Fear the Walking Dead 503 – Humbug’s Gulch theme: Persistence

Austin Amelio as Dwight - Fear the Walking Dead _ Season 5, Episode 3 - Photo Credit: Ryan Green/AMC
Austin Amelio as Dwight - Fear the Walking Dead _ Season 5, Episode 3 - Photo Credit: Ryan Green/AMC /

In season 5 episode 3 of Fear the Walking Dead, Dwight and John showed persistence despite the many obstacles present in the apocalypse.

The theme of last week’s episode of Fear the Walking Dead titled “Humbug’s Gulch” was quite obviously persistence.

Not just the persistence that Dwight showed by chasing his wife, Sherry, halfway across the country (a pursuit he’s still engaged in), but the persistence John showed in Season 4 as he looked for June.

There’s more. Morgan and Alicia showed persistence in their search for the kids (no matter what the kids have told them they don’t want to be found and appear to have nefarious plans in store for our gang), while June and John persisted in talking Dwight out of suicide.

The kids are persistent, too. Whether their roadblocks are meant to deter Morgan’s group, others, or both, they keep at it.

There’s also Morgan’s continued attempts to help the larger world, which hovers over the season as a background theme. Sure, this larger effort has faded into the background while our heroes deal with more immediate concerns (and we still haven’t checked in on Charlie’s efforts to sneak into the mill, or the truckers, since episode one).

Of course, survival in the post-apocalyptic world requires persistence in and of itself. If you give up, you’re dead. If you coast your way through life in this new world, you might make it, but the odds will be against you. Certainly, you might be able to slide through life if you’re in a relatively coddled community like Alexandria, but not on the road.

I didn’t like every aspect of this episode. Shooting an ax for a two-for-one zombie kill was silly, and the impact of Dwight’s arrival was blunted both by teases and by his arrival following so soon on the heels of Salazar and Strand’s reunion.

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But I enjoyed the return to persistence as a theme. We’ve seen it before in The Walking Dead universe, but it’s a nice, universal theme to return to instead of debating whether to help other survivors or not.

We’ll see what the next episode has in store.