Spoilers below for anyone who hasn't yet watched the Fear the Walking Dead episode titled "The Code."
In Season 4, Fear the Walking Dead's showrunners have gone for broke when it comes to introducing new characters into the country-crossing spinoff, and the Episode 11 brought in four new characters that will likely play heavily into the remaining five episodes of the season. Like last week's Alicia-centric installment, "The Code" is wholly tethered to Morgan as he crosses paths and radio waves with the new faces and voices. Let's go over each introduction in more detail.
Wendell and Sarah
When Daryl Mitchell's Wendell and Mo Collins' Sarah were first shown on the screen, I was halfway hoping Fear the Walking Dead was going to flex its buddy-comedy muscles more, given both actors have been known for some great comedic performances. And sure enough, their initial dialogue led audiences to believer they were completely gung ho about the trucking life. ("Keep onnnnn truckin'" could have been Fear's new catchphrase.) Alas, instead of truly being philanthropic journeyers delivering goods to those in need, the gun-toting duo were revealed to be quite different from how they presented themselves.
Basically, Wendell and Sarah are self-concerned thieves, having stolen the semi truck from someone else in Texas, not realizing that Morgan had fallen asleep in the back. The duo, who made the humorous claim that they were twins, don't seem to be outright murderers, even if they did leave Morgan for dead at one point. (Largely because he told them a bald-faced lie, which was a first for the character.) Their main goal after Morgan describes Alexandria (without naming it) is to make it there by any means necessary, which doesn't necessarily mean having Morgan along for the ride. But since he's the only one who knows how to get there, he's in for the long haul now, with pit stops to refurbish the "Take what you need, Leave what you don't" supply boxes spread along the road, and to pick up Alicia and the rest of Morgan's crew in Texas.
Jim The Brewmaster
As Morgan was attempting to head back to Texas after his impromptu road trip, he came across a bound and hooded man running through a field, with a pack of walkers not making the chase easy for him. This was eventually revealed to be Jim (but not Jimbo), portrayed by former 12 Monkeys star Aaron Stanford. From just his introduction, Jim appears to be a bit of a single-minded (and possibly simple-minded) chap whose ability to survive until this point of the series is somewhat mind-boggling. While he might have been lying, Jim said that he wasn't used to the walker-killing life, having spent most of his post-apocalyptic time in his brewery.
That's right, Jim makes beer. And he loves beer. Like, a lot. The way that Morgan felt about his son and wife, that's how Jim feels about his beer. He's not the only one with a mind for the suds, either, with people like Wendell and Sarah out there interested to know Jim's recipes and procedures. But while others might just be in it to get drunk and such, Jim has this grand plan to become the first major brewer of the new civilization, and is especially interested in hearing about Alexandria and the other communities, since beer is life and all. Jim's beer schemes are akin to Al's quest to document everyone's stories on video, in that both characters are thinking ahead to a point when society has already reemerged, and I like that element for each, even if Jim feels destined for a quick and hops-infused death.
That Mystery Character Morgan Talked To
While neither Wendell nor Sarah had the idea for those roadside supply boxes, somebody was responsible for them, and the episode led viewers to assume that person was a sensible and generous woman that Morgan had a short chat with on the walkie-talkie. The one who stated, "You know what we say: Take what you need, and leave what you don't." While it's unclear if she's actually part of another group or not, she was revealed at the end of the episode to be played by a rather unstable-looking Tonya Pinkins, perhaps best known to genre TV fans from her stint as Dr. Strange's sidekick Ethel Peabody on Gotham.
Morgan let the woman know that they're bringing her truck back to her, and that they'll see her up the road. She was definitely listening in, too, even if she didn't respond this time. But judging by the way she wrote the share-friendly motto on that impaled walker's face -- whose name was Pervis, and was possibly the person that Sarah and Wendell left on the side of the road -- I don't think she'll be planning anything positive for Morgan & Co. when she gets back on the road. Perhaps incidentally, she was shown at a place with a big beer poster on the wall, so is she also interested in Jim's beer recipes? What's this dude got in his recipes? Dun-dun-dunnnn.
Will Morgan actually make it back to Alexandria with all of these characters, or will he somehow get picked off along the way? I can't think the former is too likely, considering Fear has already been renewed for Season 5. But Fear the Walking Dead will further develop these characters and more as Season 4 keeps on truckin' every Sunday night on AMC at 9:00 p.m. ET. Head to our fall TV premiere schedule to see what new and returning shows will be on your screens soon.
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Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.