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When Fear the Walking Dead was first announced, not much was known beyond the fact that it would line up with the beginning of the zombie apocalypse, making it a temporary prequel to The Walking Dead. We haven’t really had a calendar showing us how much time has gone by in the time between the premiere and the recent midseason finale, but showrunner Dave Erickson has clued us in on where the show currently sits in The Walking Dead’s timeline.
If you marked off the days [that have passed on air since Fear the Walking Dead debuted], I think right now, by the end of the first half [of Season 2], we’re getting very close to Rick waking up in Georgia.
As fans are fully aware, Rick rousing from his semi-safe hospital coma is how The Walking Dead kicked off its sprawling narrative in 2010, though we did get to witness events closer to the outbreak, such as when Rick got put into said coma. So that particular date will likely get met and passed when Season 2 continues later this year, and perhaps by the time Season 3 arrives, it’ll already be past the CDC’s last days and well into the Search For Sophia.
When Rick woke up to a world already depleted by the grody undead, his cop instincts kicked in instantaneously, giving him an advantage at a time where almost everything else is a threat. The same hasn’t quite happened for the characters of Fear the Walking Dead, and Erickson understands that some fans have been quite critical of the companion series’ arguably slow-moving approach. But one of the core ideas behind the drama was finding a balance concerning how these people would be expected to react in a zombie apocalypse. Here’s what else he told TVLine.
That creates frustrations, to a certain degree, because in some instances, you want [the characters] to get it already. And in some circumstances, the things that they do that don’t seem particularly zombie-savvy are, for me, moments where they aren’t zombie-savvy.
Makes sense, but it admittedly does strengthen the claims made by all parties involved with both shows that crossovers will never happen, given the huge differences in the timeline and the setting. And it took 13 episodes to get to the point where it’s very close to the Walking Dead’s earliest days, so unless there are big time and location jumps between every three or four slow-burning episodes, the families at the heart of this show are never going to be crossing paths with Rick & Co. There are obviously other ways something like that could happen on a smaller scale, but it would involve flashbacks or flash-forwards.
Fear the Walking Dead did have a crossover within Season 2, only it was with the mini-miniseries Flight 462, which aired during commercial breaks for The Walking Dead Season 6. Not as juicy as Chris and Carl getting into a fistfight over a can of spaghetti sauce, but it was something.
Fear the Walking Dead lost some characters at the midseason break, and divided up those that lived. The show will have some answers to deliver when it comes back in August, and let’s all remember to keep an ear out for any stray radio broadcasts about Atlanta in any of those episodes.