Warning: General spoilers ahead
First things first. For those who were hoping for another Lazarus effect on Fear The Walking Dead and find out this week that Travis is, indeed, Iron Man and survived those gunshots and fall from the helicopter, sorry. As was confirmed on The Talking Dead, Travis is “dead dead,” and going into Sunday’s episode, the Clark family appears to have accepted it and are now trying to move on.
The opening sequence of the episode is actually the first promo below which depicts an infomercial for “Teotwawki” — a video series founded by Jeremiah Otto (Dayton Callie) where he teaches you how to prepare for the end of the world and create a safe haven just like he did with Broke Jaw Ranch. While this is interesting, the important parts come later when we get to see the behind-the-scenes footage of Jeremiah, his 2 sons, Jake and Troy, and his late wife, which on the surface seems like the perfect all-American family. As we find out, that’s quite the contrary. While I don’t think Troy (Daniel Sharman) gained too many fans in last week’s season 3 premiere with his homicidal behavior and crazy antics, we do learn his backstory, and all I will say is he’s not the monster that the season-opener made him out to be. Oh, and if you happened to notice that Jake and Troy’s mother in the video looked quite a bit like Madison (Kim Dickens), well, that turns out to not be an accident either. I think most of us noticed last week Troy’s almost immediate attachment to Madison, so much so that it almost felt like an obsession. There’s a reason behind that, and yes, it is related to his mother and the relationship he had with her as a child.
Elsewhere, like I said, no real mention of Travis, and the Clark family is moving on as best they can. However, there is still that pesky question as to who shot down the chopper. So, another group is sent out to locate the individual(s) responsible, and per Jeremiah’s orders, once they are found, kill them all. However, after a couple of days, this new group also fails to return to the ranch and is now officially considered missing. Uh oh. Given that Troy and his men are the ones who shot Luciana (Danay Garcia) and the other survivors from La Colonia, I think a good deal of the fandom may have concluded that Jeremiah Otto and his “family” at Broke Jaw Ranch may be the show’s next villain. Fair conclusion. However, after tomorrow’s episode, I think it’s a safe bet that the Otto’s are likely going to be allies, and the real bad guys are out there taking pot shots at helicopters and killing anyone else they encounter.
Besides getting the history of the Otto family and Broke Jaw Ranch, the episode also focuses on Strand (Colman Domingo) and what he’s up to now after leaving the hotel with a very nice set of wheels. Knowing what we know about Strand, care to take a guess? Remember, Strand is a con-man at heart, and somebody like that can’t completely change his stripes overnight. When Eileen asked Strand last week where he’d go if he could leave, he simply responded “I know a place.” Well, that place turns out to be a dam that is now controlled by an old business associate by the name of Dante Esquivel (Jason Manuel Olazabal). Just like Strand, Dante is also a con-man, and his new scheme is bartering water for goods and services. Without spoiling the entire arc, I will tell you by the end of the hour, Strand manages to get on the wrong side of Dante, finds himself in very dire straits, and people who cross Dante usually don’t fair very well.
But, as we will learn, no worries. In the final moments of the episode, we see a Strand that is broken, beaten, and hopeless. Then, in a very surprising final scene, a familiar face emerges and may be Strand’s only chance of escaping the hell Dante has created for him.
Episode 3.03 of Fear The Walking Dead is titled “Teotwawki” and airs Sunday at 9/8c on AMC.
Geeky computer and math nerd by day and TV fanatic by night. My beats are The Walking Dead, The Strain, Person of Interest, Z Nation, and anything that most people would call freaky. Editor-In-Chief and Lead Writer of TVGeekTalk.com