A reveal about the CRM in The Walking Dead: World Beyond series finale creates an issue with Althea’s exit from Fear the Walking Dead. Isabelle (Sydney Lemmon) suddenly showing up and saving members of Morgan’s group in the Fear the Walking Dead season 6 finale seemingly set up the CRM being vital to season 7. However, it simply led to a single-episode story that culminated in Al abruptly leaving the show.
Maggie Grace, who had been a series regular on FTWD since season 4, officially parts ways with the series in Fear the Walking Dead season 7 when her character left Texas, presumably for good. It was revealed that when Isabelle broke protocol to help Al’s friends, she essentially betrayed the CRM and has been around the run ever since. As a result, she decided to hide out in a cabin in the Great Smoky Mountains. Though it took some convincing from Morgan (Lennie James), Al ultimately set off to reunite with Isabelle at the end of the episode. Though this meant that her time with Morgan’s group was over, this allowed Al to get her happy ending.
Part of what makes Al’s exit from FTWD strange is what the Walking Dead: World Beyond series finale established about CRM soldiers who go AWOL. When Dennis (Maximilian Osinski) was pondering what life would be like if he and Huck (Annet Mahendru) escaped from the CRM, he mentioned a friend he knew who went off and a resource run, and was never heard from again. Dennis believed that he headed off to his family’s cabin in the Smoky Mountains. The character presumably getting away with this decision contrasts a bit with Fear the Walking Dead, which left the impression that CRM soldiers can’t simply walk away.
The CRM relentlessly hunted Isabelle and everyone associated with her over maps that she had in her possession. The key difference between the two situations is of course the maps, which oddly makes them the real reason for why Al and Isabelle couldn’t be with Morgan’s group. Looking at what Dennis said, it seems that the Civic Republic Military doesn’t typically take such drastic actions when one of their own leaves. As a member of the CRM, Dennis’ friend likely had knowledge of details they wouldn’t want revealed, but it seems that he got out anyway. If Isabelle had found a way to return the maps or prove that they were destroyed, it’s possible that she could have enjoyed the same freedom.
Dennis’ comments in the Walking Dead: World Beyond series finale just adds to problems that already existed with Al’s sudden Fear the Walking Dead exit. To many, Al’s reasons for not immediately looking for Isabelle didn’t make much sense. Plus, her decision to finally go look for her at the end felt predictable. The way the show wrote her out so quickly came off as forced and was a bit disappointing, especially since the season 6 finale created expectations for a much bigger CRM story in season 7.