Fear the Walking Dead episode 5 recap: Apocalypse now

The penultimate episode of the zombie series' first season forces our heroes to make horrific moral compromises in order to survive

Chris and Travis
(Image credit: Justina Mintz/AMC)

Sunday night's "Cobalt" was the penultimate episode of Fear the Walking Dead's first season, and the series is making its first big statement about life, survival, and human nature in the wake of the apocalypse. Indeed, as our heroes adjust to the bleakness of life in the new world order, Fear has made its central moral perfectly clear: If you're going to survive, you'd better be ruthless.

Not everyone has managed to take that lesson to heart. Let's get this out of the way now: Travis is useless. As an ostensible "leader" who has totally failed to provide any meaningful leadership (and may actually have helped the military by fostering complacency), Travis' consistent blind trust in the goodness of others is exactly what will get himself and the people he loves killed. He refuses to kill a zombie when he sees a reminder of her humanity. Worst of all, Travis is living in denial about the world around him; note how he corrects Moyers, who says he "was" a teacher, by insisting that he "is" a teacher — desperately clinging to an identity that has already been lost.

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