"Cobalt" is the fifth episode of the first season of Fear the Walking Dead. It aired on September 27, 2015 on AMC.
"The National Guard's plan for the neighborhood is revealed; Travis and Madison make a difficult decision."
Strand is a good looking, well dressed and very clean African American man. He's standing in what looks like a wire cage holding area, he's talking to to a seated, and very distressed looking, Doug Thompson. Strand taunts him, telling Doug he
can't protect his family, that his wife will turn to another man who will be able to protect her and her daughters. Strand is relentless in his humiliation of Doug Thompson who breaks down and cries, attracting the attention of the guards who take him away. Strand shakes his head says to the guards, "I don't know what came over him."
Strand then turns his attention to someone else in his were fence cell and this turns out to be Nick.
Nick is not looking well.
Ofelia throws a bottle at the wire fence between her and the soldiers, and yells. "Facist pricks. Tell me where she is! Assholes! Come out here you cowards and I'll show you hostile." She seems annoyed.
Behind the fence the soldiers prepare to come through the gate and deal with her. Ofelia turns and shouts at the other residents of the Safe Zone "What are you afraid of? When are you going to step up? When they come for you?"
up to the fence to deal with Ofelia and blocks Castro's way. He persuades Castro to let him talk to Ofelia. As Adams goes through the gate Ofelia smashes her last bottle, she seems to have come with a supply, and waits for him. "Let me take you home", he says. On the other side of the fence a young soldier, Cpl. Cole, says "I'm not doing this anymore." and starts to walk away. Lt. Moyers, who's been watching from back aways, tells Sgt. Castro to sort it out and Castro goes after him. While Castro is busy with the young Cpl, Adams takes the opportunity to quietly walk Ofelia away.
Liza is closing a wound on an injured man's arm with black sutures. Dr. Exner makes a point of complimenting her on the work and telling her how much she's needed. She talks about how she started with more nurses but doesn't answer Liza when she asks what happened to two of the other nurses. Exner tells another nurse to change a dressing on a man's leg and tells Liza that she's there at a good time, and that "no one expects her to be a superstar". She promises to help Liza talk to her son, and tells Liza that Griselda's foot had to be taken but that she's in recovery now, that Nick's "fine" and that they have work to do.
Travis brings some coffee for Madison who is sitting at the dining table, she looks as if she's been up all night. He's about to go out and talk to Moyers. Chris walks in, hostile about Travis making plans with Madison about trying to get his mother back without involving him. He tells Madison to not interrupt him when he's talking to his father about "family matters". Travis briskly walks Chris away from Maddy and it's immediately obvious how upset and near to tears Chris is. Travis tells him to be strong, and to apologise to Madison. Chris goes out instead.
A little later, Madison is making her Alicia's bed and finds Susan's letter to her husband Patrick. We can also see Alicia's drawing from Susan's wall, now on Alicia's bedside table. Madison reads the letter and goes straight to the Tran's home.Madison goes in and calls "'Licia? 'Licia are you in here?" She's walking through the house when she hears a noise from below. While she's finding a torch from the kitchen the noise is repeated, much louder, and Maddy takes a knife and goes down the steps. The noise is coming from a dark part of that floor, Maddy goes very cautiously. She opens a door and finds Adams tied to a chair, tape over his mouth and watched over by Daniel and Ofelia. She asks what is happening and Daniel tells her "This is how we bring them home."
A few minutes later and Ofelia is looking guilty and giving Adams a drink of water while Daniel sits and watches, Madison just behind him. Ofelia looks deeply worried by what is happening. We can hear the chatter of the soldiers on Adams' radio. Adams tries to reassure them about their family but says he doesn't know where they are.
Madison storms out and upstairs, followed by Ofelia and then Daniel. Ofelia tells her there was no choice and tells Madison how they will exchange him for Griselda and Nick. Daniel backs her up but once Ofelia goes he admits to Madison it won't work, and that his real plan is to get information from Adams. He tells her to go home and to make sure that Ofelia does not come back into the Tran's house. Madison says that she doesn't want the young man hurt. Daniel asks if she wants her boy back. Madison doesn't have an answer for that.Travis goes to Moyers' asking about the two members of his household, and nine others, that were taken the evening before. Moyers talks about them being a risk to the local populace and needing to be quarantined until Dr Exner says otherwise, and that Travis can't talk to the Dr. When Travis presses the point, Moyers talks about his young soldiers, saying that he has to keep them busy and challenged. Travis isn't going to be distracted, wants to know if Moyers can help him get his people back or not. Moyers starts to walk away and Travis talks about Moyers having more than him to worry about if the ones that were taken don't come back soon.
Moyers asks if that's a threat, and Travis doesn't back down. Moyers suddenly changes tack and says - "Let's go and see the Doc". Sgt Castro suggests using another squad because his have been up 50- hours but Moyers gets aggressive and insists.
