Rick Grimes, portrayed by Andrew Lincoln, was introduced in the pilot episode of The Walking Dead in 2010. Fans of the comic knew this character well and were excited to see his story brought to life on screen. Throughout this time in the series, he led a group of survivors who originated from the Atlanta Group seen in season 1.
During season 9, episode 5, “What Comes After,” Rick performs a heroic act that leads his family and friends to believe he died. With no other way to keep his family safe, Rick blows up a bridge and is thrown clear of the blast. Onlookers, including his partner Michonne (Danai Gurira), watched in horror as they believed they had just witnessed Rick Grimes’s death.
Viewers are privy to the fact that Rick didn’t die when he is located by Jadis/Anne (Pollyanna McIntosh). Already set to rendevous with a helicopter, Anne radios to let them know she has a “B,” and they agree to rescue her and the severely injured Rick.
The Walking Dead – Rick Grimes
The designations “A” and “B” had been thrown around on The Walking Dead, but the true meaning of these terms wouldn’t be revealed until the spinoff series The Walking Dead: World Beyond. This series was a coming-of-age story highlighting the mysterious CRM (Civic Republic Military).
When Jadis first captured Rick, she labeled him an “A,” as designated on the shipping container she held him in. But when she needed the helicopter to save her, she labeled him a “B.”
Earlier in season 9 of TWD, Anne/Jadis informed Gabriel (Seth Gilliam) that she had been trading people to the CRM for supplies. She was planning to trade Gabriel to them, but when he told her he would have to inform Rick, she said, “All this time, I thought you were a B.”
In World Beyond, these designations would get some clarification. It appears that an “A” is someone the CRM would conduct testing on; often, these subjects would have a walker bite. These people wouldn’t fall in line with the CRM or be considered troublemakers.
The “B” designation wasn’t as clear, but these people would become loyal to the CRM and make great soldiers or leaders.
Rick being a “B” makes more sense in the coda scene of The Walking Dead series finale. Rick, wearing a CRM jacket and possessing a CRM weapon, appears to have escaped the organization. The CRM is ruthless and generally shoots instead of giving warnings, as they did with Rick. That, along with the fact they referred to him as Consignee Grimes, makes viewers believe he has some type of leadership role in the CRM.
Rick and Michonne will reunite in a spinoff series, Summit (working title) which will finally give fans more information on this power couple and what they have endured since departing the series. This series begins filming in February 2023, with an expected release date in 2024.
At SDCC 2023, AMC announced that the Rick and Michonne series would be officially titled The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live. This title comes from a quote Rick initially said in season 5 to the residents of Alexandria. It would then be spoken by Michonne in seasons 7 and 9. During The Walking Dead’s finale episode, a final scene showcased Rick and Michonne’s return to TWDU. This quote was powerfully used in this final scene.
The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live is a highly anticipated spinoff coming to AMC and AMC+ in 2024.