For all the problems that I have with The 100, I will say that they put on a good finale. “Praimfaya” was intense start to finish, with most of the episode focused on Raven and the others rushing to retrofit a two-person rocket for eight people so that they can escape the death wave.
Aside from a brief speech from Octavia at the beginning, “Praimfaya” was spent completely on the island. All of the events happened mostly in real time, which ratcheted up the tension levels. “Praimfaya” was probably the most stressful episode of The 100 that I have ever sat through. The 100 has never shied away from death, and I figured, what with the apocalypse and everything, that someone was likely to die. For a while, it seemed like it could be anybody, but eventually I decided that it would be Clarke, considering the flagrant foreshadowing. When they were forced to leave her behind or miss their launch window, I prepared myself for the worst. Imagine my surprise when we flash forward at the end of the episode and it turns out that her Nightblood worked.
I’m unsure how I feel about the flash forward. On the one hand, it seemed unlikely that The 100 would spend season 5 with everyone in a confined space, regardless of the excellent character-driven stories that could have come out of that situation. On the other, Clarke’s monologue at the end revealed that she hasn’t had any contact with Bellamy and the Ring or with her mother and the bunker, so we have to wait until next January to find out who else survived. But the question of who’s still alive is just one of many that we have to ponder in the wait for season 5. According to Executive Producer Jason Rothenberg, season 5 will be peppered with flashbacks showing us what happened in the missing six years and seven days.
(Please, no babies.)
Everyone put in a really stellar performance in “Praimfaya”, but Eliza Taylor and Bob Morley really knocked it out of the park. Clarke and Bellamy’s relationship has been a core of the show since the beginning — first as antagonists, then as reluctant allies, then as partners — and you could see what it was costing both of them to be put in this situation. I got season 1 vibes when Bellamy had to make the decision to leave Clarke behind, and I could definitely feel his despair when he thought she’d died before managing to get the power on. (“I left her behind, and we’re gonna die anyway.”) This was also the first real time that Clarke, who has always been forced to make the tough decisions, had to sacrifice herself.
The tease at the end of the episode had some hints of season 1 as well. At the beginning of season 1, one hundred prisoners from the Ark came down to the ground to see if it was inhabitable and found out they weren’t the only ones there. Now, with a prisoner transport from the Eligius Corporation — whatever the heck that is — coming to the ground in the season 4 finale, Clarke is the Grounder. The 100 has come full circle.
“Praimfaya” proved just how good The 100 can be when it wants to be. By choosing to focus the episode on the eight going into space rather than bouncing back and forth between the island and the bunker, the show was able to dial up the intensity and allow for some really great character moments. If you weren’t moved by Clarke’s breakdown at learning she wouldn’t be able to say goodbye to her mother, I don’t want to know you. Emori and Echo’s differing reactions at the prospect of going into space were nicely done. Plus, Monty and Murphy interacted for probably the first time since season 1, when Murphy was a little more murderous — as evidenced by Monty bringing up Murphy wanting to kill Jasper for why he doesn’t like him, which ignores all of the good things Murphy has done since then.
With the show seeming to come full circle, I hope that season 5 will return to what made the show so great in the first couple of seasons. “Praimfaya” makes me believe that they can. Don’t let me down.
What did you guys think of “Praimfaya”? What are your thoughts on season 4 of The 100? What are your theories for season 5?
Author: Jamie Sugah
Jamie has a BA in English with a focus in creative writing from The Ohio State University. She self-published her first novel, The Perils of Long Hair on a Windy Day, which is available through Amazon. She is currently an archivist and lives in New York City with her demon ninja vampire cat. She covers television, books, movies, anime, and conventions in the NYC area.
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