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What You Never Noticed About The Letter 'A' In The Walking Dead

Contains spoilers for series in the Walking Dead universe

The Walking Dead has grown from yet another zombie series to a televised phenomenon. While the original series is still going strong despite Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) leaving back on season 9, the series has expanded into a full-on franchise that shows what other people are doing in the midst of the zombie apocalypse. Fear the Walking Dead follows a blended family learning new skills, while The Walking Dead: World Beyond focuses on a group of teenagers who've only known life with zombies meandering around. That's a lot of television for any one person to keep up with, but each show rewards eagle-eyed viewers by throwing in references to the other series, making it clear that everything is connected. 

One of the most prevalent connections seen throughout the three shows is the prominence of the letter "A." Characters often refer to each other as an "A" or "B," and anyone who watches World Beyond finally got some key questions answered when it was finally revealed that an "A" refers to zombies being studied by the Civic Republic

However, as you've watched the various series, you may have noticed the letter "A" pop up here and there outside of that context. For example, on The Walking Dead season 7, Daryl Dixon (Norman Reedus) gets marked with an "A" when he's held prisoner in the Sanctuary. That's far from the only time an "A" has come up outside of labeling walkers, and one Redditor has discovered a commonality amongst all of the letter's usages.

The letter 'A' signifies when characters are trapped and have their humanity put to the test

Redditor u/two_graves_for_us pointed out several situations where "A" crops up — including "cell block A at the prison, Terminus train car A, Gareth marking the church with a red A, the A mark Sam puts on the survivors' hands at the house party, [and] Daryl being prisoner A at the Sanctuary."

It's possible the creators behind the show are just big fans of The Scarlet Letter, but the Redditor points out how an "A" usually comes up during specific situations. It appears as though the letter materializes when a character is put in a confining scenario wherein their humanity is put to the test. For instance, the survivors are placed in cell block A when they stay at the prison on The Walking Dead season 4; they end up becoming trapped inside when walkers breach the perimeter. The season 4 finale was actually titled "A," and it saw the main cast get taken away to Terminus in train car "A." 

The Reddit user seems to think that this coding has nothing to do with how the CRM approaches the letter "A," but it's possible for the two meanings to converge at some point. The post ends on an intriguing note: "Rick does find himself in a similar trapped and tested situation with Jadis after she marks his cell with an A, which probably means this motif isn't completely gone, and will carry over into the Rick films. (If they ever happen)." 

"A" is clearly important within The Walking Dead universe, and chances are good it will come up again throughout the three series in the future. As the main The Walking Dead series comes to close, pay attention to every last detail to see how things may shake out for these beloved characters.