|This article is about a character from Eden Rising. You may be looking for other Tom's.|
If there's one thing I still believe in, even to this day, it's purpose. I'm not done yet. I've got something left to do. I just... I feel it, okay?
Tom Snyder was a lead character in Eden Rising. Tom was a former small-town sheriff who lead a group of survivors through post-apocalyptic United States, successfully to the bio-dome of Eden in Normandy, France. The death of his first wife Annie haunted him until the day he died, giving his relationships, including those with his second wife Kate and loving girlfriend Sidney a bad history.
After his daughter Darla was bit by an infected on the arm and given an amputation, Tom began unraveling. After many poor decision-making moments, Tom and his group finally arrived at Eden, where Tom was able to settle down. However, his relationships with Darla and Ash were ruined by him focusing on building his relationship with Leigh, whose focus was not on him but on her malicious intentions. He went on a downward spiral as she began to make serious threats against himself and Darla, murdering Rory Stiles and Gareth to protect her.
Finally seeing the light and a way to escape her clutches, Tom took part in a plan that finally caused Leigh's death. Wracked by defeat at the death of his daughter at the hands of a posthumous Leigh, who even in death was one step ahead of him, Tom near gave up. But in the end, he sacrificed himself for the greater good of Ash, getting mauled to death by numerous infected, protecting Tamsin. Ash put him down with a bullet to the head to prevent reanimation.
In his tragic death, however, Tom finally allowed himself to move on from his wife Annie's death and realize the happiness he had with Sidney.
People look up to Tom, not only for the badge and gun he carries, but because he exudes natural charm and charisma. He has a way with people, strong and authoritative and capable of delivering bad news smoothly. However, he is admittedly not very good at handling personal crises. He is often quick to jump to irrational conclusions in these situations.
Haunted by personal demons, Tom does not have a good track record with women. He sees the good in many aspects of humanity that many would otherwise overlook. He has hopes to change people who are impossible to turn around for the better, usually in hopes that they in turn can better his own life.
Tom was married to a woman named Annie, who died giving childbirth. The child, Darla, survived. Tom has since been devoted to raising Darla in the post-apocalyptic town of Glenley where he protects as one of its sheriffs, though Annie's death has deeply traumatized Tom and has completely shaped his future. Now plagued by guilt of Annie's death, Tom is accursed with ending his relationships because of his inability to get over Annie. He married a nurse, Kate, early in Darla's childhood, but that marriage ended amicably.
As the series begins, Tom is training a young deputy named Kelvin, and is dating Darla's teacher Sidney Strauss. He recovers a mysterious red-hooded stranger on the premises of Glenley. When he discovers that their electric fences have been sabotaged and disabled, Tom realizes this man is more of a threat than he anticipated. As an agent of The General, a tyrant who overtakes cities and towns for his own, this red-hooded stranger ends up leading numerous soldiers into the town for pure destruction. Tom leads a group of survivors out of Glenley and on the road.
Their first pit-stop is to New Venice, a post-apocalyptic metropolis once managed by Gwen, who wants to go back and retrieve her friends. Gwen's best friend Kitty, Kitty's husand Xander, Kitty's sister Lori, Lori's son Joey, and Gwen's ex-boyfriend Christopher join the group on this pit-stop, escaping as The General takes over the metropolis. Soon after, Tom is forced to deal with the revelation that one of his close confidantes, Declan, was a former convict in jail for his participation in a gang rape while a teenager. Tom manages to call the group to a vote, but Declan decides to leave on his own out of shame, a decision which Tom respects. On the road, Tom starts to strike up a bond with teenager Ash.
Tom leads his group to a fair, where it is rumored an Eden outpost is located, but it has since been overrun by The General, who captures Tom and his group. Tom and Kelvin witness young Ash brutally slaughter The General. The group manages to stay safe, until Tom realizes that his ex-wife Kate was gravely wounded in their escape attempt. He puts her down with a gunshot to the head to prevent reanimation.
Tom loses his temper upon arriving to the airport after his daughter Darla is bit by a infected soldier, and the lieutenant stationed there, Griggs, blows up the airplane ready to take the group home as a precaution. Tom unloads an entire clip of his gun into Griggs's head, and the group begins to wonder about Tom's state of mind.
