Horrified at what she has discovered, Clarke tries to free Anya, and is almost caught when the creepy doctor comes to get bags of Grounder blood. After she's left, Clarke has to persuade Anya to leave, since she wants to save the other Grounders. I can completely understand why - where is Clarke's conscience? Does she not feel bad leaving the other Grounders behind? It's hardly like she's only rescuing Anya because they're BFFs, their relationship hasn't been peaceful up to now.
Still, the two escape into what looks like a lift, only it turns out to be a rubbish shoot. When the trap door falls open beneath their feet the pair plunge down into what is basically a graveyard for the Grounders whose blood is no longer needed by the Mountain Men. Anya definitely doesn't want to leave now, but she and Clarke are forced into hiding when they hear reapers approaching in the tunnel.
This strikes me as weird. The reapers rock up, chuck a couple of bodies into a metal bin (where Clarke and Anya are inconveniently hiding) and then leave with the bin, wheeling it down a track that looks like a railway line. How is it that the reapers can just stroll in, pick up some bodies, and stroll back out again? It's like the Mountain Men know they exist, and are happy to have them acting as rubbish disposal men.
In the slightly more attractive setting inside Mount Weather, Jasper is flirting up a storm with Maya, who's taken him to see the vast number of paintings stored in one of the many rooms in the mountain. But his flirting is interrupted by Monty, who thankfully hasn't forgotten that Clarke exists, or that she saved their lives many times over. Monty wants to know if anyone has seen Clarke, and Jasper decides to get Maya to find out. I'm not sure I trust Maya, and I think Jasper is blinded by the fact that a pretty girl seems to like him.
Under the mountain, Anya kills a dying Grounder sharing the rubbish cart with her and Clarke, rather than let him live through the horror of being eaten alive by the reapers. This moment is a mirror of Clarke mercy killing Atom in season one, drawing even more parallels between the two women than the show has already established.
Parallels be darned, Anya doesn't want to go into partnership with Clarke, and heads of into the tunnels when Clarke's back is turned. Clarke soon finds herself in trouble, trapped by reapers. Just as it looks like it can't get any worse, a few Mountain Men turn up in their space suits, with some kind of weapon that causes the reapers to shy away. This is huge - the fact that the Mountain Men know how to control the reapers is of course evidence that they've encountered each other many, many times before.
Maya comes back to Monty and Jasper with information - Clarke is on the psych ward. Jasper swallows this easily, but I'm hoping Monty will remain suspicious. As for Maya, does she know she's lying? I feel like she does.
Clarke isn't, of course, on the psych ward, but she is being being taken by the Mountain Men to the harvest chamber. Harvest chamber. What a terrifying phrase. Luckily, Anya comes to the rescue, and the two escape, finding an exit. Only problem is, the exit leads to a waterfall. Anya jumps quickly, but Clarke looks like she might be hesitating. It's a bluff of course, and she jumps as well...
And is once again rescued by Anya, who drags her out of the water and onto the shore. And then proceeds to bash her head with a rock and take her prisoner.
Back in the mountain, the reapers have brought a series of Grounders to be examined by the creepy doctor woman (of course they're working together), who begins classifying them. Most get sent for harvest, but she picks one for the Cerberus programme. IT'S LINCOLN. AND WHAT IS THE CERBERUS PROGRAMME?
In the woods
This season The 100 is placing its characters in not just new situations, but also new partnerships, which I think really comes out this episode. In the woods, Finn and Bellamy are being forced to work together, pretty much for the first time, without any intervention from Clarke or Raven, or even Octavia. It's tension filled - they're both on the same side, but they haven't found a rhythm.
Also not finding a rhythm are Indra and Octavia, who I thought for sure would pair up to find Lincoln, Nyco and the other members of their clan captured by the reapers. Instead, Indra is taking a crew out on a rescue job, and when she spots Octavia, orders her men to kill the teenager.
Finn and Bellamy's gang are led to a Grounder camp by Murphy, and capture a Grounder who is wearing Clarke's watch around his neck. They take him to the bunker where the gang found their guns. Are they going to torture him? You think these guys would have learned their lesson by now.
