Wow. So, okay. Yeah. That episode. Do not let my lack of caps mislead you, I am a wreck.
As the apocalypse creeps close and closer, The 100 is not shying away from showing evidence, consequences and costs of the choices characters are making because of course it isn’t. This week’s episode was arguably a tad weaker than the previous two in terms of, idk, plot cohesivity? The Polis storyline (while excellent for a number of reasons) felt disconnected in a way the season has avoided so far. That said, the show continues to deliver harder than ever on character-based stories and that is far, far, far more important to me.
Anyway, stuff happened! Some was alarming, some was tragic, some was moving and some downright broke my brain. Capes are the number one look of the post apocalyptic future and Jaha is determined to prove you can solve every problem with a cult. Let’s talk about it.
Clarke’s speech from the end of 4×02 seems like it was super effective. Arkadia is a full on hive of activity as people weld, drill, hammer, other building terms the Ark into radiation-proof habitable shape. Unfortunately, space isn’t their only problem.
Bravenlarke open the ep with another married people pow wow. Clarke and Bellamy are trying to figure out rationing and my beautiful, practical, grudge-holding Raven interjects a dose of grim reality: the hunting parties are bringing back less and less as the animals disappear (yikes) so their rations need to be even more ration-y than they thought. Then she points out if they had a hydrogenerator they could make water and protein (I am accepting this as science because I don’t know any better) so thanks Bellamy because of the aforementioned grudge-holding thing. Ouch!
Then Bellamy says don’t worry about it, he’s not getting on the Ark because of course he did and Clarke immediately responds um fuck that noise because of course she does. That high pitched whistling noise you may be hearing is totally normal and you shouldn’t worry about it, I’m fine.
This is why it’s very important to do a patch test when trying out new skin care products.
A group arrived at the gates of Arkadia, it’s Nyko (hi Nyko!) along with Luna and her little girl and two of random extras that are all that’s left of Luna’s people. They are not looking so good and in need of help. Luna immediately addresses the irony of this (you know, because when they turned up at her gate asking for help she was like lol no) so at least there’s that.
But hey, who has time to worry about rations and grudges when fish are dying and people are erupting in acne from hell? Abby quickly diagnosis the group with acute radiation sickness. Raven checks her math and everyone gets an unpleasant surprise. That 6 months they thought they had? Turns out it’s more like 2. My episode timeline continuity is slightly scrambled this week, don’t judge me it matches where my brain is at.
Is this another one of Grandpa Theo’s hand me downs?
Over in Polis, Roan has figured out that Octavia is the go to girl if you need a stabbing. She’s even acquired a new nickname: skairipa (death from above). While that sounds very badass and Skyrim, I have a couple of questions. A nickname implies a growing rep and it seems like a single stabbing (especially a stabbing that was purposefully sneaky so people wouldn’t even know dude was stabbed) in a city that was totally used to people getting kicked off of towers in a society that seems to go to war when someone sneezes, I have a hard time understanding how a single secret stabbing gets Octavia a nickname. Do people know about the Azgeda guards from the premiere? I can’t imagine Roan’s security people want that info to get out. Has Octavia just been running around Polis murdering people? What am I missing here?
Anyway, Roan needs a stabbing to prevent likely war. Someone broke into his chambers and ran off with the flame. Roan, I swear to god, you had one job.
Arkadia and Floukru aren’t the only ones having food problems. Murphy and Emori are camped out in the woods and noting the lack of huntable animals. There aren’t even bugs. That’s probably very not good.
More importantly, Murphy reminisces a little about Polis and I have mixed feelings. On the one hand, I am very, very glad Murphy explicitly states he didn’t have a choice about the things he did with Ontari. For those following along at home, that is clarifying that the Ontari/Murphy scene was not consensual aka it was rape. I’m super glad the show clarified that because the number of people that took it as kinky sex was downright alarming (though tragically unsurprising). I am not so glad at the choice to portray Emori as jealous leading up to that, especially since it seems like this isn’t the first time they’ve discussed it? That was an odd beat and I am not really into it. Anyway, Murphy decides to head to Arkadia for supplies because he’s a better thief than hunter.
The tension is rising between Clarke, Bellamy and Raven. The latter is scrambling to adjust her timeline and workload to make the Ark at least sealable by the time the black rain comes. There’s still one problem: too many people. Raven points out that they need a list of the 100 chosen survivors to plan for the day the doors close and that list is on Clarke because “choosing who gets to live or die is your speciality.”
Tell me again how being considered Wanheda is some great honor.
