The 100, Season 2, Episode 13, “Resurrection”
Written by Bruce Miller
Directed by Dean White
Airs Wednesdays at 9pm (ET) on The CW
On this week’s The 100, Clarke, Lexa, and Lincoln track down a sniper, Abby attempts to rescue Kane, Jasper and Co. fight back against the Mountain Men, and Octavia temporarily leads the remaining Grounders.
“Resurrection” is a master class in handling the aftermath of an attack, as the episode never loses its intensity or urgency, even when pausing for heavy moments of character reflection or development. While The 100 could’ve taken a breather after last week’s emotional stunner, the show knows better–after all, as Bellamy says during the hour, “war is coming.” There’s no time for the characters to take a break and prepare.
The cold open sets the stage for the episode nicely, as Clarke witnesses the aftermath of the missile in an incredibly well-directed, and trippy, sequence, complete with slow-motion burning horses and a one-armed lady, among other traumatizing features. The mixture of slow motion with real time movement excellently puts the audience in Clarke’s shock-infused state of mind; plus, the girl’s loaded with guilt–“Resurrection” refuses to let us forget Clarke’s mental state, and this is, of course, a brilliant move that Eliza Taylor manages with ease. Seriously, Taylor is a marvel to watch, especially when she quietly allows Clarke’s grief and guilt to shine through her reactions to everything around her, including the people she encounters. Also, she gets to be her typical awesome self when she finally, in an attempt to assuage her crushing guilt, tracks down the sniper and takes him down. Again, kudos to Eliza Taylor. Every week, she impresses with her performance.
Like Clarke, Octavia and Jasper are also being forced into positions of leadership, and they’ve been proving that they wear the title well. Octavia is basically a Grounder now, and she’s celebrating this achievement by being as awesome as possible at all times. Even without Indra or Lincoln backing her, Octavia manages to convince the surviving Grounders to follow her lead, and this is no small feat, especially considering how they insult her, and the Sky People, at every available chance. Octavia handles the resistance with admirable grace and continues to prove why she is such a strong and respectable character. Jasper, too, is in the midst of intense character development–it’s hard not to simultaneously cheer and groan when he’s forced to kill a Mountain Man. The cost of survival is extremely high, as The 100 is fond of reminding the audience; the death of Jasper’s innocence, and the loss of his blood-free hands, is only one such cost. (Also, how painful was Jasper mentioning Finn to Bellamy? Like a punch to the gut–it always hurts when a character not in the know talks about a dead character. Ouch.)
Meanwhile, one of the best scenes of the episode involves Abby and Kane. With time to kill while they wait for rescue, Abby confesses the truth about Clarke to Kane, presumably, and understandably, because she couldn’t keep her horror and shock to herself. Kane, to his immense credit, understands immediately–after all, Clarke learned from him, and Jaha, and her mother. Clarke’s lived her entire life on the ark, so of course she learned leadership from the leaders of the ark. The pair’s subsequent guilt, and curiosity about their own right to live (“After all we’ve done, do we even deserve to survive?”) is yet another reiteration about the cost of survival; The 100 absolutely understands what survival is costing its characters, and it definitely knows them well enough to portray how each character is affected. The result is a tremendous achievement in character development for every member of the cast–no one really gets the shaft when it comes to quality story, especially in this episode, but also since the show’s pilot. And that’s a very rare thing.
While it’s almost impossible not to love the characters, especially considering how much the show itself loves its cast, it’s also impossible not to feel a slew of emotions as they struggle and fight and attempt to survive in a war-torn landscape. But, honestly, the war is secondary compared to the characters’ inner battles to retain their humanity and keep the cost of survival at a manageable level. By “Resurrection’s” end, Clarke is at the forefront of this extremely human struggle. Her success, as well as the success of her companions and allies, is driving this war, more so than the war itself, because The 100 understands that the characters, and their development, comes first.