10 Biggest Reveals From The Ones Who Live Finale


This article contains spoilers for the season finale of The Walking Dead: The Ones Who LivedThe Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live has been one of the best received spin-offs in The Walking Dead franchise to date. Telling the story of what happened to Rick Grimes after he left the original show and was presumed dead, it also follows the journey of Michonne trying to find him and bring him back home.



It was a bittersweet end to the show, and the storyline suggests the spin-off might be wrapped up for good (there’s no official confirmation as yet). As Rick and Michonne fought to take down the Civic Republic Military (CRM), keep their hometown of Alexandria safe, and get back home, so many secrets were revealed.


10 The Human Race Has 14 Years Left to Live

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During the Echelon briefing, Rick managed to snag with Major General Beale after gaining his trust, Rick learned part of the reason why the CRM justifies doing what they are doing. General Beale believes that, based on extensive research by his team of scientists, the human race, in this state of dystopian America, can only survive up to 14 more years.

“The Sword That Kills Is the Sword That Brings Things Back”

In his twisted sense of reasoning, Beale likens the CRM to a sword and by ridding the Earth of a population of diseased corpses and already infected humans, the world has the best chance of surviving beyond this timeline. He believes that starvation, population versus yield, and simply disease mean the real end of the world is imminent unless something is done about it.

Related: How to Watch The Walking Dead and Its Spinoffs in Order

9 Jadis Told the Truth About the Dossier

Jadis on the verge of death in The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live.
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In the penultimate episode, once she had been bitten and knew the fight was over, Jadis made one final attempt to get back to the person she once was. She told Rick and Michonne the location of the dossier she kept on them. It outlines everything there is to know about Rick and his group, including details about the existence of Alexandria.

“I’d Chosen a Side.”

Jadis declared that she felt she chose a side by joining the CRM, but she could not shake the love and affinity she had for Alexandria. Thus, all those years, she kept the community off the CRM radar while continuing what she believed was her good work. In the finale, Michonne quickly finds the dossier exactly where Jadis said it was. She furiously tears it up and disposes the file to keep Alexandria safe.

8 Rick Kills Beale

General Beale holds a sword to Rick and he blocks with his prosthetic arm in The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live.
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Rick did everything he said he would do to get his plan in motion, including returning to the CRM with a story about why he was missing for so long and going back to being a dutiful soldier. Once he gained Beale’s trust and was invited for the Echelon briefing, he listened to the entire speech before revealing his true intentions.

“We’re Not Dead, You Are”

Rick used the very sword Beale placed on the table for symbolic reasons to strike Beale and kill him. He tells him he never lost his son nor his wife, but rather they were the swords that gave him life, a single, unstoppable life.

The move happened so quickly. Some fans might have thought Rick was reconsidering when Beale offered to allow him to save anyone he wanted and bring them back before their city was obliterated. But Rick was determined in his plan to take Beale, and the CRM, down, and he started with Beale.


7 The CRM Was Going to Abduct Children

Michonne wearing a CRM solider uniform in The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live
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While investigating the building after destroying Jadis’ dossier, Michonne comes across a room with a video playing for the high-level soldiers. It discusses the upcoming plan to abduct select children from Portland before gassing the entire city and everyone in it. The implication from the details is that the CRM may have been planning to run experiments on some of these kids, presuming they could hold the key to a cure, or at least to repopulating the Earth once it comes time. Michonne is visibly horrified to learn this.


“We Have to Stop Them”

While Rick is ready to go home, Michonne tells him of the awful plan she learned about and pleads with him that they cannot leave the CRM until they put a stop to it. “We can still get home,” she says, “but not yet. We have to stop them because we can stop them” Michonne heroically states in what may chalk up to be one of her best moments.

Related: The Walking Dead: Every Season of the Original Series, Ranked

6 The CRM Had Spies

Rick listening to Beale during the Echelon briefing on The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live.
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Beale reveals to Rick that the CRM has had people working under false identities in communities like Portland to eventually complete the evacuation of selected children. They have effectively been spies, many working directly in the schools.


