The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live – Season 1 Episode 6 Recap, Review & Ending Explained

The Last Time

Episode 6 of The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live begins with Rick and Michonne planning. He will get the briefing while Michonne gets the dossier. They will tell the city about CRM’s bombing and leave. If anything changes, they should key the walkie. While they plan, they wonder if they are crazy because of the things they have done to protect their family. 

Rick returns and claims Michonne is dead. Thorne is happy to see him but she has a change of heart. She feels Okafor died because he didn’t believe in the CRM; she doesn’t want to change things anymore. Rick just plays along. 

As for Michonne, she sneaks into Jadis’ room which is full of Gabriel’s drawing. She finds the dossier and tears it. But an officer catches her and she has to kill her. 

What is the Echelon Brief?

Beale is impressed with Rick and relates to him and the things he has done to survive. He confesses that Philadelphia and Pittsburg were in a civil war when a massive horde came their way. He evacuated secretly and let the horde take down Pittsburgh before bombing it.

Beale then gives the Echelon Briefing – CRM’s research shows that humans have 14 years left on the planet due to the increasing population of walkers, starvation and the diseases the dead might transmit into the air. To beat the odds, CRM destroys communities for resources, secrecy and strategic superiority.

They have embeds aka spies all over the world to monitor, influence and potentially sabotage existing communities. Some of the survivors have been used for experiments. He confesses that this is why they destroyed Omaha and their next target is Portland after which they will be the strongest force on the continent.

CRM will then declare martial law on the city (Civic Republic) and get rid of the city council. They will continue to eliminate any growing competition so that with all of their collected resources, they may survive.

Why do Michonne and Rick change their plan?

While Michonne is making her way out, she sneaks into a meeting on Child Evacuation Protocol. CRM will “evacuate” select children who make up 10% of Portland’s population. They are to avoid picking children who may stand out or be different in any way. The city will then be destroyed. A horrified Michonne keys the walkie which alerts Beale but Rick claims that it is Thorne calling him.

Beale thinks Rick will be the next CRM leader since he came back even after being free. His story is a symbol of hope for those who may want to go against the CRM. He also sweetens the deal – Rick’s family will be spared and brought to the city even if they are Type As. 

Beale asks him to swear on the sword but realises too late that Rick has other plans. Rick attacks and stabs Beale with the sword, saying the world will live.

Rick puts Beale in a container and takes the lift. A guard joins him but the blood gives him away. They fight but Rick smashes his head in. The lift pops back but it is Michonne who says they need to stop CRM themselves.

How does Thorne figure out Rick’s plan?

Rick walkies Thorne that Beale is killing walkers but when she goes to the site she doesn’t find him. She finds Rick’s prosthetic arm in his room and realises he’s backing out. She also observes that all of CRM’s higher-ups who are part of Echelon are on the grounds for the Summit (Portland bombing). She recalls Rick constantly saying that his wife is alive and his insistence on helping Dana (Michonne) and she connects the dots.

How do the duo stop CRM?

Michonne uses grenades to create a huge bomb that she learned from Nat. Rick says he wants to leave, he hates the time he missed with his kids but Michonne reminds them that this is what they do – saving lives. They plant the bombs in the tent full of poisonous gas and tie a wire to Beale and the Lift Guard who have now become walkers. Thorne finds them but they hide under a water tanker as the bomb explodes.

Most of the Echelon guards are killed while the rest become walkers. Rick is surrounded while Michonne attacks Thorne who has a gas mask. Thorne says love is pointless in a dead world but Michonne stabs her and says it isn’t. 

Rick detonates a grenade and Michonne is shocked. However, he uses a walker as a shield and survives. A dying Thorne sees it all and realises Okafor was right and Beale was wrong as there is still hope.

What is the aftermath of the Summit bombing?

The casualties include the CRM’s Frontline and Force Command. Rick and Michonne jump over the containers and escape to the Civic Republic city where they expose the CRM. The city council announces that are taking over the remaining forces of the CRM who are innocent. The citizens are also allowed to leave if they like and CRC will take in whoever arrives. They also provide a helicopter for Rick and Michonne who head back to Alexandria.

RJ and Judith run and hug Michonne while Rick watches from a distance. Judith hugs Rick and shares she had hope that he was alive. RJ asks if he is the Brave Man and Rick cries as he fixes RJ’s sheriff hat and says he can call him dad. RJ says he too knew Rick was alive and they all hug at the end of The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live Episode 6.

The Episode Review

Well, with The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live Episode 6, the mini-series comes to an end. We get a nice wrap up for Rick and Michonne. But it does feel that Thorne’s character is wasted. She has such a strong introduction, she has steadfast beliefs, she is human and most importantly she is ethical, which is what drew Rick to her despite his need to escape.

However, all of this changes just in a span of one dialogue – with her turning her back on Okafor just because he died and continuing with CRM’s bloody rule. At least Jadis’ loyalty to CRM is explained along with her internal conflict of being responsible for the bombings. But Thorne doesn’t get any of that. She is simply turned into the bad guy to rush the story along with again a hasty singular dialogue to give her redemption.

But the CRM storyline actually gets pretty interesting with the Echelon Briefing. All of the vague rules start making sense such as only having Type B citizens so that they remain docile and easy to manipulate. We are also able to connect the dots like Okafor’s plan to grow crops and bring in someone like Rick. It was clear he never agreed with the Echelon Briefing and he needed someone like Rick to stop CRM. Wish we’d gotten a full 22-episode season with Thorne, Okafor and Beale.

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Read our season 1 review of The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live here!

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