Fallout Wiki
Fallout Wiki

What do you suppose your Brotherhood would do with infinite power? Maybe you can stop them. Maybe you can't. Maybe all you can do is try.— Moldaver's dying words to Maximus

Lee Moldaver, also called the Flame Mother by the inhabitants of Vault 4 and known as Miss Williams before the Great War, is an R&D specialist (PhD), nuclear fusion scientist and the primary antagonist of season one in the Fallout TV series.

She led remnant forces of the New California Republic at the Griffith Observatory in 2296. Moldaver abducts Lucy MacLean's father Hank, making it Lucy's mission to rescue her father from Moldaver's clutches.



Before the Great War, Moldaver (then known as Miss Williams) was a nuclear scientist who had spent her life working towards cold fusion. She never finished her research, as the Vault-Tec Corporation ultimately acquired all the research companies she worked for. Vault-Tec acquired and buried the technology, as virtually infinite energy was incompatible with America's capitalist economic system, and especially Vault-Tec's profits, as cheap energy would remove the economic foundation for the ongoing Sino-American War. This brought her into contact with Barb Howard, a Vault-Tec executive involved with the acquisitions, and made Moldaver wealthy.[4]

However, with her research gone and buried to perpetuate the war, Williams began organizing against the corporations. She became the head of an intellectual circle at the Hollywood Forever funeral home, where she gave speeches and lectures warning against Vault-Tec's hegemony over the United States, and in particular the danger the ultra-rich posed to the common people.

FOTV Miss Williams 2

Moldaver meeting Cooper Howard in the 2070s

One frequent attendee was Hollywood actor Charles Whiteknife, who would subsequently bring fellow actor and co-star Cooper Howard to one of their sessions.[5] Moldaver smiled upon meeting Howard, claiming she was a big fan of his movies. During her presentation, Howard, who was an Anchorage veteran like Whiteknife, but also a staunch anti-communist, did not like her take. He was initially repulsed by her rhetoric, especially when she pointed out that the average American had more in common with the average Chinese citizen, rather than the people in power in the US.

Describing it as "horseshit," he tried to walk out in the middle of the speech, which led to a confrontation between the two. Gently needling him about his behavior and apparent over-sensitivity, she defused his attempt and convinced him to stay and listen, when she revealed that she knew his wife and a side of her Cooper did not. She explained to him the history of cold fusion and Vault-Tec's attempts, while providing Cooper with a listening device so he could learn the truth himself. When he refused, she insisted he keep it as a souvenir, and noted that while she was called a communist, she was not. To her, "communist" was a dirty word that society used to badmouth people who weren't insane.[6]


FOTV Rose Moldaver Lucy

Rose, Lucy and Moldaver in Shady Sands

FOTV Happy Star-Crossed Couple

A moment of happiness.

Moldaver survived the Great War and the next two hundred years through unknown means; it appears clear from the way she is depicted that she is not a ghoul, but very few other details are available. By 2277, she had become a citizen of the New California Republic who lived in Shady Sands. During this time, she met Rose MacLean, a dweller of Vault 33 who had found out that civilization survived on the surface and left to live in Shady Sands with her children, Lucy and Norm. It is implied the two may have developed deeper relationship,[Meta 1] forming a new life on the surface.[3]

This changed when she met Hank, Rose's husband and Vault 33's overseer, who pursued her. Hank tried but failed to convince Rose to return to the Vault, for reasons Moldaver would later discover: Hank was an employee of Vault-Tec, whose directive was to destroy any and all vestige of civilization on the surface so that the Vault-Tec aligned populace of his Vault (and Vaults 31 and 32) would establish a monopoly over the wasteland. Unable to convince Rose, he took their kids back to the Vault, and then (according to Moldaver), the Vault-Tec executive detonated a nuclear bomb that destroyed Shady Sands, leaving only a crater in its wake, sometime after the Second Battle of Hoover Dam.[3]

FOTV Flame Mother

Moldaver venerated as the Flame Mother by the refugee dwellers of Vault 4.

