This THE 100 review contains spoilers
The 100 Season 7 Episode 4
“Hesperides” proves once again that Sky Ring is the best thing that ever happened to The 100’s storytelling. It continues the seventh and final season’s high bar of storytelling, even if a decision to go for a juicy, plot-twist ending completely trashes what little character development there was for Echo.
The opening act of the show is a lovely wordless version of a lifetime together in the space of just a few minutes. In a way, it’s a heartbreak that we don’t get to see Dev again, but that’s also the kind of story choice where I’m willing to have my heart broken.
For those obsessively tracking who is when and where vis a vis the Anomaly and Planet Beta, we now know what happened to Hope after Diyoza and Octavia were taken presumably to Bardo) and how she got of Planet Beta/Sky Ring, but not where she went and what happened next. Let the mysteries continue!
Speaking of mysteries, the two halves of our story, which in the old days would be something like Arkadia and Polis but are now on two straight up different moons that apparently we’re just calling planets now, are finally together ish, in the story sense of the word. Clarke and friends know about Bardo and the Disciples and they’re on their way…somewhere. Eventually. We’ve just spent how many episodes learning how precarious travel is between these worlds, and here go these lovable dopes with no clue what they’re doing!
While their odds feel a bit dire after everything we’ve seen so far, for the first time since perhaps the first season, I have that old feeling of genuinely not knowing how the Sky Teens are going to accomplish something, rather than wondering angstily who they will choose to kill or save and how. The former feels more fun and like it opens up more of a road back toward a possible ending for the show where the teens aren’t just murdering everyone they meet – but maybe that’s just wishful thinking on my part, after watching Hope for two episodes.
Getting Raven in on the tech was a great idea and bringing the gang for a road trip feels fun, but inherently opens some questions about Sanctum. Are there enough characters back there for us to care? It makes sense for our favorite fake Primes to stay back and Indra is still there, but it’s a slim list of characters we know well and care about. Can we maintain three plots so disparate, four or five if we catch up with Bell and Octavia any time soon? This is also no time to leave a barely-supervised Sanctum. If Sheidheda isn’t in charge by the time they get back, he’s not worth the title Dark Commander.
And then there’s our friends over on Sky Ring. This episode does a great job believably creating a bond between Echo, Hope and Gabriel rather quickly, something that The 100 has had varying levels of success with during its varying time jumps. Of course, never content, the show immediately tests that by having Echo betray the only other person they know, who they just spent an hour making me love.
Echo’s take on why she had to kill the other guards and leave Orlando is that he would inevitably be loyal to his people, raising the issue again of who, exactly, Echo sees as her people. She’s always been loyal to her people – but the question is who she considers to be her people. Does she now see Gabriel and Hope as her people? By the 40- or 50-minute mark of the episode, I would have said yes. But seeing Echo betray Orlando naturally puts betraying Gabriel and Hope on the table as well. How can they trust them? Perhaps Hope is safest, as Octavia’s daughter, though she’s likely also the most pissed. More thoughts on Echo’s choice, as well as input from showrunner Jason Rothenberg, here.
Hope carried a sizeable burden throughout the entire episode. As soon as she realized she was back on Sky Ring without the key she needed to operate the Anomaly Stone, Hope seemed resigned to having to use another prisoner, speaking rather derisively about her past experience with Dev. But we know from what we saw during the opening act of the episode that as a child, Hope had no malice or foresight. She wasn’t using Dev, she was just a scared kid who came to be mentored, guided, and then loved by someone who clearly cared deeply for her.
The way Hope talks about what they must do to Orlando, it’s clear to see that she’s already hating herself for how she’s going to have to use Orlando. If nothing else, it’s clear that Diyoza got what she wanted, and she and Octavia did right by their baby girl: Hope isn’t a naturally calculated person. It pains her to use someone. Maybe I’m falling for what The 100 is selling just like Orlando fell for Echo, but with Echo, it feels like there might be a path forward for these people to finally find peace.
- With every passing episode, I get more excited for the eventual meeting between Hope and Madi. I hope it’s not too weird that Hope is somehow older even though she was born after!
- The “Sky Teens” are probably old now, right? Sky Quarter-Life Crisis? Sky-Twentysomethings?
- For those wondering why Orlando was so obsessed with Hope, he lived in the cabin ~100 years after her and her name was written on the walls where they marked her height, her dolls was there, and other remnants of her were there, so he sort of imprinted on the idea of her in his mania.
- Jordan really stepped it up! Good to know he’s still on the team.
- Seeing Octavia tell Hope about mythology like Bellamy did to her – once again, the Blakes kill me even without showing Bellamy on screen.
- Gaia and Clarke are truly the power moms we deserve. Love them and their understated queer power suits so much.
- So now that Clarke is using the Anomaly Stones, it doesn’t matter how close together you go in, or is this a stones vs. bridge situation? Helmets are optional? I need an owner’s manual. This is the best I’ve come up with so far.
- If anything happens to Gaia, we riot. (She may be a former flamekeeper, but she can still kick ass when needed!)
- I want to see some truly wild planets. What’s the strangest, least-Vancouver-y thing you can imagine them doing on a CW budget? Theories in the comments please!