What an insane episode of The 100. Last night's episode contained everything I loathed and everything I love about this series. And man, oh man, The 100 certainly wasn't afraid to go full gut punch — and that's a good thing! Massive spoilers ahead.
OK, let's go ahead and get the silly stuff out of the way. It's not that I don't love when The 100 acts like Gossip Girl meets Lord of the Flies — but when it's in the confines of an episode like this one, an episode that decides to do something very intense and dramatic, it kind of cheapens the impact. That said, I still loved the episode.
So obviously, I'm addressing the newly added love triangle... because it is a rule that all YA TV shows or movies or teepee peyote desert trips have to have a love triangle. Last week Clarke Boys Name and The Boy Who Is Too Pretty hooked up. It was a little forced, but we all saw it coming because this show put two teenagers by some blankets. And you know what sluts TV teens are for blankets and after-sex-naked-blanket-covered-up-cuddling.
So Clarke and Pretty made it, and it was OK. But then his real girlfriend landed and she was all "hey boyfriend" and Pretty was all "D'oh!" and Clarke was all "noble noble noble, puppy pout noble." Bottom line: Raven, the girlfriend, just broke up the love fest and Clarke is trying to be cool about it. Thankfully Raven's presence means they have a way to contact the Ark. Alas, there needs to be some stalling for dramatic effect so Bellamy (La Bamba) gets involved and hides Raven's radio. Turns out the real reason he's doing that is so his murder secret won't be revealed (it's stupid and selfish, I know). And none of that matters, because the radio is broken anyway. Which really stresses everyone out, because Raven has just informed everyone that the Ark is about to kill off 320 people to conserve oxygen.
And that is where the meat of this episode is: on The Ark. It was a nice change. I've been pretty wrapped up in the kids on Earth, but the drama transitioned nicely over to space. At this point no one on the Ark (besides the main characters) knows about this calamity. The Chancellor decides that he will sacrifice himself, thus putting Kane in charge (along with 319 other citizens). Honestly, it kind of felt like the Chancellor was giving up. It seemed like he was tired of making the hard decisions, and wanted someone with no emotional ties to steer the future of humanity (Kane). Obviously once Clarke's Mom foisted this "emotional reveal" upon the people by leaking her husbands tape, everyone had to face the facts. This wasn't a decision that could be made by numbers or facts, you had to trust your gut. Unfortunately their gut was half wrong, and late. So while they weren't wrong, they were still wrong. And it was heartbreaking.
The Ark's Council Member's biggest fear was anarchy aboard the ship. If the citizens found out about the oxygen shortage surely they would revolt and everyone would end up dying. But when the information is revealed, the humans act with love and 320 volunteers give up their lives so their loved ones can have more time. Watching each person line up was pretty great (super cornball and I don't BELIEVE FOR A SECOND that's what would happen in real life) but in this world, where Clarke's hair still looks that good this long without showering... OK, you got it, The 100.
Perhaps the absolute best moment was watching the Chancellor accept real responsibility for his actions. Instead of giving up his life with the rest of the 320, he pushes the button that sentences them all to death. He doesn't let Gaeta (yes that's Gaeta to me) do it, he does it. It was a symbolic gesture that the Chancellor isn't going to be blinded by emotions and scared for humanity, he's going to step up and make the hard choices and embrace whatever consequences these acts will have on his soul. It's brutal, and great.
Back on Earth the kids are desperately trying to contact the Ark so they know that the Earth is an option for survival. Which probably would have been done earlier, had the government not sent children to do this task, but that's neither here nor there. Raven uses her rocket fuel and smarts to launch pink rockets into the sky, but by the time they reach space, everyone is already dead.
Yikes. What a kick in the gut. And well done. I'm happy that this series, that is about the end of humanity, isn't afraid to END HUMANITY. If you're going set up these kind of circumstances, you can't be afraid to go dark. And this series certainly has proven that it's not afraid to get a little blood on its hands. So far, so good. This isn't a red shirt scenario — these are characters you started to care for (Wells) and the last members of the human race, so we're emotionally involved. Keep going, 100!
And finally, here's a Groundling. Or Grounder or WHATEVER — I think we can all agree that the names of the surviving humans are absolutely terrible. A shame The Others was taken and Survivors has been overused, because let's get real: Calling these things Grounders is about the same stretch of the imagination as no one on Walking Dead calling Walkers Zombies. BECAUSE THAT IS WHAT THEY FUCKING ARE.
Oh well, at least the Grounders are keeping up with the sexy, sexy 100 theme of "We Would Probably Bone Everyone On This Series." Until next week, may you feel really bad about all your mass-suicide decisions.