season 7 started with a surprising disappointment for me. In season 6 the villains were fascists and there were moments with great lines and heartening stances; the game had never been better. The latest season begins with the setup of a cannibal anarchist biker gang as an antagonistic faction. It’s a frustrating, misguided choice that confuses the political stance
opposing coercion and advocating for stateless societies with an ethos of coercive violence.
SAM YAO: Oh, yeah. Well, Just to share intel between settlements, rumors, that kind of thing. A lot of it turns out to be nothing, but this… well, they’re saying Sigrid had a deal. She just didn’t bother them, and they kept their murder/cannibal stuff north of Thwaite. Since she fell, well, they’ve got ambitious. If you can call anarchists ambitious.
This peace conference is supposed to bring people together, to work out how we’re going to organize the country now Sigrid’s gone. So obviously, they want to sabotage it.
–Season 7, Mission 1: Sorry For Party Rocking
On into the sixth mission, the confusion continues:
SAM YAO: Well, yeah. Well, more like out of the sadistic anarchist cult, into the jaws of the undead, but yeah. She didn’t want to infect anyone, so she’s waiting in the woods. You should have time to get the cure to her.
–Season 7, Mission 6: Sleep When I’m Dead
I’m hopeful the story will correct this big initial misstep as it continues, but for me this initial batch of missions have been disappointing pieces of writing from Naomi Alderman, an author who has often impressed me (The Power is excellent).