And it seems that Bellamy has learnt something. He wants information from the Grounder, but he doesn't want to torture him. Finn however, has no such qualms. It's like he and Bellamy have swapped personalities or something. The Grounder gives up the information Finn wants, but then there's the problem of what to do with the Grounder while the gang go and search for Clarke and co.
Bellamy wants to leave him tied up, but Murphy argues that he could escape, so they're best getting rid. While the two argue, Finn makes a decision - and SHOOTS THE GROUNDER DEAD. Woah. Finn has properly gone over to the dark side. I think Bellamy has realised how dark his soul got after engaging in torture in season one, but Finn doesn't have that experience. He's bent on rescuing the other members of The 100, and willing to do whatever it takes. Very, very dangerous behaviour.
In the other uneasy alliance, Octavia's following Indra finally comes to fruition, when the latter decides Octavia will make good bait for the reapers. So Octavia steps up to the plate, and then proceeds to kill a bunch of reapers when they approach. She and Indra fight alongside each other, and succeed in rescuing Indra's people, only Lincoln isn't with them, leaving Octavia heartbroken.
In Camp Jaha, Kane is cross. Really cross. He's annoyed that Abby not only let Bellamy, Finn et all go, but also armed them. He asks: "Are we back to this?" Kane is referring to Abby's rebellion, but he could just as easily be referring to the fact that he seems to have rewound back to early season one Kane - dour, kind of evil, and just not nice.
He's egged on by the blond security/police woman, who's like Diana-lite. Whatever her name is, she wants to see Abby punished, telling Kane that the people need to be brought into line, and that to keep calm in the camp requires people to be shown to be punished if they're doing wrong. Her point is hammered home when guards bring a captured Grounder back to camp, and everyone goes a bit nuts, wanting to attack the Grounder for taking away their children (even though it's more Kane's fault that the kids were ever out in danger).
So Kane has Abby brought outside, in front of everyone else in Camp Jaha, and has blonde woman 'whip' her with the Ark's version of a whip, which seems to work on electrical current. I'm so annoyed - Kane was making such progress, and now he's back to being so insecure that he needs to use punishment to control his people. Abby takes the punishment with her head held high, showing why she is so respected, and placing Kane firmly in the villain camp (alongside the guard woman).
Because Kane's awful, he goes to see Abby after he's had her tortured. And then twists everything round - he actually wants her to be Chancellor while he heads out with the Grounder and a few guards, not to attack the other Grounders but to sign a peace treaty with them. What has happened to Kane? Has he had a personality transplant suddenly? Whatever it is, he stays true to his word, and heads out of camp, with one last, lingering look at Abby.
This was a very twisty, turny episode of The 100 and at times it felt like there was way too much going on. For me, it felt like an episode that's main purpose was to set up for future episodes. After all, much of the time was spent manouevering people into place - Clarke and Anya are now together, Octavia has proved herself to Indra, Kane is ready to approach the Grounders, and Finn, Bellamy and co are one step closer to finding the other members of The 100.
There was also a lot of exposition, mainly about the Mountain Men, which was useful, but also felt quite rushed. Their connection with the reapers was too quickly explained (although not actually explained, just shown so the audience could make up their own mind). And the backwards and forwards with Kane also felt rushed, especially considering how carefully and well the writers handled his transition from semi-villain to hero in the first series. In this episode he did that same transition, in the course of 40 or so minutes.
But I did think there were good points. There's a lot to chew on, and once again The 100 is exploring dark issues - we had two lots of torture/punishment pitched against each other, raising the question of whether it's okay to punish someone with violence if the law says it is, or whether that's still as much torture as what Finn did to the Grounder. And what's happening at Mount Weather is just super disturbing, and raises questions of just how civilised a society can be if it's built on a foundation of torture and deals with very very bad people.
Still, I look forward to The 100 getting back to normal next week, still action packed but handling everything with a bit more care. And can we have Raven back please? Her absence was definitely felt.