After a short but sweet first season, [Fear the Walking Dead](tag:1117438) is back for a 15-episode Season 2, premiering with Episode 1, "Monster."
When we left our group at the end of Season 1, they had made it back to Strand's impressive residence on the coast and were about to depart on his boat, when Liza revealed she had been bitten and Travis killed her to prevent a painful death and reanimation. As Season 2 opened, it was clear that little time had past since Liza's death and as the episode progressed, there was a lot of drama and interesting conflicts as some characters adapted to this new world quicker than others.
"Monster" was a great start to Season 2 and has certainly set up some very compelling possibilities for the remaining 14 episodes. Despite taking place almost entirely on a boat, there were a lot of small details in the episode — did you notice them all? Take a look at five things you might have missed in Fear the Walking Dead Episode 1, "Monster."
1. San Diego Is Almost Certainly Destroyed
After the group get settled on the boat, Strand reveals that he has set course for San Diego, hoping to receive help from the Navy or Border Patrol. Later in the episode, Strand admits to Nick that he doesn't have a backup plan if San Diego doesn't work out.
Well, I hate to break it to Strand, but judging by the fact that the Coast Guard announced that they can no longer rescue anyone by sea, air or land, it seems very unlikely that any organization in San Diego is able to aid survivors either. At best, San Diego is still standing and the group can get supplies, or at worst the city has been completely destroyed by bombs like LA was and there's nothing left except the charred remains of walkers. I know Strand doesn't have a backup plan, but I think he better start thinking of one quick.
2. Strand Is A Survivor But Is Also Dangerous
There's no doubt about it, Strand is a very savvy man, a survivor even. But his behavior in "Monster" leads me to think that soon he's going to become a danger to the group.
After allowing Nick and the rest of the group on board his yacht the Abigail, Strand has taken the role of the captain and seems very reluctant to let anyone else give him a break from his post. Throughout the episode, different characters talk quietly about how Strand hasn't slept since the group set sail, and Madison even catches him talking to himself. While Strand defends the fact he's chatting to himself by saying, "It's a characteristic of the gifted," Madison's quick to fire back with, "And the crazy." So which is he?
Along with Madison, Daniel also has his reservations about Strand, pointing out that he'd already packed his bags before the bombs started dropping. Although Strand might have seemed like the group's knight in shining armor when he offered them room on his yacht, what hasn't he told everyone? And why was he locked up in the military compound in Season 1?
3. Alicia's Loose Lips Might Literally Sink A Ship
Oh Alicia, I really wanted to believe that your book smarts would translate to street smarts, but sadly that doesn't seem to be the case.
After entrusting Alicia to man the radio, she manages to get in touch with the mysterious Jack and basically gave away the location of the group and their boat. While Jack claims he's only with two others and that their boat is sinking, after Alicia tells him that their group can't save him, he finishes the conversation by ominously saying, "It's OK, Alicia, I got you. I'll see you soon." Soon after, Nick finds a bullet-hole-ridden skiff, then Strand notices an incoming boat on the radar — could it be Jack?
At this early stage in the apocalypse, some people have already absolutely adapted to a survival mentality, and perhaps this is where Jack is at. My theory is that Jack and his group has been gathering locations of other boats, turning up, shooting the crews dead and either stealing their supplies or hijacking their vessels. Earlier on in the episode, Alicia revealed that Abigail had a desalinization system, something that would definitely be worth fighting for if times were getting desperate.
4. Nick Managed To Retrieve The Captain's Log
After spotting the upside-down skiff in the water, Nick decides (perhaps a tad foolishly) to take a look inside the boat. While he comes across a floating walker that gets pretty close to ripping a chunk out of him, he also manages to retrieve the vessel's log book that has been protected by a waterproof bag.
With the episode ending before Nick has time to check through the book, hopefully in Episode 2 we'll get to have a look at what obstacles or threats the crew of that skiff were facing, not to mention where the boat had originated from or what ports it had visited. Judging by the fact that the captain had taken the time to make sure the log was waterproofed, there should be some fascinating information in that book that could be of use to our group and even determine their next move.
5. Walkers Can't Swim But They Do Float
Many of us wondered whether we might see swimming zombies in the second season of Fear the Walking Dead, and that question is answered in Episode 1 when it became obvious that walkers cannot swim, but they do float.
That's right, while it doesn't seem as though water-based walkers have the ability to coordinate their limbs enough to propel themselves specifically toward an object (much like how walkers lurch about unsteadily on land), they can drift. In addition to that, if the walkers spot something they want, they will grab for it, meaning they're definitely still a threat.
What will be very interesting to longtime fans of The Walking Dead universe will be the rate of decay. TWD viewers will know that as the show has gone on, the walkers have deteriorated more and more, simply due to the passage of time and environmental factors. Because the walkers in Fear the Walking Dead are in the ocean, will that mean that we'll see some true soggy, bloated sacks of skin floating about by the end of the season? By Season 3 (on the off chance the show is still ocean-based) will walkers even be a threat in the water? Surely the sun, sea creatures and salty water would make quick work of their decaying flesh and send them floating to the seabed.
'Fear the Walking Dead' returns to AMC with 'We All Fall Down' on Sunday, April 17.