When Darla's arm is amputated and she is stabilized, the situation begins to defuse until the next-in-command soldier, Michael, begins planning an uprising. Most of the soldiers are picked off by attacking infected, and Ash takes out Michael with a headshot to shut him up, and Tom shoots down the two remaining soldiers. Now, Tom establishes himself as the leader of the airport group. Darla mentions to Tom that she feels like Sidney is trying to act a lot like Kate's replacement, which she finds uncomfortable, so the three decide together as a family unit to split ways, with Tom and Sidney breaking up.
Four months later, the group has split alliances, with many people siding with Gwen against Tom. Leigh and Tom participate in a relationship, but keep Darla out of it, much to Sidney's chagrin. Tom and Gwen have a scuffle about the rationing of food, as concern is raised that she was showing favoritism in her rations. Tom later decides to accompany Leigh to the Last Chance Society, to comfort her in her father's dying days, leaving Gwen in charge of things at the airport.
Libby, nurse of Leigh's father, told Tom and Leigh that Ronald was going to die soon. Leigh was unable to give him the medication that would quicken her father's death and do it painlessly, so Tom decided to help her out and do it himself. While at her father's funeral, Leigh runs off, leaving Tom to mull over his actions. Gwen, Ash, Darla, and an injured Manila arrived at the Last Chance Society after contacting Tom, in need of medical care for Manila, who was stabbed by a mysterious assailant. Tom later learns that his ex-girlfriend Sidney was a victim in the attack and he's left in a state of shock and anger.
Tom ended up caught in the struggle between John Smith and Father Warden for leadership, as Tom's people (particularly Declan and Ash) were used as scapegoats for the conflict and Tom refused to let that happen. With Kelvin left berated by Tom for turning his back on Tom and the rest of the group, Kelvin commited suicide in a last-ditch effort to protect Ash, and Tom was left with a bad taste in his mouth over his actions, feeling Kelvin took the easy way out. Tom witnessed Smith preparing a failsafe bomb and Smith fed himself to his infected wife, defeated. Leigh attempted to disable the bomb but Tom did not allow her to out of fear they were wasting time and he just wanted to get everyone to safety. As they fled, the bomb exploded behind them and numerous people were killed. Tom returned to the airport and visits Sidney's grave, before boarding the rescue plane and arrive at Eden.
At Eden, Gareth informed Tom of Leigh being a factor in Sidney's death, setting up a juicy conflict.
An indeterminate amount of time since the season two finale has passed. Tom and the others have settled into Eden, and Ash has since moved out of Tom's suite. His relationships with Leigh and Darla have faltered, with suspicions fueling that Leigh was involved with Sidney's death after Gareth's hints. They attended therapy together, and he admitted to wanting to fight these suspicions and get back together while Leigh seemed more despondent and careless.
Tom cooked a dinner that Darla and Leigh attend, though it turns out disastrously as Darla pointed out that he didn't fight to work out his relationships with Kate and Sidney, and they actually cared about her. It turns into a shouting match and Leigh steps out, saying this isn't working out. At therapy the next day, both Tom and Leigh admit they want to work toward a goal of separating amicably. While on a walk after therapy, Tom encountered a woman who killed herself in her car of carbon monoxide poisoning. He put down her reanimated self, and is visibly traumatized after this. Leigh comforts him and learns that Tom's mother killed herself in this way, and witnessing this brought back that childhood trauma.
When Darla announces what happened to her outside the dome, Tom accompanies Leigh, Declan and Touch Star employee Victor to The Serpent's island in an effort to retrieve the kidnapped Ash and PJ. Upon finishing the mission, Tom tried to repair his relationships with Darla and Leigh. Darla returned to him with open arms, guilty for her behavior, while Leigh started to back off even more.
During Eddie's rampage, Tom and Leigh stumbled upon Declan's dead body and a devastated PJ. PJ was rushed to the clinic, and an angered Ash challenged Tom's frame of mind when he trusted Leigh to bring PJ blankets and first aid equipment when it was taking her so long to do so.