Also, stick a pin in Raven’s almost maniacal, panic-tinged harshness because we’re going to talk about that later.
“You know, they have a cult for that.” – Jaha, probably
Before Clarke can respond, the team hears a rover starting up and rush to investigate. It’s Jaha! He’s put two and two together and done some math of his own and concluded Clarke’s 402 speech had more holes than the Titanic. Never fear, he’s found a doomsday cult (because of course he did, cults seem to have become Jaha’s go to answer for everything) that may have a bunker large enough to hold thousands of people. Hurrah! Raven is (justifiably) skeptical but she’s overruled by Clarke and Bellamy who are ready to grasp any straw no matter how sketchy of it means they can save more people. Saddle up kids, it’s time for a day trip!
Later that night, Murphy arrives at Arkadia and is greeted by the Miller family guarding the gates. I am so happy to see Papa Miller alive and well you guys! I am also so happy to see Papa Miller intercede when Murphy casually brings up Bryan! And an awkward silence ensues! So much yay for caring dads! How many more exclamation points do I need to convey my happiness?!
While Murphy scavenges in the store room he overhears an ideological conflict between Raven and Abby. Abby wants to use their limited supply of radiation meds to treat Luna’s people and Raven’s not having it. Raven has a deeply harsh but logical point, they have 28 doses that need to last 100 people 5 years on a radiation soaked planet. You don’t have to be good at math to know those numbers aren’t good. Furthermore, they don’t even know if the meds will work when the radiation sickness is that advanced. Abby, as usual, is looking on the side of wonder and wants to try. Have I mentioned how much I love the Abby/Bellamy we save who we can save today alignment? I love it a lot.
Abby leaves empty-handed after dropping an equally harsh truth bomb on Raven: “the radiation isn’t killing that child, you are.” Ouch! Damn Abby. I get where she’s coming from just as much as I get where Raven’s coming from and god, GOD. GUYS. THE ENDLESS MORALITY CONFLICTS THIS SEASON KEEPS ON DELIVERING ARE THE BEST.
I knew Murphy being selfless had a catch.
In an unexpected twist that would make his father proud, Murphy snags a bottle of pills and brings them to Abby. I love love love when this show does subtle callbacks (as opposed to beating us over the head with repetitive dialogue) and this one was so well done. As the show reminds us via Jackson (hi Jackson!), Murphy’s dad was floated for stealing medicine for Murphy, an incident that taught him it’s better to look out for yourself than other people (okay so maybe it wasn’t the subtlest of callbacks). How much of this move was genuine and how much was part of a long con to ingratiate himself with Abby remains to be seen but Abby is definitely heading up the Murphy Fan Club right now. Personally, I think it’s a complicated mix of the two.
Back in Polis, the camera, along with Octavia, tracks the mysterious flame thief through the city. The thief takes refuge in Titus’ basement temple lair (lit by a, quite frankly, ridiculous number of candles which are apparently an infinite resource in the future). In addition to having downright glorious hair, after a brief fight, we discover the new ass-kicking flame keeper is *drumroll* INDRA’S DAUGHTER. HIGH FIVE THEORISTS YOU WIN. Guys I cannot tell you how excited about all of this. In addition to being somehow equal parts adorable and fierce all on her own, Gaia levels us up to potentially unlock Indra’s back story and I cannot wait.
I love love love that one of the underlying themes of this episode was mother/daughter, both found and literal, relationships. We have Luna and her girl, Abby and Raven, Indra and Octavia and now Indra and Gaia. This is great stuff.
“My daughter was not meant to wander the Earth looking for nightbloods. My daughter was meant to lead armies. My daughter was meant to lead our people.” Adina Porter wins episode MVP hands down for this mini speech. It wasn’t a prolonged moment but god, the anguish woven into that delivery spoke volumes about the state and history of Indra and Gaia’s relationship and anyone who can paint such a vivid picture in the tone of just three sentences is incredible. This entire scene was, honestly, the lifesaver of the Polis arc for me. The tension between the three women and their shared desperation to find a way out of the situation crackled through the entire scene.
Unfortunately, the family reunion is cut short as Ilian and his band of anti-tech looters arrive to seize and destroy the flame. A brief scuffle ensues culminating in a slow motion shot of Ilian hammering a chip into dust. I gotta say it was super fun watching my entire twitter timeline as one go HOLY SHIT THEY DIDN’T……wait no of course they didn’t. Sure enough, after Ilian leaves we see Octavia came up with a split second plan to swap the flame for the junk chip Gaia wears around her neck. (Come on guys, if, if, the show destroys the flame, they aren’t going to do it in the middle of the third episode).
