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The Walking Dead: World Beyond Premiere Theory That Has Fans Talking

Contains spoilers for the series premiere of The Walking Dead: World Beyond

The first episode of The Walking Dead aired nearly 10 years ago now, and though AMC's post-apocalyptic hit show has received the occasional call for cancelation, it's been going from strength to zombie-dodging strength for much of its run. While Robert Kirkman's original comics suddenly came to an end in July 2019, AMC just launched the flagship show's latest spin-off, The Walking Dead: World Beyond

Fittingly, World Beyond starts 10 years after the walking dead overran the world, so we might eventually find out just how long a zombie apocalypse would actually last. The series premiere takes us to Nebraska State University, which has been converted into Campus Colony, a comparatively peaceful haven for nearly 10,000 well-fed survivors. Our protagonists are Iris (Aliyah Royale) and Hope (Alexa Mansour), two teenage sisters who are living a relatively normal life out of danger's reach. Unfortunately, trouble is looming on the horizon. While Iris is living out her best high school life, Hope is a malcontent who dislikes the Colony's alliance with a militant faction called the Civic Republic Military (CRM), and even sabotages a welcome banner to say "THE CIVIC REPUBLIC SUCKS A**." 

Hope's instincts are correct, and it turns out that the CRM and its Lieutenant Colonel Elizabeth Kublek (Julia Ormond) are up to no good. As the siblings join forces on a quest to travel to New York and find their father, Kublek's forces play merry hell with the Campus Colony, infecting it with walkers and taking the territory. 

While the show leaves it unclear just how Kublek was able to arrange a surprise zombie horde to overwhelm thousands of people, eagle-eyed viewers think they might have spotted what happened. Here's the World Beyond premiere theory that has fans talking.

The premiere's beginning might offer a grim clue about its end

It turns out that the events at the beginning of The Walking Dead: World Beyond's premiere might explain how the CRM was able to give the Campus Colony its very own zombie apocalypse. A theory posted on Instagram by an account called "TWD Universe Network" argues that the militant organization simply hid the walkers in plain sight, and the viewers even saw the moment they were smuggled in. 

"At the beginning of the episode, Hope sees multiple helicopters fly by carrying shipping containers," the post says. "Walkers are in the containers. The CRM rammed the walls and dropped those containers on the community. They wiped out everyone and the reason is assumed to be because Iris openly showed mistrust to the CRM in front of everyone."  

As a thread in the Waking Dead subreddit notes, this is a pretty intriguing theory, though some commenters think there might be more to the story than the fact that Iris disrespected them. This could be a fair point, because destroying the entire community does seem like a disproportionate retribution for some mild welcome banner sabotage. It'll certainly be interesting to see what prompted the CRM to attack, and whether the shipping container theory turns out to be correct — though hopefully, we won't find out by seeing them use the tactic on another community.