It's rare for an hour of TV to be chilling, comical, and bursting at the seams with character development.
Despite not initially being the plan, Fear the Walking Dead Season 6 Episode 7 worked very well as a midseason finale.
After how terribly Alicia was written on Fear the Walking Dead Season 5, it was nice to get an episode centered on her and her pursuit of some semblance of freedom.
Following Alicia into the building and being knocked out and waking up, restrained as though she was about to be changed by Dr. Frankenstein made for some tense TV, but I only wish this villain was actually scarier.
Boarding up the house and trapping Alicia, Dakota, and Charlie amped up the tension, but the resolution to that particular arc could have been handled much better.
The series is about survival at its core, so it's not in the least surprising that the man was up to no good. He gave serious sociopath vibes the moment he popped up on-screen.
While his death was brutal, it was deserved. The best part of the storyline was that it made me think he attacked Virginia's raiders so that Dakota would have to come to him for help, almost like he wanted to create a damsel in distress.
In that respect, it was successful because the last thing I expected was for Morgan to show up and admit that he's been causing a whole host of problems for Virginia.
The wild war of words between Alicia, Morgan, and Strand was a great way to show just how divided these different factions are nowadays.
If you watch Fear the Walking Dead online, you know Strand thinks about himself first, before considering anybody else.
He was introduced as a crook early in the series, but he saw something in Nick, something that made him want to save him.
So, to have him hold a gun at the head of Nick's sister solidified the fact that the old Strand is back, and he's probably here to stay.
Like I've said countless times, Strand loves the little bit of power he actually has, but he's also starting to realize that Virginia is telling him information on a need-to-know basis.
Virginia wants her rangers to do her bidding, sending them into deadly scenarios, even though the people attacking mostly want her head on a silver platter.
Strand returning alone after learning about Morgan being alive, and letting Virginia know the others had taken her sisters seemed like a way for him to get some more pull with Virginia.
He wants to make sure he's safe, but maybe he will stage the ultimate betrayal when Virginia needs him the most.
The battle she teased earlier in Fear the Walking Dead Season 6 made me think it would be huge, with different factions and thousands of different people on multiple sides.
Who would have thought the battle she was referring to was against Morgan? She must have known he would rally up his troops to take her down.
The straw that broke the camel's back in this scenario was when she realized that her sister was on the opposite side.
Dakota is young, but she certainly knows the way the world works, and has a fraught relationship with her sister.
Then again, what if Dakota is just as scheming as her older sister and is only working with Morgan and Alicia to expose them when they least expect it?
I wondered where the heck Grace had been, but having her as a prisoner to use against Morgan is probably the best move Virginia has made. Morgan is not going to be able to think straight when he realizes the lives of his unborn child and love interest are on the line.
We still don't know who saved Morgan, but Dakota seemed like a plausible choice until this installment. They would have recognized each other had one of them saved the other.
The common theory in the fandom is that Madison is about to stage a comeback, and while I would love that to happen, I sincerely doubt it will.
Kim Dickens did not leave the series on the best of terms when the showrunners for Fear the Walking Dead Season 4 wanted to make their mark on the series.
That controversial season resulted in the departures of both Nick and Madison, with them both being left dead.
But Madison's death occurred off-screen, leading to many fans wondering whether she could pop back up when they least expect it.
If Madison survived the stadium, she could have moved on to a new group and could be in a position of power, or she could be merely lurking in the shadows, waiting to help when Alicia least expects it.
Then again, could you imagine how she would greet Charlie?
The fact that the episode mentioned the stadium, as well as the clicking system with the walkie-talkies Madison invented, is either a whole lot of baiting the audience, or it could be foreshadowing.
Alicia reuniting with her mother would be beautiful, mostly because of how much Alicia lost and the internal struggle she went through in the years since.
"Damage from the Inside" was a good way to cap off this impressive run of episodes. I'm rarely upset this series is wrapping for an undisclosed amount of time, but I can't wait to find out what happens next.
How about you, FTWD fans?
Do you think Madison could return? What did you think of Alicia and Morgan vs. Strand? Were you satisfied with the reveal that Grace is being held hostage?
Hit the comments below.
Fear the Walking Dead returns in 2021.
Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.