As Fear the Walking Dead season 5 presses forward, the show is doing its best to innovate. Case in point, the series will be introducing a brand new character named Rabbi Jacob Kessner, played by Peter Jacobson, who is a straight-up zombie-killing Rabbi. Whether or not this will flesh itself out into more than a momentarily entertaining gimmick remains to be seen, but this first clip is pretty intriguing.

A clip has made its way online that reveals the opening minutes of this week's episode of Fear the Walking Dead. In it, we meet Rabbi Jacob Kessner. He's seen attempting to peacefully perform a religious ceremony inside his place of worship. Unfortunately, he's interrupted by a pesky walker. As we see, he has no compunction when it comes to killing the undead. As things progress, our new hero comes across the young Charlie, whom he rescues then has a rather pleasant exchange with. The whole thing is pretty amusing and it's fascinating to see a man of faith make his way so calmly through a situation such as this.

Peter Jacobson, known for his roles in Transformers and NCIS: Los Angeles, plays the part convincingly. This certainly isn't the first time a religious figure has made his way to prominence in this universe either. Over on The Walking Dead, Father Gabriel (Seth Gilliam) has represented that point of view. This is rather different though. Not just because we're dealing with a man of the Jewish faith, but because Jacob doesn't seem to be wrestling one bit with killing. Hopefully, we'll explore his thoughts on the matter more in the upcoming episode, and possibly beyond.

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Perhaps the larger point here is attempted innovation. The Walking Dead is about to kick off season 10 this fall and Fear the Walking Dead is rapidly approaching its season 5 finale, with season 6 already confirmed to be on the way. Plus, there's the untitled third spin-off series in the works, not to mention the Rick Grimes movie that is coming to theaters, just the first in a planned trilogy. Point being, AMC has no intent on stopping TWD universe anytime soon. One could argue that they're just getting started, given the new projects coming down the pipeline. This also comes at a time shortly after creator Robert Kirkman recently ended the comic book series that the shows are based on.

With that in mind, the need for innovation is key. The need to tell new types of stories in this universe is key. The need to explore other parts of humanity in the post-apocalyptic zombie wasteland is key. Whether or not they stick the landing remains to be seen, but Rabbi Jacob Kessner represents something new, and that matters. Fear the Walking Dead returns Sunday with a new episode on AMC. Be sure to check out the clip from the upcoming episode for yourself. This news was previously reported by Entertainment Weekly.

Ryan Scott at TVweb
Ryan Scott