Tuesday, May 21, 2019

REVIEW: 'The 100' - The Naming Day Ceremony Reveals More About the Culture of Sanctum in 'The Face Behind the Glass'

The CW's The 100 - Episode 6.04 "The Face Behind the Glass"

Clarke embraces the traditions of Sanctum and tries to make amends for her past actions.

In 2018, there were 495 scripted shows airing amongst the linear channels and streaming services. The way people are consuming content now is so different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, there is less necessity to provide ample coverage of each specific episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site is making the move to shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of The CW's The 100

"The Face Behind the Glass" was written by Charmaine DeGrate and directed by Tim Scanlan

Four episodes into the new season, the show finally reveals its new premise. It's absolutely horrifying and signals some very compelling ways the show will evolve this year. The opening of this season was solid but familiar. It has embraced plot and character beats that have grown all too common over the years. The characters literally landed on a new planet and are now interacting with a new community. And yet, so much of the drama felt the same as when they were on Earth just fighting to survive. This show has told so many stories about the idea of survival and the various ways it has been used to justify some horrifying actions that the characters have taken. And now, the show presents a new community at the Sanctum. They are thriving and actually have a hierarchy. There is a respect for the culture here that absolutely presents as welcoming. This entire episode is a celebration. It's Naming Day and Delilah will officially be recognized as one of the Primes in this community. It's a big deal. She is equal parts excited and terrified of what this all means. And yet, this hour gains so much power out of the exact circumstances being a complete mystery to the audience and the characters from Earth. All of this presents as a community that is happy to be alive and celebrating. They have fantastic food, thriving sex lives and dance parties. All of this seems like the potential to unburden oneself from the horrifying actions of the past. Clarke and the others from Earth can absolutely relate to that impulse. Clarke wants to make amends. It stings when Raven rejects that apology because she has heard it one too many times in the past. She just sees Clarke as someone who continues to do horrible things but feigns remorse over all of those decisions. Clarke wants to unburden herself in this new world. She presents as the leader of the newcomers to Sanctum. Russel allowed them to stay because he learned that she was a nightblood. That shows that these communities share the same heritage. They both came from the same world. The Primes have built a system here that has actually survived for hundreds of years. That's something that no one was capable of doing on Earth. And so, it is inspiring. But now, the show highlights the horrors under the surface. The Primes are idolized as gods. Their word is law and these people are obsessed with the individuals with this royal blood. That's familiar territory as well because nightbloods have always had a significance on Earth. The grounders worshipped the commander and saw him or her as the leader they needed during their most trying times. At Sanctum though, nightbloods present as the opportunity to keep various individuals alive for hundreds of years. That's what Naming Day is all about. Jordan is so clueless and naive when he sends Delilah away for this ceremony. She returns as a completely different person. That's the first clue that not everything is okay in this community. And then, there is the later reveal that Clarke will be used as the new host body for Russel and Simone's daughter, Josephine. That presents as this terrifying image in which Clarke is incapable of moving. She has been paralyzed because someone was trying to save her from the reality of this world. Clarke and the other people from Earth still don't know what's going on here. But that is already carrying a ton of consequences for them. Now, Clarke could be gone for good. That seems unlikely. But it should also be very interesting to see how Josephine is integrated into this world as she has to live with the face of a woman her people have very conflicting feelings towards.