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Fear the Walking Dead Is Ending Without a Purpose

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Fear the Walking Dead started as a TWD prequel, but it’s worn out that billing. With the AMC series now ending after Season 8, it needs a new point.


The Walking Dead franchise is receiving a massive overhaul. Just last year, fans saw the conclusion of The Walking Dead and prepared themselves to focus on a plethora of spinoffs. Since it was the original spinoff, they assumed that Fear the Walking Dead would take over as the franchise’s mainstay, but they were wrong. While announcing the 2023 TWD schedule, AMC casually dropped the news that Season 8 would be FTWD’s last.


There’s no question that FTWD has failed to please its fans in recent years. Between anthology-style episodes, an over-crowded cast and a plot that’s always rife with plot armor, it’s fair to say that things have been headed in the wrong direction. Even after the return of Kim Dickens as Madison Clark, AMC must have believed that the series had run its course and decided to pull the plug. Yet while FTWD may be ending, it still hasn’t defined its reason for existing.

RELATED: Fear the Walking Dead Drops a First Look at Its Final Season


Fear the Walking Dead Started as a Prequel

Fear the Walking Dead Madison, Nick and Alicia

Fear the Walking Dead was originally billed as a prequel to The Walking Dead. While TWD started 59 days into the zombie outbreak, FTWD began two weeks after the initial incident. It started with Nick Clark waking up to the outbreak before he, his mother Madison, his sister Alicia and a few others wound up on Victor Strand’s yacht. That was an entertaining starting point. Viewers got to see the initial panic that happened when walkers first appeared, along with failed military responses like Operation Cobalt.

The first few seasons stayed true to the prequel idea, as FTWD Season 4 lined up with TWD Season 8. But after that, things went downhill. Storylines were annoying, the writing was bad and some of the characters were less than memorable. Morgan Jones, Dwight and Sherry were sent over from the main series in Season 4, 5 and 6 respectively. Yet FTWD still tried to tell its own stories without really connecting to TWD — and in Season 7 that totally fell apart.

RELATED: Why Ending Fear the Walking Dead With Season 8 Is the Right Call

Fear the Walking Needs To Define Its New Purpose

fear the walking dead padre ocean

With FTWD having well outworn its status as a prequel, it needs to establish a reason for people to keep watching. Going into its eighth and final season, it’s telling its own story, and while that’s fine for most spinoffs, The Walking Dead is a clearly interconnected franchise. There has to be some overlap between its various entities. That creates a new and important question: how will FTWD connect to some of the risky TWD spinoffs?

Tracking FTWD’s timeline is especially difficult, but it’s not impossible. Morgan crossed over in 2013, which was the end of Season 8 for TWD and midway through Season 4 of FTWD. Midway through Season 9, TWD jumped forward to 2019 and then Season 11 concluded in 2023. While that was happening, FTWD’s Seasons 5-7 seem to have only taken a few months each. That rough estimate would suggest that FWTD Season 8 will happen sometime during the latter half of TWD’s time jump — placing the season in the 2015-2019 range — unless the spinoff also moves forward in time.

Assuming nothing too drastic happens, it’s not hard to hypothesize FTWD’s new purpose. The above timeline puts Season 8 near the end of the time that Rick was in the clutches of the CRM, so the show could give fans hints to his whereabouts before the untitled Rick and Michonne spinoff premieres. It could give PADRE some connection to the CRM; dealing with PADRE would be an easy way to lead Morgan and Madison to the CRM. It wouldn’t be unfathomable for the series to end with Morgan leaving to find Rick. It would also make sense for Madison and Rick — as the two original series leads — to meet. Fear the Walking Dead Season 8 can give viewers the pieces they need to prepare for the future of The Walking Dead franchise, and give itself another reason for being.

Fear the Walking Dead Season 8 premieres on May 14.

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