Season four of The 100 premiered on February 1st, and the first two episodes have landed Skaikru in a few more pickles than where we left off. For those who don’t remember, season three ended not only with the defeat of ALIE, but with the realization that there is a second apocalypse imminent. A handful of nuclear reactors that were once built to withstand the end of the world (that’s handy, right?) are now breaking down. Their collapse will release radiation similar to what destroyed civilization 97 years before. Season three body count: 2+
In the aftermath of ALIE’s destruction, Skaikru and Trikru alike are trying pick themselves up and put themselves back together. But in the midst of collecting the bodies of the dead and the healing wounds of the living, Azgeda takes control of the city. Trikru and Azgeda both blame Skaikru for bringing the City of Light to them (thanks, Jaha) and surprise surprise, Skaikru is still the most hated clan in the coalition. Echo (remember her? The Azgeda spy whom Bellamy trusted?) reveals that Prince Roan isn’t dead after all, but that until he is healed she is in charge. She issues an order that no Sky Person is allowed to leave the city.
Clarke, Bellamy, Abby, Kane, Indra, and Octavia (“but didn’t she say she was leaving?”) know that if Roan dies, they will have no chance of survival—but Echo won’t let Clarke or Abby near him, insisting that they have their own healer. The Sky People devise a plan to break into the room where Roan is being kept, and Abby is able to remove the bullet in his chest. He awakens, and at first refuses to acknowledge that he and Clarke had formed an alliance. He knows that he has no claim to rule either Azgeda or the coalition. Even though his mother was queen, he spent so much time away from Ice Nation that the people don’t accept him. He also isn’t a Nightblood and can’t take the flame in order to be Commander. He explains to Clarke that protecting Skaikru would only threaten his rule further. Desperate, she tells him about the impending disaster and offers him the flame in exchange for his promise that Skaikru will continue as the 13th clan.
Roan accepts Clarke’s proposal and allows Kane to return to his role as an ambassador. Meanwhile, Kane, Indra, and Octavia uncover the plot of another ambassador who plans to challenge Roan to combat. Knowing that Roan isn’t strong enough to win a fight yet, Octavia assassinates the ambassador. A young man named Ilian, who was forced by ALIE to murder his family, was going to be the ambassador’s “witness” as to why Skaikru was a threat; he immediately guesses that Octavia murdered the ambassador and asks her how long it will be until she comes for him. Due to his vendetta against Skaikru, I doubt it will be the last we see of Ilian.
Arkadia and beyond
Suddenly tasked with ensuring everyone’s survival, Clarke and Bellamy return to Arkadia to meet up with Raven, Monty, Jasper, Harper, and the other Sky People. For the general public, life seems to be returning to normal—for our delinquents, it’s not quite so easy. While Clarke tries to figure out how to save everyone, Monty comes up with a solution that would ensure the survival of Skaikru, if no one else. They decide to patch up the remains of the Ark, which was built to endure the hardship and radiation of space, and which would protect them from their new threat. The catch, however, is that there is no way to store or produce water, as the hydrogenerator was lost with Farm Station.
Bellamy leads a group of guards to see if the hydrogenerator can be found in the remains of Farm Station, but they are apprehended by a group of grounders who have taken over the hunk of metal that fell from the sky. Their leader allows them to look for the generator, but they aren’t given permission to take anything else. To their dismay, the guards realize that the grounders are keeping slaves, some of whom are Sky People long thought dead. To save their people, the guards blow up the generator and kill the grounders. Bellamy takes full responsibility for the decision, frustrating Raven and Clarke. Clarke tells the truth to the rest of the Sky People, in the hopes that if they work together, they’ll be able to find a solution.
A Look Forward
What does this mean for the future of Skaikru and all the other clans left on Earth? The theme of the entire show has always been survival in the present. On the Ark in space, each day was lived with the sole purpose of moving on to the next—the preservation of the species with the intent of having a population that could someday return to earth. Once the 100 were sent down, it was again a daily struggle to stay alive. But now, established as the 13th clan, and with the threat of a second wave of radiation that could eradicate humankind for good, the Sky People must think about surviving (and thriving) in the future. Did they return to earth only to die?
This brings up other themes that have been explored in the past, but which almost have different implications now. What is it to live when you know your days are numbered (*cough*Jasper*cough*)? How do you collaborate with your enemy when you both need to survive (*cough*Octavia*cough*)? Who gets to choose who lives and who dies (*cough*ClarkeBellamyJahaLiterallyEveryone*cough*)?
May we meet again,
The Collected Mutineer
P.S. Let me know your thoughts on Twitter @ImpalaMutineers.