The Walking Dead is deliberately vague about the undead situation beyond United States borders, but The Walking Dead: World Beyond gives a major hint as to the status of other countries. Through 3 separate AMC TV shows, a handful of webisodes and the original comic series by Robert Kirkman, The Walking Dead covers a lot of geographical ground. Virtually of that, however, is American soil. Audiences have seen Georgia, Washington, Nebraska, New York, California, and more – all in equal states of post-apocalyptic peril.
The USA has very obviously fallen in The Walking Dead, but the franchise is less generous with details concerning other countries. Fear The Walking Dead briefly ventures into Mexico, and the situation there is no better than the US. The original Walking Dead comics included a Spain-based spinoff (starring Rick Grimes’ brother) which revealed the zombie apocalypse had spread to Europe, and in The Walking Dead season 1, the CDC’s Dr. Jenner explained how France was the last station to go offline, implying everywhere else had already collapsed. It’s safe to assume The Walking Dead‘s zombie outbreak was a global event, but the current timeline is over a decade removed, and plenty could’ve changed since those dark early days.
In The Walking Dead: World Beyond‘s season 2 premiere, the CRM’s Lt Col. Elizabeth Kublek maps out the current situation to her young new recruit, Hope Bennett. The British villain reveals, “we’re 10 years into this new world, and there are dead columns roaming the continent… and as far as we can tell, the entire world.” For starters, this proves the entirety of North America (we had high hopes for you, Canada…) is still beset with hordes of corpses dominating the land. But Elizabeth’s “as far as we can tell” line is an even more ominous red flag, confirming no meaningful contact has been made between the Civic Republic and the outside world.
From what The Walking Dead has shown of the Civic Republic thus far, Elizabeth’s people have helicopters, bombs, sonic devices, full scientific labs, and are self-reliant in terms of generating power and producing resources. The CRM is comfortably the most advanced community currently on United States soil, and surely boasts the technology to communicate with areas beyond North America. If another country had managed to successfully rebuild their infrastructure over the past decade of The Walking Dead’s timeline, they and the CRM would be in touch by now. No news is bad news in this instance. Elizabeth’s speech proves that not only does the zombie apocalypse remain a global problem, but no other country contains a group with the technology and resources of the Civic Republic, otherwise there would be a line of communication between them.
Though tragic, the wider world’s undead woes make sense within The Walking Dead‘s narrative. If a country such as Japan or the United Kingdom had solved its zombie problem by developing a cure or through sheer brute force, military units would’ve been sent to other countries (the US included) to help out – as seen in other franchises such as 28 Days Later. The most Walking Dead fans can hope for is that the world outside North America is hanging in there with smaller communities like Alexandria, which have started to make steps toward rebuilding, but still lack the technology to communicate or travel beyond a local distance. With that said, the odds on a few countries falling completely is pretty high too.
We have to entertain the possibility that Elizabeth is lying, of course, The CRM is far from trustworthy, and Elizabeth is trying to instill a sense of fearful responsibility within Hope. It serves the villain’s purpose to present the CRM as not only America’s last hope, but the entire world’s. For this reason, the Civic Republic might be secretly in contact with outside countries – a possibility made more likely by Elizabeth’s former role as US attaché for the UK’s Ministry of Defence. Lt Col. Kublek could feasibly be liaising with her former employers back in Britain, who may have plans for the wider world of The Walking Dead.