Is the CRM launching zombie hordes toward the Commonwealth in The Walking Dead season 11? Arriving at the Commonwealth has been something of a culture shock for Daryl Dixon and friends. The sprawling community is a world away from Alexandria, Hilltop or the Sanctuary, and stands proudly as the biggest settlement seen in The Walking Dead across its entire 11-season run. The jewel in Governor Milton’s crown is her military, led by the formidable Mercer, and backed by hundreds of loyal armed soldiers whose primary job is keeping the Commonwealth’s idyllic peace intact.
Nevertheless, a more powerful community does exist in The Walking Dead’s live-action mythology – the helicopter group who took Rick Grimes. Officially known as the Civic Republic Military (CRM), Rick’s captors make Pamela and Lance’s setup look like zombie apocalypse amateur hour. Their military are better equipped, CRM scientists are making breakthroughs toward a zombie cure, and their population is approximately four times the size of Milton’s. Unfortunately, the CRM are also ruthless aggressors who show little tolerance toward other communities. The Walking Dead season 11’s “Rogue Element” hints a CRM assault upon the Commonwealth might’ve already started…
As part of her journalist gig, Connie is sent to report on Mercer’s zombie-culling operation beyond Commonwealth walls. A horde is apparently approaching the community, and the military must handle it before trouble brews. The soldiers struggle against their undead foes, and were it not for the presence of Mercer himself, the operation probably would’ve failed. Excursions like this probably aren’t uncommon for the Commonwealth. Hordes are like weather in The Walking Dead‘s present day, blowing through now and then like a force of nature. But suspicion is raised by a conspicuously visible headline on a newspaper in Connie’s apartment. The front page reads “TASK FORCE HOLDS THE LINE – SECOND WAVE EXPECTED.”
Maybe the Commonwealth is just particularly unlucky. Perhaps zombie hordes have their own season, when several make land in quick succession. Or are these zombies being aimed toward the Commonwealth on purpose? Though there’s still plenty The Walking Dead hasn’t revealed about the CRM, we know the city committed genocide against two other settlements – one smaller than the Commonwealth, one slightly bigger. Neither of these fallen locales was a threat, and both attacks were completely unprovoked. We also know the CRM are proficient at manipulating zombie hordes. Like more advanced Whisperers, the CRM use sonic charges and helicopters to direct clusters of zombies – a tactic they employed on both Omaha and Campus Colony (albeit after gassing them).
Given how the CRM is spread across the entire United States, it’s almost inconceivable they aren’t at least aware of the Commonwealth. And looking at the destroyed ruins left behind in Walking Dead: World Beyond, the CRM aren’t going to be making friendship bracelets with Lance Hornsby anytime soon. Are these waves of zombies the first subtle signs of a Civic Republic attack upon the Commonwealth? Weaken their forces, then swoop in when Mercer’s troops are at their lowest?
You’d certainly anticipate the CRM will have some presence in The Walking Dead season 11. Not only is Rick Grimes heavily rumored for a cameo in the final episodes (even more so after being spotted with Norman Reedus near location), but Fear The Walking Dead and Walking Dead: World Beyond have been building the CRM for something big. It’s not clear exactly where and when that payoff will come, but if The Walking Dead‘s final season is where the CRM reveal themselves, these undead forays toward the Commonwealth could be a first blood red flag.