That was refreshing.
Fear the Walking Dead Season 6 is taking an anthology approach to storytelling, and it is proving to be a nice change of pace for the series.
Fear the Walking Dead Season 6 Episode 2 got us up to speed on what happened to Alicia, Daniel, and Strand and was filled with must-see moments from start to finish.
It's clear the writers have taken the criticism toward Fear the Walking Dead Season 5 on board and are now telling stories that are intriguing, scary, and help advance the overall plot of the series.
If you watch Fear the Walking Dead online, you know that Alicia and Daniel have been given some truly abysmal plots in recent years, making them seem like completely different people.
"Welcome to the Club" was the best writing for both of those characters in years, putting them on paths that feel true to the characters.
Alicia is no longer worried about radiation, painting trees, or sulking her way through the apocalypse. She has been hardened and is ready to fight back when the time comes to secure her freedom.
I've missed Alicia's moments with Strand, so I was unimpressed with Strand reassigning Alicia somewhere else. In the earlier seasons of the series, Strand was selfish and would throw people in front of a bus if it meant saving his bacon.
That Strand was on full display throughout the grueling encounter with the walkers, and while it was a nice throwback for the longtime viewers who have stuck with the show, Strand was upset by it.
Sanjay did not have the drive to survive, as evidenced by the very first scene of the installment. Every single time it seemed like he was going to rise like a phoenix and save some lives, he would be caught hiding away from the walkers.
He was a liability to the team, and Strand knew it. What if, god forbid, he was tasked with looking after Dakota? He would have thrown the child to the wolves.
Strand stabbing Sanjay and hurling him at the undead was a genuinely shocking development, but don't expect Strand to do it again any time soon. He hated that the selfish side of him came out, and he wants everyone to be far away from him in case he screws up his new post.
Strand likes to have some element of control, and there's a good chance he will relish at being a ranger. He can make the difficult decisions, as evidenced by sending Alicia away.
The plan to kill the raiders and escape Virginia's clutches was a poorly executed plan, but at least there was a small victory on the other side of it.
Virginia testing everyone who entered the building to see if they could work well together to form an army was unexpected, but it highlighted the fact that the villain is worried about the safety of her people when the big war arrives.
It's possible this big war could be against the Civic Republic Military because all of the TWD-verse shows have been introducing them of late, and there was Isabelle on Fear the Walking Dead Season 5.
Virginia may not be the villain we've been led to believe and could be merely battling to maintain a position of power. When it comes to leading a group of people, there are tough decisions to be made.
Morgan very publicly ridiculed her, so in order for her to look as though she's badass, she had to make a decision to change the perception of herself.
They are no sworn enemies, but they could realize they need to work together for the greater good -- assuming the people she wants Strand's army to fight against are actually bad people.
Daniel implying he had lost his memory was probably the best way he could keep himself safe. It pained him to play dumb in front of both Alicia and Charlie, but the last-minute reveal that he remembered everything was a nice touch.
Morgan is completely different nowadays, and if Daniel works with him, they could trigger the undoing of Virginia before long.
Many characters are still unaccounted for, and I suspect the small groups will get their episodes together as we build towards the midseason finale.
Then again, there's no telling when the midseason finale will arrive. Production was halted due to COVID-19, but it is back up and running again.
I want to tell myself not to get too excited by the direction of the series because the series typically hits a lull after strong opening episodes.
It's nice the series is on a good track, and my only hope is that it can keep up the momentum as we head into a new chapter with Al and Dwight.
What did you think of Strand getting promoted? Are you happy the OG characters are actually getting decent material to work with?
What will Morgan and Daniel do to get the upper hand on the raiders and, by extension, Virginia?
Hit the comments below.
Fear the Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9/8c on AMC.
Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.