AMC’s Fear the Walking Dead season four episode two begins in a period of time labeled “Before.” No explanation’s given as to when “Before” actually is, but it appears to be during a quiet period for Madison and her family and friends.
Life seems almost pre-zombie apocalypse normal in the opening moments of the episode titled “Another Day in the Diamond.” Everyone’s waking up from a night of peaceful sleep, with Nick (Frank Dillane) and Luciana (Danay Garcia) climbing out of bed and greeting the morning with coffee. The new world’s revealed when Alicia (Alycia Debnam-Carey) opens her curtains to reveal a stadium has been turned into a bustling community.
Nick, Luciana, Alicia, and Victor (Colman Domingo) go about their assigned jobs while Madison (Kim Dickens) questions a young girl, Charlie, about her former life. Madison’s on lookout duty while comforting the young girl and welcoming her into the community. The girl points out the direction she was coming from when she stumbled upon this community.
A PA announcer says it’s another beautiful day and reminds everyone that today marks one full year of living in “the Diamond.” Crops are growing well, and it appears these zombie apocalypse survivors have jelled as a community.
To celebrate their one-year anniversary, Victor shares a special treat: syrup.
While Nick, Alicia, and their friends eat breakfast, Madison is working away on multiple projects. Alicia heads over and tells her mom to rest and relax, but Madison actually seems fine. She even attempts to crack a joke.
Nick and Charlie examine the turnips and Charlie’s concerned about the amount of food stored. Nick assures her they’ll be fine before changing the subject.
Madison and some of the community leaders discuss whether a search party should be sent out after Charlie’s family. Charlie indicated the direction and that, plus a library book, put the family’s location outside the community’s agreed upon range. Madison thinks they have to look for the family and finally the group agrees.
A baseball pitching machine throws a baseball that’s used to distract the walkers so the exit can be cleared. Before Victor, Luciana, and Madison head out, Nick asks them to find a new book for Charlie. He doesn’t want to accompany the group, completely content with staying put in the safety of the Diamond. Alicia also loves the place’s serenity but is part of the search party anyway.
As they hit the road, Luciana and Madison talk about Nick. Madison’s sure there will come a time when Nick steps outside the walls of the Diamond, but for now he just has to feel safe. Madison reminds Luciana that Nick was in bad shape when she found him.
Nick uses the walkie talkie to tell the guys on the road trip the turnips are invested with weevils. Their conversation is cut off (the distance is too great) as they enter a deserted town.
Victor teams up with Luciana while Madison and Alicia stick together to try and find Charlie’s family. Victor and Lucina enter a store that’s been completely picked clean. Even the light bulbs are gone.
Luciana and Madison spot a banner with 457 sprayed on it as they check out the town. They find a camp that looks recent but has burned. Victor and Alicia speak by walkie talkie, and Victor points out they haven’t seen a single walker since they arrived in the town – or any dead bodies at all.
Madison finds a container that looks fresh and wants to stick around a while to find the person who was recently eating lunch.
Back at the Diamond, Charlie listens to the walkie and tells Frank she knows they’re out looking for her family. Nick sidetracks her by asking if she’ll help him with the turnips.
Alicia calls her mom and Madison’s about to answer when a woman holds a gun to the back of her head. The stranger demands she hand over her keys but Madison doesn’t comply. Instead, she presses the walkie’s mic a few times to alert the others that she’s in trouble. They come running but not before Madison explains they’re looking for survivors who could be related to a little girl named Charlie.
The woman reveals she doesn’t have a kid and wants Madison to stop talking. As the woman tries to run away after grabbing the keys, she’s surrounded by Madison’s group. She runs anyway, and Alicia places her own gun on the ground, trying to convince her they’re there to help. She leads them up on a roof and as they talk, she backs up and falls through the roof into what looks like oil-filled tank full of walkers. She tries to take them on by herself, and then Madison hops into the storage tank to help her out.
Meanwhile, Victor and Alicia finally manage to get the door open. They take out the walkers as they spill out the open door.
Night falls and they shelter in the town. They’re finally recovered enough from the walker battle to talk and get around to asking the woman’s name. She introduces herself as Naomi (Jenna Elfman) and she apologizes for what she just put them through. She doesn’t know who led the walkers into the tank and says she’s only spent one night in this town.
As they talk, walkers are heard banging on the walls of other silos.
Back at the Diamond, Nick burns the yucky turnips. He hears music on the walkie and thinks maybe they should head out to find his mom and the others. He’s told to be patient and wait, but Nick’s really anxious. He asks Charlie to open the gate for him and heads out after taking a deep breath. He has a flashback of falling from the bridge after blowing the dam.
Walkers pound on his truck as he leaves the Diamond. Inside the community, a watchman takes out the walkers. Nick is confused when he steps outside the truck, and just then Madison and her group pull up. He jokes he was just taking a stroll.
Madison finds Charlie and Charlie already knows her family wasn’t located. Madison has another question and knows it won’t be easy to answer. She wants to know what happened at Charlie’s camp and why everything was destroyed in a fire.
It turns out Naomi is an ER/ICU nurse and she bandages up Nick’s minor head wound. Madison arrives and confirms Charlie knew they wouldn’t find her family. Nick goes to check on her as Madison and Naomi discuss the future. Madison tells her there will be 48 people living there, if Naomi decides to stay. Madison is okay with Naomi remaining there, even though she pulled a gun on her. Madison confesses she’s done much worse. (That’s an understatement!)
Madison’s very kind to Naomi, telling her they’ll wait and see how she feels after a shower. Naomi’s incredulous, nearly unable to process the thought of having a real shower with hot water.
As Luciana watches with a rifle from inside the gates, she spots a convoy of vehicles approaching fast. She yells for the people who are retrieving Nick’s truck to forget about it and hurry inside. They make it back before the convoy pulls to a halt outside the front gate.
Alicia wants everyone to head to the armory and grab all the weapons.
The convoy consists of cars, trucks, and RVs. They use a guy on a bicycle playing music to lead the walkers into the back of a truck. They follow him like lambs to the slaughter. One man then takes a white banner and spray paints 12 on it, hanging it on the outside of the truck containing walkers.
The same man then begins unpacking folding chairs, sits down, and waits.
Madison heads out alone but with her people armed behind the gates. She approaches the man and asks what happened in town and how the walkers got into the storage tanks. He claims that his group cleaned up that mess and that the town went up in flames because of a clogged bleeder valve on one of the tanks.
The man knows all about the Diamond down to the fact there are weevils eating the turnip crop. It turns out Charlie’s with this group and has been reporting back on this community. The man admits they found her a while ago and since then she’s been great at finding places for them to takeover.
The man reels off an accurate list of the weapons at the camp and then gives Madison an ultimatum. If the group turns over their items, his people will let them live. Or, they’ll let the group die while they try to make things work. He finally introduces himself as Mel and Madison assures him they aren’t leaving. He then warns her she’s about to be tested. Mel says they’ll wait outside the gates until that time comes.
The fruits and vegetables continue to die. Life otherwise goes on inside the Diamond. Madison keeps working on building something and the others join in.
Spring forward to what we’re told is “Now” and Alicia, Nick, Luciana, and Victor have Al (Maggie Grace), John (Garret Dillahunt), and Morgan (Lennie James) tied up outside Al’s truck. They find a flag with 51 on it inside Al’s truck and mistakenly believe she’s with Mel’s group, the Vultures.
Al is told to take them to where she found the flag. They all pile into Al’s truck (a former SWAT vehicle) and head off.
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