‘Fear The Walking Dead’ Season 4 Premiere: Episode 1 Recap, “What’s Your Story?”

AMC's 'Fear the Walking Dead' Season 4 Premiere, Episode 1, What's Your Story, John Dorie with his gun

[Image by Richard Foreman, Jr/AMC]

Now, normally, the awesome Cassidy does the recaps for Fear the Walking Dead. However, this year, I was given early screeners for the first two episodes by AMC. As a result, I am hijacking the recaps for these episodes of Fear.

Don’t worry though, Cassidy will still jump in and add her thoughts about the episodes as she views them.

CF:  I will do my best.

Here’s what went down in the Season 4 premiere, Episode 1 (titled “What’s Your Story?”) of AMC’s Fear the Walking Dead.

Morgan Tries To Avoid People But Quickly Joins A Group

“So, what’s your story?” newcomer, John Dorie (“Like the fish but with an “IE” and not a “Y”), asks Morgan.

“Well,” says AMC as they lean back into their chair and stretch out before launching into a backstory episode.

Now, if you were concerned about how AMC would handle such a huge time jump between The Walking Dead and Fear the Walking Dead, it turns out we had nothing to worry about.

Thanks to what happened in the Season 8 finale of The Walking Dead, Morgan (Lennie James) is back to avoiding people all over again. His does this by moving into Jadis’ old headquarters, since she isn’t using them anymore on account of Simon (Steven Ogg) killing all of her group in Episode 10 of Season 8 of The Walking Dead.

AMC's 'Fear the Walking Dead' Season 4 Premiere, Episode 1, What's Your Story, Morgan

[Image via Gene Page/AMC]

There is no time for Morgan to just be alone, though. Separately, Jesus (Tom Payne) and Carol (Melissa McBride) try to convince Morgan to return to them.

When this doesn’t work, Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) decides it’s time to remind Morgan that “a lot of people are here now because you helped me at the beginning.” *snorts* Um, Rick, I actually beg to differ on this one. I think a lot of people would still be alive today if Morgan had just killed you all the way back in Season 1 of The Walking Dead.

However, I digress.

To stop everyone turning up on his doorstep, Morgan does a runner. He takes off across the country by any means necessary rather than run the risk of caring about people again.

Which means he totally ends up meeting new people because this is Fear the Walking Dead and AMC likes to torture their characters as much as possible.

CF:  The whole first act was really what The Walking Dead does best, one of those slow burns without much talking.  The montage of Morgan making his way cross country was done so well, filmed in desaturated tones like it’s perpetually fall.  Really, though: I’d have gotten the fuck out of town the moment Rick showed up, ’cause you know his ass is coming back at some point and he’ll just keep bugging you until you say “Yes” or you kill him.  And I agree: killing Rick at the start probably would have been easier and saved more people.

RT: Morgan’s journey between the two shows was so well done, I completely agree. And, can we also talk about how much better the new opening sequence for Fear is this season?

CF:  Yes!  I was going to PM you and say that.  I was like, “Whoa.  This is so nice.”  FTWD really was like a quantum leap from what we’ve seen with the parent show.

He manages to come across John Dorie (Garret Dillahunt), a man who likes to talk out loud to himself and is looking for a woman called L … aura. Wait, is this the Laura from The Walking Dead? Oh dear…

He also likes to wear a hat and has a distinctive gun.

But he’s totally not like Rick Grimes because he is the one trying to save Morgan and not the other way around in Episode 1 of Fear the Walking Dead Season 4.

CF: When I saw promo photos of John I thought he was going to be a stereotype and I was gonna hate him.  But right off the bat you see him reading Love Story and the more he talks, the more you seem to learn about this character.  By the time they were at the end of the episode I was totally on his side as a character.  But then, both the new characters are great and not the sort of people you’ve seen up to this point.

RT: I totally agree. John was not a character I thought I would like at all. However, by the end of the episode, he was completely under my skin. Al too.

AMC's 'Fear the Walking Dead' Season 4 Premiere, Episode 1, What's Your Story, Al covers her ears

[Image via Richard Foreman, Jr/AMC]

Al Is Awesome

While I am pretty impressed with John and his country hick sort of humour, Al (Maggie Grace) is another character I can’t wait to learn more about.

From Episode 1 of Fear the Walking Dead Season 2, we already know she is a journalist who is trying to curate survivor stories. I guess her theory is that, one day, when civilisation is restored, people will want to know this shit.

She also drives a S.W.A.T vehicle like a motherfucking boss.

She is the third person in Morgan’s new gang and comes across Morgan and John when they are accidentally captured by Leland and his rogue gang. (On a side note: if you are ever in the zombie apocalypse and come across a tent that looks perfect, just keep walking. It’s a trap.)

CF: You know who she is?  She’s the Max Brooks–author of Word War Z–of this world.  Since there were never any zombie stories in this world, Max Brooks had no reason to write WWZ, and now… Althea is doing it for real, but she’s living it and finding the stories of those who have lived up to this point.

