"CRM" refers to an advanced network of three communities of survivors first introduced in Season 8 of AMC's The Walking Dead, they also appear in Season 5 of Fear The Walking Dead, where they are encountered by Morgan's group, particularly Althea, and will also appear in World Beyond. The group possesses one or multiple helicopters that are used as transportation to collect new survivors and search for supplies. Their whereabouts and motives are predominately unknown.
Nothing is known about the members of the three communities prior to or as the outbreak began. According to Anne, one of the communities is situated somewhere very far away, so presumably, their base of operations is not within Virginia.
At some point following the outbreak, three communities located in different states of the United States (one of them being Nebraska) formed a large network named CRM, with a three-circled figure as their symbol. Although their purpose is still unknown, it involves the future of civilization. At least one of those communities came into possession of helicopters that were utilized as a means of long-distance transportation and to scavenge areas for valuable supplies and resources. It is not known how many helicopters any of these communities possess.
Eventually, one of the communities encountered a large group of survivors situated in a junkyard in Virginia and made a deal with their leader Anne (under the alias "Jadis") that, in exchange for bringing them strong survivors, they would supply her and her people with much-needed resources. The grading system this group used for captured survivors was marking them as an "A" (survivor with leadership abilities and willingness to fight) or "B" (survivor who is unable or unwilling to fight) which Anne would assign to the captives herself before delivery. It is not known how many survivors were given to the helicopter group by Anne and her people or what fate befell them after they were taken away, or if the group made similar arrangements with other survivor groups or settlements. One notable survivor captured by Anne and her people was Heath, a supply runner from the Alexandria Safe-Zone who was separated from his ally, Tara, while on a scouting mission and was taken away by the helicopter group to an unknown fate.
Anne would later reveal that she was planning on trading Gabriel Stokes to this group after he was captured by her lieutenant Tamiel, though he was rescued by his own group before this could occur. It is highly likely that Anne made a deal with Negan and the Saviors to help fight back against Rick and his people in order to obtain 12 new survivors to be traded to the helicopter group for supplies. This however never occurred.
While traveling to the Junkyard to confront Anne and her people to enlist their help in fighting against the Saviors, Rick Grimes spots a black helicopter flying away from the junkyard (presumably after trading supplies for survivors captured and delivered by the Scavengers). After it flies away, Rick continues on his way confused over the helicopter.
After capturing Negan, Anne plans on trading him to the helicopter group. Her watch beeps. She leaves Negan alone for a moment and returns with a walker tied to a cart. Negan fires at her with a gun he managed to get hold of, and threatens to burn a pile of sentimental photos with a flare that he found in her bag. Her watch beeps again. She rams the walker into Negan and wrestles the flare away. To her dismay, the flare falls in a puddle of water and the flame is snuffed. A helicopter appears overhead and hovers. Anne runs to get another flare, but by the time she ignites it, the helicopter turns and leaves. A few days later, Anne is invited to live in the Alexandria Safe-Zone, she agrees and cuts off contact with the helicopter group.
At the plane crash site, a zombified member of CRM is amongst the herd that attacks Morgan's Group. The man goes after Al who is unable to stab him in the head due to his helmet. Al manages to fling him backwards, impaling the man on a pole and records him with her video camera, interested in his black armor.
Al later returns to the crash site, believing that there is a story there. Finding the zombified man still impaled on the pole, Al removes his helmet and puts him down. Searching his body, she discovers laminated documents with maps of the United States and possibly other locations around the world. As Al radios to Morgan that she was right about there being a story, she is tasered from behind and captured by another member of CRM.
After returning to the crash site, John Dorie finds no sign of Al or the body of the zombified CRM member, suggesting that the group removed it after capturing Al. Unaware that Al put the man down, John speculates that the rain allowed him to slip free of the pole he was impaled upon and walk away, possibly followed by Al.
While repairing one of their walker traps, Max and Annie spot a member of the group nearby putting down walkers and quickly hide, complicated by a radio call from Dylan that almost draws the soldier’s attention. However, they succeed in hiding until the member is gone.
After talking down Max, Annie, and a group of children, Morgan and Alicia ask them about the group, having learned from Dylan that the kids saw them when they first arrived and were scared by them. The children agree to lead them to the camp and Max explains that they first saw them a few weeks back and the members had uniforms and weapons. While the children only saw two, there could be more.
