As we approach the first season finale, we are now bringing a number of major plot points to a head. With this penultimate episode we clearly see where we will be heading in episode 6, and a rough idea of where the characters will be by the end of the season.
Whilst ‘Fear’ still has its faults, it’s managed to improve over the last couple of episodes to produce a more polished and engaging approach to its storytelling. The characters are a lot more interesting, even the boring ones, and the plots, while they may have been rushed, feel like they work on screen.
I, as many people do, would have liked to see some more of society breaking down, but it’s kind of nice to have a slower pace, opting to focus on the public and military dispute instead. This defines the back half of this season, as it leads towards its carnage based finale, we get the sense of the imposing force upon the residents of this little cul de sac.
These are all stories and themes that haven’t been done before, even in ‘The Walking Dead’, but here they’re presented with enough verve and panache to keep it watchable. Both the soundtrack and cinematography are improving, adapting to the slower and more chilling atmosphere that has evolved since last episode. For example the story of Liza working in an internment camp like hospital gives things a wider view, as well as new information, which keeps things interesting.
Most notable this week is the introduction of a new character, Strand, who Nick meets in the same ‘camp’, and who is a smooth talking, smartly dressed man who has a way with the guards. He seems like a fresh new addition to the show at the moment, so I hope that he becomes a regular.
Overall, this was a solid enough episode that means I look forward to the finale, and I hope it can fix its problems in the next season.
Rating: B+ 8/10