“Do Not Disturb” begins with a scene that sheds some light on a somber site our characters had stumbled across in “Los Muertos.” The wedding reception, which was assumedly ruined by the outbreak. The guests are happy and dancing; the outbreak hasn’t yet reached them, and they are enjoying a night of celebrating a new beginning. Oscar and Jessica, the newlyweds, are enjoying their first dance, before the bride is whisked away to dance with her father. The bride’s mother is reluctant to stay in Mexico with the news of what is taking place and wants to get the guests across the border before things get too bad. Her request is too little too late, though, and the bride’s father collapses to the floor and dies, reanimating as one of the infected and biting his daughter (that’s a true wedding crasher). The two employees attending the reception exit the room and lock the guests inside.
Cut to Alicia. She’s still alone and contemplating her next move, gearing up for battle. The teenage girl who we had first seen in the series premiere seems awfully distant right now, instead replaced by a determined and seasoned veteran. The infected are still roaming about in the hall, and she is keeping count of how many she sees, using the switchblade she had taken from Jack to carve a tally into the door. When she finally musters the courage to leave the room, she quickly becomes surrounded, and her only option for escape is the elevator shaft. As she begins to climb her way towards the next floor, doors open and a woman’s hand reaches out to help her. Strangers aren’t always kind, though, and the woman forces Alicia against the wall once she is out of the elevator shaft.
It turns out that her name is Elena, and she is one of the hotel employees who had locked the guests in the room during the flashback. She is also the one who has been marking the rooms that contain the infected with “Do Not Disturb” signs, a way for her to contain the problem, which she believes to be Alicia and her group. Elena thinks that Alicia belongs to the group of guests who remain in the hotel and who now have her nephew, Hector, and are using him as a bargaining chip to pull her out and hand over the keys to the hotel. Whoever has the keys controls the hotel, and the guests would either kill her or exile her. Alicia uses this newfound knowledge to her advantage and makes a deal: if Elena helps her get back to her family, Alicia’s group will help defend the hotel.
The two wait until morning to put their plan into action, Elena drawing the infected from the stairwell and into the hallway before hiding in a room, Alicia taking over and leading them into a different room. She locks herself out on the balcony, and just as the glass door begins to break, Elena throws a sheet over to her and Alicia climbs over to the adjacent balcony. Elena doesn’t have any intentions of going any further than this, but Alicia tells her that she is her tour guide. When asked if her mother would want Alicia to risk her life for her, Alicia answer no, but she knows that Madison would risk her life for Alicia.
Elena and Alicia make their way to the reception hall, and Alicia learns of the room’s dark past and exactly why the guests that remain in the hotel don’t think very kindly of Elena. But Alicia and her group have seen and done worse, and she doesn’t think any less of Elena for what she had done. When they finally make it to the doors of the bar, they are blocked by furniture. Elena tells Alicia that if her mother was in there, she is dead, but Alicia refuses to believe it and begins to pull the furniture away. The hotel guests that Elena is so afraid of show up with Hector and Alicia demands to know where her group is, telling Elaina not to give them the keys. Alicia eventually relents and allows Elena to hand over the keys, and just as Hector is released, they open the doors to the bar and hide behind it as the infected pour through.
Once they have the chance to escape into the bar, Alicia sees an infected person who at first looks exactly like Madison and she pauses, but as it turns her face towards her Alicia realizes it isn’t her and kills it. They make their way to a doorway that leads below and follow the hallway to a door that is locked. The infected are coming and just as they begin to reach them, the door opens, and Alicia is reunited with her mother and Strand.
The last time we saw Chris Manawa, he was holding a knife over a sleeping Alicia and Madison, holding a little boy hostage and attacking his father. When we see Chris Manawa next, tensions seem to have settled, and he is more concerned about his father’s injured feet than he is of anything else. When they find a broken down station wagon, Chris requests that he be allowed to go and check out the surrounding buildings for supplies, and he ultimately gets Travis to agree after he promises to come back if anything happens.
He technically keeps his promise, though loosely. When he goes to a taco stand, there are already people inside, and they have killed two people who were in there. He grabs water and a can that is sitting on the counter, but he isn’t able to leave before one of the intruders spots him. Infected also make an appearance, and Chris is quick to kill them before running away to his father and demanding that they have to leave right away.
The car ride is reminiscent of the world before the outbreak. Travis allows Chris to get behind the wheel and teaches him to drive (it gets off to a rough start at first, but Chris gets the hang of it). They drive until the car runs out of gas and then make camp, talking about the time they had camped at Big Bear and Chris’s mother went along despite not liking the outdoors. Travis believes that a place in the mountain is where they need to be, a place where they can see what’s coming and have enough land to farm, and can hunt and fish.
Conversation of what to do next is cut short when the headlights from a car are seen, and Chris realizes that it’s the people he had seen at the taco stand. They put out the fire and hide behind a bush. One of the men informs them that they aren’t going to kill them over refried beans, and Travis steps out from behind the bush. The group doesn’t have any intentions of hurting them, and they are impressed by the badassery that Chris showed at the taco stand, so they make camp for the night together and after some discussion and Travis’s rejection of joining them and heading for the border, agree to drive Travis and Chris to a town the following morning.
In the morning, they take off to the next town, Travis riding in the bed of the truck with Brandon and Chris up front with Baby James and Derek. Chris is enjoying himself, and it seems like he easily fits in with this group. They understand him and instead of seeing him as a monster, they see him as an asset. They eventually stop at an old farmhouse, and Travis thinks that they could stay here. Chris, on the other hand, wants to stay with the group. Chris runs off with the rest of the guys to the barn to get a few chickens, but Travis remains behind. He sees three graves: two children and a mother, and he realizes that they aren’t alone. He rushes to the barn and warns the other that they have to go, and when a gun-wielding man shows up and orders them to leave, he begs Chris and tries to diffuse the situation. The group they have wound up with doesn’t take it seriously and push the man, leading to Baby James being shot, and Chris reacts by shooting the man and killing him.
Chris and Alicia’s stories in “Do Not Disturb” very much mirror each other. They are both on a journey of self-discovery and learning who they are in this new world and how they will deal with it. Alicia is coming into her own, taking charge and doing what is necessary for her survival and the survival of her family. She has shown more times than once that she has the potential to be a leader. Chris, on the other hand, is going down a much darker path. His actions reflect the cruelty of this world that he has suddenly found himself in. They are both growing independent from their parents and proving that they are capable of fending for themselves, even if their means of survival are questionable.
- Alicia’s gotten pretty good with that switchblade, swinging around like that…I would have cut a finger off on accident.
- Alicia is understanding but also willing to do what needs to be done to survive. She makes an alliance with another person, convinces them to trust her. She has the potential to be the group’s leader. Rick Grimes 2.0.
- Where’s Ofelia? She disappeared on Alicia, and she wasn’t with Madison and Strand. She’s still somewhere in that hotel, but where, and why did she leave Alicia?
- The scene in the car. Let’s talk about that for a moment. It’s a normal father and son moment, but it is tinged by the reality of the world around them.
- ALERT! ALERT! New name for the undead! Wasted! They do look like they’re stumbling around after having a bit too much to drink.
- Travis not taking the hand that Chris offers is a very poignant moment. Travis no longer recognizes his son and the realization that he may not be able to help Chris is setting in.
Don’t miss an all-new episode of Fear The Walking Dead Sunday at 9 EST on AMC.