“Can you see it? Is it beautiful?”
“I hope we do better there.”
“I hope Jasper was wrong and we aren’t the problem. I hope your lives there are as happy as mine has been.”
“Be the good guys.”
I hope you’re ready, because season six of The 100 is going to be a wild ride. Based on this trailer, it’s not like anything we’ve seen before, starting with a view of a Saturn-like planet with rings. This trailer makes it very clear that while in the past The 100 has told post-apocalyptic, space-centric, and tech-driven science fiction stories, this series we’re going to a wondrous place, at least at the beginning.
The shot of a solitary ship flying over a landscape while lone cords of music play felt very evocative of Star Wars, and gives a sense of where The 100 is trying to ground its brave new world. Our scene-setting shots do a fantastic job of bringing to life what showrunner Jason Rothenberg discussed at Comic Con about transforming familiar locations into a new planet.
The funky, otherworldly tree and other warm, surreal details signal a return to the magical, sci-fi earth of early season 1, which I always felt we got cheated out of far too early. I’m so impressed that (at least for a little while) we’ll get to genuinely go to a new world.
There’s also a brilliant callback to the infamous, “We’re back bitches!” from the pilot, and at various points we see a landing party that consists of what is probably more or less our new core group: Echo, Murphy, Emori, Raven, Shaw, Miller, Jackson, Bellamy, and Clarke. A wisened Kane and a surprisingly healthy-looking Abby look out the window from a ship and wax philosophic.
Welcome to Sanctum.
We’ve known for a while that there would be a new society, so I for one suspected it would somehow be dark and twisty. This Thor: Ragnarok-colored world, complete with a night club, lantern festival, and happy children running about caught me completely off guard. These happy-go-lucky monsters even have topiaries for crying out loud!
Those kids aren’t the only ones who are happy, either. Jackson and Miller look like they’re good, and Miller’s line about redemption makes it sound like his position at Blodreina’s right hand hasn’t hurt him moving forward. Raven has a love interest, and there are more than just a few new faces and voices sprinkled throughout this trailer. But the shot that made my heart swell the most was the image of Clarke spinning, carefree, in a room full of art, and realizing that there were supplies on a desk. It’s her studio.
Throughout this trailer there’s some repeated imagery in the architecture and interior design that looks like stylized lotus blossoms. It appears in the red doors that open to reveal Clarke, the railings on the balcony, in the stained glass of the nightclub (?), and even in the design of the ground itself. I’m not sure what this means yet, but I’m sure it has significance to the people of Sanctum. (The ground, divided into segments of a circle like that, also called to mind the Quarter Quell but happy? Is this the Stepford Wives of dystopias?)
Seeing Clarke dressed up reminded me of her white formal duds in Mount Weather. In fact, the Mount Weather parallels feel like they’re everywhere with this genteel, “civilized” society. But with the cult-like atmosphere (and I’m guessing a cult of personality revolving around J.R. Bourne’s character), perhaps it will more readily call to mind the cult back on Earth that built the bunker?
Facing down demons.
Because this is The 100, it didn’t take long for this situation to go from Willy Wonka to Hunger Games on steroids. Everyone starts hulking out in what we quickly learn (from a children’s book? Dang they’re advanced!) is eclipse-induced psychosis. Everyone gets all stabby and has to be chained up like werewolves, although something about this makes it seem selective, like maybe not everyone is affected? I can’t quite place it, but I’m getting a vibe.
It also looks like O, who we mostly see sparring and training others, is fighting herself at one point? Her current self vs her Bloodreina self, back in the fighting pits. That makes me think that at least some of what’s in this trailer is from eclipse-related hallucinations. I doubt Bellamy telling her his sister died years ago was imaginary, though. Yikes. Blakes, you’re breaking my heart.
We hear Bellamy telling Clarke, “you called me every day for six years, but you left me to die in the fighting pits,” and, uh, point taken. Miller seems to tell her, “Salvation comes from faith and good works – you haven’t done anything yet.” I’m sure there will be more context for this, and it often seems arbitrary who gets forgiven in the world of The 100 and who is held accountable. Even so, I’m excited by the idea of people (especially Clarke) finally being called to account for some of their BS, especially last season when she rarely made sense.
Beyond the dome.
No utopia would be complete without a The Village-esque forbidden place and some bogeymen, because of course, “there are worse things in this world than Eclipse-induced psychosis.”
Outside the dome, things look a bit more like what the audience of the 100 is used to: the green and brown color pallet of the thinly veiled Vancouver landscape, radiation, people clad head to toe who want to kill whatever remains of the people I suppose we still call the 100. But don’t be fooled: this is unfamiliar territory for our there-are-no-heroes.
Outside the high-tech dome (another Hunger Games similarity, though its hardly unique to that franchise) is where we catch our only glimpse of Octavia on the ground, and what look like our only shots of Indra and Niylah, with weapons.
Gaia is here! And Kane! Kane has another show and was gravely injured last time and we saw him only in one clip, so who knows how they’re going to work that out. Maybe he goes back into a pod? Those certainly seem to be an active situation throughout the season, as we see someone releasing the kraken – er, I mean Diyoza and her ancient unborn fetus. As for Gaia, she has a couple of quick, great shots, but I always want more of her and Indra.
Jordan is barely in this trailer, just one clip in a Sanctum cafeteria with the landing party crew. I’m guessing that means his adventures (or Clarke and Bellamy’s attempts at parenting) are too spoiler-y.
Madi was in it a bit, though not as much as I anticipated, likely for spoiler reasons as well. It sounds like Madi goes missing, perhaps due to the commanders in her head or the one she sees that scares her, and Clarke goes after her. What we did catch a glimpse of was fascinating. Madi was strapped in a chair undergoing what looked like a medical procedure at one point. Was this inside their ship, or are the people of Sanctum going the Mount Weather route? Perhaps they aren’t the only people on this planet (which really does need a name.)
Is Octavia allowed to go to the ground, or is she perhaps only brought down for fighting outside the dome? I want to read into who we got to see only on the ship versus who we saw in Sanctum, but I might just be too excited for my own good. And of course it’s still far too little information about Diyoza and the rest of her crew. Aside from when she was woken up, I caught a very quick glimpse of what looked like Diyoza with a gun around the 3 minutes mark, but it was hard to glean anything from that.
I can’t wait to figure out what this season’s central question and/or inevitable disaster is, although I kind of love that they haven’t given it to us yet. In some ways, Jason Rothenberg has been clear that it’s “can they be better people this time/will they inevitably ruin everything this time, too.” That said, I’m hoping for some refinement on that one since that seems like a Book II overarching question and not season-specific.
I leave you with these words from Sanctum’s charismatic leader:
“These people are dangerous. They will burn this world down. Just like their last one.”
The 100 Season 6 premieres on Tuesday, April 30 at 9 p.m. ET on The CW. Read more about Season 6 here, and stay tuned for details from our set visit.