I was just watching "What comes after" and I realised that Anne referred to Rick as a "B" as opposed to in season 8 when she wrote "A" on the boxcar he was trapped in.

So what gives?

Is "A" immune and "B" isn't?
Is it like Gabriel said and "A" is leader and "B" is follower"? But surely in that case, Rick would be an "A"?

  • 1
    It's not revealed yet, you'll probably have to wait until the Walking Dead Movie about Rick before this is answered. Until now it's just speculation about it, personally i think A is for test subjects (seeing A's are strong and tend to resist her) While B seems to be friendly to her so i would guess a new member to their team?
    – A.bakker
    Commented Sep 17, 2020 at 21:20
  • My personal and simplistic theory is that A is for badasses and B other people (lieutenants, injured, followers...). She delivers A or B depending on the recruiters needs. At the end, the recruiters need an A, but Rick is B (wounded) but she vouches for him as he has the potential of an A. Commented Sep 18, 2020 at 13:30

1 Answer 1


The Walking Dead spinoff series, The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live, clarified the mysterious labels "A" and "B". This series reveals that the Civic Republic Military (aka "CRM"), based in Philadelphia, uses these names as part of its survivor classification system.

A key revelation comes in Episode 3, where Anne/Jadis discloses that her group, the Scavengers, struck a deal with the CRM. This arrangement involved trading any individual — either “A” or “B" — for supplies. This is how Rick ended up in the Civic Republic following the events of The Walking Dead Season 9, Episode 5, "What Comes After."

Relevant dialogue:

Jadis: My people and I... when I had people... we were approached by one of them. They proposed a resource exchange, and if we, uh, came across lost souls who needed saving, we would hold them and give them to the CRM. And if we found a threat, well, we'd give them to the CRM, too. In exchange, we got supplies.

- The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live Season 1, Episode 3, "Bye"

Individuals with the "A" designation demonstrate strength, leadership, and the courage to sacrifice themselves for their convictions. They are forbidden from entering the Civic Republic and are taken away to be killed. This is why Anne/Jadis falsely classified Rick as a "B" — so that the CRM will take him in.

As of the latest episode of The Ones Who Live (Season 1, Episode 3, "Bye"), the only known "A's" taken in by the CRM are Rick Grimes, Pearl Thorne, and Michonne. CRM Lieutenant Colonel Donald Okafor knew Rick and Thorne to actually be "A's" and recognized their potential as strong leaders capable of instigating change within the CRM. Subsequently, Michonne, another "A," was also permitted entry, thanks to a fabricated backstory concocted by both Rick and herself.

On the other hand, the “B” designation pertains to survivors who are primarily focused on their day-to-day survival and are predisposed to comply with authority. These individuals are integrated into the Civic Republic through a consignment program. They work on the outskirts of the city in a situation similar to indentured slavery for six years. Upon completion of this term, they are granted full citizenship in the Civic Republic and permitted to enter the city.

Relevant dialogue:

Okafor (to Rick and Thorne): The CRM designates people they find as A's and B's. A's have a strength. A's will die for what they believe in. People follow A's.

The people we cross in the world, the few we bring in, they're classified as B's. Everyday people who are just trying to survive. B's get in.

A's are sent away and killed, except you two.

- The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live Season 1, Episode 1, "Years"

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