Fallout TV series Season 1, Episode 4 review — The Golden Rule

This episode is very much “Thou shalt get sidetracked by bullshit, every damned time”, feeling like a side quest for the full runtime. Let’s set aside the main quest for a few and level up a bit.

Lucy and Cooper the Ghoul set off across the wasteland, and it’s not too long before they meet up with Raj at the Westside Medical Clinic. Raj seems way on his way to being feral, but he’s able to resist the urges, at least for now. Reminiscing with Cooper about how good food used to taste, including Blamco Mac & Cheese, we get to learn a little bit more about ghoul life. It turns out, it’s not awesome. Who would have thought? After a quick re-supply (Mmm, jerky and water!), they’re back on their way across the harsh desert.

Fallout TV show - Interview w/ series creators Geneva Robertson-Dworet & Graham Wagner

Heading back into the vault we get to see what Lucy’s brother Norm is up to these days. It turns out that his recent offhand comments didn’t make the hive mind all that happy. His voice carries weight in the Vault as the son of an Overseer, and that could be disruptive to the overall harmony of the group. Taking the words of Betty (one of the elders of 33) to heart, he decides to turn the other cheek, serving up some jello cake to the prisoners in the hold. There’s no reason we can’t be civil, right?

Speaking of civil, Steph is working on getting over the grief of recently losing her beloved husband, Bert. It’s a tough process, but soon she’s able to find a welcome distraction. Nothing in the vault stays perfect for long though, and soon enough a sprung leak interrupts her happy moment. It’ll be interesting to see how her character develops, but her budding friendship with Chet might be the shoulder she needs.

Popping back to Lucy and Cooper, their relationship continues to evolve. They eventually get to a place where they can have an honest exchange, which seems to point the way towards a real turning point for both of them. Every side quest run seems to turn into a goat-rope, though, so they’ll need to pop by the local Super Duper Mart for a bit of shopping.

The Super Duper Mart reminds me of that opening moment of Fallout 3, when you hit that first store scrounging for literally anything that might have been left behind. Thankfully, folks in the wasteland can be pretty handy with maximizing their supplies, and Lucy and Cooper are able to come to an accord to get some life-saving medicine for their journey. Thankfully she was able to meet up with a new friend that’s pretty handy with a stimpack and bandages. Matt Berry turns in a stellar performance, as always, but I’m not going to ruin that for you.

Back at the vault, Norm’s interest in what he saw in his brief time at 32 has him curious. Now that he has access to a computer, he figured he’d just get a look at their records. Or he would, if it wasn’t all locked down. Well, that’s nothing a little field trip can’t fix. Anyone who’s played a Fallout game can attest that things are not always as cut and dry as “place where you can hide from the bomb” when it comes to Vault-Tec vaults, and 32 is no exception. Again, no spoilers here, but when has Fallout ever been black and white? Well, other than the Indian Head Test Pattern at the start of every game…

Back at the Super Duper Mart Lucy finally gets some much-needed time off her feet for some R&R. Friends are pretty important in the wasteland, and thankfully she’s able to pick up some weapons and make a few more friends before heading back out. She might be soaked in blood and looking rough for wear, but, but you never know when a friend might be able to help you have a better day. At least things can end on a high note, for once?

While we don’t get any time with Maximus this episode, this may be the best performance we’ve seen from Walton Goggins so far. I’ve seen him in a metric ton of shows and movies, and the way he sinks into this role reminds me of just how locked in he was with The Shield – high praise indeed. Ella Purnell is stellar as always, and she’s doing a great job of showcasing her slow realization that the wasteland is a hard place for hard people. She’s becoming more than a simple vault dweller, but Purnell does so while still retaining that doe-eyed naivete that makes her so compelling.

You can read our review for Episode 5 here.

Executive Director and Editor-in-Chief | [email protected]

Ron Burke is the Editor in Chief for Gaming Trend. Currently living in Fort Worth, Texas, Ron is an old-school gamer who enjoys CRPGs, action/adventure, platformers, music games, and has recently gotten into tabletop gaming.

Ron is also a fourth degree black belt, with a Master's rank in Matsumura Seito Shōrin-ryū, Moo Duk Kwan Tang Soo Do, Universal Tang Soo Do Alliance, and International Tang Soo Do Federation. He also holds ranks in several other styles in his search to be a well-rounded fighter.

Ron has been married to Gaming Trend Editor, Laura Burke, for 28 years. They have three dogs - Pazuzu (Irish Terrier), Atë, and Calliope (both Australian Kelpie/Pit Bull mixes), and an Axolotl named Dagon!



Fallout TV series

Review Guidelines

This may be a side quest episode, but somehow it’s my favorite so far. Characters and the world around them are coming into focus, whetting our appetite for whatever Blamco meal lies on the horizon.

Ron Burke

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