The Polis plot later wraps with Octavia delivering some rando’s head to Roan, claiming said rando is responsible for stealing the flame. Roan’s face is a perfect replica of surejan.gif but he lets it go for now.
And we’re back in Arkadia. Raven emerges from the storeroom just in time to see that she was right and the radiation meds weren’t able to save Luna’s little girl. We’re then all treated to a gut wrenching scene where Luna holds her as she dies. Luna cannot catch a break guys.
Raven I have never wanted to be wrong so bad in my life Reyes
Alright, let’s talk about Raven. Over the course of these three eps, Raven, more than anyone, has been super focused on the grim realities of their situation and hasn’t been shy about rubbing those realities in people’s faces to the point of being a borderline dick about it. Of course she has, she’s an engineer. She’s been trained to look at the bare bones of a problem and figure out how to fix it. I also wonder how much of this is left over from her Alie brain rewiring (which isn’t an attempt to shift anything to Alie, more a commentary on how program-like her focus has been). Regardless, she’s clearly terrified and stressed beyond belief and is dealing with it by focusing on facts to the point of literally sequestering herself away in another room, avoiding the human cost of the calls she’s being forced to make.
Watching Luna and her people was her first real, unavoidable look at that human cost and I don’t see how you can see her face and tell me she’s heartless. In denial in a major way? Sure. Heartless? Absolutely not. Lindsey Morgan’s performance just watching was flawless and heartbreaking. The lengthy focus and continual cutbacks to Raven drove home the reality that a lot of people are about to die and no amount of hiding behind math can mitigate the horror of that.
Raven’s getting her first real wake up call to the life and death stakes and choices the other characters have been swimming in for some time now and the weight of that is crushing. I look forward to seeing how she approaches the situation going forward. It’s totally possibly she doubles down and focuses even harder but the show is clearly setting Raven on a path to discovering her own line in the sand and ensuing breaking point. I will allow that this may make me a deeply fucked up person, but I for one cannot wait to see her find and deal with her line.
But that’s a story for another episode because we still have to see what Clarke, Bellamy and Jaha find at the bunker. They arrive at their destination and Clarke runs ahead to look for the door because of course she does. Jaha and Bellamy take advantage of their momentary privacy to have an in hindsight not at all surprising conversation.
BUT BEFORE WE GET THERE I JUST NEED TO DWELL FOR A SECOND ON THIS EXCHANGE:
Jaha: She’s lucky to have you. Leadership is a lonely pursuit. But you? You keep her centered.
Bellamy: You got it backwards.
HAHAHA. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. I’M FINE THIS IS FINE IT’S ALL FINE.
The she in question was Clarke if my brief bout of hysteria didn’t make that clear.
So then Jaha brings up and absolves Bellamy for the massacre and shooting him (twice) saying that his intentions were pure. Here’s where I eat crow and admit that I have been fairly dedicated in writing off Jaha since season 1 (in my defense, he was so boring/egotistical in s2 and his s3 chipped persona was The Worst).
“Hu……uuuuh. Perhaps I have been unfair to Jaha.” – Bellamy and the audience as one
I do think it is worth pointing out that in the real world intent doesn’t absolve impact (and it seems that Bellamy shares this mindset), but is is nice that the show took the time to once again clarify Bellamy’s s3 arc a little bit. It’s good that he’s still struggling with it, I would call ooc SO. FAST. if Bellamy was just totally copacetic with all of the pain he’s caused (and like, massacre) but I like that the show is taking pains to remind us that within this world, everyone is trying to do their best for the people they care about.
So anyway, they find the door to the bunker and Jaha explains that the cult was actually Scientology with a different name to avoid lawsuits. I’m cackling. Bellamy uses the rover to pry open the door of the bunker (again, cackling) and our heroes discover…..drumroll…….people soup. To quote my friend Erin, man that room must’ve smelled AWESOME.
Guess we aren’t close enough to the eleventh hour to find a convenient way out.
Murphy has scampered back to Emori and wraps up his part in the episode by telling her they need to go back to Arkadia to survive the looming apocalypse. Don’t worry, he’s already started laying the groundwork with Abby. Oh Murphy, you cockroach.
I’m going to skip ahead and wrap up the medical portion of the episode so everyone who doesn’t want to read me utterly losing my shit over a THING can bounce.