In the aftermath of Shady Sands' destruction, Moldaver became a leading figure among NCR survivors in the L.A. region, likely due to her role in the evacuation. The refugees who were accepted into Vault 4 struggled with the trauma and started performing religious rituals, symbolically bringing Shady Sands back. Moldaver became the "Flame Mother", who would bring about salvation.[7] Moldaver rallied other NCR units and established a stronghold at Griffith Observatory, while looking for a way to recover cold fusion.[3] Over the years, she became a well-known force in the region, known to everyone.[8] She earned a reputation for being extremely dangerous as the moniker started to spread.[9] Some even described her as a "madwoman in the hills."[10]

Recovery of cold fusion[]

The work towards recovering her life's work bore fruit in 2296. Moldaver made contact with Siggi Wilzig, an Enclave scientist willing to risk his life and recover the technology from the organization.[11] As the Triennial Trade between Vault 32 and Vault 33 neared, Wilzig prepared to smuggle out the fusion catalyst. At the same time, Moldaver set up a raid in order to abduct its overseer. Due to Vault-Tec making the technology proprietary, she needed an executive's code to unlock it. Moldaver's group entered Vault 32 using Rose MacLean's Pip-Boy, posing as the Vault's new overseer and dwellers (the original population was wiped out in a civil war when the dwellers discovered the truth about the Vault's experiment). Moldaver contacted Hank MacLean via a terminal telegram and told him the overseer Ian Jackson had died and she was taking his place. She used a cover story that a Vault famine killed many of the Vault's inhabitants in order to erase suspicion as to why their visiting group was different.[12]

The ruse worked and Moldaver attended Lucy's marriage with Monty. She soon ordered the attack as the trade celebrations wound down and the Vault's inhabitants retired for the night. Despite taking significant losses, with several raiders dead and sixteen captured, Moldaver succeeded: She confronted Hank MacLean at the intra-Vault passage and forced him to surrender, offering him a choice between his dwellers' lives and his daughter. With his guard dropped Lee had the raiders tranquilize him and withdrew, blowing up the passageway into Vault 32.[12]

However, Wilzig's defection ran into problems after an Enclave administrator discovered his attempt. Wilzig was forced to flee the Enclave research colony before schedule, after which the Enclave issued a high paid bounty on him, while the Brotherhood of Steel intercepted the intel and organized search and recovery operation of their own. Moldaver already arranged for an extraction from Filly and paid for his safe transport,[13] with one of her own soldiers acting as an intermediary.[10] However, the sudden escape attracted attention. Everyone knew he was running to Moldaver, including bounty hunters,[14] allowing The Ghoul to deduce where Wilzig was likely to try and go to the ground. He intercepted the defector in Filly, wounding him severely. Sidetracked by Maximus, Wilzig got away with Lucy MacLean's help, who was trying to track Moldaver down after the attack on Vault 33.[15] Well aware of what Moldaver was planning, Wilzig committed suicide and had Lucy saw his head off to deliver it to Moldaver.[16]

FOTV Lee Moldaver with Cold Fusion Catalyst

Moldaver finally holding her life's work

Eventually, Lucy managed to arrive at the observatory with Wilzig's head to trade it for her father. Instead, Moldaver revealed the truth about Hank to Lucy, including his involvement in destroying Shady Sands. The crushing revelation and the realization that her father left her mother for dead, once she spotted her mother's locket on the feral ghoul tied to the chair at Moldaver's table, resulted in her demanding the code from her father. Hank complied: The catalyst placed inside the cold fusion plant set up by Moldaver at the observatory worked and began charging.[3]

FOTV Official Trailer Still 083

Moldaver defending the NCR's base from the Brotherhood of Steel

However, as the device charged up, the Brotherhood came into range of the Observatory's sentries. Taking command of the troops, Moldaver left to lead the defense, personally taking control of the anti-aircraft turret once the gunner was killed in action.[3] In the subsequent battle, the NCR and the Brotherhood both suffered losses, but the remnants were eventually destroyed. While the Brotherhood managed to break through NCR lines and fight its way inside the Observatory, they were ambushed by the Ghoul. Moldaver was shot in the gut, but managed to return to the control room just moments after Hank escaped due to Maximus' actions, while the Ghoul and Lucy took off in pursuit after Lucy put her ghoulified mother out of her misery.[3]

FOTV Moldaver dies beside Rose

Moldaver watches power restored to Los Angeles as she dies with Rose

As Maximus came to, she activated the cold fusion reactor, powering up the entire Los Angeles area. As it lit up, she sat next to Rose, holding her hand and whispering that they finally managed to fulfill their dream. Before dying, Moldaver warned Maximus about the consequences of giving the Brotherhood unlimited power, suggesting, in her usual, roundabout way, that he try to stop them.[17] Brotherhood reinforcements led by Dane entered the control room moments later and found Maximus standing beside Moldaver's body. Looking at Moldaver and Maximus, Dane assumed Maximus killed her, although he denied this quietly. Before Maximus could deny this to the rest of the group, Dane took the opportunity to credit Maximus with taking down the NCR leader, ensuring that he would be knighted for the feat.[3]


FOTV Moldaver

Instead of remaining in safety, Moldaver fights alongside her NCR soldiers on the battlefield

Willing to sacrifice anything for her band of people,[18] Moldaver is a woman driven by the greater good. Despite Vault-Tec's acquisitions giving her immense wealth, she refused to accept them and continued to look for a way to retake cold fusion from the corporation and end the Resource Wars. As a talented speaker and an excellent judge of character, she managed to convince even Cooper Howard, who initially marked her as a communist, to look into his wife's corporate career. However, the gambit did not seem to pay off, as the Great War occurred and cold fusion remained out of her reach.

