All 8 episodes of Fallout, ranked from worst to best

The first season of Prime Video's Fallout is an entertaining thrill ride from start to finish. But some episodes are a little better than others. Let's rank them from least jaw-dropping to most!
Power Armor in Fallout. Credit: Prime Video © 2024 Amazon Content Services LLC
Power Armor in Fallout. Credit: Prime Video © 2024 Amazon Content Services LLC /

The first season of Prime Video's Fallout dropped last week, and ever since we've been neck deep in irradiated bliss. Fallout is based on the beloved video game series from Bethesda Softworks and Interplay, and somehow managed the miraculous feat of capturing the quirky tone of this post-apocalyptic world while also being compelling television. We recapped every episode, and we're still finding new things to love about Fallout days later.

Since Prime Video released all eight episodes at once, that means you don't have to wait to see everything the season has to offer. Let's go through and rank the episodes from worst to best. Obviously, there will be SPOILERS.

Power Armor in Prime Video's Fallout. /

8. Episode 105: "The Past"

Let's be clear here at the top: there are no bad episodes of Fallout. But there are some where a bit less happens than others, and "The Past" falls into that category. Much of this episode serves as set up for what comes after. Norm uncovers secrets in Vault 32, but the episode holds back some of his investigation until the start of the following episode. Lucy and Maximus have a bunch of great scenes together, including a hilarious encounter on a bridge and a visit to the ruined city of Shady Sands — but their journey ends with the cliffhanger that they've arrived at another vault.

"The Past" is all about set up, which means it's less mind-blowing than the episodes where bigger stuff goes down. Plus, The Ghoul/Cooper Howard sits this episode out entirely. Obviously that's going to count against it, no matter how good the rest is.

Moisés Arias (Norm) in Fallout. Credit: JoJo Whilden/Prime Video © 2024 Amazon Content Services LLC /

7. Episode 107: "The Radio"

Episode 107 ends up lower on the list for the same reason as Episode 105: it primarily serves as set up for the following episode. That makes sense and feels just right for "The Radio," but a bit less happens than in the surrounding episodes. Fallout had to give us a moment to catch our breath before the big finish, right?

The highlight of this one is a guest appearance by comedian Fred Armisen, who plays a radio DJ obsessed with the eccentric fiddle music of the Minutemen radio station from the Fallout 4 video game. That scene is a highlight of not only "The Radio," but also the season as a whole, and it's enough to bump "The Radio" ahead of "The Past." It even trolls video game fans by commenting on how Fred Armisen's favorite music makes some people "fully mad," which is a nod to how many gamers have complained about how the Minutemen radio station music was annoying in Fallout 4. And speaking as someone who nearly raged in Fallout 4 just the other day because that stupid, wonderful music made it hard to think straight, I get it!

Between Fred Armisen and the reveal that the inhabitants of Vault 4 are much nicer than they first seemed, "The Radio" may also be one of Fallout's funniest episodes. But we also spend a healthy dose of time in Vault 33 with Norm as Overseer Betty enacts her plan to split up the residents and ship half of them off to Vault 32, which keeps that pit in the stomach.

Fallout - First Look
Ella Purnell (Lucy) in “Fallout” /

6. Episode 101: "The End"

I hear you getting upset: "The Fallout premiere was great! How could you put it this low on the list?!" Well, you're right! It is great, which shows how hard these decisions are!

"The End" is pretty much a pitch perfect series premiere, introducing us to the series by showing how the world ended, before spending ample time with both Vault 33 and the Brotherhood of Steel. The intro sequence and the vault massacre in particular stand out; even after watching the whole season, they remain arresting, excellent scenes. But this is only an introduction to Fallout. No matter how good the premiere is, there's plenty of more exciting fare ahead as the season goes on.

Ella Purnell, Michael Emerson, Dale Dickey in Fallout. Credit: JoJo Whilden/Prime Video © 2024 Amazon Content Services LLC /

5. Episode 102: "The Target"

One nice thing about Fallout is that even though it sets up lots of big plotlines and secrets, it also pays off various promises pretty quickly. That's the case with "The Target," which sees Lucy and Maximus each go on their own journeys into the wasteland. Lucy has an absurd interaction with a guy in a dirty cloth poopy diaper, while Maximus and Knight Titus cross paths with a dangerous yao guai. There's a lot to enjoy, and that's before it brings the two of them and The Ghoul together for a big shootout in the town of Filly.

The Filly sequence is chaotic and bloody, while still keeping Fallout's twisted sense of humor front and center. The result is an episode that ends with one of the most memorable set pieces of the season, as each of our three leads gets a chance to shine. And this is the only episode that gives Michael Emerson's Dr. Wilzig and Dale Dickey's Ma June moments in the sun; both of them turn in memorable performances, especially Dickey.

