Saturday, April 30, 2016

The 100, Season Three, Episode Thirteen: Join or Die

Kane and Pike are brought into Polis, walking through what looks like a river of blood.  On either side of them are people who are in the process of being crucified.  Of course, Pike has to snark about this being exactly what he expected.  It's not long before they discover that Jaha and ALIE beat them to Polis.  When Jaha and Pike finally meet, Pike realises that the can no longer just dismiss Jaha as "crazy".  This is yet another sign of just how incompetent Pike is as a leader.  He fixated on the Grounders, who at the time were not threat to him and just allowed Jaha to chip the people, paying no attention to the results. Both men are offered the key and both refuse.  Jaha says that there are part of the 3% who refuse.  Bags are put over Kane and Pike's head and they are taken away.  Abby offers to work on Kane personally because of their bond.

Kane is taken to what I think are the commanders rooms and Abby rushes in pretending not to be chipped asking about Clarke. Kane tries to reassure Abby but she keeps pushing for more information. They embrace and then Abby kisses him.  With ALIE spurring her on, Abby pushes Kane onto a bed.  This is enough for Kane to realise that he is not actually dealing with Abby and so he pushes her away.  ALIE is out of patience and decides that its time to get tough with Kane and so has him crucified.  Does there have to be a level of acceptance for the chip to work?  This bit of brutality couldn't be for the people because the chip means that they will always obey ALIE's orders and the others are imprisoned and cannot see it? Why not just hold Kane down and force the chip down his throat?

Because Pike wasn't an ally of Clarke's, he's practically getting VIP treatment in comparison to Kane but that does however mean that he is imprisoned with Indra, who firmly believes in the blood must have blood philosophy of life. Indra grabs a knife that she has hidden in the walls and tells Pike that she wants justice which means one cut for every person that he killed.  Pike rips up in his shirt and tells her to get started.  Murphy, also in the same holding area simply turns his back as Indra begins to cut.

It's time for a flashback to the ARK. Pike is called into a room with Abby, Kane and Jaha and told that he has to teach earth skills to the prisoners.  Pike is warned on pain of death that he cannot reveal to anyone what he is doing and he is only given two weeks to teach the kids enough skills to survive. Because they don't know how much they are going to need these skills, the kids hardly pay attention and Murphy is full of snark about the whole thing.

Jaha approaches Kane and gives him one last chance to take the key but Kane refuses.  ALIE comments that Kane is very strong.  Kane suggests that they should just kill him but Jaha conceeds that if he does that, then he won't get the answers he needs.  A gun his held to Abby's head and Kane is informed that if he doesn't take the key, that Abby will be killed.  Kane finally calls uncle and the key is placed in his mouth.  Again, wouldn't it have been easier to just force the key down his throat rather than have all of the his dramatic nonsense?

Pike figures out that the ARK is dying because it's the only explanation as to why he is sending kids rather than scientists to the ground.  Pike begs to go with the kids because they are not paying attention in the class or at the very least inform them what they are up against but Jaha is adamant that no one can know.  Jaha simply tells Pike to give the kids a reason to listen to him. Pike's way of dealing with frustration is violence.  Pike focuses in on Murphy bringing up the fact that his mother drank herself to death after his father was floated for stealing medicine for him to live.  When that doesn't get the rise that he wants out of Murphy, Pike strikes him repeatedly telling Murphy that no one is coming to save him, asking him what he is going to do. Because the beating is so savage, the kids start to work together to protect Murphy.  They manage to get Cain's attention and comes in with some enforcers.  Pike declares that the kids have graduated.  I guess the lesson was that the kids need to work together to survive but there had to be some other way to teach this.  Is Pike ever going to be anything other than one dimensional?

Back in the present, Indra is taking it to Pike and Murphy steps up to point out that the forces amassed against them are huge and that they need Pike because he is strong. Another Grounder steps in to agree with Murphy, who asks, "Do you want want your revenge, or do you want your people alive?" Indra answers, "both," and steps away from Pike. It's clear that she has to work with Pike for now but when this is over, Indra is going to get her pound of flesh one way or another.

Clarke and crew are following Lincoln's map to try and find Luna.  They reach the end of the map and are stymied because they don't see a village. Bellamy reaches out for Lincoln's book and Octavia snatches it back ordering him not to touch it.  Bellamy is hurt because he expected forgiveness from Octavia.  Does Bellamy realise that Lincoln's body isn't even cold yet?  Bellamy heads off to sulk.

Jasper throws some leaves into the fire and it glows green, causing Octavia to remember the leaf in Lincoln's journal.  She puts it together that they are supposed set a signal fire.  While Jasper and Octavia work on the signal fire, Clarke goes to see the sulking Bellamy, who is worried that Octavia will never forgive him. Bellamy then says that he had a hard time forgiving Clarke for leaving after Mount Weather.  To me this smacks of if you had stayed, I would never have been an ass and followed Pike. Clarke, full of patience, suggests that one day, they'll both get the forgiveness they need and they hug it out.

We get some navy seal like Grounders who creep out of the water and attack Clarke and Bellamy. They then drag Clarke and Bellamy over to Jasper and Octavia, who explain that they are there because of Lincoln and need safe passage.  The Grounders hand over a vial and Octavia takes it without question, saying that she trusts Lincoln.  Jasper takes his next and moments later they both collapse.  The Grounders explain to Clarke and Bellamy that this is their last chance to for free passage and they decide to take drink whatever is in a vial.

When Bellamy, Clarke, Jasper and Octavia awake, they find themselves inside a shipping container. Luna walks in and Clarke shows her the chip and asks her to take it.  Luna simply says no and walks out of the shipping container.  When the crew follow, they discover that they are on a oil rig in the middle of the ocean.

It probably would have helped if Clarke had bothered to tell Luna why they want her to take the chip. Luna made it clear that she didn't want to be commander when she had the chance.  Why would Luna say yes to something she had already rejected without a compelling reason?

We were meant to pay attention to the flashback scenes on the Ark.  I know this because The 100 did the dramatic music thing again.  I really didn't think that these scenes were at all necessary and just seemed to be filler for the episode.  They certainly didn't add any better characterisation to Pike.  We already knew that Pike's answer to every problem is violence.  It did however remind us how new the positive relationship between Kane and Abby really is.  I suppose this was a set up to explain why Kane took the chip only when threatened with Abby's death.

The bright moment of the episode for me was Murphy informing Pike that he learned everything he needed for survival on the ground.  It wasn't Pike's final lesson that kept Murphy alive but his pragmatism.  Murphy has always been able to read a situation to see which way the wind is blowing and react accordingly.

Can the male characters on this show have any kind of characterisation that doesn't come with manpain?  Bellamy is directly responsible for the deaths of hundreds of people and yet has the nerve to whine about Octavia forgiving him for Lincoln's death.  It all reads like he is more upset about Octavia not forgiving him than any real regret over what he has done.  Let's not forget, Bellamy is guilty of the culling on the Ark, Mount Weather and Lincoln yet he's only sad about Octavia. If The 100 is going to go down the redemption train for Bellamy, it has to be about so much more than Octavia for it work. Bellamy needs to have some real growth as a character.