This The 100 review contains spoilers.
The 100 Season 3 Episode 10
I’ll cut to the chase: “Fallen” is not one of The 100’s finest hours. I wanted it to be but it simply wasn’t. Generally speaking, The 100 is very well-crafted sci-fi drama, the kind that shows the gritty underbelly of dystopia without stooping to using tropes. Now, I’m not saying “Fallen” was a predictable episode (even though at times it certainly was), I’m saying that this episode was all over the place, throwing so much at the wall that nothing stuck. Which is frustrating, given that the episodes leading up to “Fallen” had some pretty strong moments.
Hopefully we can agree that the Alie storyline has taken a really weird turn. I liked this all much better when Jaha was on a quest to find the mythical City of Light. Now that he’s found it, and we understand the city to be a means for Alie to gain power via controlling minds—the power of this idea pretty much goes out the window. It’s one thing to turn a strong character like Jaha into a numb, mindless acolyte who can’t remember his son’s name, but what happens to Raven in this episode was very frustrating to watch.
I liked the idea of Raven battling back against Alie, as this is something Raven would logically do, given what we know about her character. But suddenly Alie can move freely about, seeing and hearing through the eyes and ears of those who have entered the City of Light. I understand Alie was able to flit about before, but in “Fallen” she just seemed too powerful, especially when it came to flooding Raven with painful memories (seriously, Raven has been through a lot). Again, I understand how such a thing would be possible for Alie to do, but in execution I thought it was just way too over the top. Once Raven began speaking with Alie’s voice (via synaptic control), I all but checked out of the episode.
As for Abby, she’s had a strong couple of episodes, especially in her interactions with Kane before he escaped Arkadia. But any of that emotional momentum is now gone, and Abby doesn’t have much to do but protest loudly before finally ingesting the key. Yes, she did it to save Raven, who lay bleeding on the floor, but the predictability of this bothered me.
The same thing goes for Monty’s storyline. What started out with a poignant moment with his mother warning him to leave was later undermined when it was revealed that his mother had ratted him out to Pike. Had this not been so obvious, this revelation would have carried a lot more weight.
This was a tough episode for kin, given how Octavia works Bellamy over until he’s a bloody, wide-eyed mess. This was actually one of my favorite scenes, with Bellamy somehow trying to do right by his sister in the wake of Lincoln’s death. Other than this one scene, Lincoln’s death didn’t really carry too much emotional weight, and it should have.
Another great moment was Kane asking Bellamy what motivated him to help turn Pike over to the Grounders. Did he do it for his sister, or because it was the right thing to do? Bellamy misses the point of the question, but Kane holds him to it, explaining that there’s a real difference between the two answers. It’s because of dialogue like this that I continue to really enjoy Henry Ian Cusick’s scenes. He wants people to become their best selves, to embrace their potential to be truly good citizens of this new world.
As for Polis, as much as I like Richard Harmon, even Murphy couldn’t rescue these scenes with Ontari in the capital. With Lexa and Titus gone, there isn’t much happening in Polis anymore, which is strange, given how important Lexa’s death was. If anything, I would say Ontari’s introduction and grab for power happened way too quickly. Add to this the odd chemistry between her and Murphy, and I feel like this storyline is sputtering out.
Some closing thoughts:
Jasper really didn’t have enough to do in this episode. I almost forgot he was even in this episode at all, until he was shown handcuffed to the ladder. I know Devon Bostick has gotten a lot of screen time this season, but what’s the harm in giving him more?
Clarke randomly shows up at Arkadia just long enough to disappear into the night with Jasper and Raven? In general “Fallen” had a lot of characters coming or going or splitting off with other groups. In other words, the episode felt just as scattered as the survivors themselves.