How ‘The Walking Dead’s’ Rick Grimes survived his coma isn’t a mystery, y’all

Another year, another resuscitated “Walking Dead” fan theory. Much like zombies themselves, theories about our favorite shows never truly die. They just lay dormant and wait, patiently, for the perfect moment to rear up and scare the hell out of us.

One that has been particularly persistent is trying to figure out how Rick Grimes – coma patient – survived in a derelict, abandoned hospital without fluids. Having done the math, fans estimate Rick was in said coma for about 45 days, but humans die without water after 3 days. SO WHAT IS GOING ON!? Several theories abound, but they all hinge on one thing: the hospital being abandoned WAY earlier than it actually was.

Take a journey with me. A journey into the boring truth about Rick Grimes coma survival.

Let”s start with the smoking gun. The dead flowers Rick half-remembers Shane bringing to him. By the time Rick wakes up, the flowers are dead, proving how much time has lapsed, right?

Image Credit: AMC


Assuming Shane is a conscientious giver of flowers and put the packet of plant food into the vase, those flowers would”ve lasted about a week or two before starting to wilt. And despite our collective memory otherwise, those flowers up there aren't dead. They”re merely beginning to wilt. 

But whatever right? I mean, obviously those flowers could still go on being pretty long after the hospital was abandoned to the living dead! Except this hospital was still up and running as late as 24 hours prior to Rick waking up. 

The first thing Rick does, after drinking enough water from the bathroom tap to drown a camel, is wander out into the spooky, flickering light of the trashed hospital hallway. There”s the key clue that whatever happened here just went down.

Image Credit: AMC

Based on light research – Google – a hospital generator can keep the lights up and running for up to 24 hours. Less if it”s powering the WHOLE hospital and not just emergency systems. But considering there”s no power in the rest of city, it stands to reason someone was refilling the fuel tank to keep patients alive. Probably those nice military personnel that were stationed outside.

Speaking of which, the hospital Rick wakes up in isn”t decrepit. All those wires sticking out of the ceiling and the papers strewn on the floor? Clearly the product of a last stand blow-out between the military and the undead. There”s even machine-gun bullet holes all along the wall. 

Image Credit: AMC

Which makes sense since the damage gets worse as Rick gets closer to the “Don”t Open, Dead Inside” warning sign. And it was a recent skirmish, too. Otherwise this poor lady”s face wouldn”t be so pretty. She hasn”t had time to decompose – or turn – at all.

Image Credit: AMC

Once Rick gets outside, you can see the military thought they had this undead problem on lock-down. These guys are all SUPER dead, every one with a bullet through its brain.

Image Credit: AMC

The one thing they weren”t counting on though – and how could they? – was that everyone becomes zombified when they die. So people probably turned while in the morgue or something, and shit quickly hit the fan. So quickly, in fact, the military fled without their gear. But recently enough that no one else has come by to commandeer the Humvees or the helicopter.

Image Credit: AMC

So yeah, Rick Grimes didn”t magically survive over a month in a coma without food or water. He just miraculously woke up at the exact moment necessary to miss the action but still survive. Sorry guys.