Fear The Walking Dead Theory: PADRE Is The U.S. Government

Kim Dickens as Madison Clark - Fear the Walking Dead _ Season 7, Episode 16 - Photo Credit: Lauren "Lo" Smith/AMC
Kim Dickens as Madison Clark - Fear the Walking Dead _ Season 7, Episode 16 - Photo Credit: Lauren "Lo" Smith/AMC /

At the end of the season 7 finale of Fear The Walking Dead, we finally got a glimpse of P.A.D.R.E. Does that mean the government’s still functioning?

Sunday marked the end of season 7 of Fear The Walking Dead, wherein Morgan Jones finally met Madison Clark, who, it was revealed, was collecting children on behalf of P.A.D.R.E.

P.A.D.R.E., the very thing Alicia and her followers spent months searching the whole of the state of Texas for, has finally been proven to exist. Initially, it was thought to be a place somewhere in the continental U.S. (presumably in Texas or the southwest, since the place government officials were supposed to be sent to was in Texas), but, as we saw at the end of this week’s episode, P.A.D.R.E. seemed be operating out of the Gulf of Mexico, utilizing a U.S. Coast Guard ship.

While it’s possible that the Coast Guard abandoned the ship during the outbreak or after a crew member turned, considering what we know, I highly doubt that.

Fear The Walking Dead Theory

P.A.D.R.E. is part of the lingering United States government.

– Fear the Walking Dead _ Season 7, Episode 8 – Photo Credit: Lauren “Lo” Smith/AMC
– Fear the Walking Dead _ Season 7, Episode 8 – Photo Credit: Lauren “Lo” Smith/AMC /

Let’s start with what we know about P.A.D.R.E. We see that the U.S. government’s plan was to squirrel away as many high-ranking officials and politicians as possible to the Franklin Hotel’s nuclear bunker in Eastern Texas. Still, only Senator Vasquez and his staff made it of those officials.

Second, we know that Senator Vasquez, being part of the U.S. Senate, knew the location of P.A.D.R.E. (something kept out the large binder about it at the Franklin’s bunker), but kept it a closely guarded secret, likely meaning that only those elected officials and high-level military and security personnel who were to be sent there knew its location. If the people Madison’s been working for know the location of P.A.D.R.E., this suggests that they were among that select few.

Third, we know that the government intended to keep P.A.D.R.E. secret from the general public. This means that it is probably in a location already going to be under government control when the outbreak hit, most likely a military base, which would already be fortified, and a place civilians would know they’re not supposed to trespass into.

Finally, we know that P.A.D.R.E.’s emissaries travel to and from it using a Coast Guard vessel. Again, it could have been abandoned, but considering the secretive nature of the whole operation, P.A.D.R.E.’s location wouldn’t just be sitting on some piece of paper in a random Coast Guard ship unless the ship was already assigned to serve as a taxi to and from it.

– Fear the Walking Dead _ Season 7, Episode 16 – Photo Credit: Lauren “Lo” Smith/AMC
– Fear the Walking Dead _ Season 7, Episode 16 – Photo Credit: Lauren “Lo” Smith/AMC /

In fact, that secretive nature largely rules out the possibility that Madison was working for some nefarious group of survivors who just happened to stumble onto P.A.D.R.E., since, not even Will, an aide to Senator Vasquez, knew its location, and I doubt that just a bunch of randos, who might not have even known about it, found it and established a kidnapping ring based out of it.

On top of that, the facility we saw Madison in her flashbacks looked a lot like the facility Michonne found herself in The Walking Dead on Bloodsworth Island in the Chesapeake Bay, a U.S. military base.

I think that P.A.D.R.E. is some vestige of the U.S. government. Some government officials made their way to it during the outbreak and began trying to “rebuild” the country by grabbing kids, hoping to use them as a first generation of post-apocalypse citizens to help reclaim the country. Perhaps with the idea of having the government replace their parents in their minds and fostering loyalty to the government that way.

Suppose you combine the fact that P.A.D.R.E. was a government program, the secretive nature, and the fact that they’re using a Coast Guard ship and operating out of the Gulf of Mexico. In that case, it all leads me to believe that P.A.D.R.E. is either in Key West or at Guantanamo Bay. Both have U.S. military bases, are disconnected from the mainland, and Guantanamo Bay already has a notorious reputation for things the government didn’t want people seeing, just the kind of place to run a secret (And now nefarious) operation out of.

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But, what do you think? Do you believe P.A.D.R.E. and its nefarious kidnapping ring is a lingering remnant of the U.S. government? Do you think some other group stumbled upon P.A.D.R.E. and took it over? Let me know! I’m curious! If you enjoyed this and want to learn how to stay alive in a zombie apocalypse, why not pick up a copy of my book, The Rules: A Guide To Surviving The Zombie Apocalypse!  You can also get it at Amazon here, on iTunes here!