Over two hundred years later, having survived the War through means not yet revealed, Moldaver joined the New California Republic, and formed close ties with Rose MacLean, a defector from Vault 33. The wasteland life aged and hardened her, as did the subsequent destruction of Shady Sands: When the opportunity presented itself to retake cold fusion from the Enclave, she had no compunctions about raiding Vault 33 or the resulting loss of life within the bunker. Her contempt for Vault-Tec and the dwellers kept as cattle likely played a role.[19] However, she also inspired loyalty, rallying people to her cause, and fighting on the frontlines with them, which ultimately cost Moldaver her own life.

However, Moldaver ultimately achieved her 230-year-long goal of introducing clean unlimited energy to the world. A technology that undoubtedly would have changed the outcome of the Resource Wars had it been allowed to be introduced. This action saw lights reignite across all of post-War Los Angeles, with the cold fusion generator feeding unlimited power to the Boneyard and Shady Sands' ruins. However, due to the complete eradication of Moldaver's NCR forces, this technology now appears to be in the control of the Brotherhood of Steel.


Fallout Shelter


  • "What is it about California, that we all came to this place? Maybe it's the sunshine. Maybe it's the friendly people. When you think of the promise of the American Dream, you think of California. But it is just a dream. It's not real. We were told the atom bomb meant the end of war. That didn't work out, did it? We were told America's always getting better, it's always moving toward a better future. But the future is getting closer, and we can see it. Their "better future" is a cliff's edge. And it's coming up fast, isn't it? These soldiers that we're fighting abroad, their families, we have more in common with them than we do with the people here in power, the real enemy."
  • "I didn't realize that America's favorite gunslinger was so... sensitive."
  • "I'm not a communist, Mr. Howard. That's just a dirty word they use to describe people who aren't insane."
  • "Everyone knows who I am. But do they know who they are? They are the product of one of life's tricky little choices. So I'm gonna offer you a choice: them or her."
  • "To the real world. You should see it sometime. Maybe you should do what you do best: run and hide."
  • "Lucy, what you brought me is cold fusion. It's limitless energy. And we can build our own world. It could be a better world that has clean water and medicine and power, but for everyone because when Vault-Tec bought my research, they made it proprietary so only a trusted Vault-Tec minion can activate cold fusion."


Lee Moldaver appears in the Fallout TV series episodes "The End," "The Trap," "The Radio" and "The Beginning." She was also added to Fallout Shelter as of update 1.17.0.

Behind the scenes[]

Well, first of all, I love that you use the word “pragmatic,” because when I’ve been asked, “How did I approach the role,” for me, the only way Moldaver would work was with pragmatism. If you become a cult leader, I don’t think you give yourself those qualities. I think they’re put on you, so blood, reverence, the kneeling is something the followers do. You could literally be just standing doing nothing. So, I think pragmatism, and not being crazy, and being almost logical actually is a quality that makes a leader in a world that’s apocalyptic. I think it all came more from her pragmatism.Sarita Choudhury, Nerdist
  • In the above interview with the Nerdist, Choudhury also hinted that Rose and Lee had developed deeper relationship. She also noted that, as a scientist who invented cold fusion, she was likely capable of devising a way to prolong her life.
  • In another interview with the Decider, when asked if Rose and Moldaver were lovers, Choudhury replied, "I have a backstory and I can’t say much. But I can say I love that [fans] are picking up on all of this and adding — or whatever — to it. There is such a closeness and who knows… if there’s a Season 2, you’ll find out.”[Meta 2]
  • The name Lee Moldaver is similar to Lee Oliver's. However, Oliver is a Franco-British first name, later adopted also as a surname, while Moldaver is of Eastern European Jewish origin and anglicized (eg. Michael Moldaver). In Polish, the name can be rendered as Mołdawer, and was used in occupied Poland in 1881.


