Wednesday, November 5, 2014

REVIEW: 'The 100' - Clarke Fights for Her Survival, Kane Punishes Abby & Finn and Bellamy Take a Prisoner in 'Reapercussions'

The CW's The 100 - Episode 2.03 "Reapercussions"

When Clarke discovers a horrifying project in Mount Weather's medical ward, she joins forces with an unlikely ally. After Abby confesses to committing a crime, Kane issues an order to have her brutally punished. Monty warns a distracted Jasper that Clarke could be in trouble. Octavia continues to fight for Lincoln.

For everyone on the show right now, living life is all about survival. There are the people who realize they can't be doing things the way they have been doing (Kane and Clarke) because that would mean more bloodshed. For others, like Octavia and Abby, survival is nothing if they can't be with the person they love the most in this world. It's this strong weightiness of survival as a community. Finn is fighting to find Clarke and vice versa. Everyone at the main camp wants answers to what is happening out there in the rest of the world and the kids. These characters are forced to make choices. By hour's end, they all seem to be heading in the same direction and the convergence of all of these plots could be very interesting and rewarding.

Clarke has peaked behind the curtain that is Mount Weather only to find this horrible experimentation and exploitation of the Grounders. The Mountain Men are siphoning Grounders blood in order to heal themselves. It's horrifying and the mere discovery of it dooms Clarke to the same fate. The rest of her people in this facility are willing to just buy into the atmosphere and luxuries Mount Weather provides. Monty is worried about Clarke but Jasper is off having a fun time with Maya without a big care in the world. But Clarke is fighting to escape this place and reunite with the rest of her people on the outside. That's what she is fighting for. She rescues Anya along the way because that is the decent thing to do. Anya and Clarke may not get along as two clashing civilizations. But they both need each other in order to survive and escape this hell. That leads them to an all-out fight for their lives against both the Mountain Men and the Reapers. They are trapped in a maze. It is terrifying. We don't know much about the Reapers but they are horrifying creatures. It should come as no surprise then that the Reapers and Mountain Men have some kind of understanding - they both provide bodies to each other. The only way out for Clarke and Anya is to jump over a waterfall. Fortunately, they both survive the fall. It's in that moment where they can start thinking about themselves again. They've made it back outside safely. It's time Anya thinks about her people and all the pain that Clarke has caused them. Clarke wants to be free to fight. And yet, she winds up as someone's prisoner yet again by episode's end.

Taking prisoners is a big plot point for "Reapercussions." Bellamy, Finn and Murphy take a Grounder prisoner as does Kane. Both vary widely on the type of information and idealism that comes forth. Finn's group is fighting to rescue their friends. They believe the Grounders have taken them and they aren't just going to sit by and wait for Kane to act. They know this terrain and the Grounders much better. They know the amount of urgency this situation demands. And yet, they are walking without a map out there in the world. They believe Murphy can lead them back to the Grounders' camp. And then, they happen on a Grounder who also happens to have Clarke's beloved watch. That turns a switch in Finn. He is desperately searching for his friends but even more desperately trying to find Clarke. He's taking a severe turn to the darkness. He threatens to kill the Grounder with a gun if he doesn't provide them with the information they want and then he ultimately does kill him so he won't become a liability later. Bellamy is the advocate for not executing him. Finn does so anyway. That is a big role reversal. And one that makes Finn a vastly more interesting character.

Meanwhile, Kane is at a loss as to how to lead his people. He is still gathering intel. And yet, things happen quickly in this world. He's trying to protect his people as one large group and yet that herd can easily go out of control. When the Grounder prisoner shows up, the crowd can't be contained and a man dies. Everyone in this small society wants answers and Kane needs everyone to get into line so he can start providing them to his people. It's a tricky slope to walk as Chancellor. He's trying to protect his people by continuing the practices that his society has been implementing over the years. But to live on the ground, they need to survive. In order to do that, they need to do things differently. He punishes Abby for helping Finn and Bellamy escape with several lashes. That is painful to watch but an even more painful decision for him to act out. He needs to know that there is another way of ruling. So now, he's off to visit the Grounders to try and establish peace. That's a lofty expectation. And yet, it seems everyone is heading to the same location hopeful of finding something better even though this world gets darker and bleaker.

Some more thoughts:
  • "Reapercussions" was written by Aaron Ginsburg & Wade McIntyre and directed by Dean White.
  • Octavia actually works with Indra and the rest of the Grounders in order to rescue some of their people from the Reapers. The attack last week took Lincoln away from her. She is so hopeful that this time, the two of them will finally be together again. And then, he's not there and it is completely devastating. Indra lets her live. But for her, it's hard to imagine surviving without Lincoln.
  • And Lincoln, it turns out, has been taken to the Mountain Men. The doctor even labels him for a special separate project. That can't be good. 
  • Abby's line to Marcus about Jaha beating him to redemption is a tad ironic because of the audience's awareness that he is still alive and on the ground as well - even though he's not in this episode at all.
  • Now that Clarke has official escaped from Mount Weather, what will Maya be able to tell Jasper and Monty? And when will they really start to worry?