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The 100: “Inclement Weather”

The 100‘s premiere, as good as it was, was unfortunately short on emotional moments. Its followup “Inclement Weather” makes up for this extremely well, loading the episode with the moments we didn’t get there. From Raven’s life-threatening surgery, to Octavia’s play to get a captured Lincoln returned to her and particularly Jaha and the phantom baby up in space, it’s a fantastic episode that combines all the best elements of the show. 

First, Raven’s wandering bullet is still causing her pain and will likely cause paralysis as well if it’s not removed. So Abby suggest a surgery (minus anesthesia and appropriate equipment) that could very well kill Raven. It’s her only option at survival on the ground, since the thought of surviving in the harsh environment of the ground without the use of her legs is just as terrifying as death. Finn isn’t as weak a link as usual in this episode, sitting at Raven’s side while she recovers. Though their relationship is fraught with drama, their history still remains, and their mutual affection shows even with their more recent issues. Raven confessing to her fear and Finn holding her hand through the surgery is easily one of the most affecting moments the show’s churned out yet.

Raven’s survival leads Kane to comment on her bravery, and all of their bravery really. It could potentially also be described as stupidity, perhaps based on their lack of experience, but it’s in stark contrast to what’s coming from Kane and co. Kane’s never been leadership material, a fact he (and the show) knows. They’re slow to move to find the kids, having so little knowledge about the Grounders to draw upon, and what Kane sees of them doesn’t make him eager to take them on. Stumbling upon three of their soldiers pinned to trees by spears and arrows clearly throws everyone for a loop and makes Kane hesitate. But Bellamy, Finn and Murphy (along for the ride) set out to find the missing 48 with Abby’s blessing (and that of Miller’s dad!).

It’s both better and worse that the kids haven’t been snatched by Grounders. The Grounders are certainly brutal, and their tactics are known so it’s nice that the 100 aren’t being treated badly especially if Kane’s dragging his feet with going to look for them. But them being at Mount Weather is much worse, due to their shady intentions and the fact that no one else even knows these people exist much less that they’ve grabbed the others. While everyone’s attention is on the Grounders, it’s Mount Weather they should all be worried about, but it’s likely they’ll learn this sooner rather than later.

Octavia’s the one wading deeper and deeper into Grounder territory. When Lincoln is captured, she takes drastic measures to get him back. After being cured of her poisoning by Lincoln’s friend and fellow healer Michael (Ty Olsson), Octavia takes him hostage and threatens to kill him unless she gets Lincoln back. Though everyone’s been changed by their time on the ground, Octavia’s probably had the biggest transformation. It takes no time for her to decide what she’s going to do, and there’s no hesitation afterward. Though Michael seems to doubt her resolve to kill him if Lincoln isn’t brought back, that doesn’t come across on Octavia’s end. She probably would have killed him if Lincoln wasn’t brought back and she’s even angry when Lincoln’s returned to her hurt. She worries them enough that Lincoln is brought back, and her victory turns into a loss when the Reapers attack.

Clarke’s problems at Mount Weather are a little less violent, though not by much. She makes no secret of her suspicions, but the President smooths them over by showing her that the soldier shot and killed wasn’t shot by a gun but by an arrow (though he was definitely shot by a gun). This lie serves its purpose and makes Clarke look less than trustworthy in front of her friends, all satisfied with their current place at Mount Weather. Jasper blaming her for jeopardizing their stay there makes Clarke doubt herself even more. She’s always fought for the protection and safety of the others and hearing that she’s a direct threat to that is a harsh blow. It’s almost enough to make Clarke change her tune until she spots a soldier, last seen with massive burns from radiation, rapidly healing and wandering the compound.

Of course Clarke’s going to discover something shocking and damning when she explores the compound further, slicing open her stitches to get a free pass into medical. Even knowing she’s going to find something that proves that Mount Weather is not on the up and up is suspenseful because of Clarke’s powerless position there. She is a prisoner, and her only allies are reluctant to believe her. Even when she stumbles upon the captive Grounders, some suspended from the ceiling and having their blood pumped to Mount Weather’s sick and others trapped in cages, Clarke’s perhaps in an even more vulnerable position than before. Now she knows one of Mount Weather’s secrets, and what are they going to do to keep it?

Anya’s reappearance opens up another can of worms that I’m eager to see the show dive into. Clarke and Anya toyed with the possibility of a partnership when they met for that failed peace talk, and now that they’re both trapped in Mount Weather there’s even bigger reason for them to become allies. They aren’t the only ones in this awkward position either. With Lincoln and Michael dragged off by Reapers, Octavia’s likely going to team up with the remainder of Lincoln’s clan to save him. And to find out what happened to 48, Bellamy and Finn enlist Murphy. None of these partnerships are going to be smooth ones, but they are necessary ones.  The enemy of their enemies are their friends, right?

Aboard the Ark, Jaha goes on a hunt for that crying baby. It was always unlikely that this baby was a real one (because who would just leave their baby locked in a drawer on the Ark?), but it served its purpose in renewing Jaha’s drive to get to the ground. It gets him into the spacesuit to make a walk to the missile that will get him to earth, which he wasn’t ready to do until he found another helpless innocent who deserved to live. That this baby is a stand-in for Wells is obvious, with its carrying of that chess piece, even before the baby disappears to be replaced by Eli Goree, reprising his role as the gone-too-soon Wells.

The first season certainly deprived us of father-son scenes between the two, and the one we get now makes me even angrier that we missed out on all this greatness earlier. Wells it there to push Jaha to survive when he’s lost all will to do so. After everything that’s happened in the past season, naturally Jaha is just exhausted, but there’s still something for him to do. Though Kane’s doing his best on Earth (Kane’s “best” isn’t actually best, you know), Jaha’s the one who should be in charge down there. There’s still a lot of great stuff that he can get his people through. Jaha getting in that missile and landing on Earth is a great moment, though like every victory on this show (like Raven living through her surgery but still having no sensation in her left leg, Octavia losing Lincoln just after getting him back) it’s bittersweet. Who knows where he’s landed or what’s waiting for him there?

Stray Observations

  • I’m really digging the opening credit sequence.
  • Where is Monty?
  • Is everyone from Battlestar Galactica  going to show up on this show? I hope so. This week it’s Rekha Sharma as a doctor in the compound.
  • It seems that the Grounders’ blood is used to heal Mount Weather’s sick because their blood has better properties, including an immunity to radiation. But that makes their continuous cries of “quarantine” all the more confusing if they’re intentionally exposing their people to the blood of outsiders. Even if we ignore the moral question of what the doctors at Mount Weather are up to, capturing Grounders and squeezing them dry of their blood, what does this mean for the 100 who are there? Their blood, too has certain attributes that would make it beneficial so who’s to say they wouldn’t start using theirs as well?

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