The 100: Rubicon
February 12, 2015 9:27 PM - Season 2, Episode 12 - Subscribe

Mt. Weather ratchets up the pressure on the 47 and on the alliance. Clarke and Lexa face a no-win scenario. Jasper gets desperate, and Bellamy uncovers some disturbing news.

Just four more instalments in this 16-episode season. And, in older news that I just now found out about, Alycia Debnam Carey (Lexa) has been cast in the Walking Dead spin-off, which doesn't bode well for her continuing presence on The 100.
posted by Banknote of the year (8 comments total)
 
Once again, Murphy -- of all people -- had my favourite lines of the week. I'd written him off as basically beyond redemption, and it's great to have been wrong about that.

Speaking of redemption: (Former) President Wallace is looking increasingly sympathetic, after the coup and his assist to the 47. I'm still feeling like his redemption is too little too late, after the first two-thirds of the season painted him and the rest of the Mountain Men as fully aware of and complicit in the atrocities committed against the Grounders. But I've misjudged these situations before (see previous item).

It'll be interesting to see what kind of redemption arc the show tries with the Mountain Men in season 3. They ought to have a lot of natural affinities with the Sky People -- both groups saw themselves as the last saviours of western civilization, for starters. And the Mountain Men have always been a bit of alternate-universe Sky People, facing awful moral choices to stay alive. But the Mountain Men's greatest sin is being driven by aspiration, not desperation, so they feel less There but for the grace of God go I and more goatee-wearing evil twin.

Finally, I've always thought that the Coventry Blitz dilemma is a bit of a cliche (not to mention apocryphal), so I was glad to see the show breeze past the question of do we stay or go, and on to the effects of the decision on Clarke.
posted by Banknote of the year at 9:50 PM on February 12, 2015 [2 favorites]


Go away Clarke's mother, official worst chancellor ever.

Also holy shit, those poor kids dying. All of them this episode, anywhere. And hooray for LincTavia, at least something not-terrible at the end out of such terror.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 10:50 PM on February 12, 2015 [1 favorite]


Go away Clarke's mother, official worst chancellor ever.

I somehow have a lot of sympathy for Abby, even though I agree she's been acting pretty awful all season. I liked watching her back in season 1 when she had enough agency to make her own plans and schemes (even if I didn't like what she did). Now that she's basically just a foil for Clarke, she's not working nearly as well as a character because she's not given the space to form any objections or alternatives beyond "I don't like this." But I still hope to get old Abby back, someday.
posted by Banknote of the year at 11:31 PM on February 12, 2015


Thanks for putting up the post!

Important question: does Harper make it out of this alive? I figured she was a goner when she disappeared, but then she was rescued and subsequently given not immediately selected for extraction, so she might make it.

More thoughts later.
posted by vibratory manner of working at 3:41 PM on February 13, 2015


Missile may I?

I pretty much enjoyed the episode overall, though it was slightly predictable on a couple occasions. For example, we knew that Cusick's character, or any character we actually have been following around would probably make it out of the village before the missile hit. The show has generally shown that when they're ready to kill off a somewhat major character, they make it count in a personal and up front manner. They don't kill them off screen with a massive explosion. The other matter being the mutant girl in the waste land. As much as I wanted her story to be true, I kinda figured that in the waste land it's pretty much do what ever you must to survive (as seen with Jaha's experience before). Beyond those two major points, it was good stuff.

I second the "wow!" straight up killing of the remaining 47 in the bone marrow extraction lab. Hard core, but they weren't afraid to kill off the kids in vicious grounder attacks, either. In a way, it kind of parallels the attacks, that both groups have individuals (at least) who have no problem killing the Ark kiddos. I have been waiting for the wicked doctor to get her karmic payback for being the prime instigator for the experimentation and killing of the kids, but I definitely did not expect it in this episode. I'll admit, I cheered when Jasper's bar popped through the closing elevator doors and he let her die from radiation exposure. Killed by the very thing she had forsaken her humanity to overcome. Poetic?

Clarke is slowly merging into something between a grounder and Ark person, with her close collaboration with Lexa. She has a bodyguard now, who incidentally resembles Lexa's old bodyguard quite closely. (What is it with these guys with black beards and shaved heads?) My prediction, as Blanknote pointed out, is that Lexa will die in the battle against the Mountain Men and Clarke will assume the leadership position. She will win the support of the grounders through victory.