  1. Fallout TV series, season 1, episode 8, "The Beginning", 49:45~
  2. 2.0 2.1 Fallout TV series, Season 1, Episode 2: "The Target"
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 Fallout TV series, Season 1, Episode 8: "The Beginning"
  4. Cooper Howard: "How do you know my wife?"
    Lee Moldaver: "My research company was acquired by her division. We were developing this kind of technology that's... difficult to monetize. Cold fusion. Infinite energy. That's what I was on the verge of achieving when Vault-Tec swept in and bought up every company I'd ever worked for."
    Cooper Howard: "Every one of them? So, what are you, a millionaire communist?"
    Lee Moldaver: "Hypocrisy is like violence in your movies. If you only let the bad guys use it, the bad guys win."
    Cooper Howard: "Yeah? I, uh, I got a little showbiz secret for you. A good bad guy doesn't see themselves as the bad guy."
    Lee Moldaver: "America has been locked in a resource war for over a decade. Vault-Tec bought the means to end that war, the same war you fought in, so they could put it on the shelf. All because it didn't fit into their business model."
    ("The Radio")
  5. Fallout TV series, Season 1, Episode 6: "The Trap"
  6. Fallout TV series, Season 1, Episode 7: "The Radio"
  7. Chant: "Flame Mother, we remember. We bring back the past as we remember. We bring back Shady Sands... ...as we remember. We bring back those taken from us by covering ourselves in their ashes. To bring back Shady Sands, blood must spill. Oh, Flame Mother, you will be our salvation."
    ("The Trap")
  8. Ma June: "Everyone knows who Moldaver is."
    ("The Target")
  9. The Ghoul: "Cause this is the first I'm hearing about this outfit. Now, what I am hearing is a whole lot of chatter about some woman. Name of Moldaver."
    Sorrel Booker: "They call her the Flame Mother. Now, that bitch is dangerous."
    The Ghoul: "Well, when it comes to leadership these days, dangerous is what they call a prerequisite."
    ("The Radio")
  10. 10.0 10.1 The Ghoul: "...Old Roofus got Tommy here mixed up with that madwoman, too. Now, according to this, Roofus sent Tommy a stash of caps to pay a courier for 'the safe transport of an Enclave defector' to that very same madwoman in the hills. Moldaver. But my problem is, by the time I got this letter off your brother, it was a little bit hard to read. For some reason, I just can't make out her location. Now, you give me that location, and I'll be on my way."
    ("The Radio")
  11. Wilzig knew exactly where to go and who to contact to get to Moldaver; immediately after running (as seen in "The Target", he gets to the Wilds still wearing his lab coat and only ditches it there).
  12. 12.0 12.1 Fallout TV series, Season 1, Episode 1: "The End"
  13. Ma June: "Maybe. But I've been paid a whole lot of caps to provide this man safe transport out of Filly."
    ("The Target")
  14. Honcho: "It ain't where they's running from I figured you'd be interested in. It's where they's running to. That witch Moldaver. In California. That's where you from, ain't it?"
    ("The End")
  15. Ma June: "My client goes by the name of Lee Moldaver. Now, you ain't getting near Moldaver without something to bargain with, and delivering this guy right here is your best option."
    Lucy MacLean: "Well, what does Moldaver want with you? I mean, she steals dads!"
    Ma June: "Do you want your dad back or not, kid?"
    ("The Target")
  16. Siggi Wilzig: "People are going to come after you. You'll need to move quickly. You can change the future if you can bring me to Moldaver."
    Lucy MacLean: "But how am I gonna bring you if you're..."
    Siggi Wilzig: "No, not-not my whole body. Just my head."
    ("The Target")
  17. Lee Moldaver: "What do you suppose your Brotherhood would do with infinite power? Maybe you can stop them. Maybe you can't. Maybe all you can do is try."
    ("The Beginning")
  18. Fallout First Look: This Is How the World Ends—With a Smiling Thumbs-Up (Archived)
  19. Lee Moldaver: "Everyone knows who I am. But do they know who they are? They are the product of one of life's tricky little choices."
    ("The End")


  1. 1.0 1.1 Nerdist: "Nerdist: The scenes between Moldaver and Lucy’s mom, Rose MacLean, both in the present and in flashbacks, felt really romantic to me, like they were telling a tragic love story. So I have to ask, is Moldaver in love with Rose MacLean in the Fallout series? And if so, how hard was it to watch her turn into a feral ghoul?
    Sarita Choudhury: I love that you did a smart thing. You asked the question; then you did a second. So, if I answered the second, it would answer the first. So, I can’t really answer, but I can tell you the level of closeness and the family structure with Hank, Rose, and Lucy—there is something there. And I can’t say more than that.
    Nerdist: I saw it with my eyes. The show told us.
    Choudhury: I love it."
  2. Decider
Fallout TV series characters
Fo2 NCR Seal
Major antagonists