And yes: you see a good tent, just leave it.  Walk on and don’t stop.

She negotiates on their behalf and ends up taking Morgan and John back to her place so she can ply them for their stories. John immediately opens up about his search for Laura. He reveals just enough for me to wonder if maybe Laura left him because he was a creepy stalker and not because of reasons that are too painful for him to disclose just yet.

Morgan, on the other hand, is determined to make Al work for her story. He does tell her about the Kingdom with a king and a tiger, though. While Al likely doesn’t believe him, she does dog him about why he left a perfectly good community.

Finally, Morgan gives the following reply.

“I lose people, and then I lose myself.”

Already, I am wondering just how long it is before Morgan starts seeing dead people again.

CF: Let’s mention that Al like to negotiate by pointing a couple of remote controled M-60 machineguns at you.  That tends to make you listen and give in pretty quickly.  I do love her S.W.A.T. truck, though.

RT: Yeah, she could totally end up being a bad guy 😉

AMC's 'Fear the Walking Dead' Season 4 Premiere, Episode 1, What's Your Story, Morgan and John are captured

[Image via Richard Foreman, Jr/AMC]

Leland Is A Douche

Leland, not happy with the ramen noodles and Pall Mall’s given to him in exchange for Morgan and John, decides to raid Al’s place.

In the process, John releases a room full of walkers, Morgan is shot, and Al gives Leland a dummy set of keys rather than hand over her S.W.A.T. machine.

Oh, and Leland’s group totally gets wiped out of existence. However, Morgan didn’t have to actually kill any of them, so I guess we can hold off on the “I see dead people” episode just yet.

However, as a result of all this, the group is now a thing and they set off in search of Laura because Al is totally a sucker for a good story.

CF: I loved John’s line, “That man was a special kind of asshole.” Keep bringing that to the table, writers. It makes him seem all the more real when he says shit like that.

AMC's 'Fear the Walking Dead' Season 4 Premiere, Episode 1, What's Your Story, Al and her SWAT Vehicle

[Image via Richard Foreman, Jr/AMC]

Alicia Is An Even Bigger Douche

While they are on the road, bonding and eating John’s candy, they spot a distraught girl in the middle of the road.

They are cautious at first — especially since Morgan and John reveal to Al that they don’t like killing people. However, they set forth; ready to help the damsel in distress. The woman, crying hysterically, manages to verbalise the following.

“There are bad people here.”

That crying girl is Alicia and she (and Nick and Luciana) ARE the bad people.

Even while captured, Al just wants to know their story. However, viewers will have to tune into next week’s episode of Fear the Walking Dead to find out just how Alicia’s group turned out to be the bad guys.

CF: Holy shit, what can I say about the end? I didn’t quite pick up on the voice at first, but when I saw the eyes through the wild hair I was like, “Wait? Is that Alicia? It IS Alicia!” I was literally going “Holy Fuck!” when she pulled the knife on Al and Strand, Lucinda, and Nick popped up.  After that I was laughing because we’ve been saying for two seasons now, “It won’t be long before Madison becomes the new Governor,” and no shit: this whole ambush comes across as something he’d have pulled back in the day.  Only Madison isn’t crazy and neither are her followers.  Seriously, this is what I’ve been waiting for with these people: to make their own community and do it right, but still be some ruthless shits at the end of the day.

To me it was a perfect moment that tells you the Clark Family ain’t the same ones you saw at the end of last season.  I have a feeling Morgan will find his new home to his liking ’cause Madison isn’t fucked up in the head like Rick.  Though… will it be long before she turns to the Dark Side?

What did you think of Episode 1 of the Fear the Walking Dead Season 4 premiere? Let us know by commenting below!

CF: Seriously, if this is how it’s starting I can’t wait to see how the season plays out.  And let’s give credit where credit is due: this episode was written by Scott Gimple, Andrew Chambliss and Ian B. Goldberg.  While Gimple is now the executive producer of the show, Chambliss and Goldberg are the actual show runners, and I’m guessing much of what appeared on the screen was their doing.  Both have a history with the show Once Upon a Time, with Chambliss writing a huge number of episodes for that series.

And just so you know, Chambliss and Goldberg wrote the next episode and Episode 5 is titled “Laura”.  So I guess we’ll find out about the person John’s looking for.

RT: I can’t WAIT to find out more about this Laura 😉 I can’t believe Gimple had a hand at something this good though. I guess the others made sure he didn’t fuck it up.

CF: Again, I think Gimple adds a few ideas and because of that they have to give him a credit.  But, this didn’t feel like his story: it felt like Chambliss and Goldberg.  The part I’d say was mostly Gimple: the fight at the trailers.

Fear the Walking Dead returns to AMC on Sunday, April 22, at 9 p.m. ET. Zap2It lists the following synopsis for Episode 2 (titled “Another Day in the Diamond”).

“A troubled survivor finds allies in an unexpected place; the life Madison has fought to build comes under threat.”

[Featured image via Richard Foreman, Jr/AMC]

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