When You Watch Fear the Walking Dead You’re Watching The Walking Dead

(Spoilers ahead) We don’t expect too much from spin off series, do we? Cities may change but NCIS is always going to be the same. Put any words in any combination behind Law and Order‘s colon and it will be the same show. Following the same not so secret formula is how these series continue to stay on the air. Change the formula and the series itself changes. If the series changes people may not watch and that is a risk the networks can’t take. The exact same thing is happening in Fear the Walking Dead.

We were told Fear the Walking Dead would be about how the zombie virus spread. We were told we would see how civilization collapsed. Neither of these things happened. However, we were told we would never know what or how the zombie virus was created. It’s the only thing showrunners and creator Robert Kirkman said would, or would not happen as the case may be, happen in the series.

Instead of a series chronicling the break down of society and the collapse of civilization we got a clone of The Walking Dead. You don’t think Fear the Walking Dead is a clone of The Walking Dead? Read on for more proof:

  • The characters of  The Walking Dead roam from place to place.
  • The characters in Fear the Walking Dead roam from place to place.
Hershel's farm in the Walking Dead

Old Hershel had a farm E-I-E-I-O

  • TWD had the farm
  • FtWD had the ranch..and the farm.
Fear the Walking Dead's Ranch

This ain’t the Buny Ranch

  • The Walking Dead finds a place to call home only to lose it in the most absurd ways possible.
  • FtWD finds a home only to lose it in the most absurd way possible.
Rick still hasn't bathed in 9 seasons of The Walking Dead

Grizzled super post-apocalyptic general Rick Grimes

  • TWD has Rick, a grizzled sheriff who may have had some combat training and may have had some previous training in military strategies becomes super general.
  • FtWD has Madison, a grizzled guidance counselor who had no combat training or knowledge of military tactics becomes super general over night.
Madison in Fear the Walking Dead

Grizzled school guidance counselor super post-apocalyptic general.

  • TWD had Carl who went of the rails, but came back to be one of the “good guys.”
  • FtWD had Chris who went of the rails, but never came back.
  • TWD had Carl who died off screen in the weakest of storytelling devices possible (Why didn’t we see Carl get bitten by a zombie? Because…reasons.)
  • FtWD had Chris who was killed off screen in the weakest plot devices imaginable (A car wreck because he didn’t know how to drive? Uh huh.)
Negan plays pool in the Walking Dead

Even when he’s strapped down and vulnerable Negan won’t die.

  • TWD has the unkillable Negan.
  • FtWD has Proctor John who is quickly shaping up to be another Negan or even a Governor. Take your pick.
Proctor John from Fear the Walking Dead

He’s the Diet Coke of Negan. Just one calorie not Negan enough.

 

 

  • TWD has the Saviors.
  • FtWD has…a motorcycle gang shaping up to be the Saviors. Hey, they even dress like Negan.

 

  • TWD constantly reminds the viewers that they don’t want to become like the bad guys because they’re fighting for something better.
  • FtWD constantly reminds the viewers that they don’t want to become like the bad guys because they’re fighting for something better.

 

  • TWD has lots of flash back scenes.
  • FtWD has lost of flash back scenes.

 

  • TWD the viewer is insulted with touchy feely moments any time a character dies.
  • WD the viewer is insulted with touchy feely moments any time a character dies.

 

And finally…

Morgan in the Walking Dead

  • TWD has Morgan.
  • FtWD also has….Morgan?
Morgan drives away from the Walking Dead

Morgan finds himself with a different crew but the story is the same.

There’s plenty of more examples of Fear the Walking Dead stealing from The Walking Dead. Who could forget the religious zealots from season one who thought the zombies could be cured? Hershel thought the same thing in season two of The Walking Dead.

What can we really expect from a series about a group of people living in post-zombie America? What could be done differently if one series wasn’t going to be about how it all ended? Not much. The Walking Dead has seen a decline in viewership, but not enough to worry about cancellation. Fear the Walking Dead may be getting along with The Walking Dead fans, but for how much longer?

Fear the Walking Dead season four starts Sunday, April 15. It’s the same day The Walking Dead season finale ends.

 

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