This The 100 review contains spoilers.
The 100 Season 5 Episode 7
This season of The 100 can’t decide which is the bigger heartbreak: the people who have changed so much, or those who are exactly the same. For all that time in space, Echo is still that Azgeda spy, betraying Raven (through Shaw) to get what she wants. Abby is still addicted and Kane is still a martyr, though I continue to be pleasantly surprised at the way the show is convincingly arguing for the concept of maintaining functionality versus trying to get high.
The 100 is at its best when pulling at our perceptions of good and evil, ethical and not. For that reason I’m hoping that the writing will push Clarke and the others to do more self-reflection in the upcoming episodes, so they can’t just fall into the easy pattern that they’re the good guys and Octavia has changed. Frankly, she isn’t all that different – she’s just responsible for more people now. Even her more extreme decisions make sense once explained, and so far nothing seems all that different from what Clarke has done, as Octavia is quick to point out.
Even the episode’s title, “Acceptable Losses” points toward this double-standard. Losing Abby, Raven and Echo may seem awful now, but once upon a time, Clarke was willing to lose Octavia in TonDC. We’re used to seeing Clarke make the kind of calls that Octavia has been making, but we’re also used to being on the inside of the thought process, so we understand and empathize with the decision, even if we disagree. The 100 is going to have to decide what it’s more invested in: Clarke, or moral quandaries with no clear winners or losers. If the answer is the latter, we might need to be brought into Octavia’s world once again.
I like Diyoza as someone who troubles Kane, and keeps him from getting on that high horse, of which he is so fond. Seeing his former friends lost trust in him is a good move, and I’m eager for the chance to see that happen himself. Diyoza’s deep knowledge of their history was a huge narrative asset that we’ve only just started to see pay off when she compares sending 100 delinquents down to the surface
Diyoza’s backstory seems like it’s headed toward not only a new perspective on the (first) end of days, but also some #current political economy. While the former is intriguing, the latter feels unnecessary. Unless there’s something truly original to say, The 100 is more creative when it comes at moral and political issues sideways.
And then of course, there’s Diyoza’s pregnancy. This is a fantastic bomb in so many ways. First, like Wynonna Earp before her, Diyoza is seriously testing our perceptions of what pregnancy means and looks like. Second, it will test everyone’s convictions, especially Clarke, Octavia and Echo. Can they still kill her now? Go to war with her? Oh and finally I suppose it would be interesting to know who got her pregnant, and whether stasis or space affected that timeline at all. Personally, I’m pulling for science to be the father.
Finally, Octavia has pulled Madi in under her wing, though it may not be such a safe place. I’d like to get a better idea of how many people beyond Gaia and Indra are willing to defy Octavia, since it seems like in a short period of time Wonkru went from frothing at the mouth with loyalty to ready to abandon her. Will Madi have more in common with someone like Octavia, who doesn’t tell her to stop speaking Trigadeslang or make herself small? Will Octavia’s affection for a hidden little warrior win out over her sense of self-preservation? And when the chips are down, who will stand by whom as Clarke takes on Octavia?