The Look of ‘Fear the Walking Dead’ in Season 7 Will Remind You of ‘Mad Max’
This is an excerpt from TV Guide Magazine’s The Walking Dead Universe Special Collector’s Issue, which is available for international pre-order online now at TheWalkingDeadMag.com and will be available nationwide on newsstands now.
The thrilling sixth season of Fear the Walking Dead ended with a—literal—bang. And the 10 nuclear warheads that doomsday cult leader Teddy Maddox (John Glover) unleashed across the state of Texas in the last episode have altered the fabric of the show.
“One of the things I’m excited for fans to see is our depiction of the apocalypse on top of the apocalypse,” says Lennie James, who plays benevolent leader Morgan Jones. It will affect the landscape drastically, he notes, as well as “how [the survivors] move around and inhabit it.”
Morgan’s world was also rocked in the finale by the arrival of an orphaned baby, delivered to him and his love Grace Mukherjee (Karen David) by local dog Rufus (what a good boy!). According to James, little Mo (full name: Morgan Jr.) becomes a symbol of hope: “It is beholden on us to put ourselves second, behind making sure we can build something for this child.”
Meanwhile, con man Victor Strand (Colman Domingo) doubles down on his murky survival tactics, and possibly tears some things apart. “I love the fact that he plays on both sides of the line,” Domingo says of his morally gray character. But Strand’s latest betrayal—shoving Morgan into the dead as bait—becomes what Domingo calls “a dividing point” between him and the group. Strand won’t be lonely, though—Domingo teases a “great team-up” coming for him and historian Howard (Omid Abtahi).
And what about fighter Alicia Clark (Alycia Debnam-Carey), last seen trapped, but safe, in a bunker? “When we see her emerge, that time in there is going to have changed her a lot,” says Debnam-Carey, who directs for the first time in Season 7. “Alicia’s position grows further into the reluctant leader.”
As for the other steadfast survivors, nurse June Dorie (Jenna Elfman) and her father-in-law John Sr. (Keith Carradine) and lovebirds Dwight (Austin Amelio) and Sherry (Christine Evangelista) all took shelter underground. But Daniel (Rubén Blades), Luciana (Danay Garcia), Charlie (Alexa Nisenson), Sarah (Mo Collins), Wes (Colby Hollman) and Rabbi Kessner (Peter Jacobson) were flown from the nuclear fallout in a Civic Republic Military helicopter thanks to journalist Al (Maggie Grace). “That is going to bring some unintended consequences Al wasn’t bargaining for,” executive producer Andrew Chambliss says.
Season 7’s biggest change will be its new look post-warheads. Domingo describes the scenery as “reminiscent of Mad Max.” Debnam-Carey adds: “And the season doesn’t just change the way the world looks—it’s also a clean slate for our characters.” A fresh start in the filthiest nuclear apocalypse, that is.
Fear the Walking Dead, Season Premiere Sunday, Oct. 17, 9/8c, AMC