The postapocalyptic series begins with Charlie and several others trekking from their pastoral home to Chicago in search of her uncle Miles, whom she hopes will help her rescue her brother Danny, who's been taken by a militia. Along the way, she makes the acquaintance of an archer named Nate, who helps her crew out of a jam. Danny, meanwhile, struggles to free himself from the clutches of the militia.
The gang close in on Neville's group, but a discovery threatens to impede their efforts to rescue Danny. In other events, Monroe ups the value of Danny's life; and Nora makes a connection with another rebel.
Miles leads the group to an acquaintance who can help the injured Nora, but the journey takes them into unfriendly territory; Aaron recalls his life prior to and after the blackout; Neville delivers Danny to Monroe.
Miles leads the rebels away from Philadelphia to escape Monroe's helicopters and machine guns; Rachel attempts to redeem herself by providing power to the rebels; romance sparks between Miles and Nora.
Charlie and the gang suffer a devastating loss. In other events, Miles and Nora set out to recruit a former militia comrade; and Rachel searches for a power source and Charlie's forgiveness while attempting to elude Flynn.
Monroe doubts Neville's loyalty, which causes Neville to disown his son; Rachel and Charlie start to mend their relationship, but the bond frays when Rachel leaves on a quest to restore the power and regain her self-respect.
Monroe's overcome with paranoia when Neville disappears. In other events, Jason makes a major decision; the bond between Miles and Charlie strengthens; Miles is attracted to both Rachel and Nora; and Rachel sets off on a quest to infiltrate the Tower.
Miles and Neville find themselves on the same side of a cause; Charlie, Jason and Nora undertake a daring mission in order to keep Monroe from acquiring anthrax; Rachel and Aaron are captured by militia forces.
Romance heats up between Miles and Nora; and Charlie and Jason. In other events, the militia launches drone strikes; Monroe faces an assassination attempt; President Foster considers surrender; and Rachel and Aaron cross the Plains Nation into Colorado.
A captured Nora is tortured and left for dead; Monroe learns that Rachel is heading for the Tower; Miles tries to figure out why many of his close associates are being killed; Miles, Charlie, Neville, Jason, Hudson and Sanborn try to make it out of the Plains Nation so that they can join Rachel.
In the Season 1 finale, the rebels suffer a major loss when they infiltrate the Tower. Miles' leadership skills and feelings for Nora and Charlie are also put to the test; Aaron's genius proves beneficial; and Neville and Flynn give new meaning to evil.