Brutality reaches new heights in this week’s episode of The 100 as those in Mount Weather band together to fight off the Mountain Men, whilst those above deal with the fatal aftermath of last week’s missile attack. Season 2 has really been about pushing Clarke and the other characters to their limits when it comes to survival. How far will they go to protect those they love? And would they lose themselves if they did?
After making the tough decision to abandon the Grounder village, Clarke and Lexa set out to track down the sniper, who stays behind to finish off those who survived, picking them off one by one in a ruthless slaughter. Nice. We’ve come a long way from seeing the Grounders as the only savages. It’s clear from the sniper’s disregard for Grounders that nearly all of humankind can quickly become animals. It’s just a matter of what will push our limits.
Amongst the group of villagers are Lincoln, Octavia and Indra – who is injured early on – and the race is on to hunt down the sniper and save the remaining people. Octavia adapts to a new leadership role and urges the Grounders to tunnel their way out instead of placing all their bets on Lincoln, who also volunteers to track down and kill the sniper. Clarke and Lexa eventually cross paths with Lincoln just as they reach the sniper’s whereabouts, and there’s a great scene where Clarke is forced into another choice when the shooter has Lincoln at knifepoint.
Having witnessed Clarke’s development of late, I was sure she’d sacrifice Lincoln and kill the man who’d murdered an entire village. However, Clarke shoots both in order to end one; killing the sniper and leaving Lincoln with a non-fatal shoulder wound. The line “you are my people” served as a reminder that despite Clarke’s wavering morals, she’s still the same passionate and caring leader that she’s always been.
A couple of survivors from the explosion also face their own fates this week: Abby and Kane. While trapped under rubble, the two spend the time wallowing in self-righteousness and misery. Well, Abby mainly. Kane just sits there and tries not to die. I’ve always found Abby to be an interesting character; similarly to Clarke who always does best by her people, but lately the divide between mother and daughter is becoming more and more obvious.
Abby spends her time in brick limbo, grieving over Clarke’s knowledge of the missile attack. Never mind that her daughter had barely a minute to decide, Abby seems to question the lack of humanity within Clarke and surprisingly it’s Kane who offers a fair judgement. The dying ex-chancellor reminds Abby of the Ark’s ruthless survival rules, and points out just where Clarke learnt her brutality from: them. It’s definitely a ‘snap’ moment. Kane: 1, Abby: 0. However, I do understand Abby’s predicament. She’s a mother first and a leader next, and Clarke’s life will always be her priority. We witness this towards the end, after Abby and Kane have been dug out, when Abby reminds her daughter that they’re “the good guys”.
Unfortunately, it’s just not that simple anymore and morals are also threatened when Jasper and those fighting in Mount Weather are forced to turn to violent methods against their captors. Who can blame them, really? Jasper quickly becomes leader to the scared teens and orders them to weapon-up and fight back. Which they do. Most violently. After switching methods, new president Wallace takes Maya hostage and leaves Jasper and the teens with a choice: surrender or Maya loses oxygen and dies. Unwilling to surrender, the group – with the help of an undercover Bellamy – come up with a third option which involves fleeing through the tunnels and cooping up with some of the Mountain Men, who are also opposed to Wallace’s murderous plans.
It’s great to see that there are decent people inside the Mountain too, and hopefully the Grounders and the Sky People will stand a chance in the imminent war which seems right around the corner.