Fear the Walking Dead follows up the awful season five premiere with an episode of mostly filler. The Hurt That Will Happen doesn't get any closer to finding Al, but did follow up an important clue about who took Rick Grimes. Morgan (Lennie James) and Alicia (Alycia Debnam-Carey) discover the source of the radiation. Victor Strand (Colman Domingo) makes contact with Daniel Salazar (Ruben Blades). John (Garret Dillahunt) and June (Jenna Elfman) go to camp, while a drugged up Luciana (Danay Garcia) holes up at the truck stop.

The Hurt That Will Happen opens with Strand in the MRAV recording a message to the group. They'll have to complete the mission if he doesn't make it. He guzzles beer, then walks down a long road. He stops at rebar impediments that block a gated entrance. A cat cuddles up to his feet, followed by a walker that trips on the obstacle and gets impaled. A gun cocks behind his head. Strand pleads with Salazar not to shoot him as a "Pavlovian response." Salazar shoots a walker behind him, "You still talk too much Victor." The cat, "Skidmark", purrs at Strand's feet. Salazar invites him in.

John investigates where Al impaled the walker at the plane crash. He radios to Morgan and Alicia there's no sign of her. At the crash, Morgan notes that the weapons and supplies were taken as well. They separate, John will return to June. Alicia and Morgan will follow the road. Alicia regrets not stopping Al from leaving.

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At the truck stop, June bandages Luciana's shoulder. She gives her drugs for the pain. Luciana asks hazily, "Will she ever be able to play the accordion?" John returns with scavenged supplies, including their copy of "The Little Prince". June and John will search south. John gives Luciana one of his pistols. She'll remain and try to raise Strand on the radio.

Salazar takes Strand through a warehouse filled with vehicles and machinery. Strand wants to know how he go this "bounty". Salazar replies that he "inherited it." He wants to know why Strand is here. Strands asks him about the plane. Althea told him and Salazar's whereabouts. Salazar asks about Madison. Strand breaks up before telling him that she and Nick are "gone." Alicia is alive. He needs the plane to rescue "all their friends." Salazar doesn't believe him, "It's for you and no one else. I know who you are." Strand begs to use the radio.

Morgan and Alicia are at a roadblock covered in radiation warnings. They radio in to Luciana, who's still high on accordion talk. They investigate an equipment truck that's still warm. They go into the woods; finding a birdcage with walkers reaching for it below. When Morgan kills them, his feet is caught in a trap. He's rescued by a woman covered in a radiation suit. She orders him to cut himself free and remove all of his clothes. She cuts dosimeters off the walkers necks. When Morgan asks for his staff back, Alicia attacks the woman from behind. She demands to know Al's location.

Morgan orders Alicia to stand down. She keeps the woman's gun and takes off her mask. The woman warns them that there were two reactors several miles away. One of them melted down. The walkers were the workers at the plant. Morgan needs to be decontaminated. Her name is Grace (Karen David). Alicia keeps her gun.

At her truck, Morgan washes under a portable shower. Grace instructs him to clean under his nails and wedding ring. Grace offers to help search for Al, after she takes care of the wrapped up walker. She has a bucket filled with captured dosimeters. Grace warns Al, if you see them on the dead, "run the other way." Grace has been putting up the radiation signs, but has nothing to do with the decapitated heads. She tells them they need to investigate the walkers at the crash site. John and June radio in. They're walking after their truck broke down. Alicia tell them to beware of walkers with the dosimeters around their necks.

John and June find a sign for the camp on the children's truck. They walk into Camp Cackleberry, yelling the children's names. They find spent ammo on the ground, and a cabin filled with walkers. Meanwhile at Salazar's warehouse, Strand is trying to contact them on the radio. Salazar wonders why he wasn't on the plane. Strand responds that he had to clear the runway. Salazar doesn't believe he would be unselfish. The last time he trusted Strand, "A dam exploded and he was shot in the face." Strand apologizes, he's not the same man he was in Mexico. Salazar takes over the radio search.

At the crash site, Grace scans the walkers for radiation. Morgan again asks for his staff. He can't get it back, the wood is porous. It can't be cleaned. Grace is upset they knocked down her fence. It was the only border keeping the radioactive dead away. Alicia is upset they're not looking for Al. A group of walkers with dosimeters approach. Alicia refuses to give Grace her gun. She holds them off while Morgan helps Grace suit up. The walkers trip in the mud. Alicia can't tell which ones are wearing the radiation detectors.

As Alicia tries to hold off the walkers, Grace scans them. Al throws her the gun. Grace shoots the radioactive walkers while Morgan captures them in a tarp. That night they collect the infected dead. Grace warns them that they can look for Al, but cannot be exposed searching. She was the operations manager at the reactor. These were her people. They had supplies for months, but the plants weren't needed once the cities fell. She didn't evacuate in time. There are sixty-three infected remaining. John radios in, they found a bunch at the camp.

At the camp, John and June lead Grace to the radioactive walkers in the cabin. At the truck stop, Luciana makes contact with Strand. She tells him they're at the truck stop. Al is missing. They've found other people. Strand replies that he found the man with the plane. Luciana hears a noise outside. She loses the radio signal. Strand turns to Salazar, "Do you believe me now? They need help."

Luciana, drugged up and bandaged, foolishly ventures outside. At the camp, John and June find a truck with gas. Luciana radios in that she spoke to Strand. He's coming with the plane, but the wind destroyed the antennae. June is stunned Luciana's on her feet and outside. She orders Luciana to get inside and lock the doors. Walkers approach Luciana. She struggles to shoot through the pain. She locks herself inside then passes out at the door.

At the camp, Morgan has another heart to heart Alicia. She hasn't helped anyone. Morgan reminds her that things haven't gone "the way he had hoped." There's no way to stop yourself from losing people. But you must open your door to possibilities, the hurt that will happen. His life started over again, hers will too.

Grace is taking the bodies to caverns near the plant; including Morgan's stick. She advises them to leave soon. Grace cannot go back with them. She's also wearing a dosimeter and was contaminated. She won't risk anyone else. Morgan tells her that they're on the other side of the radio if needed. Grace drives away.

Back at the truck stop, June finds Luciana at the door. The walkers chasing her are gone. They have been decapitated and their heads hung as a warning from a billboard. The group gathers below. June says they're close to finding something. John replies that Strand is coming with the plane. They'll find the kids, Al, and then go home.

At the warehouse, Salazar leads Strand back to the gate. He's not giving Strand the plane. Salazar says Alicia and Al are resourceful. If he gives Strand the plane, he'll make it worse for them. He shoots in the air, "If you come back...the next one is in your face." Strand viciously pummels a walker in the street, then walks away desperately into the night.

The plot slightly thickens, but got us nowhere in finding Al or those kids. In episode one, the guys that took Al were associated with a three ringed symbol. This was on the helicopter that spirited Rick away on The Walking Dead. It looks like all roads will lead to the reactors and the source of the radiation. Luciana fumbling about at the truck stop was pure filler. Why did Salazar entertain Strand if he was never going to help him? Insert more filler. It looks like Fear the Walking Dead is going to stretch the plot noodle thin and load us up on sauce. Tune in next week to AMC as the search for Al continues, and hopefully Morgan gets a new staff.

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Julian Roman at TVweb
Julian Roman