Shock and Anger Expressed at Character death in Fear the Walking Dead
Warning, this article contains spoilers for Episodes 1 and 2 of Season 3 from Fear the Walking Dead
The companion series to AMC’s The Walking Dead has gotten a lot of attention recently with shocking events transpiring with the premiere of the show’s third season. One particular incident that has left viewers shaken is the death of an important member of the main cast, Travis. He was a father who held onto his humanity and the belief that it was possible to fix something that was broken.
His friendly nature makes his death even more tragic because of the circumstances surrounding it. Essentially, during the second episode (airing right after the first episode), Travis and another character named Alicia were escaping a zombie infested compound that was owned by Jeremiah Otto’s doomsday prepper community. The helicopter came under fire and Travis was hit twice. Since he was hit in the neck and the stomach, there was no hope for the man. This pushed him to jump from the helicopter in a bid to ensure that he would not turn into a walker and hurt others.
Despite the fact that nobody is safe in The Walking Dead, this event caught many viewers off guard. Many Reddit users and magazine writers felt that Travis’s death made no sense. The reason for this is that Travis’s character was just starting to get interesting. The end of Season 2 hinted that he was going down a dark road, so there seemed to be little reason in killing him. The other side of this argument is shown by showrunner Dave Erickson, who says in an article on the Hollywood reporter, that Travis was meant to have a longer arc that focused on redemption due to events in Season 2. However, this was cut short as he managed to achieve this by saving his surrogate son, Nick, in the premiere episode of Season 3.
So while the death seems to have occurred in the middle of an important story arc, it seems that Travis had achieved his goal and his character arc had been fulfilled. Of course this explanation is still debatable. It is likely that Travis’s character still had room to grow and the darker side of his character could have been explored before his death, so it is still somewhat unfortunate that we won’t be able to see him again.