The big bad behind "the end is the beginning" is revealed when cult leader Teddy (Smallville's John Glover) corners Alicia Clark (Alycia Debnam-Carey) on Fear the Walking Dead. Spoilers for Season 6 Episode 11, "The Holding." After Morgan (Lennie James) warns about the existential threat to the survivors that unnerved even Virginia (Colby Minifie), her daughter Dakota (Zoe Colletti) reveals the group behind the spray-painted messages targeting Virginia's settlements are laying low in Dallas. It's there that Alicia, Luciana (Danay Garcia), Althea (Maggie Grace), and Wes (Colby Hollman) dig into "The Holding," Teddy's underground community that has spent years preparing for their "new beginning."
Riley (Nick Stahl) and Derek (Chinaza Uche) — Wes's brother he thought was dead — are among the most faithful of The Holding, where a pre-recorded message from Teddy sermonizes about "death, destruction, decay" in-between promises to help the lost "see the truth" about the world above.
The Holding has power, water, and food grown from walker-made mulch, and is self-sufficient enough that it will soon close up its doors for good. "We never have to go topside again. This is the new way. That was the old," Riley reveals. "This is where life will begin again."
The "recruits" infiltrating The Holding find maps watermarked with the three-rings logo of the Civic Republic Military, which Althea recognizes from her encounter with CRM soldier Isabelle (Sydney Lemmon) in Season 5. The underground group is preparing for their "new beginning" foretold by Teddy, which they'll only have once "everyone and everything up there is gone."
When the foursome is found out and captured, they're taken to a room filled with embalming equipment taken from the funeral home where a freshly-embalmed walker attacked Althea in "Alaska."
"You won't decay. You won't return to the earth. You won't be part of our new beginning," Riley threatens, demanding they tell him where to find Morgan Jones. The four make a run for it, but Alicia stays behind and sets fire to the flammable embalming fluid in an attempt to bring down The Holding.
The others reconvene at Morgan's dam community, telling him that the End is the Beginners are planning "something big." They're determined to find Morgan and the key that unlocks a nuclear-filled submarine. Althea goes off to try and find Isabelle with a warning: Teddy's people who survived the blaze could use their stolen maps to target CRM drop sites in the region and commandeer a helicopter.
In the ashes of The Holding, Riley and Harvey (Dean Neistat) plan to embalm and preserve Alicia as-is, but the honor is something Teddy would want to do himself. When she calls him the "king of the crazies," Teddy tells Alicia that her people "destroyed everything we have been working toward. Years of work. Sacrifices literal and figurative. You destroyed it!" But fear not, he says: "For every ending springs a new beginning."
Alicia tells him she's not buying the shit he's selling about him wanting to "save" her. "I know you don't believe in this, in us... yet. But you will," Teddy says with a chuckle. "I've been looking for someone like you for a long, long time."0comments
The encounter confirms Teddy is the brain-washing serial killer and "two-bit mortician" put behind bars by John Dorie's (Garret Dillahunt) father decades before the zombie apocalypse. Whatever his plans for Alicia, Teddy is out to unleash a nuclear apocalypse on the zombie-ravaged surface world to achieve his "new beginning."
Follow the author @CameronBonomolo on Twitter for all things TWD. New episodes of Fear the Walking Dead Season 6 premiere Sundays at 9/8c on AMC.