Fear the Walking Dead: “Cobalt” is Mediocre, but on this Show, That Feels Like a Victory

Fear the Walking Dead continues to lurch and screw around around all the way to the finish line.  I swear, this show is like the kid in the junior track meet who, on the easiest possibly race, stops to pick flowers and dig boogers out of its nose.

Perhaps I’m being a teensy unfair here, so let me just say that, compared to the cure for insomnia that they aired last week, “Cobalt” was a large measure better but only just so.  There were at least zombies in this one and a modicum of action even though most of it happened off camera.  There’s also some new developments and, I have to say, Sanchez just became my favorite characters.  Notice how I didn’t say “new” favorite character because, up until this point, none of them deserved that title.

So, what happened again?

Travis tried going to the hospital to see his ex and his pet druggie, but he didn’t quite make it because the army are pansies or something.  Salazar tortures the heck out of the nice army guy (don’t know his name, don’t care) until the army’s evil plans are laid open for all of them to see.

Also, the idea that the army is actually evil isn’t novel and we were kind of expecting it, but the fact that there were so many Armed Forces recruitment ads that played during the commercial breaks for this episode was hilarious.

So, some things worked:  Even with the small amount of action in this episode, it was welcome because at last something was actually happening.   I also loved Salazar in this episode.  I’m not advocating what he did because it was pretty horrible, but you’ve got to love a character with so much darkness inside of him doing what none of the other characters can do… doing what has to be done.

Fear the Walking Dead has been clumsily playing with what a societal collapse actually means.  This is one of the only times it seems like they actually got it right.

I’m also liking the salesman.  It says something about the cast of a TV show when a character can appear for about five minutes and instantly be more likable than the people who have been there for five whole episodes.

It wasn’t great… I would even struggle to call it good, but when the bar is set so low for a series like this, even mediocre seems like an accomplishment.  I really hope they’ve been saving up for something big in the finale and we’re not going to be exposed to another underwhelming messup next week.

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