‘Fear the Walking Dead’ Sets Morgan Up for Heartbreak in ‘Today and Tomorrow’ (RECAP)
[WARNING: The following contains MAJOR spoilers for Fear The Walking Dead Season 5 episode 14, “Today and Tomorrow.”]
If Morgan’s story in 5B has been about letting go of his past, then “Today and Tomorrow” is the final chapter.
This episode sees the stick-swinging altruist finally summoning the courage to say goodbye to his all-consuming regret about the role he played in the deaths of his wife and son. It appears he’s motivated to move forward, but the apocalypse might be getting ready to shove him backward again.
Speaking of looking backward, Al’s not ready to give up on Isabelle or CRM just yet, even though she can’t tell her friends anything about what she went through earlier. When a new group might offer clues as to the helicopter squad’s motives, she jumps at the chance to investigate even though it’ll put her in danger.
The episode opens with Morgan and Al running into a man named Tom. He’s trying to escape some not-so-great people, who turn out to be the cowboy group that took the oil fields. Surprise!
When the cowboys arrive they hide, and after the baddies leave, Morgan and Al take Tom with them and hit the road. Al gets his story, and he tells her he’s from a place called Paradise Ridge. Paradise Ridge is a condo complex he used to lead until the cowboys rode in, “saved” the failing place by providing food and electricity, and kicked him out. They also find out his sister is there, so they spring into action to help.
Al, noticeably shaken after Tom mentions the cowboys’ “not about today, about tomorrow” mantra, is determined to get inside the walls at any cost (she doesn’t say it, but she’s thinking about CRM and Isabelle.) Morgan doesn’t understand until she tells him she’s looking for someone who might be inside.
And thus, Morgan accompanies her. They slip inside the walls and hide in a barn just long enough to see their oil rig drive through the gates, which is an unwelcome surprise. This freaks out Morgan, who says that if anything happened to the group (read: Grace) it’ll be his fault. They opt to split up. Al goes to search for anything related to CRM and Isabelle, while Morgan goes to find Tom’s sister.
Making an Entrance
Neither of them are successful. As it turns out, Tom’s sister left not long after he did, but she did leave a walker in the closet that breaks free and causes serious trouble for Al. But before her life is endangered from the walker, Al pokes around the compound and finds… well, not a whole lot. She finds a map with some keys, but nothing more concrete to tie the cowboys to CRM.
Then, on her way back, the walker Morgan freed from the closet gets the upper hand over her and she falls into a pool. It seems like she should have been bitten several times, but Morgan jumps into the pool and rescues her. For a minute it appears everything might be all right, and then the cowboys, Virginia in the lead, show up. “You two sure know how to make an entrance,” she says.
Letting Go of the Past
Virginia brings Morgan and Al to her office, where they have an odd chat. Virginia doesn’t want to hurt them and makes mention of some large settlements complete with doctors, but Al’s disheartened to hear her people aren’t flying any helicopters. The leader gives the duo their stuff back, allows Al to keep anything she recorded and returns Morgan’s staff, totally fixed. They then head on their merry way.
Later, Morgan’s trying to keep telling Al about his family as he had been earlier in the episode, but his heart doesn’t seem to be in it. “I don’t think I need to do this anymore,” he says. He then radios Grace.
Not the Way You Think
Back at the mall, Grace and Daniel pack up their haul from the stores and head out. Unfortunately, their haul is a little too heavy, and the truck they’re in breaks down. After battling some walkers (and losing some vinyl records, much to Daniel’s chagrin), they trek to an old bar and safely spend the night there.
In the morning, they eat a breakfast of Twinkies—they really don’t expire!—and muse on their respective worldviews. Earlier in the episode Grace had seemed to be looking toward the future rather than worrying about her death, and Daniel admitted he was no longer as much of a harsh realist as he had been. Now, he tells Grace what changed his mind: Charlie. “Nothing felt the same to me after she showed up,” he says. “You think you know what it is you’re going to leave behind… but things don’t always go the way you think.”
He says he regrets not being able to save the records because he wanted to share them with Charlie, but Grace figures out they don’t need them. She sees a guitar on the stage, and the two sing a duet.
It’s Happening Now
When Morgan reaches out to Grace, Daniel answers. Something’s clearly wrong with her; she’s sweating, weak and her voice is hoarse. She tells Morgan that the thing she “thought was happening at the mall is happening now”—in fewer words, she’s dying. Desperate to reach her, Morgan asks where they are, and when Daniel tells them, he says they’ll be there.
- This wasn’t too bad of an episode, all things considered. We got some decent plot progression, and shockingly, these cowboy people don’t seem to be related to CRM. I don’t know if I’m happy about the unpredictability of that, or sad because Fear could use the harsh, realistic tone change.
- Speaking of tone changes, I wish this show would commit to having villains again. Remember the Proctors? Even with the little screentime they had, they were terrifying. On the main show, Alpha is terrifying. Negan had jokes, sure, but he was scary when he needed to be. Fear could be so much better if it had an antagonist that inspired… well, fear.
- Does this mean the writers aren’t dropping the radiation exposure plot? If they’re not, several of the current series regulars, Morgan included, are now in grave danger. Maybe I’m just giving myself inaccurate hope, but… it’s likely the only way out of that predicament is CRM and its resources. Right?
Fear the Walking Dead, Sundays, 9/8c, AMC