The series finale of AMC’s The Walking Dead: World Beyond introduced the possibility of fast — and intelligent — zombies. So, how could that work moving forward in the Walking Dead universe?
The Walking Dead: World Beyond has concluded and won’t be back for a third season. This means that the teaser at the end of the show will likely be a hint at what is to come in one of the other TV series.
Currently, The Walking Dead is gearing up for the second half of its eleventh — and final — season. The likelihood there is that the new form of walkers will not fit with the current storyline and where the network wants to go for the end of the original series.
However, a small clue dropped in the midseason finale for Fear the Walking Dead might be how intelligent zombies will turn up there.
How AMC introduced smart zombies
In World Beyond, a cut scene was included after the final episode aired. Here, fans discovered that the zombie virus was developed in France and things went hideously wrong from there.
Not only did this country create the virus, but they also tampered with it. Dr. Edwin Jenner (Noah Emmerich) commented on the new strain during a video conversation with the French laboratory.
However, it was when a French scientist was shot by another researcher that the true horror of the situation was revealed. The scientist quickly reanimated and took off at a run toward the door just vacated by the other person.
This revealed a few things. Not only are these variants fast when they move but they also reanimate very quickly. In addition to this, the fact that the walker went straight for the door indicates a level of some sort of intelligence from these zombies.
This ties in with a storyline that featured in Sunday night’s episode of Fear the Walking Dead.
Here’s how things could change in Fear the Walking Dead
In the midseason finale, Fear the Walking Dead revealed that Alicia Clark (Alycia Debnam-Carey) had been bitten by a walker. Her arm was amputated but, potentially, not in time for the infection to spread.
The character is now fighting off the undead infection months after being bitten.
During her exchanges with Morgan Jones (Lennie James), Alicia was convinced that some walkers had a slight level of intelligence and this was why she was using the undead Will (Gus Halper) to try and locate Padre.
It could be argued here that Alicia was only hoping that walkers retained some form of their former selves after reanimation because she was facing death herself thanks to the ongoing infection from the walker bite.
However, Alicia has also spent a while locked in a bunker that contained top-secret government files. Considering, Dr. Jenner knew about the zombie variant occurring in France, the potential here is that details of this were recorded and kept in the bunker that Alicia was stuck in.
If this is the case, perhaps Alicia is drawing from what she has read about the French walkers in regard to the retention of some form of intelligence.
As Digital Spy points out, the timeline for The Walking Dead, World Beyond, and Fear the Walking Dead have been jumbled since the start. However, currently, the timeline of World Beyond is fixed just prior to Season 6 of Fear the Walking Dead. This means that if the details of the cut scene occurred at the same time as the end of the episode, it is possible AMC could be setting up for a reveal of fast walkers when Fear returns.
AMC has also renewed Fear the Walking Dead for an eighth season, so while The Walking Dead is coming to an end, Fear the Walking Dead could certainly continue on with a terrifying new form of walkers.
Season 7 of Fear the Walking Dead will return to AMC on Sunday, April 17, 2022.