Jeremiah Otto’s ranch is fracturing.
There’s an uneasy feeling in the air since Troy’s little reconnaissance mission returned from their little powwow with Walker last episode sans weapons and shoes. Jeremiah is in flux about what to do. His eldest son Jake is as well but decides to take action and seek out Walker for a face to face since the two have “history.” Second son Troy – frequently the bad seed – is as confused as his father but he’s bound and determined to rally the ranch and prepare for any possible outside threat. He’s just not certain he’ll be able to deliver.
Interestingly, smack dab in the middle of all this confusion and instability is Madison, listening in on their conversation and throwing out her interpretation on the situation, trying to shed a little light where needed and attempting to stabilize the shaky ground everyone seems to be treading on. Which naturally (to me anyway) begs the question: How has she ingrained herself so quickly into the “inner circle” of The Otto’s ranch? This stranger, this no nonsense outsider who suddenly appears out of nowhere, strong-willed and strong-tongued, quick to volunteer for duties and just as quick to pass judgment on people she doesn’t even know?
Should those things be red flags to Jeremiah and his sons, not to mention others in the community? Are they that gullible or has she plead her case to the point they feel compelled to welcome her into the fold? Because, both directly and indirectly, she’s made her presence known, enough to rile Jeremiah into asking her what she expects him to do in light of the recent skirmish with Walker. Enough to lord advice over Troy, challenging him to play a different hand in convincing the people of the ranch to work and prepare for any menace that could further rip the ranch in two. And others are listening to her too, regardless of her freshman stature within the community.
If I were any of the three Ottos I’d be wary in the extreme of Madison. I wouldn’t take my eye off her. Maybe her intentions are nothing more than self-preservation for both her and her kids, that motherly sort of protection. And then maybe not.
All I’m saying is the Ottos are giving her a lot of rope.
Now … I don’t know about you but if I was Jeremiah – having bled, sweated and teared to put together the cozy little community he has – I wouldn’t trust the Clark matriarch as far as I could throw her. Just to be on the safe side.
… maybe that’s just what Jeremiah is doing, in his own way, with the friendship and camaraderie he’s been building with Nick. You know, an unassuming back door methodology to keep tabs on her. Maybe the history lessons and the wearing of his heart on his sleeve and the bender he went on at Nick’s new digs are simply puzzle pieces in his grand scheme of things.
What really had me wondering how Jeremiah is running things, however, was his willingness to let Madison speak on his behalf to engage everyone in the defense of the ranch. With the reveal of the dead Trimbol family (an incredibly powerful tool for her to use), how could anyone say no to her? Maybe Jeremiah sees not only the potential but the leadership qualities in Madison. Maybe he’s even smarter than he’s let on to this point.
And, so far, in an obstacle-heavy sort of way, all that makes sense … right?
But there’s one wrench in the machine I don’t quite understand yet, that no one has seen about Madison outside one individual: Her continuous back and forth with Troy. You have to admit there’s a weird relationship going on there. They’ve both inflicted bodily harm to each other, yet Madison continues to try and reason with him, even in light of his having attempted to kill her … and several times at that. Is she just that sly? Does she think she knows the cards Troy is going to play at any given moment? Or is she just that cock-sure about her abilities to manipulate his quirky nature? Seems like she’s continuously playing with fire when it comes to the younger of the Otto siblings.
One more thing: Did Troy really kill the Trimbol family once they flew the coop? And, if he did, how in the world could anyone possibly trust anything he does or says if he had? The thought boggles my mind …
Then? Just like that? We’re at the mid-season finale, with double the Fear The Walking Dead episodes come next Sunday.
Buckle up, people.
Tell us what you thought of the this episode in the comments below.