Travis gets in the back of a Humvee with Richards, Castro, Moyers and Cole. Driving across town. Moyers is standing up and looking out at the town through the hatch as they go. Cpl Cole is chatting with Travis, he now has a bruise on his left cheekbone that he says is nothing - due to "a momentary lapse of patriotism"Moyers stops them and says he's found one. They all get out and a sniper rifle is set-up, a well rehearsed routine with points to be won for the difficulty of the shot etc. Moyers looks through his binoculars and says "She's a ripe one". Moyers cocks the rifle and tell Travis to shoot the Infected woman, accuses him of not wanting to get his hands dirty when Travis hesitates. Travis sets up to take the shot but can't do it when he sees the Infected woman, still in her work uniform and with a name tag reading "Kimberly". Moyers says "that's what I thought" and puts the unfortunate woman down with a single shot.
Daniel walks back into the basement, asking Adams not to blame Ofelia for "this... situation" that she only brought him to Daniel because she's frightened for her mother and that Ofelia cares for him. They talk about Ofelia as Daniel calmly and methodically lays everything out the way he wants it. A small table here, a chair just there. Adams becomes increasingly scared as he watches him. Daniel tells him that Ofelia thinks that Adams will not be harmed, that Daniel will talk to him and then exchange him for Griselda. Daniel admits that this isn't going to happen as he takes off his shirt and lays out his razors. Adams is terrified.
Daniel tells Adams about El Salvador, Adams has his eyes shut, barely controlling himself as Daniel sits on his right doing something we can't see. "The man with the blade and the man in the chair, they're not different. They both suffer and their lives are changed forever." He's telling Adams how he came to be the man with the blade, in El Salvador. Adams begs him to stop. Daniel asks about "Cobalt", a word he's heard many times now on the radio Adams had with him. He asks "What is Cobalt?" and takes the dressing off Adams' right forearm so that he can use the razor on him again. He talks about how the "outer layers" are relatively insensitive, how it hurts more the deeper you go. He asks "What is Cobalt?" Adams answers that he doesn't know, so Daniel cuts him again and Adams tries not to scream.
At the hospital Dr. Exner is assessing and checking in an injured soldier. Quizzing and training Liza as she does. Liza correctly identifies a collapsed lung as the problem and gets to assess the next one herself. The next one has concussion, fractures and bite marks - Exner calls Liza away immediately and get a combat medic, a corpsman, to deal with the bitten man. As Liza goes off down the corridor she can see the corpsman bring over some device that needs compressed air.
As they take the first soldier down the corridor, Exner carries on training Liza. "Anything that looks like a bite - is."One slip up, one 'what if?' and we all start finding out what the neighbors taste like."Chris is lying on the top of someone's car when Alicia rides up on a "borrowed" bike and teases him, flirts with him. She tells him to come with her to see something. He does and she shows him a house that belonged to a very rich family. Expensive toys that Chris plays with and expensive clothes, jewellery and makeup that Alicia puts on. Chris sees her sliding the strap off a shoulder as she looks in the mirror and backs off in a hurry, Alicia sees him disappear and smiles. In the rich family's house he looks younger, and she looks older. In the holding cells, the soldiers come and check everyone's temperature. Strand's is normal while Nick, in the throes of heroin withdrawal, shows a fever. They start to take him but Strand bribes one of them, Melvin, with diamond cufflinks to leave Nick there. The soldiers with Travis get a radio message about a squad pinned down in the library and divert off to help them. Over the radio they can hear the chaos and panic. They arrive at the West View Library and, as they get out, Castro tells Travis to stay in the truck, "no matter what". Travis sits very still, very wide eyed as the soldiers go into the building. The radio messages are panicked and chaotic: "there's too many", "behind you, behind you". Infected men and women are shot and thrown out of windows. The squad, minus Moyers, run out of the building followed by a line of Infected men. One of the soldiers throws a grenade and they get back in the Humvee, Travis asks where Moyers is and Richards answers that "He ain't coming." With Moyers gone Sgt. Castro is now heading home to San Diego and his family. He says he'll drop Travis back within a few blocks of home and then he's on his own.
Madison is woken by Ofelia screaming, whilst Madison dozed Ofelia went back into the Tran's basement and has seen what her father is doing there. In the Tran's kitchen Ofelia pushes past Madison and out. Daniel washes his hands, his vest is stained with blood and Madison stares at him. He is grief stricken that he has had to do this again, and that his daughter has seen him capable of it. He scrubs obsessively his hands at the sink. Madison asks "Did he tell us what we need to know?"
Walking home, Travis finds Ofelia sitting on the front lawn, she doesn't respond to him at first. He goes into the Clark home and asks Maddie "Did you know what he was going to do?" but she doesn't answer.