“The CRM Destroys Communities for Resources”

Rick learns that the CRM destroys communities for resources as well as “strategic superiority.” The spies are also there to monitor the residents of the community, even potentially sabotage them and influence their politics and approaches. It’s a harrowing revelation that makes fans wonder if such individuals might be at Alexandria or, more likely, The Commonwealth. Even if that was the case, however, by the end of the episode, it wouldn’t matter anyway.

5 Beale Planned to Eliminate the Council

Beale holds a sword in TWD: The Ones Who Live
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Beale had plans to reveal what was going on to the Civic Republic and declare martial law on the city. Part and parcel with that would be eliminating the Council, which would then give the military all power throughout the community. The plan would be to continue traveling throughout the U.S. to remove any successful communities that pose a competition until the CRM was the only one left.


“Maybe We Get to Survive”

Beale believes that with this dictatorship-like plan, the world would somehow manage to survive. And, of course, he would be in charge of it all along with his high-ranking soldiers. It would effectively decimate all mankind before getting to that point. While the plan sounds terribly evil, it seemed perhaps Beale truly felt like he was doing the best thing for humanity, seeing the remaining survivors as necessary sacrifices.

4 Pearl Thorne Figured it Out

Pearl Thorne pointing a gun in The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live.
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It took some time, but Pearl Thorne, one of the new characters on the show, finally figured out what was going on. As she thought back to when Michonne arrived, she put two and two together to realize that Michonne is the person that Rick was trying to get to the entire time, and not just some random woman named Dana they found along the way.


“Love Doesn’t Die”

While fighting with Michonne, Pearl can’t wrap her head around how Michonne managed to find Rick. Michonne tells her she simply didn’t “give up me like you did.” Pearl cries that the world is dead and love is dead, but Michonne puts her in her place right before she delivers the fatal blow by sword.

While Thorne did hold a soft spot for Rick and wanted to get back home as much as he did, she completely lost herself. Rick did as well for a time, but seeing how deep Thorne had fallen and how high Rick had risen showed that Michonne brought him back from being on the verge of losing himself.

3 Rick and Michonne Used the CRM’s Gas Bombs Against Them

Nat standing by a house in The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live.
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Once their plan is ready to go, Rick and Michonne head outside with the now reanimated Beale hiding in a container and procuring another walker CRM soldier. They tie them to opposite sides of wire wrapped around the rows and rows of bombs the CRM has ready to drop onto Portland. In a wonderful callback, Michonne reveals that she learned how to set this up from her old friend Nat, who had learned to harness his scientific curiosity in a positive way from his stepfather.

“They Have a Tent of Bombs”

While the plan is almost thwarted, Rick and Michonne manage to lead the walkers to opposite sides, just far enough away for them to duck for cover before the explosion happens. In the process, they kill every high-ranking CRM official, completely taking out the military.

2 The CRM Has Been Changed for Good

A CRM helicopter flying in the sky in The Walking Dead.
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The end revealed that the fallout of the explosion was sweeping changes at the CRM. A radio news report notes that with the death of Beale as well as other high-ranking offers, and the shocking revelations that came to light, a new council has been formed to oversee the military.

There are also major rule changes. People are free to come and go as they please. New members can join the community, and the military will offer assistance to individuals and communities as needed.

“Citizens Are Now Free to Leave at Will”

As the radio news report is read, several helicopters are seen flying, sporting the CRM logo, including one with Rick and Michonne inside. The military has now become a group focused on defense to one focused on aid and assistance. Thus, Rick and Michonne accomplished everything they set out to do, and more.


1 Rick and Michonne Finally Got Home

Rick meeting RJ for the first time, Michonne and Judith hugging them and looking on in The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live.
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The biggest reveal in the finale is that Rick and Michonne, now freshly engaged, were one of the couples who left the CRM to go back home. This means they finally reunite with their kids and Rick meets RJ for the first time.

“I Knew You Were Still Out There”

After an awkward moment as Rick looks on while the kids hug Michonne tightly, a now much-older Judith tells Rick that she knew he was still out there and didn’t want him to feel alone.

RJ, too, says he knew his dad would come back simply because he believed. It was a sweet callback to the “believe a little longer” etching on the phone screen that Rick kept with him to give him hope through all those years of separation from his family.



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