(Warning: Fear The Walking Dead spoilers will be found below.)
While fighting off a radioactive zombie at the end of last week’s episode of Fear the Walking Dead, Alicia pulled her weapon out of the zombie’s brain and was splashed all over the face with radioactive blood, leaving not just Alicia but viewers with the distinct impression that her death may be imminent.
The death of Alicia, obviously, would be devastating for Fear the Walking Dead, but showrunners Andrew Chambliss and Ian Goldberg did little to allay fans’ concerns, telling Entertainment Weekly, “All that contaminated blood on Alicia definitely puts her in a lot of risk and danger … it’s definitely cause for concern.”
Apparently, even Alycia Debnam-Carey’s alarm bells went off after reading the script for last week’s episode. “When I first read it, I did call up, like, ‘Yo, what’s happening?’,” she told TVLine at Comic-Con this weekend.
The good news after the Fear the Walking Dead midseason finale is this: Alicia did not die, and it does not appear that she’s going to die anytime soon. In fact, after showering the blood off of her, Grace — the expert in nuclear contamination — said to her simply, “Alicia, you’re going to be OK.” That’s it? She’s “going to be OK?” But for how long? We’ve seen Chernobyl; we know that exposure to nuclear radiation can be deadly, and that showering afterward is not exactly an antidote. Is this one of those situations where she has 6 months to live? Or 30 years?
We don’t know. Beyond “you’re going to be OK,” the episode didn’t really address the contamination. In fact, Morgan spoke to Alicia about introducing her to the exercises Eastman showed to him, essentially speaking as though a her future was no longer in doubt. They’re just going to go back to the way things were.
In other words, the bad news is: It was another fake-out in The Walking Dead universe, and those fake-outs are damaging to the trust viewers have with the series. Every time the show pulls a stunt like this, we’re less inclined to believe the next. Fortunately, Fear doesn’t have an extensive track record of cliffhanger fake-outs (unlike The Walking Dead), but the show should certainly tread carefully in the future. Thankfully, in this case, the only thing worse than a fake-out would have been the death of Alicia.
The back half of Fear the Walking Dead will kick off in three weeks, on August 11th. Based on the trailer, Alicia’s life is not in any immediate danger.