Spoilers below for the two-part midseason premiere of Fear the Walking Dead Season 3. If you haven't already watched, come back once you have.
Throughout Fear the Walking Dead's run so far, Frank Dillane's Nick Clark has made choices both great and terrible moving from group to group, and he dropped some major whoppers in the doubled-up midseason premiere. First, he thwarted Troy's attempt to go out in a blaze of glory and corpses, and then Nick confessed to having killed Troy's father Jeremiah. And later, he was somewhat strong-armed into agreeing to side with the rancher militia. When showrunner Dave Erickson spoke with CinemaBlend about the back half of Season 3, I asked about Nick's struggles in choosing sides, and here's what the showrunner told me.
Nick is definitely stuck between a rock and a hard place, where the rock and the hard place both have instincts to kill the other. Of course, since he's only been privy to the "Broke Jaw Ranch vs. the Nation" antagonism for a temporary spell, he's able to view the situation from more of a big picture angle, and he can see the inanity behind the militia trying to restart any more potentially deadly skirmishes with Walker's crew. Especially since he straight up murdered Jeremiah in order to usher in something resembling peace between the two factions. And neither the water shortage nor the well situation are helping things.
Not everyone knows what Nick did, obviously, and it's pretty interesting that Troy didn't share Nick's big secret with the rest of the ranchers. (Especially his brother Jake, who is basically doing everything that everyone else tells him to do.) Still, even though Nick did kill Jeremiah, he outwardly appears to be siding with the militia every step of the way, so there's not much of a reason for them to suspect him of any "double agent" intentions. At this point, even if Troy came back and told everyone that Jeremiah's death is on Nick and Madison's hands, Nick could probably fake his way out of it and make Troy look like a liar. Although the way he keeps trying to pacify situations would clue them in a bit more.
But then, it might not even come to that. The last thing we see during Episode 10, "The Diviner," is Alicia working with the Native Americans in trying to dig a new well, which comes just as Nick and the militia are approaching Ofelia's place. Instead of waging a new battle, both sides converge in the effort to find more water. During my talk with Dave Erickson, he brought up that moment as the one that seemingly does unite the two sides. Although he left things off ominously, hinting at more dangers on the way.
Now, is he talking about threats like the zombies that haven't been very prevalent so far in Season 3? Or is he talking about other desperate folks still in the land of the living, such as a group like the distressed people who attempted a mutiny at the dam? We've got more info from Dave Erickson on the way. In the meantime, check out what the showrunner told us about whether or not Troy will return, as well as how Nick. Alicia and Madison's relationships are changing in the back half of Season 3.
With next week's episode drawing in its focus to a select few characters, Fear the Walking Dead airs Sunday nights on AMC at 9:00 p.m. ET. To see everything else that's heading to the small screen soon, check out our fall TV schedule.
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Nick is a Cajun Country native and an Assistant Managing Editor with a focus on TV and features. His humble origin story with CinemaBlend began all the way back in the pre-streaming era, circa 2009, as a freelancing DVD reviewer and TV recapper. Nick leapfrogged over to the small screen to cover more and more television news and interviews, eventually taking over the section for the current era and covering topics like Yellowstone, The Walking Dead and horror. Born in Louisiana and currently living in Texas — Who Dat Nation over America’s Team all day, all night — Nick spent several years in the hospitality industry, and also worked as a 911 operator. If you ever happened to hear his music or read his comics/short stories, you have his sympathy.