Fear The Walking Dead S03E07 “The Unveiling” REVIEW

Fear The Walking Dead S03E07 “The Unveiling” REVIEW

0 comments 📅18 July 2017, 23:53

Airing in the UK on AMC, exclusive to BT, Mondays at 2am and 9pm 
Writer: Mark Richard
Director: Jeremy Webb

Essential Plot Points:

  • We open on Jake heading to Walker’s land. He hears something, runs, hides, prepares to confront his attacker and…It’s Alicia.
  • She tells him Walker’s people killed Mike and his family. Jake is crushed… and isn’t stopping. Alicia goes with him.
  • They reach the gas station Walker and his people work out of and are let in. Walker, preparing lunch, welcomes them with some remarkably polite hostility.
  • Back at the ranch, Madison has noticed Alicia is missing. Nick isn’t worried. Nick also isn’t interested in alleviating any of his mother’s fears. When Jeremiah admits Jake is missing too, it becomes clear something is going on. He also makes it clear no one is leaving as they can’t spare the manpower. When Jeremiah calls him on his bravado, Nick cheerfully volunteers for the militia.
  • Jake and Walker talk. It does not go well. Especially when Walker admits that Jake’s drunk friends made his life hell before the fall. He also implies, HEAVILY, that Jeremiah killed members of the tribe and the innocent verdict was bought.
  • And that’s when lunch is served.
  • By Ofelia.

  • Back at the ranch, Nick joins the training. He admits that he blames himself for Travis’ death and the horrific damage it’s caused Madison. Troy welcomes him aboard.
  • At the gas station, Alicia berates Ofelia for leaving them to die. She, showing more class than pretty much every single other character in the history of this show, apologises.
  • She also reveals that there was no mission two nights ago. Someone at the Ranch is lying…
  • Jake volunteers to stay as a hostage and Alicia persuades him to swap her out so Jeremiah will listen to him.
  • Nick is cutting his hair at the ranch when Jake and Ofelia come back. Madison is not happy, as is Nick but Jake reassures them as best they can.
  • At the gas station, Walker gives Alicia the tour. It goes well until she finds the helicopter. She explains that Walker is responsible for Travis’ death. Alicia is disgusted at Walker for it, admitting she hates him.
  • At the ranch, Madison interrupts Jake and Jeremiah discussing Walker’s need for water. Madison is furious about Alicia being left behind. She wants blood and, once Jake leaves. Jeremiah implies heavily that she’s going to get it.
  • At the gas station, Walker shows Alicia the skull of his great grandfather and the sideshow trailer they had to make of their family history. Madison talks to Troy about Ofelia. Which is actually her talking about getting Alicia back by any means necessary. She openly advocates war. More than Troy.
  • Jeremiah corners Ofelia in the larder and browbeats her into keeping quiet about old business.
  • At the gas station, Alicia is feeding the pigs when she’s snatched by Troy. Alicia is FURIOUS, especially when Troy kills one of Walker’s men.
  • War is coming. For no good reason beyond Madison wanting it.
  • Everything goes South. Nick is almost killed and a running gunfight ensues.
  • They roll back. Jake and Alicia are disgusted. Jeremiah isn’t much better.

  • The following day, the Otto brothers talk. It does not go well. Jake is adamant that he can take Ofelia back and make something of this catastrophe. Troy isn’t certain he’s coming back if he does.
  • Ofelia apologises for Travis and leaves, advising Alicia to do the same.

