First Aired June 18th, 2017
Flashbacks show a wounded Daniel [Ruben Blades] staggering through a Mexico town and passing out under a car. On the brink of delirium and dehydration he’s found by a man named Efrain [Jesse Borrego] who decides to help him.
Efrain takes Daniel to a doctor Lola [Lisandra Tena] who treats his wounds and eventually nurses him back to health. Over time Efrain and Daniel bond with each other to the point where Daniel reveals his dark past including the dozens of people he killed before fleeing El Salvador. Daniel tearfully asks Efrain to offer him forgiveness, (something he usually does before killing a walker), but Efrain tells him that in this new world nobody can judge him.
That night he goes out in a storm and is nearly killed by a walker before it’s killed by a lightning strike. The next day he’s found in a sewer by Lola and a few others near the dam owned by Dante [Jason Manuel Olazabel]. She tells him to pretend they never met before and, to keep Daniel from getting killed, passes him off as someone wanting to work and he’s assigned to be a janitor.
Walker being struck down by lightening? It’s a little far fetched but there’s no denying it was a cool visual. After Daniel popped up in the end of the last episode we had a lot of questions, and this emotionally charged episode answered them. Daniel almost rarely let his guard down before so but here he was emotionally raw. Even the small act of cutting Efrain’s hair was meaningful because it was a moment for Daniel to regain a small sense of normalcy.
After Daniel was integrated into the dam it was clear the main story was him having to choose between keeping himself safe or turning on Efrain and Lola. Throughout the episode he struggled with forgiveness for his past and now he would be tested morally once again.
When a guard antagonizes Daniel he attacks him, but when Dante discovers his past he is impressed. Daniel asks for a car to search for Ofelia [Mercedes Mason] but instead is offered a place ensuring the security at the dam in exchange for a comfortable existence. While out with guards searching for a thief who has been taking water, they come across Efrain’s hideout. Daniel turns Efrain over and Lola is disgusted that he turned on the man who saved his life and ruined her operation of supplying water to people on the outside who can’t barter for it.
Later Daniel sees Strand [Colman Domingo] being brought into the compound and asks about Ofelia. Strand lies and says Ofelia is at the hotel in hopes of getting Daniel to free him but Daniel doesn’t believe Strand and leaves him in his cell. Daniel finds Dante beating Efrain for information on who in the dam was helping him to steal water, Daniel offers Efrain a fast death to keep him from being tortured but Efrain rejects him.
Daniel and Strand always had a contentious relationship and that’s not likely to change anytime soon. Plus Strand didn’t help himself by getting caught in a lie. I think because Daniel assumed Ofelia was dead, it caused him to snap which is why he became cold and calculating towards Efrain. If he has nothing left from his old life there’s no reason not to give in to his darker instincts, in fact it’s the best way to avoid how he’s feeling. Although it’s clear that we are not meant to see Daniel as a true villain as he doesn’t fully embrace that new mentality. He tries to protect Lola from being found out and offers Efrain a fast death. Although, considering he turned Efrain in, that offer doesn’t sound so appealing to him. Overall this was a great episode that helped reintegrate Daniel’s character in the story and sets up a secondary narrative that can juxtapose with the action at the ranch.
Daniel prepares to begin torturing Efrain, and Lola steps in to stop it revealing that she helped Efrain. Efrain and Lola are ordered to be thrown over a balcony and fed to walkers as Strand and Daniel look on. But Daniel shoots and kills Dante and his guards. He hands Lola the gun and gets on his knees asking for forgiveness and, although hesitant, she does. There was little doubt that Daniel was going to kill Efrain and Lola because he’s supposed to be a character we can root for. We know he killed and tortured people in the past but to actually see him murder innocent people would have forever changed how viewers saw him as a character. In a sense, Daniel found the forgiveness he was looking for while still having a lot to make up for.
“I’m not a good man, I’ve done terrible things. I’m afraid it’s time to pay my debts.”
Daniel might be old but he’s surprisingly quick when he has to defend himself.
“This may be the apocalypse, but it’s not communism.”
Daniel better hope he finds Ofelia soon given that his current group is full of people he’s screwed over and they may not be forgiving forever.
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