Shortly after this, Leigh kidnapped Rory from his own wedding ceremony and brought him to Tom. Threatening Darla's life, Leigh demanded that Tom kill Rory for her, handing him a meat tenderizer as his weapon. Despite his initial hesitation, Tom wanted nothing more than to protect his daughter, so he beat Rory to death with it. Tearful, Tom was forced to clean up the living room of the blood left behind by Rory, while Leigh chopped up his body. Tom was tasked with ridding the body -- wrapped in a garbage bag -- into the flooded alpha sector of Eden. Gareth, seeing this alongside Gwen, became suspicious and followed Tom. He witnessed Tom dumping the bag, and became convinced that Tom was a murderer.
Tom, Gareth and Gwen went into the alpha sector on their own. When Gareth locked Gwen in another room and attacked Tom, Tom gained the upper hand and shot Gareth with his own harpoon, allowing him to be eaten by the infected inside. When Gwen arrived, Tom tossed her Gareth's harpoon and allowed her to fight her way through the infected. He lied, telling Gwen that Gareth confessed to murdering Rory and he killed Gareth in self-defense, presenting Rory's dogtags as his proof. Little did Tom know that Gareth confided in Gwen about seeing Tom dump the body, and was with Gwen the entire last few hours, thus proving Gareth's innocence to her.
Gwen told a grieving Kitty the truth about Rory's death, and the two broke into Tom's suite the next morning, forcing him to send Darla to Manila's suite to finish an assignment involving baking cupcakes with PJ. Gwen held Tom at gunpoint, while Kitty sat in stoic silence, as he was forced to tell the truth about why he killed Rory. Gwen offered Tom an opportunity to put Leigh away, as this is what she suspected. They reveal that Manila smuggled in a bomb for Leigh, but tapped it with a tracking device and rigged it to backfire and explode in a smaller explosion than intended, to only kill Leigh but not cause massive damage.
They tracked Leigh to the ventilation shafts. During a shootout, Kitty turned her gun on Tom, seeing the opportunity to take her revenge. She shot him in the chest. However, the bullet went through and through, allowing Tom to still function. Only Tom saw Kitty take this shot, but he said nothing, feeling for the grieving woman and understanding her anger. Tom talked to Leigh privately. She still armed the bomb, but made a warning about Darla's safety. Leigh perished in the explosion she set up, and while the others felt their victory, Tom realized that the virus was never intended to be in the bomb; Leigh had another plan. This was the elaborate distraction.
Tom realized that Darla may have been Leigh's target due to her warning of his daughter's safety to him in her final moments. Tom raced to Manila's suite, where PJ admitted that Darla was acting strange and just stormed out of the suite a minute earlier. Tom knew where she'd go to, the greenhouse. To visit the snapdragon flowers she so beloved. Even though Darla tried fighting through the infection, she managed to attack and infect a woman in the lobby of the greenhouse. It was too late.
Tom met with his daughter once again in the greenhouse, and she began to cry tears of blood. As Tom brought her in for a hug, he snapped her neck in order to give his beloved daughter a quick, painless death but also to sever the path from the spinal cord to the brain and prevent reanimation. However, this did not work, as Darla was still twitching and turning in her twisted position on the ground. Heartbroken, Tom was forced to pull his gun and shoot her in the head. Gwen and Kitty later stumbled upon this scene. As infected closed in on the area, the trio were forced to leave the greenhouse through the upper levels.
Tom led Kitty to safety while Gwen acted as a distraction, firing her weapon and getting the mass of infected to follow her to the roof. Having reached ground level, Tom and Kitty hid in a storage shed. Kitty revealed that she was pregnant, and Tom finally mustered an honest apology. Revealing he had been bitten protecting Kitty, Tom instructed her - for the safety of herself and her child - to stay inside the shed while he goes outside. Kitty expressed her understanding of what he did to Rory as he left.
Tom arrived in the greenhouse lobby in the nick of time to protect Tamsin, a girl he barely knew, but a girl he knew provided Ash with much happiness. He was chewed on by various infected, all of which were slaughtered by a horrified Ash. He cradled his old mentor in his arms, and Tom informed everyone that Kitty was in the shed. Heartbroken, Ash took Tom's revolver from his belt, spun the chamber, and shot him in the head to prevent his reanimation.
As he died, Tom saw himself at a subway inhabited by people who passed away before him - including previous lover Sidney, daughter Darla and ex-wife Kate. His reunion with Sidney expressed Tom finally letting go of his ex-wife Annie and finally finding happiness elsewhere. Annie, who was in the next carriage, a passenger who Tom walked right past, smiled at the scene.
