Fear the Walking Dead co-showrunner Andrew Chambliss has confirmed that Daniel Salazar, played by Rubén Blades, is still alive. Since the character hasn't appeared since the season 3 finale and is no longer a series regular, fans have been worried that Daniel was killed when the dam exploded.
In the season 3 finale, Daniel was shot by Strand (Colman Domingo), who was secretly plotting with Proctor John to get control of the dam. Daniel survived and shot down many of Proctor John's men, before helping Nick (Frank Dillane) blow up the dam. The character's fate has yet to be revealed.
In an interview with TV Line, Andrew Chambliss confirmed that Daniel "is alive and out there," but says that the details of his whereabouts are being kept under wraps. Chambliss teases that there's "a very good chance that he will appear in the Walking Dead universe."
He’s [made it through] a fire in a wine cellar, then getting shot in the face and then a dam explosion… He’s definitely a survivor!
It's certainly true that Daniel surviving the explosion of the dam wouldn't be the show's most shocking revelation concerning the character. In the first three seasons, fans have seen Daniel overcome impossible odds again and again. He supposedly died after setting a wine cellar full of zombies on fire. Daniel was believed to be dead until the third episode of season 3 when he encountered Strand, who was being held prisoner by the people at the dam. The character's experiences as a highly trained killer in El Savador have helped him survive against threats where others would not.
It's too early to say what will bring Daniel back, or how he will interact with the Clarke family after everything that's happened. However, we can assume that Daniel's relationship will Strand will become even more strained. It's possible that Daniel's return will reignite a conflict with Strand, whose history as a con artist has divided the characters in the past. Daniel has never trusted Strand, and it's likely that this will continue in season 4. Even so, Daniel's skillset and experience could be instrumental in defeating the Vultures.
It's worth noting that Chambliss' comments don't necessarily mean that Daniel will return in Fear the Walking Dead. Chambliss' statement that Daniel could appear in "the Walking Dead universe" could mean something else entirely. Since Morgan (Lennie James) has crossed over from The Walking Dead to Fear, more crossovers could happen in the future. Could Daniel appear in season 9 of The Walking Dead?
Season 4 of Fear the Walking Dead continues Sunday, May 13 9pm ET on AMC.
Source: TV Line