We have followed two timelines in Fear the Walking Dead season four.  The mid-season finale should give us the answer to the biggest question of all: What happened to Madison (Kim Dickens)?   

Morgan (Lennie James), Al (Maggie Grace), Naomi (Jenna Elfman), and Charlie (Alexa Nisenson) are taking a wounded John Dorie (Garret Dillahunt) to the stadium for medical supplies.  But Alicia (Alycia Debnam-Carey), Strand (Colman Domingo) and Luciana (Danay Garcia) are not far behind. Alicia believes Naomi had something to do with the fall of the baseball stadium. And she will waste no time making Naomi pay for it.

We will finally get to see what the Vultures do to make the stadium fall. And find out what happened to Madison? Hopefully Madison was right when she said, “No One’s Gone.”

RELATED: Recap Last Week’s Episode of FEAR THE WALKING DEAD “The Wrong Side of Where You Are”

Before

Sometime after the fall of the dam in season three, Madison comes upon a stranger in the dark. She pulls a gun on the individual, demanding the keys to their vehicle.  Althea, Al refuses to toss the keys to her, so Madison walks toward her. Madison trips over a wire and shoots Al’s cup of noodles. Al turns around and looks at her. Madison says that wasn’t an accident.  She says she’s lost everything. Al can sympathize with her.

Madison demands the keys again and ties up Al. Madison finds Al’s tapes, and asks what they are.  She says there are people out there who need her, and Al’s truck is going to make finding them a lot easier.  Al says the tapes are interviews. She tries to make a deal with Madison. Al breaks free of her zip ties and rushes on Madison.  Madison hits Al, knocking her out. When Al wakes up, Madison is gone and so is her camera and bag of tapes.

Madison finds a car and goes through the tapes. Hoping to find Nick (Frank Dillane) and Alicia among the interviews. She get frustrated when she can’t find anything.  A walker hears her outburst. Madison rolls down her window to kill the walker. Al is standing behind it with a gun pointed at Madison. She wants her stuff back and Madison’s story.

Fear the Walking Dead

Maggie Grace as Al in Fear the Walking Dead, “No One’s Dead” Photo by Richard Forman Jr./AMC

Al ties up Madison and starts recording.  She asks Madison who she lost. Madison won’t answer.  Al starts naming off loved ones, boyfriend, husband, girlfriend, kids…Madison flinches at the mention of kids.  Al asks what happened to her kids. Madison doesn’t know why it matters. Al says that Madison may not have the story she’s looking for, but it might be a story someone else wants to hear later.  

Madison starts by saying she promised to keep her kids safe and she failed.  She wanted to find them a place to live, but it was about more than walls. They had plenty of places with walls. She wanted a place where her kids wouldn’t have to steal or hurt anyone.  She thought she found it, but says what’s she’s looking for may not exist.

Present

Al films everything inside the truck.  Naomi says she stopped the bleeding, but she needs to get the bullet out.  Al hands the camera to Charlie and tells her to keep filming. Morgan asks if she can get them closer to the tunnels.

John tells Morgan not to endanger himself. Morgan says he got him out of something so now Morgan is returning the favor. Naomi says she knows exactly where the infirmary is and what supplies they need so she’s going too. She promises John that she will return this time. He jokes, telling her not to make him come after her.  Al shoots at the walkers as Naomi and Morgan run inside. As soon as the get in the tunnel, an explosion goes off above them. Al makes sure they are okay. Charlie looks through Al’s camera and sees Alicia standing at the top of the stadium. Al tells Morgan and Naomi to hurry. They have been found.

Fear the Walking Dead

Lennie James as Morgan Jones and Danay Garcia as Luciana Galvez Fear the Walking Dead, “No One’s Dead” Photo by Richard Forman Jr./AMC

Al sits on top of the van, shooting at Alicia, Strand and Luciana. Alicia radios her, asking if she still wants a story.  Charlie calls up to Al, John is getting worse. She radios Naomi, telling her that John is bleeding again. She instructs Al to put pressure on the wound.  John tells Charlie to turn on the camera. He tells Naomi to stop running for people because she has to make it…even if he doesn’t. And he instructs Morgan to do the same.  The truck is hit with a big blast. Alicia radios Al again asking if she liked the RPG. Al tells her to keep it coming, her van is not penetrable. The driver’s door falls off and Alicia is on the other side with a gun pointed at Al.

