Whoa, guys. What a spectacularly staged, powerful ending to a fantastic episode. Raven limping away, her leg seemingly "cured" thanks to Jaha's chip, and encountering ALIE, was so intense.
The fallout from Pike's massacre of Indra's innocent army dominated The 100 Season 3 Episode 5, resulting in several powerhouse performances and incredibly moving scenes.
That Bellamy/Clarke confrontation was something else, wasn't it? Bravo to Bob Morley and Eliza Taylor!!
Also, a quick note: I am (unfortunately) aware of the leaked footage spoiling a certain development in a future episode but I am specifically not mentioning that here, in case others are purposely avoiding spoilers.
Clarke and Lexa (and later Octavia, separately) coming upon the field of slaughtered Grounders was just as intense and horrifying as the trailer indicated. The writers really went for that extra gut-punch by having Lexa and Clarke gleefully discuss how they'd won peace between their people by eliminating the Ice Queen.
That hard cut from the smiley "We achieved peace!" to blood-spattered and grim Bellamy was extra painful.
Before stuff got real, can we just take a moment to appreciate how adorable those smiles Clarke and Lexa exchanged were? Lexa smiles/noticeably betrays emotion so infrequently that it always feels like a huge deal and stands out when she does.
Hope you took a moment to savor those happy grins because there was nary a grin in sight for the remainder of "Hakeldama," and I don't expect there will be for a long while.
Poor Indra. She was (apparently) the sole survivor of the attack, thanks to Bellamy's interference. Her reaction when Lexa and Clarke found her was so sad. She immediately, instinctively reacted to move away with Clarke, just further demonstrating how all of this senseless violence can make former allies distrustful.
Obviously it made sense on a show-level to have it be Indra as the sole survivor, but it also made sense from a Bellamy-perspective to insist on sparing her – she is really the only Grounder (besides Lincoln) who Bellamy has interacted with regularly and who has not actively betrayed his people.
Also, he knew Indra being dead would crush his sister.
Clarke, being Clarke, did not wallow in the pain for long. She quickly jumped to action, convincing Lexa to allow her to contact Kane in an attempt to figure out what the hell happened and if it would be possible to fix this mess.
"Hakeldama" prominently featured a lot of this – Clarke convincing Lexa to listen to her, against Lexa's (better?) judgment. It was fascinating to see the episode progress and watch Lexa's resolve kind of deteriorate.
Lexa's first reaction (completely in character) was to gather her army and destroy Arkadia, preventing Clarke from leaving. Clarke agrees not to leave for Arkadia, but in place of that insists on meeting with Kane. She brushes past Lexa to beg Indra to radio Kane. Indra looked at Lexa for approval and Lexa gave a tiny nod.
OK, so that's one instance. Later, when Octavia arrives, Clarke flat out tells Lexa she's going to Arkadia to talk Bellamy down (so Bellamy can in turn talk Pike down). Lexa put up even less of a fight at that one.
By the end, when Clarke's attempt to talk Bellamy down failed, she goes with plan B: convince Lexa not to retaliate. It seemed there was no way Lexa would go along with it. But she did.
Indra: Commander, you can't seriously be considering this.
Lexa: I'm not considering it. I'm doing it.
Indra: Heda, please--
Lexa: Indra, our people act as if war is easier than peace. If that's so, should we not try and achieve the more difficult goal?
Indra: Polis will not support you. Titus--
Lexa: Titus is my subject. They're all my subjects! Do you say they will defy me? Will you defy me?
Indra: No, Heda, I will not.
Lexa: Then let it be known. Blood must not have blood.
This was a huge moment. Indra was horrified. Clarke was gratified. I, as a viewer, was just confused. Who is this Lexa I see before me? This is an altogether different Lexa than the one of The 100 Season 2, who insisted upon thinking logically and from a warrior's perspective.
It appears that as Clarke and Lexa grow closer on a personal level, the power gap between them is closing. Clarke is being more commanding. Lexa is accepting her commands, even when Indra is verbalizing that Lexa's choices are not typical Grounder Commander ones.
Now, I don't disagree with the fact that what Lexa said made complete logical sense. Brokering peace rather than continuing infinite retaliations is the smart move. But these are the Grounders we're talking about.
Indra's reaction said it all – she literally said it all, in plain English. Polis, Titus, Lexa's people, will not go for this. This will not seem like an appropriate course of action to them.
Of course, I could be totally wrong and everyone back at Polis might be like, "Sure thing, Heda, you know best after all!" But I sincerely doubt that. If Lexa sticks with this plan, I fear for both her reign as Commander and her actual life.
There is another option, of course: Lexa is playing Clarke, pretending to agree to a ceasefire until she can figure out a way to get a leg up on the Sky People. That would be more like the Lexa we know and love, but I can't imagine that she would do that and the Clexa relationship would survive it.
That would be a real shame, because Clarke deserves a modicum of happiness and she was clearly well on her way there with Lexa, based on that opening scene.