  • Jake brings Ofelia back. He’s beaten with an inch of his life, has his scalp opened and is only saved when Ofelia intercedes. Walker sends him home with a message; he’ll finish scalping Jake the next time he sees him. He’ll feed Troy to the hogs. And once that’s done, he’ll burn Jeremiah alive.
  • A beaten up Ofelia is dumped at the gates. She’s debriefed by Madison who is, again, just a staggering asshole. Jeremiah makes sure her wounds are tended and sends her for treatment. Jeremiah makes sure Madison knows Ofelia is her responsibility. Madison puts her to work and Ofelia makes the coffee for the militia.
  • That night, Troy makes sure his staff know that no one sleeps for 48 hours. He reveals that the plan is to leave a ‘suicide note’ at any contact; a soldier who will stay behind to fight off overwhelming odds while the others engage elsewhere. Nick volunteers because, as far as he’s concerned he’s ‘suicide proof’.
  • Alicia is sharpening her knife and probing her mom’s morality. She pushes on whether Walker really killed the Trimbles and Madison has no answer.
  • At the gate, one of Troy’s guys suddenly starts vomiting and screaming in pain.
  • Then another.
  • Madison, Ofelia and Alicia are woken by the screams. Ofelia does not seem overly surprised…
  • The gate guards are dead.
  • The gate guards turn.
  • On the inside of the fence.

  • Nick races back to the camp to see chaos. People ordered to stay in their tents, Walkers screaming but impossible to spot.
  • Nick, Alicia and Madison regroup and Nick begins to vomit. Ofelia poisoned the food. She makes a run for it as Madison chases her…


There’s a lot of good this episode, and a lot of brave choices. But if the show doesn’t land this next episode then we’re in some trouble.

The good, both in terms of writing and acting, sits with Alicia and Jake. Jake is so fundamentally decent that it’s almost impossible to believe he’s Jeremiah’s son or Troy’s brother. Somehow though, he’s still sympathetic and interesting instead of a wet blanket. That’s helped immensely by how little patience he clearly has for his family’s nonsense and the sheer courage of going into Walker’s territory to speak to him.

Walker is the other really strong note this episode. Michael Greyeyes is incredible in the role, never once backing down from the man’s justifiable fury but putting a real note of maturity and consideration behind it. The scene where he shows Alicia the helicopter is a standout as is the moment where he shows her the trailer his ancestor’s bones are in. Walker, thanks to Greyeyes, is so much more than a stereotype. This is a calm, rational, murderous man whose fierce competence is matched only by his seething hatred for Jeremiah. That makes him unpredictable but sympathetic and, given he functionally scars Jake for life this episode, that’s quite an achievement.

Elsewhere the episode is both brave and on fragile territory. Madison’s relentless bloodthirst is understandable but dangerously close to one note. Elsewhere the closing action scene is great (The Walkers…they’re coming from INSIDE THE FENCE!) but requires people to be blisteringly stupid for it to happen. That’s a crutch the show has leant on too often before and even with the massively welcome return of Ofelia, it feels a little off.

Despite that, this is still a good episode. Lots happens, there’s some nice twists to the Ranch mystery and the cast are all great. If it can hold this line one more episode, the show’s about to hand in its best ever half season.

The Good:

  • The drone camera work that opens the episode is genuinely beautiful. We love how this season, in particular, FTWD is starting to establish a very different visual style to the original show.
  • Some excellent Alicia stuff this week. We love how she’s becoming the moral centre of the show even as Madison and Nick to a lesser extent are becoming…something…else.

The Bad:

  • Madison’s full force bloodthirstiness feels odd. It shouldn’t, she saw a man scalped and his brain eaten in real time after all, but it still feels super racist very fast.
  • Likewise, Jake’s near scalping is simultaneously horrible and weirdly flat.
  • No one thought to keep the hostage away from the food for the only soldiers on site? Seriously?

And the Random:

  • Jeremy Webb has directed for Merlin, Atlantis, Madam Secretary, Red Road, Elementary and has an episode of the upcoming Netflix Punisher show on his CV He also directed ‘The Wedding Of River Song’ and ‘The Curse Of The Black Spot’ for Doctor Who.
  • Mark Richard has of course been in these parts before, writing ‘The New Frontier’ at the top of the season. He’s also worked on Tyrant, Hell on Wheels, Party of Five and many more.
  • Michael Greyeyes, who plays Walker, has previously appeared in shows like Numb3rs and Law & Order: Criminal Intent. He’s also done voice work for the computer game Prey, is an Associate Professor of Theatre at York University and founded Signal Theatre.
Review by Alasdair Stuart

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