After much waiting, Walking Dead: World Beyond’s series finale directly addresses the matter, offering the first concrete details in years. Before this, Walking Dead viewers had formed various convincing A and B theories, many of which revolve around character traits and personality, but without firm answers, all ideas remained purely speculative. But World Beyond’s last episode culminates in a brutal duel between Jadis, Walking Dead’s Scavenger leader, and her former mentor, Huck. During the fight, Jadis remarks, « I had someone special. I had an « A » but I said he was a « B » so he wouldn’t end up in your mother’s lab. I owed him that much. »
Jadis’ Walking Dead comment is definitely referring to Rick Grimes in this scene, and her line reveals a lot about the CRM’s A and B labels, as well as what became of Rick after Andrew Lincoln’s exit in The Walking Dead season 9. Firstly, it’s clear that an A is the CRM’s preferred Christmas present. Jadis confirms she intentionally downplayed Rick’s importance, and would’ve been better rewarded by admitting his true value. The scene also reveals what becomes of A-grade prisoners – Project V lab experiments. The CRM’s secret science club required fresh specimens to test their prototype reanimation-slowing drug, and A subjects were apparently reserved for this purpose. Knowing what the CRM used A types for, it’s possible to deduce why Rick was among them. Since CRM doctors would’ve picked up any biological traits, the criteria for an A must derive exclusively from personality. The CRM obviously wanted to test Project V on victims with certain qualities – maybe hoping a determined, tenacious personality would prove more successful in resisting reanimation.
Jadis’ Walking Dead: World Beyond fight scene clears up a second major question from the main show – why Rick was downgraded from A to B in his farewell episode. Some viewers speculated that Rick’s near-death state was to blame, but Jadis now confirms he was always an A, and referring to Rick as a B was merely a ploy to spare him certain death. Rick Grimes treated Jadis with respect and accepted her into Alexandria. Even though she ultimately left the community, Jadis couldn’t bear condemning her friend to death by revealing his true status. This hints toward a glimmer of friendship still existing between The Walking Dead’s two helicopter escapees.