[Warning: This story contains spoilers from Sunday's season two finale of Fear the Walking Dead.]
It was only a matter of time before one of the core castmembers of Fear the Walking Dead finally succumbed to the brutal world of the zombie apocalypse - and no, Daniel Salazar (Ruben Blades) does not count, considering showrunner Dave Erickson's assertion that the man's story is not yet over.
But unless viewers aren't meant to trust the word of armageddon enthusiasts Brandon (Kelly Blatz) and Derek (Kenny Wormald), who in this case had zero reason to lie, then it's time to say goodbye to Chris Manawa (Lorenzo James Henrie), the troubled youth with a killer streak of his own.
In the penultimate episode of the season, "Wrath," which aired immediately before the finale, Travis reunited with Brandon and Derek, whom he last saw riding off into parts unknown with Chris. For his part, Chris decided that his world view was more in line with these new peers than with Travis, who only believes in killing as a last resort, not as a casual necessity of the apocalypse. As it turns out, that philosophy backfired: Brandon and Derek killed Chris, after he ruined their car and broke his leg, becoming a physical liability. As evidenced by how they handled their ill friend "Baby James," Brandon and Derek don't have much tolerance for liabilities.
Travis discovers his son's fate after reuniting with Brandon and Derek at Madison's hotel fortress, beating them senseless until they reveal the real reason Chris is no longer with them. In a moment of desperation, Brandon admits that they killed Chris after the accident, shooting him in the head right on the spot. The scene plays out in a wordless flashback, leaving open the slightest possibility that Chris is actually alive - but unless Brandon and Derek had severe death wishes, there was no reason to lie, as Travis took the news poorly and chose to end the boys' lives with his own bare hands.
Now, Travis is the last Manawa standing, out on the open road with Madison (Kim Dickens) and Alicia (Alycia Debnam-Carey) after the three of them were exiled from the hotel due to Travis' actions, and later, Alicia's choice to kill an innocent man in order to protect her veritable step-father. For his part, Victor Strand (Colman Domingo) chose to stay behind at the hotel, but only after helping Madison, Alicia and Travis escape.
Meanwhile, another troubled son is in jeopardy: Nick (Frank Dillane) ends the season leading the people of La Colonia away from their former home and toward what he believes to be a safe haven on the other side of the border. His instincts are proven horribly wrong when gunmen arrive and shoot at the Colonia's people, injuring Luciana (Danay Garcia) and surrounding her and Nick, their next moves unknown until the show returns. As it turns out, the world is big enough for two FTWD cliffhangers with a main character's life hanging in the balance.
Tune into THR on Monday for more on the Fear the Walking Dead finale. In the meantime, what did you think of season two's conclusion?