Why Fear The Walking Dead's Austin Amelio Didn't Totally Expect Dwight's Big Reunion

dwight fear the walking dead
(Image credit: amc press)

Spoilers below for anyone who hasn't yet watched the latest episode of Fear the Walking Dead, titled "Alaska."

The third episode of Fear the Walking Dead Season 6 initially appeared to be a buddy adventure dramedy between Maggie Grace's Al and Austin Amelio's Dwight, but the final sequence delivered the not-exactly-unexpected reunion that franchise fans have been waiting ages to see come to fruition. No, not between Al and Isabelle, since Al gave up her shot at that reconnection. Instead, I'm talking about Dwight finally meeting up again with Christine Evangelista's Sherry.

Dwight and Sherry's loving embrace was a long time a-coming, with the latter having first exited the world of The Walking Dead back in Season 7. It's been quite a few years since Dwight hit the road looking for her, and it wasn't entirely clear if he and Sherry would ever find each other again. In fact, Austin Amelio told TVLine that even he wasn't fully convinced that the showrunners would be able to get the two characters back together again. When asked about shooting the estranged couple's emotional reunion, Amelio said:

I’m just glad it paid off for me and Christine. That was a big part of [Dwight’s] story for a long time. I just tried not to put too much pressure on the outcome of the scene and tried to be in it with her. But it was really, really cool that they were able to get her back because I didn’t know if that was going to happen or not. [I thought] they were going to make him fall in love with someone else and have that be a whole thing, and so, it’s cool that it worked out the way that it did.

Austin Amelio was basically just sent along for the ride whenever he got written out of The Walking Dead proper at the end of Season 8, only to be brought back into the fold for Fear's fifth season. And it sounds like the actor was steered into Season 6 without a very detailed map for where Dwight's story was heading. So that had to be a sweet surprise for him when the showrunners and producers were able to sign Christine Evangelista for however many episodes Sherry will be around for. Even if she's around all season, though, the anthologized episode structure would likely limit her appearances somewhat.

I think the question we're all asking ourselves right now is: could the writers have ever set Dwight up with another love interest and "have that be a whole thing," as he put it? Even though a romantic relationship with Al wouldn't be in the cards at all, it was still nice to see Dwight as jovial and easy-going as he was in this latest Fear the Walking Dead episode, so perhaps he could have found someone else out there to be his honey. But no need to worry about that anymore...at least for now.

Fans no doubt assumed that Dwight's hunt for Sherry would eventually lead to success, especially since Christine Evangelista's return was first announced very early in 2020. Given this franchise's penchant for putting characters through deep traumas, however, it wouldn't have been out of the realm of possibility for Fear the Walking Dead to bring Sherry back for her own mini-storyline leading up to a reunion with Dwight, only to have her get killed off before they met up again. Thankfully, that wasn't at all the case here.

Below is how co-showrunner Andrew Chambliss explained to EW the decision to set up Sherry's return as it happened in "Alaska":

So, we thought what better way to do it than in an episode that is actually all about an attempted reunion between two other characters. So, the bulk of this story is about Al trying to make it to the top of that tower so she can be with Isabelle again. And ultimately, it doesn't work out for her. But because she took that action, and because she ultimately made the right choice for Dwight — and also because Dwight selflessly invested everything of himself in trying to reunite Al with this mystery woman who she's told him very little about — it's almost like his karmic reward that he finds his wife. And we like that on a thematic level. And then just on a pure storytelling level, we thought if everyone's kind of investing in the idea of Al and Isabelle coming together again, they would never see that Sherry was just around the corner. And in terms of the question of where she's been and what she's been up to, that's something that we'll see very soon. Maybe in two weeks.

Fortunately for all viewers with attention spans that rival the show's walkers, Fear the Walking Dead will apparently return to Sherry's story in just two weeks. And now that Sherry is around in Dwight's life again, is it time to start theorizing about Kim Dickens' Madison making a return in Season 6, or are we past that?

Fear the Walking Dead airs Sunday nights on AMC at 9:00 p.m. ET. While waiting to see what happens next with this couple, as well as with Garret Dillahunt's John and Jenna Elfman's June, check out our 2020 Fall TV premiere schedule to see what new and returning shows are on the way soon.

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

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.