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AMC’s iconic zombie series “The Walking Dead” was at the height of its popularity when “Fear the Walking Dead” premiered in 2015, so anticipation was understandably through the roof for the franchise’s first official spinoff show. But despite that early excitement, “Fear the Walking Dead” never quite connected with viewers the way the original did. Many fans complained that it lacked the gripping intensity of “The Walking Dead.” Others found the new show’s handful of lead characters far too ordinary when compared with larger-than-life heroes like Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln), Michonne (Danai Gurira), and Daryl Dixon (Norman Reedus). And more than a few bemoaned the series’ basic premise of looking back at the early days of the zombie apocalypse, rather than picking up at the same time as “The Walking Dead,” and moving the entire story forward.

Yet as its eighth and final season approaches with its May 14 premiere, “Fear the Walking Dead” has steadily amassed a loyal and discerning audience who believe the show actually improves on the original in a number of areas, both big and small. And with new viewers discovering previous seasons on Hulu and other streaming services, “Fear the Walking Dead” is on its way to becoming a cult favorite in comparison to its predecessor. As the spinoff series nears its gory conclusion, Variety has selected 10 things that “Fear the Walking Dead” does better than “The Walking Dead.”