Why Fear the Walking Dead killed a major character on this week’s episode


Fear The Walking Dead just killed off a major character — why and what does this mean for the characters and show moving forward?

*Warning— contains major spoilers

Sunday nights Fear The Walking Dead’s episode titled “Good Out Here” ended with a major twist, leaving many viewers distraught and confused. Nick Clark was killed off in the last few minutes of the episode, and just like that, perhaps the main character of the entire series is gone.

Why did the writers decide to pull the trigger (pun intended) on such an important character? What does it mean for our favorite zombie drama going forward?

What happened?

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Nick took out his vengeance on Vulture Ennis, impaling him on a deer heads antlers. It hasn’t quite been revealed why Nick was so furious with Ennis, but as Morgan warned him, “It is not gonna work out how you think.”

In an act of retaliation, Nick was shot in the chest by Charlie, the little girl who betrayed the Clarks in the previous episode. Nick collapsed and was soon surrounded by people who loved him, but his fate was sealed the moment he chose to extract his vengeance.

Nick’s body goes still and the scene cuts back to the past. He’s lying in a bed of bluebonnets, seemingly at peace for the moment. The show ends. Everyone is wondering what in the world just happened.

Why did it happen?

As it turns out, killing off Nick was not an idea by new show writers Andrew Chambliss and Ian Goldberg to shock viewers, nor to make room for the newer characters. In fact, it was at the request of the actor, Frank Dillane, who portrays Nick.

Dillane had asked to be killed off in season 3 and producers tried to get him to stay, but the actor had multiple reasons why he wanted to move on.

"I had been doing it for three or four years, the show has undergone many changes in terms of different people in charge, all of this stuff, and I just felt like the beginning of this season kind of felt like the end of an era with this show. And television is hard work, and you have to shoot a lot. I also missed Europe very much."

But this might not be the last time we see Nick. Interestingly enough, he will still appear in the past segments of the show. Goldberg hinted that Nick’s story is not over in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, “There’s more story to be told with Nick that we think will provide some emotional context for why he’s such a different person when we find him in the present day story, than how we’ve seen him in the Diamond.”

Frank Dillane as Nick Clark, Colman Domingo as Victor Strand, Danay Garcia as Luciana, Alycia Debnam-Carey as Alicia Clark – Fear the Walking Dead _ Season 4, Episode 3 – Photo Credit: Richard Foreman, Jr/AMC

What this means going forward

There’s no denying that losing Nick, a main character on the show since day one, is game-changing. He might not be the only Clark we’ve lost, either. Madison is absent in the present scenes. 

Nick’s death will have a huge impact on the group, specifically his sister, Alicia, and his girlfriend, Luci.

With Madison’s whereabouts a complete mystery, losing Nick is by far the biggest loss Alicia has endured. Will she snap similar to how Morgan has on multiple occasions? Maybe she’ll get that same thirst for revenge that led her brother to his own demise in the first place. Morgan better hand over his Art of Peace book to her before that happens.

Luci and Nick just reunited, at least as far as the audience is concerned. The two have barely had any scenes together and now that Nick’s gone, what direction will the show go with Luci? The writers must have brought her character back for a reason. Does she have what it takes to go after a little girl with an innocent face such as Charlie?

Kim Dickens as Madison Clark – Fear the Walking Dead _ Season 4, Episode 4 – Photo Credit: Richard Foreman, Jr/AMC

Finally, that leaves Madison, the character most likely to strike back at the Vultures. With all of this time shifting, we don’t really know exactly what happened, but one can guess that there is definitely bad blood between the Clark group and the Vultures. If she’s alive, the Vultures will be in trouble. One way or another, there will be retribution for Nick.

The fallout from this major death will surely impact the rest of the season and possibly beyond. Look for Alicia to take Nick’s spot as the overall main character on the show until we find out if Madison is going to make it or not.

Filling the void

The first two episodes introduced three new characters in the lonely gunslinger John, documenting fanatic and S.W.A.T. van driving Althea, and nurse and lone wolf Naomi. Not to mention that the crossover character Morgan has already slid into a major role. Now that such an important player is gone, the new characters are likely to be featured even more. 

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What did you think of Nick Clark’s sendoff? Did you like the way the show handled it? Still sitting in front of your T.V. screens in shock? Let us know what you thought in the comment section below.

Fear The Walking Dead returns next Sunday night at 9 PM.