Radioactive zombies of the nuclear apocalypse bare all in the revealing Season 7 premiere of Fear the Walking Dead. Spoiler warning for Season 7 Episode 1, "The Beacon." In the irradiated wasteland bombed by ten of Teddy's (John Glover) nuclear warheads, Will (Gus Halper) scavenges for scraps and avoids two types of walkers: less harmful ones killed by the blasts and more dangerous ones that died from radiation. But there's another threat in the fallout: Stalkers, Will's name for the mysterious group of people in gas masks and hazmat suits he's caught stripping the dead.
When Will and Victor Strand (Colman Domingo) set off to find their missing mutual friend Alicia Clark (Alycia Debnam-Carey), they keep their eyes peeled for Stalkers. Will's caught sight of Stalkers sneaking up on the dead and stripping them down to their fleshy birthday suits, leaving bared bodies behind for reasons to be exposed later in Season 7.
The Walking Dead was the first to go full frontal with a naked zombie that had "strategically placed" bite marks on private parts. Walkers went wild again when a topless zombie appeared in the AMC series' ninth season.
The stripped-down dead ones, and the masked Stalkers doing the stripping, are part of an even deadlier environment caused by the fallout from Season 6 of Fear.
"At the end of Season 6, the world changed in a drastic way with the detonation of the warheads that Teddy launched from the sub. It completely ravaged the landscape and redefined the apocalypse as we know it," showrunner Ian Goldberg said on Fear the Walking Dead Episode Insider. "We knew that things were going to be different, but we wanted to come into the season showing just how dire and scary this landscape was as a result of those bombs."
That's shown first hand through the eyes of new character Will, someone "the audience could experience this new world with," added showrunner Andrew Chambliss. "The opening [of 'The Beacon'] really is all about establishing just how punishing the environment is out there. It's not just about walkers, it's about all the things that our characters would have taken for granted prior to the detonations — shelter that's safe from radioactive fallout, water that's clean to drink, food that's safe to eat. Even the walkers take on new danger because you don't know if they're contaminated or they're not."
New episodes of Fear the Walking Dead Season 7 premiere Sundays at 9/8c on AMC. Follow the author @CameronBonomolo on Twitter for all things TWD and stay tuned to ComicBook for coverage all season long.