The Walking Dead: “Designation Two,” Explained

What is “Designation Two” on The Walking Dead? That’s the burning question from Sunday’s “Outpost 22,” which found Daryl (Norman Reedus), Carol (Melissa McBride), and Maggie (Lauren Cohan) tracking a convoy that could lead them to their disappeared friends. Since the death of her son Sebastian (Teo Rapp-Olsson), Governor Pamela Milton (Laila Robins) ordered immigrants from the Virginia communities of Riverbend, Hilltop, and Alexandria rounded up and removed from the Commonwealth of Ohio. As “exiles,” the disappeared do hard labor working railway duty in the wastelands outside the Commonwealth’s walls — revealed by Lance Hornsby (Josh Hamilton) to be expanding its reach with a working train.

Following the supply train to find their friends, Daryl and Carol watched from afar as Commonwealth troopers delivered a captured Connie (Lauren Ridloff). A close listen revealed the exchange:

Trooper #1: Guy’s saying I have to put an exile on here. It’s a cargo transport and against regs. Over.
Trooper #2: It’s been cleared from up on high. She’s not gonna be a worker. She’s designation two.
Trooper #1: Oh, sh-t.
Trooper #2: Yeah, exactly. Get her there safely.

(Photo: AMC Studios)

Later, when interrogated by Daryl about the train’s destination and exiles who are labeled “designation two,” a dying trooper revealed some intel:

“I’ve only heard rumors about designation two. They’re taken somewhere far away. They’re never seen again.”

Somewhere like the Civic Republic?

What Is CRM in The Walking Dead?

The CRM — short for Civic Republic Military — is the authoritarian paramilitary force of the Civic Republic. A fortified “hidden city” located in post-apocalyptic Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the CR dwarfs even the Commonwealth: the advanced civilization is home to 200,000 survivors.

The Civic Republic is the base of the CRM, the black-suited soldiers who have appeared on Fear the Walking Dead and The Walking Dead: World Beyond. When we last saw Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) on Season 9 of The Walking Dead, it was aboard a CRM helicopter; Heath (Corey Hawkins) went missing when he was trafficked by the CRM.

The Civic Republic Military’s Project Votus

World Beyond disclosed that Jadis (Pollyanna McIntosh) traded Rick to the CRM for entry into the CR, the “last light of the world.” That Walking Dead spin-off also revealed the meaning behind “A and B,” a classification used to determine whether a survivor would join the CRM or be used as a test subject in Project Votus.

On World Beyond, we learned that CRM Major General Beale and Lieutenant Colonel Elizabeth Kublek (Julia Ormond) founded Project Votus in year two of the walker apocalypse. Under Project Votus, Dr. Lyla Belshaw (Natalie Gold) and other CRM scientists studied live subjects through death to further their research on reanimation by using “As”: zombie-bitten test subjects.

On The Walking Dead, Jadis traded people to the CRM in exchange for supplies for the Scavengers. Some of these people — along with survivors from communities affiliated with the Alliance of the Three, including the inhabitants of the Portland and Nebraska safe zones — were used as human test subjects in Project Votus.

What Is Designation Two on The Walking Dead?

We can infer that “designation one” indicates the workers sentenced to labor camps under the ruthless Warden (Michael Weaver). It’s possible Hornsby’s connections to the CRM means “designation two” is an exile traded to the Civic Republic Military for supplies — and in exchange for the Commonwealth’s independence, lest it be colonized by the CRM.

Before his death, Hornsby warned Governor Milton: “If something happens to me, certain alliances the Commonwealth has — certain stabilizing factors — are likely to become a problem.”

Exiles like Connie and other “designation twos” are transported far away as valuable cargo. If not for Daryl and Carol, Connie might have become a living test subject traded away to the CRM in their efforts to cure the zombie virus and ensure humanity’s survival.

READ MORE ? What Is the CRM in the Walking Dead Universe? ? Project Votus: The Walking Dead‘s “A” and “B” Meaning, Explained ? The Civic Republic Military Master Plan Revealed


Follow @CameronBonomolo and @NewsOfTheDead on Twitter for TWD Universe coverage all season long. New episodes of The Walking Dead‘s final season premiere Sundays on AMC and AMC+.