Turns out, Luna has recovered from her radiation poisoning with no medical assistance. What what what???? No, seriously, what? Didn’t we already establish that Becca’s nightblood serum didn’t help people resist radiation? Fear not, team medical is going to get to the bottom of this. Maybe we don’t have to wait until the eleventh hour after all. Hahahahaha who am I kidding there are totally strings attached to this miracle. Anyway, I owe Meagan $20 because she totally called this months ago (and others but sorry, I only have so many twenties to go around).
Alright guys. I’m about to get shouty up in here. Team bellarke knows what’s up.
If you’re the kind of person that can’t deal with the second hand embarrassment of a person totally throwing their dignity to the wind in a sea of feelings you may want to close out and do something else. This was a great episode, season 4 continues to deliver and deliver and deliver and I cannot wait to see where all of this goes. We’ll catch up next week.
For everyone sticking around, oh. My. GOD???????? OH MY GOD??????????
I’m taking a page out of Natalie’s book and doing this in list form because organized paragraphs and coherent sentences are beyond me.
- We cut back to Clarke in the chancellor’s office making the worst list of all time: the 100 people selected to survive the apocalypse
- OH GOD CLARKE I’M SO SORRY NO ONE SHOULD HAVE TO DO THIS
- PAN OVER TO THE COUCH
- BELLAMY. SLEEPING.
- CLARKE WATCHING HIM SLEEP
- BELLAMY’S FACE TURNED TOWARDS HER AS HE SLEEPS
- THE INTIMACY YOU GUYS THE FUCKING INTIMACY I CAN’T DEAL WITH THIS I AM NOT EQUIPPED TO DEAL WITH THIS
- DEEP BREATHS WE’RE LIKE ONE SECOND INTO THIS SCENE
- There are two spots left on the list
- TWO. SPOTS.
- OKAY OKAY OKAY
- CLARKE WRITES DOWN BELLAMY’S NAME
- BELLAMY BLAKE
- THERE IT IS
- CLARKE CAN’T ACCEPT A FUTURE WHERE HE DOESN’T SURVIVE
- OH GOD THE VIOLINS AND PIANO NOTES THIS SHOW IS CONSPIRING TO KILL ME
- SHE STOPS
- ONE SPOT LEFT
- HER FACE CRUMPLES
- SHE CAN’T DO IT
- DISCORDANT PIANO NOTES
- SHE TAKES A SHAKY BREATH
- SHE’S CRYING
- HIGH HOPEFUL STRINGS
- BELLAMY WAKES UP
- HE COMES OVER
- SHE TURNS AWAY
- SHE’S BREAKING
- CLARKE GRIFFIN WHO HAS BEEN HANGING ON BY A THREAD IS FINALLY CRUMBLING
- AND ALLOWING HERSELF TO BE VULNERABLE AND UNSURE
- WITH BELLAMY
- HE’S THE ONLY PERSON SHE’S SHOWN THAT HER FOUNDATION IS CRACKING UNDER THE WEIGHT OF ALL OF THIS
- GUYS IT IS VERY IMPORTANT TO ME THAT WE ALL NOTE UP UNTIL NOW MOST OF THE BELLARKE SUPPORT MOMENTS HAVE BEEN MORE DIRECTLY ABOUT CLARKE HELPING BELLAMY HOLD IT TOGETHER
- BUT NOT THIS ONE
- BELLAMY LOOKS AT THE LIST
- HE SEES WHO IS AND ISN’T ON IT
- “IF I’M ON THAT LIST, YOU’RE ON THAT LIST.”
- OH GOD HIS VOICE. IT’S SO CALM AND EVEN. HE’S NOT PLAYING AROUND.
- “BELLAMY I CAN’T”
- HER VOICE BREAKS
- SHE TURNS BACK TO HIM, CRYING HARDER NOW
- ME TOO CLARKE ME TOO
- “WRITE IT DOWN”
- “WRITE IT DOWN OR I WILL”
- STILL CALM, STILL EVEN, SO CAREFULLY CONTROLLED. SO DETERMINED
- PLAYING AROUND DOES NOT EXIST IN THE SAME UNIVERSE AS BELLAMY RIGHT NOW
- CLARKE CAN’T DO IT
- SO BELLAMY PICKS UP THE PEN
- AND WRITES HER NAME IN ALL CAPS
- (I CAN’T DO THIS WITHOUT YOU CLARKE, YOU’RE IMPORTANT CLARKE, I NEED YOU CLARKE)
- I AM DYING I AM ACTUALLY DYING
- I WANT YOU GUYS TO KNOW I CRIED FOR A SOLID HOUR LAST NIGHT BEFORE PASSING OUT MAKING DYING BABY SEAL WHIMPERY NOISES
- WHAT IS DIGNITY I DON’T KNOW I DON’T CARE
- THE PIANO. THE CELLO. THIS SCORE. I CANNOT.
