The Fear the Walking Dead midseason five finale was contrived and somewhat confounding. The story arc so far has been to separate the cast, then bring them back with new friends. Alicia (Alycia Debnam-Carey) was covered in radioactive blood, but seems fine. Everyone races back to the plane as the nuclear reactor explodes. Including Dwight (Austin Amelio) and John (Garret Dillahunt), who of course, make it in the nick of time. Salazar (Ruben Blades) and Wendell (Daryl Mitchell) offer last minute heroics, as Logan (Matt Frewer) makes a bold move.
"Is Anybody Out There" opens earlier at the denim factory. Alicia, Morgan (Lennie James), and the rest of the primary cast attempt to make contact over the radio. Their offers of assistance yield no response, while an acoustic version of Depeche Mode's "Personal Jesus" plays in the background. Just as Morgan and Alicia are about to give up, Logan responds.
In the present, Logan looks out over the factory and river. The place has been torn to pieces. An angry woman radios, "Logan get your ass down here." He confronts his group. They've searched every inch of "this shithole" and haven't found what they're looking for. The fierce woman continues, "The next hole we dig will be for you."
Alicia washes off the radioactive blood behind Grace's (Karen David) truck. Grace thanks her for rescuing the children. She also says that Alicia will be okay, as the nuclear plant's siren howls in the background. Morgan radios Luciana (Danay Garcia) that they haven't lost the herd following them. She and the others have towed the plane to the highway. The children are clearing the road to make a runway.
Morgan decides to lead the walkers away from the plane. They haven't heard from John and Dwight. At the plane, June (Jenna Elfman) tells Dylan (Cooper Dodson) that they're due for some good luck. Cut to John and Dwight at a car dealership trying to start vehicles. Dwight gets frustrated, but John sees an SUV with candy on the dashboard. He hotwires the car and it starts.
Morgan, Grace, and Alicia are leading the herd toward the nuclear plant's siren. Morgan tells Alicia that he will teach her how to use his staff. They stop the truck and lay down on the seats. The herd passes them, but the plant explodes in the distance. Grace tries to turn the truck around, but crashes into another car. They race from the truck with the herd following with a giant, radioactive dust cloud on the horizon.
At the factory, Sarah (Mo Collins) blocks the gate as Logan tries to leave. Sarah notices that Logan has "a nice shiner." She demands his help. They need to light their runway for the plane to land. Sarah delivers a passionate speech for Logan to make up for his betrayal. He isn't fazed by her lecture.
On the road, Dwight and John's SUV stalls fifteen miles from the plane. They had a full tank of gas, but the fuel is "going bad." They see the radioactive cloud in the distance. June finally reaches them on the radio. John makes her promise to leave them if they don't make it back. As they despair by the road, they see a note of perseverance painted on a tree. John realizes they may be close to Sherry's car.
Morgan, Alicia, and Grace make it to the plane with the herd behind them. Morgan refuses to leave Dwight and John. At their runway, Sarah and Wendell have no way to light it. She tells him Logan's group trashed the factory looking for something. Suddenly Salazar drives up in a truck. Sarah releases the cat, Skidmark, to him. Salazar heard their plight on the radio. He has something from the warehouse to help them.
At the plane, Grace gives Morgan permission to use his staff. Strand (Colman Domingo) and Al (Maggie Grace) are in the cockpit getting ready for takeoff. The wind has shifted the radioactive cloud. Alicia tells them the children are buckled in. Outside on the road, Morgan and the others have established a firing line to deal with the herd. Al radios that they have to leave now, or they won't have enough fuel to clear the mountains.
As they raise their guns to start firing, June remembers her promise to John. They "need to get on that plane." They're out of time. Everyone runs to the open back of the plane. June hears a honking horn. Dwight and John drive in front of the walkers, then race out of the car. They pile in with the others, as the plane motors ahead. Walkers grab on to the net meant to close the back. John and Morgan cut the net. The plane flies toward the radioactive cloud. Strand and Al bank hard right. The plane soars into the sky with the mountains ahead of them.
On the plane, Alicia asks Morgan what they're going to do next. They'll continue to help people, but "make sure we're living too." Grace breaks the bloody end off Morgan's staff and throws it outside. John eats one of the candies, then fashions the wrapper into a ring. He proposes to June. She happily says "yes" and they embrace laughing.
At the runway that night, Salazar and Sarah have strung Christmas lights to guide the plane. Wendell pours fuel into the generator up field. Strand radios that they're low on fuel, he sees the runway in the distance. At the generator, walkers approach. Wendell uses his wheelchair to impale one, but another unplugs the lights. The runway is shrouded in blackness. The plane begins to stall. Wendell says goodbye to his sister on the radio, just in case. He shoots the walker. Then heroically crawls across the runway to plug in the lights.
The plane lands in dramatic fashion. A smiling Morgan embraces Sarah. He introduces Grace. It's hugs and greetings all around. Morgan congratulates John and June. Dylan returns "The Little Prince" to Luciana. Sarah brings the hungry children to the "busted up vending machines." Salazar and Alicia catch up after years apart. She introduces Dwight. Salazar and Charlie (Alexa Nisenson) embrace, he shakes hands with Strand. Wendell, Sarah, and Luciana enjoy the terrible beer.
As Morgan checks out his shortened staff, a woman reaches out on the radio. She saw their plane flying overhead. She'd seen their boxes, heard their transmissions, but was afraid to contact them. She needs help. Her response is cut off by Logan, who drives unto the runway. The entire group aim their weapons at him.
Logan is unarmed and alone. He "has a proposition." Gasoline is going bad. Clayton, aka Polar Bear, his old partner, saw "this problem coming." He "cultivated a resource, wrote the location in his journal." That's what he was looking for. Luciana tells him she has it, "How do we know this isn't a trap." Logan admits his people would kill him if they knew he was there. He also wants to make up for his betrayal. If they want to help people, they need "to find it, before they're beaten to it."
Hmmm...so Morgan and the gang are going into the oil business? "Is Anybody Out There" sets up a logical, but completely unexpected goal for the end of season five. No major characters were killed, but several new cast members were added. Fear the Walking Dead is possibly gearing up for a fight over fuel. Are the newbies doomed, or replacing the veteran cast members? Morgan and Alicia's nonstop philosophy is annoying as hell, but he's going to teach her how to use the staff. The show has certainly taken on a different tone with the children, marriage proposal, and upbeat ending. We'll see where Fear the Walking Dead goes when it returns in three weeks on AMC.