As we gear up for the launch of Fear the Walking Dead season 4, today’s edition of our CarterMatt Unsung Heroes article series is all about a hero’s journey and someone who has found themselves in the midst of tremendous peril and pain. Alycia Debnam-Carey’s Alicia Clark started off this series as someone completely unequipped for the dangers that surrounded her in the zombie apocalypse; now, she has the capacity to help others who are suffering and to make the tough decisions when the situations arise.
How has the series allowed this character to have so much depth over time? Much of that begins with looking at where her story first began — by starting Fear the Walking Dead story soon after the apocalypse began, we had a chance to dive into some of Alicia’s humanity. She was a young woman with her own issues of identity and purpose to figure out, and throwing life-or-death stakes on top of that was a recipe for disaster. We saw her fear, her insecurity, and also some of her capacity for mistakes. She made several, whether it be in terms of trust or survival.
This is where the next key component to Alicia Clark’s evolution comes into play: Her capacity to learn. Despite her flaws (as every great hero has) her greatest strength was that she would never shut out knowledge. She learned from her experiences, and she learned from her mother Madison who had went through her fair share of pain long before the apocalypse first began. She became stronger, and was able to use some of her natural intuition more in the field. Even in the midst of death, she had someone who she could look to. She already understood empathy and looking out for someone else due to her relationship with Nick, but going through the apocalypse helped to understand it further and on a broader scale. At Broke Jaw Ranch, Alicia saw examples of bad leadership and chaos, yet she also started to understand good leadership, offering hope, and finding quick solutions to problems that weren’t self-serving. While Alicia still strived occasionally for those moments of normalcy, she realized that this was not a normal world. She showed she can think on her feet and rise above loss. That’s why she’s still standing, and her character growth is so believable and so natural for this world that you cannot help but cheer for her.
The performance of Debnam-Carey also brings Alicia to new heights, as every season it feels as though she discovers something more about this character and adds to the cocktail of life experiences she has. She can channel her pain beautifully, but also be strong and enter badass zombie-killer mode if need be. If you ever needed a microcosm of the character’s evolution, all you have to do is look at the image above from the upcoming season. Can you imagine this Alicia existing within the first season of Fear the Walking Dead? It’s hard to. It’s a sign of her heroism, her growth and her strength.
What do you think could be coming for Alicia Clark on Fear the Walking Dead from here, and are you as impressed as we are with the growth of the character? Share below! Also be sure to cast your vote for her to win our Unsung Heroes poll at the link here!
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