So it's kind of a lose-lose situation from where I'm sitting.
Let's back up a bit and talk about that incredible Bellarke scene.
It was so layered and nuanced that I could talk about it for hours. Most importantly, it allowed Bellamy a chance to vocalize his reasoning. Many (a majority) of fans felt as though Bellamy's turn to the dark side was rushed and out of character.
I agree completely that it was rushed, but this show has historically moved at breakneck speed – it is extremely plot heavy (a lot happens in a given season) and it has a limited episode order. But, as mentioned in my review of The 100 Season 3 Episode 4, I strongly believe that it's within character.
Bellamy pretty much verbalized every single one of my reasons for thinking that.
Bellamy: You left me. You left everyone.
Bellamy: Enough! Clarke, you are not in charge here. And that's a good thing because people die when you're in charge. You were willing to let a bomb drop on my sister. Then you made a deal with Lexa who left us in Mount Weather to die and forced us to kill everyone who helped us. People who trusted me!
So many important points established during this scene. This confrontation was a long time coming and it was done beautifully. I can't think of a single area for improvement in that scene.
Bellamy is resentful of Clarke for her choices that have repeatedly endangered their people (the missile at Tondc). He is resentful of her for putting him in situations where he needed to be the bad guy – where he chose to be the bad guy because he wanted to support her and because he cares for her (pulling the lever at Mount Weather).
Perhaps most importantly, he resents Clarke for abandoning him. Cue all the 'shipper feels.
Bellamy also claimed that Octavia, Kane, and Clarke convinced him that the Grounders could be trusted, against his better judgment. I don't buy that one. He trusted Echo totally of his own accord, back at Mount Weather (both times).
Clarke's reaction to Bellamy's rant was heartbreaking and also very telling. Clarke immediately teared up, and it seemed to occur to her that she'd hurt him very badly and that he was, in general, in tremendous emotional pain from everything that had happened in the past months.
Seeing Bellamy take her arm in comfort, seeing Clarke smile and think that she'd gotten through to him, only for Bellamy to turn on her and cuff her ("for her own good") was infuriating and gut-wrenching.
But predictable. If Bellamy had seen reason that easily, there'd be no show. No drama.
The other major development during "Hakeldama" was the arrival of Jaha, ALIE, and (briefly) Otan at Arkadia.
Jaha (at ALIE's disturbingly accurate urging) zeroed in on Raven, who was distraught over not being cleared for work and unable to cope with her clearly permanent disability. His emotional manipulation was awful to watch and made me despise Jaha, but Lindsey Morgan (Raven) played her part beautifully.
As upsetting as it is that his manipulation worked, fairly easily, and Raven ate the chip and became indoctrinated into the cult of ALIE, this is going to give her some amazing, meaty material to work with. And Raven will finally be a major part of a major storyline! For better or worse...
What's odd is that every adult present at Arkadia obviously believed that Jaha is just a nutbar. Further proving that Pike is an inept, useless leader, he agreed to let said nutbar "do his thing," so long as he didn't get in the way of Pike doing his thing (i.e., murder and colonization). This will definitely not come back to bite you, Pike. No, sir.
At this point, it seems rather clear that Pike and the brewing Grounder/Sky People war will be small potatoes. ALIE is capable of some terrifying things – apparent brainwashing, for one. Possibly removing souls and/or consciousness into a virtual realm, for another.
She is clearly going to be the "Big Bad" of the season. If the story goes in a predictable way, the Grounders and Sky People will eventually be forced to overcome their differences and band together as "Team Human," against ALIE.
Then again, this is The 100 – when did anything ever go as expected?
I certainly didn't expect the Grounders who picked up thieving Murphy to recognize the symbol on Jaha's chip as "the sacred symbol" and react almost fearfully. But I am incredibly intrigued and want to find out how ALIE and the Grounders overlap, ASAP. I knew this City of Light thing had potential.
- I'm glad that the show at least tried to address the lack of a warning to Indra that Pike had come into power – Octavia attempted to sneak out but was stopped by Pike's people. I still don't really understand why someone didn't go run and tell her before Kane delivered the vote to Pike, though? The only possible explanation is that they thought Pike wouldn't go through with something so horrific, but that's an unsatisfying answer.
- MILLER FOR CHANCELLOR. Thanks goodness he is only pretending to be a Pike devotee in order to help the burgeoning "rebellion" led by Abby and Kane.
- Where are Monty and Jasper? Are they still trying to gather up Finn's ashes out of the dirt?
- Murphy & Emori? I'm a fan. They are equals, and their flirty banter is an enjoyable break from the extreme seriousness of the rest of the story. They also have the greatest 'ship name – Memori. How can you not love that?! Naturally this means that Emori will die horribly by season's end, of course.
- Michael Beach (Pike) is doing a great job with his material. He is clearly a talented actor. That said, Pike is a poorly developed and uninteresting character. His platitude-filled speech near the beginning had me snoozing.
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Caralynn Lippo is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.