‘The 100’ 5.2 Recap and Review: Red Queen

The 100

Welcome to my first ever episode review of The 100! All right, now that I’ve gotten THAT out of the way …

Is it too early to say that this season is the best yet? Well, too late, I’ve already said it … and it’s damn true.

This episode had everything that is so good about The 100 (well, almost everything — no Bellarke reunion, boo!), even the death of a character whom I, for the most part — well, I shouldn’t say “hated” because that’s just rude — despised, since the start of the series. And yet, I didn’t find myself saying, “Good riddance.” Instead, I found myself mourning. But more into that later …

… Actually, you know what? Let’s actually get in to that first, before I get into the good stuff. I usually prefer “bad news” first, if you, personally, would even call it that.

Note: from here on, this article contains spoilers, so if you haven’t seen the episode, avert your eyes! But come back to read this, please?

It’s no secret that Thelonious Jaha (Isaiah Washington) is the one most controversial characters in the series. Even I, myself, was counting the days, if and when he would meet his demise. When it was announced that Washington would no longer be a series regular come season five, I was excited for his character to die. I expected him to die, as should any fan of The 100 — that’s just how it works on dystopian Earth. But the entire episode, I found myself crying and emotional. Yeah, what?

As it has been said in the series, “There are no good guys,” and I’m starting to think that they’re right. For each of the past five years to date, we’ve pointed fingers at Jaha, when in hindsight, other characters have committed similar acts, just in order for themselves and their people to survive. Unlike Michael Beach’s Pike (whom I hated — yes, hated), Jaha had heart — okay, not at first, maybe, but eventually. While he might not have had the best judgment, he just wanted to do right what he had done wrong, and that was to save all of his people, his Skaikru, first and foremost.

That, to me, was a perfect send-off to Jaha. He didn’t get what he wanted, but in the end, he saved his own people. Because of him and his help, Abby (Paige Turco), Kane (Henry Ian Cusick), Octavia (Marie Avgeropoulos), and the remaining Skaikru get to survive one more day — or six more years, even.

And speaking of Octavia: he and her have had so much history between them. As Sachin Sahel (who plays Jackson) had tweeted: “As Jaha falls the ground he imparts his knowledge to Octavia, who is just learning to stand.” I have waited for a scene such as that previously described — a scene that has been foreshadowed since Octavia’s birth — and it couldn’t have happened more perfectly. And yes, that was my segue into the good stuff.


Quoting myself in an article that I have written months back for Culturess, “Octavia Blake has “transformed from a carefree, naïve girl, to a hardened, self-reliant woman and warrior.” While this is still true, she is clearly now more than that: she is a commander, a leader, a royal, basically, and I have never been prouder.

“You are Wonkru or the enemy of Wonkru. Choose.” That scene gave me chills. In a good way.

And yes, I know, she has gone dark, but that only makes it more fun! Welcome to the New Age … of Blodreina. Bow down to our Queen.

(In a Wakandan accent) WONKRU FOREVER!

Before I go, just wanted to add more thoughts about the episode:

  • Right next to Bellarke, Kabby ranks as one of my highest ships of The 100. Kane and Abby’s vulnerability with each other makes their connection that much more powerful in a world that allows for no weakness, and that is exactly what we witnessed this week. Their love for each other has never waned despite myriad challenges, and we were treated to scenes that could have been pulled straight from a fan fiction. Of course, I loved it. And don’t worry, Abby; Clarke (Eliza Taylor) will get you guys out!
  • Mackson is the one ship that I never thought I would need. I enjoy Miller (Jarod Joseph) and Jackson, way more than I did Miller and Bryan (Jonathan Whitesell), probably due to the actors who play them and their real-life friendship, but that says a lot about their chemistry. Guys, they love each other! I’m still flailing.
  • Am I the only one who ships Octavia and Niylah (Jessica Harmon)? I mean, Octavia has a girlfriend in the book, Rebellion. They can translate that to screen, right? But when Niylah handed Octavia the book that Bellamy (Bob Morley) used to read to her, my thoughts went back to season three, when Gina (Leah Gibson) gave Bell a copy of The Iliad, in which his mother used to read to him. And then Gina died. In the flashforward, Niylah was nowhere to be seen. That better not be a parallel. SHE BETTER NOT BE DEAD.
  • I don’t know how to feel about Kara Cooper (Kyra Zagorsky) yet, even though she was badass in the ring, and ended up on Octavia’s court. Why are those from Farm Station such rebellious ones?!
  • Indra (Adina Porter) and Gaia (Tati Gabrielle), I love you.
  • Dear Isaiah, thank you for your complex portrayal of Jaha. I hope that he is reunited with Wells.
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