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Fear the Walking Dead recap: Daniel as the reliable narrator?

Ruben Blades stars as Daniel Salazar, as seen in Episode 10 of AMC's Fear the Walking Dead Season 6
Ruben Blades stars as Daniel Salazar, as seen in Episode 10 of Fear the Walking Dead Season 6. Pic credit: AMC/Ryan Green

Ever since the trailer was released showing the first few minutes of Episode 10 of Fear the Walking Dead Season 6, fans have been trying to work out what happened. And, it’s bad, but not for the reasons everyone thought.

In fact, the latest episode of Fear the Walking Dead impressed me for reasons I will get into later once the big reveal is made.

In the meantime, settle in, and let’s try to work through the mystery of why Daniel Salazar (Ruben Blades) is locked in a jail cell and rattling off random words like Donald Trump did with “Person, woman, man, camera, TV” before recanting his terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

Daniel starts the day on good terms — which makes all the viewers worried

Fans automatically know that something bad is going down in the Walking Dead universe if a montage of happiness occurs.

While Daniel may be locked in a prison cell, he starts off by thinking back over his day and how wonderful it was. People are working on building the community, Daniel’s making soup, and everyone is smiling.

So, of course, sh*t is about to get real.

Colman Domingo as Victor Strand and Bobbie Grace as Ranger Samuels, as seen in Episode 10 of AMC's Fear the Walking Dead Season 6
Colman Domingo as Victor Strand and Bobbie Grace as Ranger Samuels, as seen in Episode 10 of Fear the Walking Dead Season 6. Pic credit: AMC/Ryan Green

Strand and the others turn up

Strand was not overly impressed with Morgan’s (Lennie James) Utopia in the previous episode of Fear the Walking Dead. Because of this, plenty of people decided to do their own thing rather than abide by Morgan’s rules.

Honestly, I can see where Morgan is coming from. If you keep killing, then that’s all you will continue doing. However, Morgan is often very simplistic with his morals and only ever sees decisions in black and white rather than all the shades of grey that they really are.

Needless to say, plenty of groups up and left last week but have returned in Episode 10 of Fear the Walking Dead because a big antagonistic hole has been left by Virginia (Colby Minifie) and — already — there is a new threat by way of the group that infiltrated Tank Town and destroyed it from the inside.

However, who this new big bad truly are is overshadowed by the conflict already occurring in the new fledgling communities.

Lennie James stars as Morgan, as seen in Episode 10 of AMC's Fear the Walking Dead Season 6
Lennie James stars as Morgan, as seen in Episode 10 of Fear the Walking Dead Season 6. Pic credit: AMC/Ryan Green

Morgan should name his new community Paranoid

I mean, Daniel has done some pretty shady sh*t in his past — and that was before the zombie apocalypse happened! However, he is not the only one and once everyone is together and trying to discuss what they should do regarding this new threat, the guns go missing and all hell breaks loose.

It’s made pretty clear that only Morgan and Daniel have access to the gun room that is kept locked at all times in this community. Anyone who enters has to hand in their weapon and it is logged in a book and returned once they leave. Honestly, it’s a good system.

Until it goes wrong.

Everyone then get paranoid and pulls up every last slight against each other as they try to work out who stole the guns.

Karen David as Grace and Lennie James as Morgan Jones, as seen in Episode 10 of AMC's Fear the Walking Dead Season 6
Karen David as Grace and Lennie James as Morgan Jones, as seen in Episode 10 of Fear the Walking Dead Season 6. Pic credit: AMC/Ryan Green

Grace might be going into labor

An explosion occurs that first alerts everyone to the fact that the guns have gone missing. However, Grace (Karen David) is also having potential labor pains, and Morgan has to leave to get some fetal monitor that he has kept in some remote location for no other reason than plot, I imagine.

Along with this, the pregnant woman is also sent away to hide in a fishing cabin while everyone else freaks out about who might be behind all of this. Daniel sends her on her way with a map. He then decides that everything that is going wrong is because of Strand.