Whether this was truly Tom moving on to the afterlife is up for interpretation, but he saw this either way as a symbol of finally being able to move on.
Tom is buried alongside his daughter Darla in the greenhouse's "ground zero" site following its destruction.
- Numerous counts of infected
- Numerous counts of "Jugulators"
- Numerous citizens of the Last Chance Society (caused)
- The General (reanimated)
- Kate Kirby (before reanimation)
- Two of Michael's soldiers
- Ronald Weiss
- Rory Stiles
- Darla Snyder (before reanimation)
- Lucy (reanimated)
- Leigh Vega (reanimated)
- Tom: "People have been off their guard for too long. Five years of tranquility in a world filled with devastation can change men. Make us... feel too safe. It was foolish of us to even get too cozy."
- Kelvin: "How is it foolish to have some sort of hope? To bring back what we once had?"
- Tom: "Hope isn’t foolish, it’s the way we’ve gone about it. We’ve been too inattentive ‘round here and I told them from the get-go..."
- — Tom, expressing his worries to Kelvin[src]
- Ash: "...The only reason I carried on living after Ben died... The only reason I continued to exist... was because I had a mission. A desire in my heart for revenge. The man who beat my brother and left him to die needed to die a horrible death. Now that The General’s dead, my life should be complete. I should feel accomplished. And my brother should be able to let me reunite with him. I took my chance and Ben said “no”. It ain’t my time yet. I’m just... wondering what the hell there’s left for me to do here. And The General, he touched me he... did horrible things and he made me not feel like a man anymore. I felt like a damsel in distress especially after... after Kate... She wouldn’t have left if she didn’t feel the need to try helping me. I don’t want to get in the way, I don’t want to end up getting someone else because they felt the need to protect me. I don’t know if... if I can bare it anymore. Anymore pain, anymore death."
- Tom: "...You’re an important part of our lives, Ash. We all care about you so much. If you were to die... right after we just lost Kate especially... I just... I don’t know what any of us would do. I sure as hell don’t know what I’d do. You’re more important than just a walking plague of revenge and hate, kid. There’s more to you than that. I dunno what exactly happened between you and The General, but... it’s over now. It’s time to move on, build a new chapter in your life. We love you, we want you to keep going. Maybe... maybe Ben sees that, wherever he is now, and he knows that you need to be here, you need to carry on. We’re going to Eden, this is what you wanted, this was your idea... so you’re coming with us. You’re going to see it, you’re going to start fresh and we’re going to live a life there, a life worth living. So let’s do this. Let’s get our asses home."
- — Tom, encouraging Ash that there is still reason to live[src]
- "One could say your death was senseless. But when you think about it... all death is senseless. Death removes sense; it bursts into the everyday and colors it with shadows. All death shatters hearts and families and worlds. The only way to justify my actions-- the things I did to you-- I abandoned you for work. Because I couldn’t move on from my wife. I don’t whisper for the dead. No. They’re past saving. I do it, I help people, to put the world back together... and now it’s time to put my own world back together all over again. My world and my daughter’s. Rest in peace, Kate."
- —Tom, delivering a eulogy for Kate[src]
- Gwen: "What about Kelvin? We just leave him here?"
- Tom: "What about him, Gwen? I trusted him, he left us, never wrote. And then when we find him, he treats us like strangers, denies us, and traps us here like rats. Whatever he chooses to do, is his choice. He wants to come with, he can go on ahead. He wants to stay here and try fixing this mess, he can do that too. Quite frankly, he’s fucked us over too many times at this point for me to even try giving a damn."
- — Tom expressing his anger toward Kelvin[src]
- Tom was the ninth main character to die.
- Tom is responsible for the deaths of five main characters - three were out of mercy, two were murder - the most of any other character.
- Tom is a default racer in the hypothetical racing game, UFSW Kart.
|Season Four appearances|
|Let's Deal the Cards Again, Part I||Let's Deal the Cards Again, Part II||Halcyon||Bury the Hatchet|
|Converge||'Tis Pity She's a Dead Whore||Our Mutual Friend||The False Knight on the Road and the God-Why-Don't-You-Love-Me Blues|
|Show Me Your Teeth||Shadowboxing||I Just Wasn't Made for These Times||Mad World|