Alicia holds Charlie with a knife and points her gun at Al.  Naomi radios in that they are coming back. Alicia instructs Al to tell them that is safe.  Al tries talking Alicia out of hurting Charlie. Alicia says she has no problem killing Charlie because she killed Nick.  

John sees the radio is within his reach. He grabs it so Naomi and Morgan can hear Al and Alicia talking.  Strand radios Alicia to tell her that Naomi is not coming out. Alicia looks down and sees John’s hand on the radio.  Al and Charlie strike back. Al and Alicia start fighting.

Charlie radios to Naomi to hurry.  John continues to get worse. Naomi starts to run, but Morgan stops her.  Strand and Luciana are waiting for her to come out so they can kill her. He will go and she needs to tell him what to do to save John over the radio.

Fear the Walking Dead

Alycia Debnam-Carey as Alicia Clark and Maggie Grace as Al Fear the Walking Dead, “No One’s Dead” Photo by Richard Forman Jr./AMC

Alicia gets on top of Al, as her head hangs out of the van and walkers are reaching for her head. Al is able to get Alicia off of her and pushes her back into the van. Al pushes her into a cabinet filled with food. Alicia sees a bunch of ramen. She asks Al where she got the ramen.  Al says she traded them for a story in Oklahoma. Alicia grabs Al’s box of tapes and start going through them. She finds one labeled “Amina” and realizes that Al knew Madison. Alicia starts watching the tape.

Before

Madison tells a story about a bird that ran into the windows of their house. The wing was broken so her kids took the bird in to nurse it back to health. They fed and watered it, but it didn’t seem to get better. The kids wouldn’t give up though.  And one morning, Madison woke up to find the bird flying around in the living room. She needed to find a place that is different. So her kids won’t lose that goodness within them. Madison says she will do whatever it takes to keep that part of them alive.

Present

Morgan and Naomi move debris to get out of the tunnel. Alicia is waiting for them on the other side.  Morgan says he’s just trying to help his friend. Alicia says he can after he steps aside. She points a gun at Naomi and Morgan gets in front of the gun.  Naomi apologizes to Alicia, but Alicia doesn’t care. She says her mom is dead because of what Naomi did. Naomi says she has to save John, but Alicia doesn’t care about John.  Naomi reminds Alicia that this is not who she is, but Alicia says she’s not that person anymore.

Morgan tries to talk her down, saying she doesn’t want to be this person.  Alicia continues to tell him to get out of the way, but Morgan steps up to the gun.  Alicia asks if Morgan would really die for Naomi. He tells her about how he left his community and ran halfway across the country because he didn’t want to be around people.  A friend told him he would end up with people again, but he wanted to prove him wrong. And now he’s standing in front of a gun for someone he doesn’t even know.  He says things can change, but Alicia doesn’t believe it. He says he stepped aside for Nick, but he won’t do it for Alicia. Whatever her mother wanted for her is still there.  Morgan sees it.  Alicia lowers her gun and cries in Morgan’s arms. Naomi rushes to the truck.

RELATED: Recap the First Half of Season Four of FEAR THE WALKING DEAD HERE!

Before

Al labels Madison’s tape “Amina” and lets Madison go. She asks where she’s headed, so she knows how much food to give to Madison.  Madison asks what it will cost her as Al hands her a carton of ramen. Al says she wants to hear the story of when Madison finds her family.  Madison leaves, driving through Texas, stopping at every motel along the way. She comes upon a hotel with a single truck parked outside. She uses Morse Code to signal on the radio.  Alicia answers. She is with Strand, Luciana and Nick. Madison loads everyone up and takes them to the stadium. She says other places didn’t work because they were thinking too small. They have have room for others who come along.  Nick questions that statement. Madison tells them that someone helped her when she didn’t have to. And now it’s time they do the same.

