Major General Beale’s “14 Years” Twist Cleverly Sets Up Rick’s Next Walking Dead Story

A surprise reveal from Major General Beale may reveal what Rick Grimes’ next story is after The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live season 1’s ending.

Major General Beale’s “14 Years” Twist Cleverly Sets Up Rick’s Next Walking Dead Story

A big reveal from Terry O’Quinn’s The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live character may explain what Rick Grimes’ future is in the franchise. Although there was reason to doubt Rick wouldn’t make it out of his fight against the Civic Republic Military alive, The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live left the door open for a return. But for the time being, it’s unclear if and when Rick and Michonne will appear again in The Walking Dead universe.

Theoretically, Rick Grimes’ next appearance could come in multiple forms. One would involve Rick making a cameo when Daryl finally returns home, possibly at the end of The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon’s run. Or, Rick could show up in a potential Walking Dead crossover. The most obvious route, of course, would be The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live season 2. Regardless of which option is chosen, there’s no clear opponent for Rick to fight now that the CRM is defeated. That said, the spinoff did set up an arc that could continue Rick’s story.

Rick Grimes Saving Humanity Could Be His Next Walking Dead Story

Some good may come of the echelon briefing

The echelon briefing in The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live season 1’s ending led to Rick Grimes making some big discoveries about the CRM and the wider world. According to Major General Beale, civilization has roughly 14 years before the Earth will become “cluttered with corpses.” Beale claimed that the CRM’s scientists believe that problems like starvation and the transference of diseases from zombies will ultimately bring down humanity. Having this bit of information could motivate Rick’s decision-making in his future Walking Dead stories.

Having been a part of the CRM, Rick understands firsthand what harm the pursuit of the CRM’s goal of saving the world can do to the people around them. Rather than preserve all of humanity, the CRM focused on saving themselves, which came at the cost of thousands of lives. If Rick thinks that the CRM’s research is accurate, he may work toward saving humanity as a whole. Heading in this direction would be true to his ending in season 1, which saw him pick the greater good over the safety of his own community when he turned down Beale’s offer.

Solving The 14-Year Crisis May Happen In The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live Season 2

There’s no bigger threat for Rick to face in season 2 than extinction

If Beale’s warning is to be believed, The Walking Dead’s characters have less than two decades before starvation and diseases decimate what’s left of the human population. With that in mind, it would make sense that stopping this from coming to pass will be Rick’s primary concern if The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live season 2 happens. A second season of the AMC series hasn’t been ruled out, and if the franchise giving The Walking Dead: Dead City and Daryl Dixon additional seasons is any indication, it may intend to keep all of its spinoffs going, provided that they’re successful.

As it stands, there’s no other existing threat that should stand out more in season 2 than what Beale said about the planet’s future. Because of Rick and Michonne, the Civic Republic has reformed and has new leadership. The franchise’s biggest villain has been removed from the board, meaning that a potential The Ones Who Live season 2 will need a new challenge to throw at Rick. It’s because of that the franchise may have introduced the 14-year deadline in The Ones Who Live season 1 finale. Taking this course set up a new story to take the place of the CRM.

How Rick Can Stop Humanity’s Extinction In The Walking Dead

Rick Grimes looking at Major General Beale with his head to one side in The Walking Dead The Ones Who Live episode 6

Preventing human extinction is a tall order, even for the two people who defeated the CRM. The magnitude of such a task raises questions about such a plan would work. While the finale laid the groundwork for Rick to spend season 2 in Alexandria, chances are, saving the world will involve Rick once again interacting with people beyond Alexandria’s borders. Rick may have to travel far and wide to find the solutions to the 14-year crisis.

As for what those answers might entail, one hint may have been offered by Donald Okafor when he talked about how finding the right type of millet could “change things.” It could be that exploring Okafor’s idea will give Rick a way to stop the food crisis in The Walking Dead: The One Who Live season 2. Working closely with the Civic Republic, and perhaps meeting with the leaders of new communities, could help Rick ensure a future for everyone in The Walking Dead’s universe.

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