4. Episode 103: "The Head"

It's easy to explain why Episode 103, "The Head," is this high on the list: the gulper. This episode revolves around various characters hunting for a valuble artifact inside the head of Dr. Wilzig, which Lucy reluctantly sawed off at the end of the prior episode since he was dying anyway. After that head is eaten by a monstrous mutant salamander — a gulper — the episode gets really interesting.

The gulper itself is very cool, and this is the only episode where we really see one in action. But "The Head" also features a few great character pairings. The Ghoul captures Lucy, uses her to bait the creature, and then ties her up and drags her away after their attempts fail. Maximus also steps up and defends his armor from some raiders before he gets assigned a new squire, Thaddeus, and the two of them have their own run-in with the gulper. It's a fun but intense episode, which is exactly what we want from Fallout.

Walton Goggins (The Ghoul) in Fallout. Credit: JoJo Whilden/Prime Video © 2024 Amazon Content Services LLC /

3. Episode 106: "The Trap"

The sixth of episode of Fallout, "The Trap," is a big one for a number of reasons. My personal favorite is how it goes deep on Cooper Howard's backstory, showing how working for Vault-Tec ruined his career before giving the big reveal that wasteland queenpin Lee Moldaver has been alive for centuries. The show's absolutely genius inclusion of Matt Berry as Bartholomew Codsworth was also a highlight; not only was it another great comedian guest appearance, but it filled in a bit of lore from the games that had never previously been explored.

Cooper may be the star of this episode, but Lucy and Maximus have plenty to do as well. We see them slowly come to very different realizations about Vault 4: Lucy unearths dark Vault-Tec secrets, while Maximus finds out that hot showers and caviar are pretty nice, actually. The balance between humor and horror is firing on all cylinders in "The Trap," and it makes for a very memorable episode.

Walton Goggins (The Ghoul) in Fallout. Credit: Prime Video © 2024 Amazon Content Services LLC /

2. Episode 104: "The Ghouls"

"The Ghouls" is a tightly focused episode that's all about Lucy's ordeal at the Super Duper Mart, where The Ghoul hopes to trade her to an organ smuggling ring in exchange for more of the vials which prevent him from going feral. This is the episode where we find out exactly what "going feral" means for a ghoul, and it's a huge point in Fallout's favor that it turned it into a sad, terrifying thing rather than just leaning on the zombie horror of it all. It helps give The Ghoul's predicament better stakes, and makes you really feel for the way the wasteland has mutated these previously normal people.

From the introduction of Snip Snip the Mister Handy robot to Lucy's eventual escape just as the buzzsaw descends over her stomach, there's so much to love in the Super Duper Mart sequence. Our favorite Vault Dweller goes in as a captive who's had the tar beat out of her by the wasteland, but when she comes out she's stronger for surviving it. In a way, "The Ghouls" feels like the equivalent of the Fallout TV show's first major video game dungeon. Lucy levels up by beating it!

Throw in that tussle in the beginning of the episode where she and The Ghoul each lose a finger, and a healthy smattering of Norm unraveling the mysteries of Vault 32, and you have an all-around excellent episode of TV that's one of Fallout's best.

Kyle MacLachlan (Overseer Hank) in Fallout. Credit: JoJo Whilden/Prime Video © 2024 Amazon Content Services LLC /

1. Episode 108: "The Beginning"

Not every TV show peaks with its season finale, but it's hard to look at the final episode of Fallout's first season as anything other than a resounding success. That's kind of amazing considering how condensed the thing is: it feels like so much happens during "The Beginning," but in reality most of the episode is one long series of multilayered reveals. Because it's all executed so well, it ends up making this a showstopper, where answers to season-long questions are revealed even as new questions pile up for season 2.

It all comes back to Moldaver, Hank MacLean and Vault-Tec. Finding out all the secrets about Lucy's mother, combined with the fact that her father is a pre-war business executive-in-training who went into cryo to one day manage people in a vault, combined with the fact that vaults 32 and 33 are just "breeding pools" for said executives-in-training, combined with cold fusion and the Brotherhood and everything's a lot. It's frankly amazing that Fallout managed to pull it all together so well, and it makes for a thrilling watch that only gets better the more you revisit it.

All eight episodes of Fallout are available to stream now on Prime Video.

All 8 episodes of Fallout, reviewed. All 8 episodes of Fallout, reviewed. dark. Next

To stay up to date on everything fantasy, science fiction, and WiC, follow our all-encompassing Facebook page and Twitter account, sign up for our exclusive newsletter and check out our YouTube channel.