Now

Everyone loads up in Al’s van. Strand asks Al why they never heard about her. Al assumes that Madison was ashamed of how they met.  She asks them what happened to Madison, so Alicia tells her to pull over.

Naomi tends to John and tells him that he will be okay. He thanks her for saving him, calling her Naomi.  She says her real name is June. John says that’s his favorite month. The others are outside. Al begins recording the story of what happened at the stadium.

Fear the Walking Dead

Colman Domingo as Victor Strand and Alycia Debnam-Carey as Alicia Clark Fear the Walking Dead, “No One’s Dead” Photo by Richard Forman Jr./AMC

The Stadium

Nick, Alicia, and Mel (Kevin Zeggers) are in a car in the parking lot, with the Vultures behind them.  Strand, Madison, and Luciana are on their way out to rescue them. They clear a path for Nick and Alicia to escape the car and get back into the stadium.  When they got there, the gate was wide open.

Madison told the stadium residents that the walls were strong, but they didn’t have faith. They all left the stadium, leaving the gates open.  Madison tried to stop them, but it was too late. The Vultures killed them all for trying to escape.

Mel took the car that he was rescued in.  Charlie tells them that he didn’t run. He saw her in the parking lot and took the car to save her.  

Naomi join the conversation. She says she tried to tell everyone to stay. She believed in the stadium and wanted it to work.  Naomi ran back inside to get some supplies. When she came out, the stadium was already overrun, so she had to run. Alicia says they thought Naomi died in the stadium.  She thinks Naomi joined them to save herself. Naomi tells her that the Vultures found her on the side of the road. She didn’t think there was anywhere left to go.

They couldn’t get out of the parking lot because of the Vultures.  The stadium was overrun with the dead. Madison did the only thing she could to save everyone.  She lit a flare and used it to draw the dead away from Nick and Alicia’s truck. Alicia tried to get to her, but Strand held her back.  Alicia says they reinforced the walls to keep the dead out, so Madison knew they were strong enough to hold the dead inside. She lead the walkers inside and tried to escape through the tunnels, but got cut off.  She locked herself inside with the dead. Alicia tried calling to her over the radio. Madison answered. She said she didn’t want to lose the stadium because she thought they needed it. But they all know, no one’s gone til they’re gone.

As a large group of walkers descend on Madison, she lights the place up with the flare.  Alicia and Nick watch the stadium burn from the truck. Alicia says it was never about the stadium.  It was about the people. Madison gave up her life so everyone could live…so Alicia could live.

Al puts away her camera.  Strand passes out the noodles for everyone to eat, including Charlie.  They sit and eat in silence.

Thoughts

I can’t believe Madison is dead.  It doesn’t feel like the end of her story.  But Kim Dickens confirmed on Talking Dead that Madison is dead.  This has been Madison’s story all along, and I’m not above the writers giving it to Alicia, but…the show just won’t be the same.  

In the end it is classic Madison. She has always said she would do anything to keep her kids safe.  So it makes sense that Madison would do something so reckless just to make sure they all survive.

I’m a little frustrated with her story. The writers made her so ruthless in season three and now they decide to make her find a better way to live. Only to die senselessly.  Season three Madison would have killed Mel and Ennis in their sleep on the first night of the Vultures arrival. She wouldn’t have let the conflict go on as long as it did. That’s the Madison I was waiting for.  

When Fear returns in August, it will be a completely different show.  On one hand, I’m excited for what’s to come. On the other, I don’t know that I’ll like the show.  There will never be another character like Madison Clark.

Fear the Walking Dead returns August 12 on AMC.

 

 

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Noetta Harjo

Noetta is a self proclaimed Indigenerd, Sooner by heart, and working for that space program. Fanatic about zombies, superheroes, and Jedi.
Noetta Harjo
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