Fear the Walking Dead Season 8 Episode 2 Review: Blue JayPaul Dailly at .
Despite the rebound in quality for the first episodes of Fear the Walking Dead Season 8, the series is still struggling with villains that lack the cutthroat nature we've come to expect from this universe.
PADRE should have been a compelling final group of villains, but Fear the Walking Dead Season 8 Episode 2 continued reiterating the writing flaws for the series.
At many points, PADRE should have been able to find June before she took the fingers of their agents, but maybe I'm underestimating June's capabilities.
Jenna Elfman delivered a memorable performance as this hardened version of the character we've been watching for five seasons, and it might be the saving grace of the episode.
Undoubtedly, June has witnessed more horrors than ever during the seven-year time jump, but she slowly started figuring out the issues with the group and is now fully aware that they are not to be trusted.
Her plan to take fingers and take operatives down like they were going out of fashion was brilliant, but it highlighted that PADRE can't be as competent as we've believed.
There's an element of mystery surrounding June's past and what she did for PADRE during that time jump.
Woman: Warbler, what's your ETA?
Warbler: 10 minutes out.
Woman: Hurry up. Got a lead on an egg. Might be a whole mess.
June has always had a solid moral compass, allowing her to make the best decisions, even in the most dire situations, so she must have felt helpless while experimenting on individuals as a means to cure the zombie virus.
We shouldn't expect any cure to be utilized in this series because there's no way that wouldn't be used in one of the spinoffs.
It's too good of a storyline to be used on Fear the Walking Dead, which has struggled to showcase any form of consistency.
There's a lot of discord between June and Shrike, and it's not difficult to understand why.
Shrike is written as one of the stupidest characters on TV.
Through two episodes, she's had people go against her rule, and instead of killing them so they can't come back to haunt her down the line, she's shot arbitrary dialogue at them.
Had the writers wanted to make viewers fear for the group, she should have had characters killed on-screen.
There are many people missing from the end of Fear the Walking Dead Season 7, including Wendell, Sarah, and Charlie.
Adrian: Hello? I just wanna talk. Don't shoot.
June: Give me one good reason not to.
Adrian: Just hear me out.
June: How'd you find this place?
Adrian: I followed you here. Please! I'm the one who's been writing on your signs. Name's Adrian.
June: I don't want to know your name.
Adrian: I need your help.
June: Can't help you.
Adrian: My daughter, Hannah...
June: Don't know her.
Adrian: Collectors took her away from me years ago, right near here.
June: I said I don't know her!
Adrian: Maybe not. But you know PADRE. I've seen your signs. What you've got in that jar. I know you can help me.
June: Get out.
If you watch Fear the Walking Dead online, you know there's a high chance Charlie won't be alive, especially considering the radiation poisoning she had at the end of the prior season.
Then again, maybe we'll learn Charlie was used as a bargaining chip to force June's hand to follow the rules.
It killed June telling Charlie of her grim prognosis at Strand's tower, so she would try to find a way to save the teenager from a horrible death.
Then again, bringing Charlie back into the mix probably won't resonate with Madison. Charlie killed her son, and it would be a disservice to the character of Madison to have her not do something about it.
Shrike taking June's trigger finger was a short-term solution to a long-term problem. June will be able to train herself to fight back in ways Shrike won't see coming, and it's hard to imagine people following Shrike for much longer when she makes such laughable decisions.
Dwight and Sherry being a part of the mission was no surprise, and the writing for the couple was strong as they tried to save their son while simultaneously trying to come to terms with the fact they may never see him again.
PADRE has taken something from everyone at this stage, and Shrike allowing the zombie to bite the child when he was away from death's door was a predictable way to force June to continue her experiments.
We don't know the true extent of what powers PADRE's medicine has, but it seems to be keeping people who have been bitten alive, which is an intriguing concept.
June: I don't want to answer any questions. I will take you there. We will do this. But then you need to hold up your end of the deal and get me that boat.
Sherry: We will.
Dwight and Sherry's apprehension to have June proceed with the surgery on their son after learning what she had been up to was the perfect way to show much they cared for their kid, despite never being able to be parents to him.
My best guess is that our heroes will lose a lot more before they can fight back, but PADRE should be very afraid when they do.
Madison and Morgan popping up at the end of the episode was excellent for one reason:
It confirmed the show was done with the anthology format of storytelling that worked for Fear the Walking Dead Season 6.
Having characters disappear for episodes at a time on Fear the Walking Dead Season 7 didn't serve the story in any way, shape, or form.
We have a problem. The bullet hit the control panel. I can't do the surgery without power.June
Madison and Morgan's dynamic is one of the main attractions of this final season because, understandably, they've both changed during their time since meeting PADRE.
Madison was previously driven by her want to keep her children safe, whether that meant she had to embrace villainous tendencies to do it or not.
You could tell Madison was thinking about what she would do for Nick and Alycia when she tricked the PADRE guards to give Morgan a chance to escape and find Mo.
Unfortunately, it was another development that was too convenient to take seriously, and once again, it reflected negatively on this group we're supposed to be afraid of.
"Blue Jay" could have been an excellent episode of the series, but the low stakes and convenient developments left many aspects of the hour feeling too predictable.
Hopefully, we get some insight into the fate of the other missing characters in the coming episodes and learn more about PADRE because, right now, they suck.
What are your thoughts on June wiping out the guards and experimenting on people?
Dwight: I'm gonna kill you.
Shrike: Why would you do that? I am the only one who can save his life.
Did you like meeting Dwight and Sherry's son? Do you think they will be reunited down the line?
What's your take on PADRE so far?
Hit the comments.
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Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.