He then sets up a trap where he lets some walkers into the community to see who will shoot them. This should reveal who has stolen the weapons, he figures.

And, sure enough, Strand comes through with the goods because he has hidden a gun on his person. This leads Daniel to believe that Strand is the culprit trying to bring the community down from the inside.

Christine Evangelista as Sherry and Colman Domingo as Victor Strand, as seen in Episode 10 of AMC's Fear the Walking Dead Season 6
Christine Evangelista as Sherry and Colman Domingo as Victor Strand, as seen in Episode 10 of Fear the Walking Dead Season 6. Pic credit: AMC/Ryan Green

I mean, Strand has a history…

Daniel isn’t the only one who has a shady past, and Strand is also mixed up in the mess of his past, having been the one to shoot Daniel in the face. Of which Salazar laments when Strand is put in jail and interrogated by him.

Strand really hasn’t done himself any favors either. He is pretty much known as the guy who will do literally anything to save his own back.

Morgan eventually returns and the course of the episode changes to locating Grace.

This means that something has gone wrong and now they can’t find the pregnant woman they sent out into the woods while she may or may not have been in labor. What are the odds, huh?

Ruben Blades stars as Daniel Salazar, as seen in Episode 10 of AMC's Fear the Walking Dead Season 6
Ruben Blades stars as Daniel Salazar, as seen in Episode 10 of Fear the Walking Dead Season 6. Pic credit: AMC/Ryan Green

And, this is where it gets interesting

While the assumption has been made that it is likely Strand who took the weapons, the tables are then turned, and it is revealed that perhaps Daniel is an unreliable narrator. While it seems that Daniel gave Grace a map that led her to the fishing cabin, in fact, he led her to the caverns, which have not yet been cleared.

It is at this point that the audience has to decide if Daniel is going crazy or if he is lying for some other reason. After all, he has continued to blame Strand for being the root of a possible uprising from within but, now, it looks like Daniel may be the one.

Except that I actually buy into Daniel’s story of him not being okay.

I honestly think he may have some form of PTSD, and that is why they call in June (Jenna Elfman) to give him the once over and why he was rattling off those words at the start of the episode. She decides that what is happening to Daniel is not neurological but psychological, and I love the fact that AMC has finally decided to delve into mental health during the post-apocalyptical climate.

Because, let’s face it, ever since the dead became the undead, everyone has had to hit the ground running when it came to survival. There hasn’t been a lot of rest and recuperate moments since then either. So, mental health really is an important topic.

Yes, Daniel could be faking it. We already know that he pretended to have amnesia while with Virginia. However, he seems genuinely perplexed by the fact that he has caused everyone such duress in this episode of Fear the Walking Dead.

After this, he decides that the best course of action is to take a horse and his faithful cat Skidmark (On a side: Yay! Skidmark is back!) away from Morgan’s community because he is scared he will burn it to the ground.

As TV Insider points out, Daniel’s reference to burning down a community harks back to an earlier season of Fear the Walking Dead when Daniel set fire to Celia’s (Marlene Forte) group at the Abigail Vineyard in Season 2.

And, everyone just mostly seems okay with that.

Which I’m not. I love that they have broached the topic of mental health, but I’m not okay with the fact that everyone’s just okay to let him leave the community.

While it seems that poor Daniel will now roam the landscape or live out his life in the old warehouse he used to call home, thankfully, Strand won’t have any of that. Instead, he insists that Daniel return with them to Lawton, where they can protect him.

Because Strand still believes that Morgan’s dam is not very safe.

Daniel agrees to go with him, which seems a little odd because he was, literally, just declaring he would leave a community in order to protect it.

But, this is Strand’s community, and, let’s face it, there is a lot of history between these two. If Daniel is going to burn a place to the ground, I guess he figures it is better that Strand is involved rather than the people he actually loves.

Fear the Walking Dead airs Sunday nights at 9/8c on AMC.

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