Liza is exploring the hospital and finds heavy duty anti-infection clothing in a very blood stained room. She opens a door onto a large area that looks like where they are holding Nick. She doesn't see him and moves on, finding Griselda in "Recovery". She is sedated on a bed in a large wire cage. As she's calling her Exner arrives and asks "Why don't you trust me?" She seems to have lost track of how strange and terrifying all of this is. She tells Liza that Griselda has Septic Shock, a widespread and severe infection that Liza knows will almost certainly kill her.
Chris and Alicia have both changed clothes now, dressed in the expensive clothing that's been left behind and are drinking champagne from the bottle. They are looking at the pictures of the family that lived there, wondering where they went. Alicia asks Chris if he wonders what happened to them and Chris, still staring at a picture of that family on the mantelpiece, says he doesn't. Alicia sits at the grand piano and watches Chris throw the picture on the floor - she drains the champagne bottle and throws that as well. They wreck the room and grin at each other.
Adams is telling Daniel about what happened at the arena, that they'd never seen anyone change that fast. They'd had to lock two thousand people in the stadium and hadn't been able to rescue the healthy civilians from the Infected. Adams says he chained the doors himself. It haunts him.
Travis bursts in and demands to know what is happening. Madison gets Adams to tell Travis about Cobalt. Adams reveals to Travis, as he already has to Maddy and Daniel, that Cobalt is the evacuation of military personnel from the LA basin, and the "humane termination" of everyone else.
In the hospital, Griselda is dying. She is delirious and rambles about her life with Daniel - from what we now know we can see that she knew all about Daniel's role in the war but to Liza it is just fevered nonsense, and Exner doesn't understand Spanish. When she dies, Exner produces a captive bolt device to destroy Griselda's brain. She explains this to Liza, who takes the captive bolt and does it herself.
In the holding cell, Strand is explaining to Nick why he saved him. He wanted to "obligate" Nick, so that he would help him. Strand has picked up somehow that the soldiers are leaving. He has a key.
Walking home. Alicia and Chris hide from what they think at first are the patrols they're so used to. But the soldiers are looting now, taking flat screen TVs etc. Alicia can see that something is wrong.
We see Daniel approach the stadium in the dark that evening. There's no power to most of the area but the stairs to the main doors are lit, as if someone knows that they need to be able to see what happens there.
The doors are all chained shut, just as Adams had said, and Daniel can hear the dead, growling and pushing, slamming at the doors.
- Nevins, Sgt Castro reminds Moyers he was lost the night before.
- Kimberly, bitten on the arm, became Infected (some time before, from her condition) and is put down by Moyers.
- Soldier, backed up into a corner by the infected at West View Library and fell out the window to his death.
- Squad of soldiers overrun by the infected at West View Library and killed.
- Bitten Soldier after being assessed at hospital. Euthanized by corpsman with captive bolt.
- Moyers, killed by the Infected or by Fragging.
- Griselda Salazar dies in the hospital of sepsis despite having her right foot amputated, Liza Ortiz makes sure she doesn't turn.
Main Cast Edit
- Kim Dickens as Madison Clark
- Cliff Curtis as Travis Manawa
- Frank Dillane as Nick Clark
- Alycia Debnam Carey as Alicia Clark
- Elizabeth Rodriguez as Liza Ortiz
- Mercedes Mason as Ofelia Salazar
- Lorenzo James Henrie as Chris Manawa
- Rubén Blades as Daniel Salazar
Guest Cast Edit
- Patricia Reyes Spíndola as Griselda Salazar
- Colman Domingo as Victor Strand
- Shawn Hatosy as Cpl. Andrew Adams
- Sandrine Holt as Bethany Exner
- Jamie McShane as Moyers
- Jared Abrahamson as Cpl. Cole
- Shane Dean as (Private First Class) PFC Richards
- Bobby Naderi as (Sergeant) Sgt. Castro
- Chris Furci as "Medic"
- Khaira Ledeyo as Nurse Hodges
- Toby Levins as Sgt. Melvin Allen
- Tammy Nera as "Infected Woman" (Kimberley)
- John Stewart as Doug Thompson
- Maxwell Yip as "Injured Soldier"
- "The Walking Dead: Cobalt" was the working title for the series before it was called Fear the Walking Dead.
- This is the episode in Fear where one of the characters learns, through Dr Exner that everyone is infected and will turn when they die. Dr Exner tells Liza this, and that traumatic brain injury is the only way to stop an infected person, just after Griselda Salazar dies.
- It also was the evacuation plan of L.A base
- The plan is aborted as the Infected overrun the base.
- Military Specifications (Milspec) radio viewed from various angles:
- ↑ http://www.amc.com/shows/fear-the-walking-dead/season-1/episode-05-cobalt
- ↑ http://www.amc.com/shows/fear-the-walking-dead/episodes/season-1/cobalt/story-sync/
|First Season Episodes|
|First Season Episodes||Pilot • So Close, Yet So Far • The Dog • Cobalt • Not Fade Away • The Good Man|
|Seasons||Season 1 • Season 2a • Season 3 • Season 2b • Season 4|