about to turn, but I have a hard time believing this. Sure, Reed suffered a pretty serious injury in the previous episode and he looked quite weak as a result, but after hearing the way in which Reed was digging into Chris in this week’s episode, I would just as soon assume Chris took the low road and blew him away. Good for you Chris. Oh yeah, then he cries about it.

"It's okay son. Sometimes we just have to shoot people in the mouth."

“It’s okay son. Sometimes we just have to shoot people in the mouth.”

In classic Walking Dead fashion, Reed is reanimated in his brand new zombie form (remember: he wasn’t shot in the head/brain), and thus plan B is formed: hand off the zombie Reed to Connor and his crew, watch hilarity ensue, rescue Travis and Alicia, profit. It is at this point in the episode that we learn that Daniel hears voices, and I think that’s just great; we could use a little more insanity in this show. Anyway, the plan goes off without a hitch, and Reed even bites Connor in his lousy arm! We all know the cliche that will likely follow this delightful little development, right? You guessed it: time to chop off some limbs! And yes, you can quote me on that; it will happen in next week’s episode. We also get a nice fight between the newly released Travis and one of Connor’s underlings in which Travis performs a crushing headbutt maneuver to great success! During all this Alicia manages to escape all on her own, even after all of Jack’s pleading (pathetic), which makes me a lot less worried about a romance between those two. Thank the maker.

By the end of “Captivity,” we’ve got one less arm (I promise this), one less Reed, and the entire crew of the Abigail all reunited and back to being one big, happy, sea-worthy family. You can bet that Connor won’t be too happy about his brother being a zombie (or the whole arm biting incident), and that he will seek vengeance in a big way. Personally I’m counting on some action in the next two episodes, this show really needs it. Okay let’s get down to the nitty-gritty.

Final Grade: C+

+ Chris being all murdery (from the looks of it).

+ Victor turning over a new leaf?

+ Dat headbutt doe.

– This episode was way too slow.

– Jack’s “Connor talk” is getting irritating.

– I really wanted to see Reed’s violent tendencies in action (you can call me sick if you want to).

Extra Thoughts:

“Captivity” was a weak follow up to last week’s build up episode. I was really hoping for the hostage exchange to get a little messier, but we still have two more episodes before the mid-season break. Let’s keep our fingers cross for some chaos and mayhem in the next two weeks. And maybe some more of Travis’ karate.

What did you think of “Captivity?” Was it an exciting entry into this season of Fear the Walking Dead, or was it a powerful sleep aid to help cap off the weekend? Let us know in the comments section and on our Twitter page!

About the author

Robert Porter