WARNING: Spoilers ahead for the most recent episode of Fear the Walking Dead, Episode 11, "Pablo & Jessica."
We saw hints of Breaking Bad and the Apple keynote speech in Fear the Walking Dead this week, but Episode 11, "Pablo & Jessica" also showed some quick thinking from Clark family as well as some great set up for a season finale, which is fast approaching.
After spending some time with the freakiest kid in the apocalypse last week, Episode 11 didn't give us any Travis and Chris time, but we did return to the hotel where some delicate alliances were struck, and to the Colonia where Nick finally seems to have proven himself to Alejandro (and got himself a girlfriend in the process?!).
The story at the Colonia continues to chug along, and you can be sure that Nick's technique of cutting Oxy with milk powder isn't a long term solution, but for me, the brightest parts of Episode 11 were back at the hotel. Take a look below at the five things you (might) have missed in Fear the Walking Dead, Episode 11 "Pablo & Jessica."
1. Strand and Madison escaped exactly how they should have
Fans of The Walking Dead have been waiting for years for characters to start using the walker-guts disguise more frequently. From the very start of the series it was clear the technique it worked well, but it wasn't properly used again until seasons later during the invasion of Alexandria (and even then, little Sam found a way to render the disguise useless). However the characters of Fear the Walking Dead thankfully don't seem afraid to get mucky in order to survive, and this week it was revealed that that's exactly how Madison and Strand survived being trapped in the hotel bar.
While viewers certainly wouldn't have missed this detail, I thought it was a great point to include because it shows that this group are — no matter what the angry fans on internet forums say — savvy survivors. At this exact point in Season 2 of The Walking Dead, characters were going into paddocks in the dark to check a strange noise and being disemboweled for their troubles (RIP Dale, we miss you fam), so the fact that these guys are using already-vetted techniques to outwit walkers shows we can probably expect some pretty interesting things from them in the future.
2. Will Ofelia return with Daniel?
After Ofelia appears to have gotten the hell outa Dodge back in Episode 9, it was assumed this week that she took the truck and fled - but where to? Obviously her state of mind isn't great, especially given that she told Alicia she didn't think the group were going to make it just before she disappeared, but I doubt she went off to kill herself, instead it seems likely that she's returning to the estate at Valle de Guadalupe.
When the first half of Season 2 ended, it looked as though Ofelia's father, Daniel perished in the fire. But, as we never saw a dead body anything could be possible. I think it's highly possible that Ofelia went back to search for her father, and either rescue him if he's alive, or reach closure if he's dead.
However there's also the fact that Ofelia being out on the road might make her the perfect person to finally bring some of the groups back together. Chris and Travis seem to have walked for quite a while since they split from the group, and are still probably not so far from Valle de Guadalupe, could Ofelia come across Travis, Chris and the brothers on her travels?
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3. Alicia's idea was totally genius
When Alicia waded into the ocean, saw the sign warning a strong rip ride in the area and put together a plan, I honestly thought it was one of the smartest things to have happened in the whole Walking Dead universe to date.
For those that might not have picked up on this detail and thought the group were simply dumping the walkers into the ocean, Alicia's plan was to use the rip tide — a strong current that will very quickly pull you out to sea — to draw the walkers away from the resort area.
Strong rips are almost impossible to swim out of (top tip: If you're ever caught in one, you need to swim diagonally towards shore to have a shot at making it back), and given that walkers can't actually swim, only float, they'll likely be carried a long way away by the current.
Sure, the plan didn't kill the walkers, but it would have carried the vast, vast majority of them quite a distance away, leaving very few stragglers for the group to deal with.
4. It was kind of cool to see Alicia's iPhone reappear
So aside from the fact that it was a bit puzzling as to how Alicia's iPhone was still charged (sure, generators, why not), and that she could have used many different things to attract the walkers' attention (even clapping), it was cool to see her iPhone 4 still floating around - and in the same week that the iPhone 7 was announced, to boot!
Not only does the return of the phone serve to remind us what time frame the series is set in (back in 2010), but considering how it still pops up from time to time it's obvious that it's a bit of a security blanket for Alicia. We saw her use the phone almost continually in the first season, and then it popped up again in Season 2, Episode 2. It also served to show that although she's thinking of more practical solutions, it's hard to forget about using electronics altogether when that was the generation she was brought up in. Not to mention it probably contains the last memories of all her friends, family and loved ones she'll ever have.
5. There's going to be a showdown for the hotel
As it currently stands, the two groups inside the hotel have a very tentative relationship. But, after Alicia's plan of luring the walkers out of the hotel went well, and Strand went into to assist with zombie-bride, it looks like the wedding party might have realized that their best chance of survival is to form an alliance.
However, the other group inside the hotel isn't the only problem Madison and co will face, with a few small pieces of information dropped into Episode 11 that seems to hint that a rival group will probably soon attack the hotel. Firstly we learned from Elena that the hotel has enough dry and canned goods to feed the survivors for months. Something we've learned pretty quickly watching post-apocalyptic movies and TV is that food quickly becomes scarce, and those that have full stocks quickly become targets.
In addition to having control of food, given that such an attractive property is now cleared of zombies, there is little to stop rival groups sniffing around, and trying to making the towers home. One thing is for sure: The hotel survivors better learn to defend their base quickly, because groups of people like the brothers Travis and Chris came across will not hesitate to kill in order to occupy it. In fact, it might even make for a riveting season finale, anyone else get that vibe?
You can watch Fear the Walking Dead Episode 12, "Pillars of Salt" next Sunday at 9pm ET on AMC.