In the eleventh episode of the third season of The 100, nevermore! I get it, it’s clever, and EVERYTHING HURTS. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch The 100.
Trigger Warning: For consent, blood, body horror.
There’s a lot in “Nevermore” that I like, and its composition hits on a trope that generally entertains: stick a ton of people who have mountains of problems with one another into a room and a situation that forces them to work out those problems. WELCOME TO THIS EPISODE, which focuses solely on the 100’s need to exorcise Alie’s chip from Raven. This focus gives us an episode that is relentlessly intense, and I really do think that, aside from a couple issues, it’s one of the strongest episodes of the season.
Part of that comes from the reunion of the core characters AND the addition of Sinclair, which excites me because he might finally get his own story, too. YES. THANK YOU. It’s a brilliant callback to the first season, sure, but it also serves to address a number of plots that have been left hanging. While In Niylah’s home/shop, they can’t ignore the forty million elephants in the room. And, of course, Alie is there, too, using Raven to push everyone as far as they can in order to make them break.
It’s a messy episode in terms of emotions, but I felt like a number of issues were addressed in the process. LET’S DISCUSS.
I appreciated that the show didn’t put these characters into that room and then make them invincible caricatures. When Raven taunts Clarke, it’s a deliberate attempt to bring out her guilt and shame over… well, a lot of things. But what I was most invested in with Clarke was whether or not she would resolve her conflict with Jasper. Would she apologize to him for Maya’s death? And would that matter to him? Because ultimately, Jasper has every reason to hate Clarke, even if she didn’t have much of a choice last season. He is the one who needs to decide that he can forgive Clarke or move beyond what he’s feeling, you know? That’s not Clarke’s choice. (For once!)
I think the events in “Nevermore,” then, are a start. She actually says outright that she is sorry, and Jasper gets a chance to appreciate the challenge that comes from making a potentially life-altering decision. (He doesn’t destroy ALIE 2.0 after Clarke says it contains Lexa.) Does that mean everything is all tidy and neat now? No. And that’s a lot more realistic than anything that wrapped up this plot in just forty minutes. The same thing goes for Niylah; Clarke manipulated her, much like Clarke manipulates those around her to get what she needs. Niylah may never be seen again on this show, but Clarke can’t expect forgiveness from her either.
And if “Fallen” was the start of something new for Bellamy, then this episode is the next step on a long, long journey. It’s notable that Bellamy is practically the only character who does not have a dramatic reaction to the poison that Alie spews through Raven. My guess is that the show is having him do penance. Like the beating at the opening of “Fallen,” Bellamy is trying to learn how not to let his own ego get in the way of the healing process that must happen. He lets Alie berate him and insult him, and when Niylah realizes who he is, he doesn’t fight her either.
But does that fix everything? No, and I’m glad that Octavia called him out for that. OCTAVIA IS SO GREAT IN THAT SCENE, Y’ALL. Because that’s what he needs to know! Switching allegiances doesn’t absolve him of what he’s done, and this episode is one giant reminder of all the lives he’s ruined. They wouldn’t even have had a problem with Niylah if Bellamy and Pike’s army hadn’t slaughtered her father!
I dunno, I want to like Bellamy as much as I did last season, and Bob Morley is such a fantastic actor that I feel weird that his character has done such horrific things. The writers have a huge, ambitious task ahead of them, and I don’t know if they can pull it off.
For two and a half seasons, this show has made Monty a character who happens to other people. He might have an argument or two, he might push characters to where they need to be for the finale or some plot twist, but he has not had a story to himself this entire time. In “Nevermore,” the writers finally give him a conflict that has almost nothing to do with anyone else and –
They force him to murder his mother.
I kept trying to justify it. There’s a moment during his confrontation with Hannah outside the drop ship where I think the writers were trying to give us Monty’s frame of mind. He’s understandably hurt that his mother turned him in to Pike, that she can’t remember her husband’s favorite color, that she’s once again making a terrible decision for her son. In that, I could see a possible reason why Monty might have stopped being the reasonable, pragmatic character he usually is. He’s not very impulsive, is he? Yet he doesn’t even try to stop his mother from killing Octavia in any way except a gun, and it felt like such an obvious oversight.
But let’s just accept that he did it instead. Monty’s first plot that he must deal with by himself involves the death of the only other Asian character besides himself. His story is cruelty, too, given that he learns at the end of the episode that an EMP can kill any of Alie’s chips, meaning that he never needed to kill his mom. That’s… that’s just super fucking mean, isn’t it?
Look, I actually am very excited that the Alie plot has taken over the show because it’s such a creepy and thrilling thing. I just feel weird to see so many of the non-white characters suffering all the time. I am hoping that Alie’s admission that Raven is a threat means that Raven is the one who takes her down. Who else has a bigger need for revenge at this point than Raven? I WANT RAVEN TO DESTROY HER.
The video for “Nevermore” can be downloaded here for $0.99.
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