Tuesday, February 24, 2015

The 100, Season 2, Episode 13: Resurrection

After the missile strike of last episode, we have the horror and the fire of the aftermath. And it is very very horrific – I give The 100 max points for making the atrocity as atrocious as it is.

Lexa and Clarke escaped and Lexa leads Clarke into the woods so they’re not seen among the carnage. Others run around the wreckage trying to save whoever they can, including Abbie, Octavia and Lincoln. They find Indra but she’s badly injured – barely able to do anything except snarl angrily at Lincoln (are we surprised she finds the energy to be angry). She also manages to call Octavia to action and leadership before she passes out.

But the carnage isn’t over yet, the Spotter who guided the missile is still there and sniping at the survivors. Killing more and pinning the others down in cover. While they hide, Abbie hears Kane struggling under the rubble and tries to dig down to him.

He’s trapped and bleeding under rubble which she can’t move – but she refuses to leave him even when she hears other people crying in the rubble. At any suggestion it could be Clarke, she avoids the question not wanting to admit that Clarke knew how to get to safety. When Abbie succeeds and moving the rubble she realises it’s the only thing stopping Kane from bleeding out and has to pin him again – and again he tells her to find Clarke and Abbie tells him that Clarke is safe, and why she’s safe. More rubble falls – clearly excess drama has disturbed the weakened structure.

Now Abbie is buried as well as Kane and she has a big dramatic confession on how it’s all her fault because of what Clarke did. Dramatic confession and Abbie being all tearful about how could Clarke do something so evil. Kane hits back that she did grow up on the Arc where the government (i.e. him and Abbie) constantly did evil things because they felt they had no choice. Why wouldn’t Clarke do the same thing? Abbie realises the same when she considers her own crimes (including killing her husband for the greater good). Abbie wonders if they even deserve to survive after what they’ve done

No – and rocks fall and kill them both. Alas no. But it would have been nifty.

On the surface facing the sniper, Octavia creates a smoke screen of burning booze to lead her forces to where they can dig down to help anyone buried.

In the woods Clarke dramatically declares her intention to kill the sniper while Lexa remains cool and collected. As they walk Lexa tries to give another lesson – this time about being unemotional, recognising that both sides are ruthless in their quest to survive and getting all angry about it isn’t helpful. Also that revenge doesn’t help matters. Good advice but it makes Lexa seem like an emotionless robot, Spock is more warm and fuzzy than this woman. They run into Lincoln who is also hunting the sniper.

They find him and, with Clarke’s distraction, Lincoln attacks and wins, but the sniper has one of those annoying, noisy Reaper controlling buzzers. He holds Lincoln at knife point to try and make Clarke drop her gun. Lincoln tells her to shoot him anyway to save her people and she says “you are my people” and shoots Lincoln in the upper shoulder, killing the sniper behind him.

With the sniper dead, Octavia’s team can dig more easily- and are helped further when an aid team from Camp Jaha arrives lead by Sinclair, they saw the missile and realised help would be needed. They rescue Abbie and Kane, presumably muttering “all this work for these two?!”

Everyone reunites and Lexa and Clarke make a dramatic speech about vengeance. Abbie irritatedly interrupts to call everyone to work on the rescue of everyone still buried.

Indra wakes up, not dead, and praises Octavia. She also gets over her Reaper aversion of Lincoln. Abbie and Clarke have something close to a reconciliation and Clarke tells Abbie that since the sniper wasn’t wearing a hazmat suit, they have to hurry to save the 100 before they’re all killed for their bone marrow. Abbie also asks Clarke not to forget they’re the good guys – which Clarke dodges.

In Mount Weather, the captured 100 barricade the floor they’ve taken over. They destroy cameras and security measures while Monty works some technological shenanigans with the rest. As they prepare for the attack of the Mountain Men they realise some of them aren’t wearing Hazmat suits – the bone marrow treatment from their friend’s bodies has worked and made them immune to radiation.

They lay a perfect ambush and, in contrast to their previous ineptitude, brutally massacre the Mountain Men guards who die or are forced to retreat. But even as they run, they manage to drag one of the 100, Fox, with them. Enraged and grieving, Jasper kills one of the helpless, injured guards left behind.

She’s taken to wear the bodies of the other 100 the Mountain Men have killed are still lying – and Bellamy appears for a quick rescue, killing the guards holding her. Maya leads them somewhere safe – her home. Her father is home, unexpectedly and isn’t thrilled to be harbouring fugitives. Maya sticks to her principles and we learn that her mother died because she refused to take the treatment derived from Grounder blood, choosing to die rather than kill others to live. She was part of a movement – a movement her dad was also part of. He agrees to help.

Cage’s next tactic is to try and force the 100 to surrender by sending down Maya in a haz mat suit – with only 20 minutes of oxygen. They surrender or she suffocates or breathes the radiated air and dies. The threats are overheard by Bellamy on the radio who has already made a plan with Maya to get guns down to the 100.

At least sending her down lets her pass on the plan to Jasper and Monty so Monty can fix the trash chute they intend to use. Maya’s also clear - she doesn’t want them to surrender for her.

They open the chute with Bellamy’s help and get Maya down before she suffocates – at the bottom is her dad and a whole group of fellow Mountain Men who don’t approve of Cage’s killing and torturing of children. The 100 are split up among the people to help hide them all. Bellamy is staying as an undercover agent.

When Cage and his men break through the barricade, ready to kill the 100, they find the room empty. Everyone has escaped via the trash chute.

I’m really glad that Abbie and Kane are starting to claim responsibility for their own terrible government. Seeing Abbie sit in judgement of Clarke after being part of a government as brutal and uncompromising as the Arc’s was annoying. When faced with dire circumstances, too often difficult decisions are made and Clarke facing a desperate war and trying to win acceptance from the Grounders so they actually have a place to live is a leader faced with desperate choices as much or more than (and, sadly, this is not an unknown military tactic – few things enthuse a people for war like being the victim of atrocity).

We can argue that Clarke is, perhaps, putting more stock in the people held captive in Mount Weather than the other Sky People or Grounders… but why wouldn’t she? Ultimately, what does Clarke owe the Sky People who sent her to Earth like a miner sending a canary down a mine to see if it lives or dies? What does she owe the Grounders who repeatedly attacked her camp while they were still struggling to survive? Why shouldn’t her first priority be the remnants of The 100? Yes, even with Clarke’s dramatic “you are my people” line (and is that the Grounders or just Lincoln who is now an honoury 100 given the amount he’s fought for them?), it’s still clear she has priorities (beyond the fact Mount Weather is an ongoing threat) and why shouldn’t she?

I am glad to see the revolution or at least protectors within Mount Weather – I like the complexity it brings. It is easy to tell a story of good guys and bad guys, but The 100 has always avoided that. The Grounders were humanised, when Jaha’s government were making terrible decisions we always saw the appalling pressures that pushed them to it. Cage may be pretty damn close to evil, we can clearly see his motivations and he doesn’t represent a monolithic people; even if it means they can’t safely live on the ground, there people Mountain Men who refuse to tolerate the evil it would take. We have a lot of people – people making terrible decisions even wrong decisions, but ultimately people – no demons and monsters here. This is something that Abbie doesn’t understand (deciding their side are the good guys) and Lexa understands all too well (seeing the enemy as people trying to survive, the conflict is not personal) and Clarke is coming to learn from a different angle (she will protect her people – good and evil be damned).

Indra, oh Indra, most of the episode unconscious except when snarling at Lincoln or inspiring Octavia. I may start calling her Tropey – if she’s going to be the walking embodiment of tropes, we may as well label her as such. Though I am a little surprised she lived.