This The 100 review contains spoilers.
The 100 Season 4 Episode 13
Once again, The 100 sets up an inevitability at the beginning of the season and does exactly what they promised they would: the death wave came and the world became uninhabitable for five years. Four seasons in and it sure is fun to watch them drop that axe. That said, while the finale set up some interesting story possibilities for next season, it wasn’t as action-packed or emotionally wrought as others. Due to the environmental nature of the disaster, there were no fight sequences, and given how they broke the story, the few deaths we cared about (Miss you Jasper! Luna, Ilian, Miller’s dad, and Roan if you care I guess?) already happened.
Octavia ascends…sort of
In our scantest plot this week, Octavia formally takes her place at the head of the unified clan within the bunker, not as a commander but as a champion and unifying leader with a real moral mandate. Ruling 1200 people who are trapped together for five years is no easy task, but if anyone can do it, it’s O. With Indra at her side, she will be challenged but she will have the best guidance she can. I hope Kane stays in the mix as another mentor for Octavia, and, to a lesser extent, the suspiciously absent Abby. Don’t think I missed that concerned look from Gaia, though – a ruler without a flame means trouble for the Grounder religion, even moreso for those who have devoted their life to it.
In many ways, Octavia is the best vision of a unified clan and a unified human race. Born in the Ark but trained by Trikru, she quite literally speaks both languages, and takes the best lessons in morality and leadership from each worldview. I only wish Lincoln were alive to see it.
Octavia’s closest remaining relationship we have yet to discuss is, of course, with her brother Bellamy. The Blake siblings have always been the engine of the show as much as Clarke, pushing the plot forward with every decision they make to protect – or defy – each other. While it was heartbreaking that Octavia didn’t get to hear Bellamy say he loved her back, the way they left things it’s clear they both know how he feels. They’ve come a long way – a season or two ago, Bellamy would not have left Octavia alone in the bunker, even as it was clear she was running the show just fine without him. Part of loving someone is trusting them, and it’s good to see that the Blake siblings have their trust back.
The gang goes back to space
Since last week really wrapper up the bunker storyline, the finale was free to focus almost exclusively on our island of misfit toys, who just so happen to be some of our core characters, plus a few interesting extras.
I’m glad Echo and Emori made the cut. For one thing, the show is always more interesting when it’s mixing cultures. But Echo and Emori are two particularly interesting examples of that, since they’re both cast-offs of Grounder culture, just like the original 100 were. Echo was exiled for her zeal and Emori abandoned for her physical difference. Beyond that, there is no John Murphy redemption without Emori, and I love watching two survivors scrap their way through this world, as they continually make some of the most interesting choices of anyone on the show. Echo, on the other hand, is both a fighter, as Bellamy noted, and a powder keg from a story perspective.
She and Bellamy have had great chemistry from the beginning, and pairing them, even for a short time, would throw a wrench into Bellamy’s relationships with both Clarke and his sister, the two most important people in his life right now. Not to mention, Echo was exiled by all of Grounder society when first Roan and then Octavia cast her out. How would the Grounders feel about an exiled person surviving Praimfaya, even if it was mostly due to coincidence and necessity?
I was glad to see Murphy rise to the occasion and save Monty, who continues to be the low-key hero of this show. If he hadn’t taken off his gloves, they all would have been toast. They’ve done such a great job writing Murphy that I was yelling at my screen for him to go back, but not 100% positive that he would.
Finally, I love that this entire episode hinged on the genius that is Raven Rayes. It’s incredibly difficult to make technobabble interesting and to keep smart characters like Monty and Raven from feeling like deus ex Mensa, but The 100 does it time and again. I never doubted that Raven would make it happen, but I enjoyed watching her figure out how, and I genuinely wondered if she would have to make a tough choice and sacrifice herself or someone else to do so. It made her spacewalk that much sweeter. I know they have/had a long five (or so…) years ahead of them, but watching the team work they all showed with their buddy breathing, carrying each other, and even having Bellamy, the least cerebral of the bunch, flip the final switch, made me confident that they’re gonna be alright.
Clarke makes a sacrifice
Did anyone really expect Clarke to die here? Okay, didn’t think so. Now that we have that out of the way, I’m so glad Bellamy took Clarke’s advice and listened to his head instead of his heart, because she was nowhere close to making it back to the rocket ship.
I love the idea that everyone in space thinks she’s dead. For one thing, it’s probably the only way that Raven and Bellamy would fully come into their own as leaders, although I’m always holding out for Monty as Hero. It’s also a great way to mess with all the Bellarke feels going on throughout this episode, because let’s be honest, Bellamy would probably only move on from Clarke in a real way if he thought she were dead.
Part of me feels like Clarke needed this time (somewhat) alone after all her time with people depending on her. Didn’t she just look so relaxed on the hood of the rover? Of course, that won’t last long, now that a mysterious other space ship has landed, and a prison transport no less. Everything old is new again, and I have a feeling Clarke and her nightblood friend are in for some trouble.
See you next season!