As the group gets close to the camp, a CRM helicopter suddenly takes off and flies away. Annie states that the members had come in the helicopter and when Max wonders why they are leaving, she suggests that they got what they came for.
After being captured by Isabelle, Al witnesses her cremate Beckett's body and escapes briefly to hide her tape of him. With Isabelle's helicopter out of fuel, the two women are forced to work together to retrieve fuel for the helicopter with only 72 hours before a retrieval team arrives. Isabelle eventually reveals that she and Beckett were on a supply run for CRM when Beckett went insane after seeing the power plant that melted down and the radioactive walkers, forcing her to kill him.
Isabelle eventually explains that CRM is bigger than them all because its the future and everyone and everything else is the past. Isabelle states that the organization is about the future and rebuilding what humanity once had and they can't risk being found due to Al's tape. Al eventually leads Isabelle to where she hid the tape and allows her to destroy it. The group's protocol then requires Isabelle to kill Al as their mission means that no one can know anything or even see them. However, Isabelle chooses not to kill Al due to her attraction to Al.
After refueling her helicopter, Isabelle contacts her superiors to assure them that the mission was successfully completed. With Isabelle returning to base and not telling them about her encounter with other people, the group calls off the retrieval team. To ensure that her brother's story will live on, Al sends the tape with that story with Isabelle. Al subsequently keeps her promise to Isabelle and lies about what she saw and what happened to her.
About 19 months after cutting off contact with the group, while on a guard post, Anne spots the helicopter flying above and looks on very nervous.
After fleeing from her allies, Anne returns to the junkyard and retrieves a long-range walkie-talkie. She radios the unknown man from the helicopter. He asks her if she has an "A or a B". She asks for an extraction for herself and claims she's paid her dues but the man says for their deal to be on she'll need an A, and she promises them one the next day.
On the road, Anne's van breaks down and her helicopter contact radios to see if she has the "A". She lies and confirms she does, saying they're ready for transport. Abandoning her vehicle, Anne continues on to the meeting spot on foot.
Later, Anne hears panicked radio calls about Rick apparently blowing himself up to stop a herd at the bridge and Anne spots walkers floating down the nearby river. The helicopter arrives to pick up Anne and her supposed "A" and she pulls out her gun but suddenly spots a wounded Rick on the riverbank, still alive. She quickly radios that she has a "B" but he's strong and needs help immediately. She promises it's not a trick and explains she's just trying to save a friend who once saved her. They agree to her deal and lower the helicopter.
Inside the helicopter, Anne assures Rick that he'll be fine and that "they" will save him. Rick falls asleep as the helicopter flies away into the unknown.
- Elizabeth (Leader)
- Rick Grimes
- Raymond Campbell
- Iris Campbell
- Mr. Kadakia
- Unnamed Pilot
- Thousands of unnamed members
This list shows the victims CRM has killed:
- Beckett (Alive and Zombified)
- Angela Kang has confirmed this group is responsible for the abduction and disappearance of Heath. This is proven when the RV he and Tara used in "Swear" is seen in the Junkyard multiple times, and Anne used this same RV in "What Comes After" to reach the rendezvous point with the helicopter.
- In "Here to Help" and "The End of Everything", more details are discovered about this group:
- The official name of the organization is represented by the initials CRM.
- The symbol is a three-circled figure which can also be seen on their helicopter in "What Comes After".
- Some members of one of the communities wear a black armor suit and a helmet that covers the whole face.
- They have laminated documents with maps of the United States and possibly other locations around the world.
- Their jackets act as protection from bites by zombies.
- According to Isabelle, they are about the future and rebuilding the world which is more important than anyone.
- Secrecy is critical to the group so they destroy any trace of them with gunpowder and matches should a member die or evidence of CRM be discovered, and they will kill witnesses if necessary.
- In AMC's "How to Name Walker Herds and More Easter Eggs" it's revealed the meaning for the labels "A" and "B" this organization use for their captives:
- "A" refers to people with leadership abilities and willingness to fight.
- "B" refers to people who are unable or unwilling to fight.
- So far, CRM is the only faction to appear in every major continuity of The Walking Dead universe.
- Scott Gimple confirmed the CRM are not the TV Series adaption of the Commonwealth.
- In the teaser trailer for the first film, a skyline of Philadelphia is seen, hinting at the possible location of one of the communities of the CRM's base of operations.