- BUT WAIT THERE’S MORE
- “So what now?” “Now we put it away and hope we never have to use it”
- GOD THE SHARED BURDEN. THEY SHOULDER IT TOGETHER.
- WE WE WE WE WE
- SO MUCH WE
- “YOU STILL HAVE HOPE?”
- “WE STILL BREATHING?”
- GUYS GUYS GUYS GUUUUUUUUUYYYYYS
- WE KNEW THIS WAS COMING FROM THE TRAILER AND I KNEW IT WAS GOING TO BE A LOT BUT OH GOD THE CONTEXT THE CONTEXT
- THEY GIVE EACH OTHER THE STRENGTH TO GO ON IN THE FACE OF INSURMOUNTABLE ODDS
- THEY ARE THE REASON THEY’RE ABLE TO KEEP BREATHING
- THEY’RE EACH OTHER’S HOPE FOR THE FUTURE
- THIS IS MY SHIP THIS IS MY SHIIIIIIIIIIIIIP
- IF YOU EVER WONDERED WHY I OTP THEM SO HARD THIS IS IT THIS SHIT RIGHT HERE
- WHEN EVERYTHING IS UNIMAGINABLY TERRIBLE AND THEY ARE MAKING UTTERLY HORRIFIC DECISIONS THEY LEAN ON EACH OTHER AND SHARE THE BURDEN
- AND THEN BELLAMY PUTS HIS HAND ON CLARKE’S SHOULDER AND CLARKE GRABS HIS WRIST
- CLINGING TO IT LIKE A LIFELINE
- AND NUZZLES HIS HAND
- I NEVER IMAGINED A SCENARIO WHERE THIS WAS THE CODA AND NOT THE PEAK OF THIS SCENE
- BUT HERE WE ARE
- “GET SOME SLEEP”
- CLOSING THIS UNGODLY BEAUTIFUL TERRIBLE AMAZING MOMENT OUT WITH THE SAME INTIMACY WE OPENED WITH
- I AM UTTERLY UNDONE
- THAT’S ALL FOLKS
- I’M DONE
- I CAN’T
- I CAAAAAAAAAAAAAN’T
- THIS SHIP IS GOING TO FUCKING KILL ME
- I’M GOING TO WATCH THIS SCENE EVERY DAY UNTIL THE DAY I DIE
Additional notes put together before my mental collapse:
- heeeeeeeeey Niylah mention! The team is still working with Niylah! Can’t wait for her to turn back up.
- So is there some post apocalyptic wifi set up giving Jaha access to post apocalyptic YouTube?
- I know, I know, Ark databases, blah blah blah. I’m just saying that iPad either has one hell of a hard drive or someone has hooked up some kind of scrap metal data sharing network if they’re watching videos on a road trip through the woods.
- I have questions.
- Good god, the bravenlarke is so real this season.
- “Everything we once trusted has turned on us. Government, religion, even technology has become a weapon in their hands, used to poison our minds.” The show continues to be creepily prescient.
- I see Ilian is now heading up the makings of a cult of his own. They’re dedicated to destroying tech. That probably won’t bring him into direct and major conflict with everyone else.
- Y’all, Gaia’s voice and smile when she tells Octavia her plan was good was the cutest of all things.
- I love her, have I made it clear enough that I love her?
- “If anyone’s entitled to a lucky break, we are.” Anyone who didn’t know from that line that the bunker was going to be a bust doesn’t watch enough tv.
- BUT OH MY GOD CLARKE’S LITTLE SMILE TO BELLAMY WHEN HE SAYS THAT?????
- I CANNOT GET ENOUGH OF BELLAMY TELLING CRAP JOKES AND CLARKE SMILING AT THEM EVER
- “What are the things that eat the fish and bugs going to eat now?” Well that reeks of foreshadowing.
- “What happened to us deserving a lucky break?” CLARKE TELLING SHIT JOKES BACK AT BELLAMY I DIE I DIIIIIIIIIIIEEEEE
- Seriously does every character on this show ship bellarke? Sometimes it seems like yes, yes they all do.
SO ANYWAY THAT WAS A LOT. WHO’S STILL HERE? WHO’S STILL BREATHING?