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Walking Dead Reveals What Happened To The Rest Of The World

The Walking Dead has only ever dropped scant clues as to the wider world’s fate, but World Beyond’s post-credits finally shows what happened.

The Walking Dead’s zombie situation is bad enough in the United States, but World Beyond’s series finale post-credits sequence paints an even bleaker picture for the rest of the world. Across all three Walking Dead TV shows, it becomes painfully clear that no corner of the U.S. or Mexico is safe from the dreaded infection. And as infrastructure collapses and society crumbles, making contact with other countries becomes increasingly difficult. There are no phone lines, planes aren’t flying, and the Wi-Fi is terrible, meaning the likes of Rick Grimes have no way of knowing how the wider world is faring in The Walking Dead.

Only a scant few clues have been peppered throughout the franchise’s 10 years of existence. In The Walking Dead season 1, Dr. Jenner revealed the CDC had been communicating with other facilities across the world, but all went dark (with the French holding out longest). World Beyond season 2 elaborated further when the CRM’s Lieutenant Colonel Elizabeth Kublek claimed that, as far as the Civic Republic are aware, the whole world has fallen. Given their technology, resources and helicopters, the CRM are best-placed to figure out the world’s current status, but even they haven’t made much progress.

Now, finally, The Walking Dead gives a true glimpse at the zombie outbreak elsewhere in the world, with the World Beyond finale’s post-credits sequence set in a French biomedical lab. From the building’s state of total disrepair, it’s evident France is every bit as post-apocalyptic as the U.S., and given the geography of mainland Europe, the entire continent has probably been ravaged by the zombie virus. The vines growing over the building also prove this scene is taking place some years into The Walking Dead’s timeline – most likely in line with World Beyond, a decade after the onset.

One major difference between the U.S. and France, however, is that French survivors (some of them, at least) know exactly where the virus came from. The smoking man in Walking Dead: World Beyond’s final scene are aware which scientists are to blame for the pathogen, and his group have jailed many of the culprits, murdering the rest. How common is this knowledge in France? Is the cause of the apocalypse an open secret throughout Europe, or do only a small group of French survivors know the truth? Either way, their understanding is far greater than many in the U.S. (unless, of course, the CRM knows something they aren’t telling us).

Unfortunately, it’s not all good news for the rest of the world. Walking Dead: World Beyond’s canon-shaking post-credits also implies the French scientists accidentally created an evolved zombie variant while trying to develop a cure, meaning the undead are now faster and smarter than their American counterparts. The scene suggests this variant has become the dominant strain in France, and possibly even further. So while U.S. survivors have been struggling to navigate slow, mindless zombies, other countries are potentially battling monsters who can run and have some semblance of intelligence. That might explain why the CRM hasn’t been able to raise communications with other countries – nowhere else has groups that survive these evolved zombies long enough to build a community as powerful as the Civic Republic.

Finally, Walking Dead: World Beyond’s France scene hints the zombie virus was actually a collaborative creation involving multiple different countries. The French lab’s “Primrose” team were attending a conference in Ohio when the outbreak happened, and there’s a suggestion Spain might’ve been involved in the study also. How many other governments knew about the virus? Is the CRM actively covering up U.S. involvement in the project? Though Walking Dead: World Beyond raises many tantalizing questions, showing the zombie apocalypse from a European perspective is a huge step forward for the franchise.

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