The redemption of the Mountain Men will be definitely interesting...if they're left alive. I can see the Grounders pretty much rampaging through the facility killing everyone, even those littl' ole cute pre-school kids, based on their beliefs on revenge and justice for attacking/killing their own.

Speaking of redemption: (Former) President Wallace is looking increasingly sympathetic, after the coup and his assist to the 47. I'm still feeling like his redemption is too little too late, after the first two-thirds of the season painted him and the rest of the Mountain Men as fully aware of and complicit in the atrocities committed against the Grounders. But I've misjudged these situations before (see previous item).

Wallace is going to die, but he's going to die a "good" guy versus the creepy bad guy we first were introduced to earlier this season. His and the rest of the Mountain Men's guilt concerning the treatment of the Grounders really plays into our own subjectivity (which is also the writers'), because the good people of Mount Weather definitely view the Grounders as something of a lower race of humanity, the vermin that dwell on the surface like human cockroaches. It raises a crazy perspective that the Grounders' blood is essentially a life sustaining material, yet never have the Mountain Men considered President Wallace's plan for the 47, integration and resistance by genetics born of relationships. It speaks, in part, to the view they hold the Grounders in, that they are unfit for sexual reproduction - and perhaps, this is slightly supported by the occurrence of mutations, hence, the blood is good but the DNA is damaged...it isn't until we get the untainted DNA of the 47 that such a possibility becomes feasible (and it was working, to be honest, Jasper and Maaya sitting in a tree room full of antiques and priceless artifacts). But the 47 did dress like them, talk like them, and generally behave like them.

Jaha and Murphy. First, I'll be honest, I nearly laughed at the Middle Earth nature of the group, 12/13/14 or so people marching off on a quest through distant lands and bearded Jaha upfront with his Gandalf staff. Second, the City of Light, what is it? Is it a place with electricity, hence the "Light" element of its title? Like every fabled city, I have the instinct that its not going to be nearly as great as everyone believes and every bit terrible as one could fear. I recall Edgar Rice Burrough's Martian conspiracy where people are tricked via religion by the Therns into floating down a river, thinking it's the destination to paradise/afterlife and at the end, they end up either slaves or food on the table. I wonder if the City of Light isn't a false promise sold to catch the foolish and hopeful. Real trivia question: How many of the others still with Jaha and Murphy will actually make it?

By the way, Octavia is gradually growing into a pretty bad ass looking character. Before she had a bit of "I'm dressing up Grounder," but now, she's truly evolving into their culture. I like it. I also appreciated, if regret the silly addiction aspect of it, her telling Lincoln get over it or go crawl off and die somewhere.

The title of the episode, Rubicon, is most likely a reference to the Rubicon River and Julius Caesar's decision to cross it, thus entering Italy with his army without permission. It's symbolism of making a decision that cannot be taken back, and I think it's applicable to several people in this episode. First, Clarke. As Abby scolded her, the blood on her hands won't be washing off. She made a fateful decision not to warn anyone else at the gathering of leaders and for better or worse, this decision will control her future. Second, Jaha and Murphy and their decision to proceed North. If the city ain't there, they're going to die. Third, the Mountain Men made a fateful choice by killing the 47 and launching the missile. By killing off the respective leaders, they've probably pushed the Grounder Army into better cohesion and behind a unified leadership. Given Wallace's reaction, he may have also destroyed their best defense after the acid fog.

So it's a number of major choices. We're pushing toward our climax. Woot woot!
posted by Atreides at 8:02 PM on February 13, 2015 [4 favorites]


I'm enjoying this, but I hope they don't let Clarke off the hook for what she did too easily. Bellamy and Raven both know she rode out with news of the missile attack, and it's unlikely both characters will die any time soon. (Bellamy is in a very dangerous spot, but Raven isn't really on anybody's radar.)

Whatever they do to keep Clarke on top, it'll have to address that, because there's no way those characters will let her off the hook. (Bellamy should be especially super pissed, since Clarke both lied about Octavia's whereabouts *and* left her to die.)

That said, I've got high hopes for this show. I started watching it basically on a lark - "I am curious about this YA dystopia thing everybody's talking about," and the science is so dire I feel like patting someone on the head, but the character work on The 100 has been beautiful.
posted by mordax at 6:50 PM on February 14, 2015 [2 favorites]


Wallace is going to die, but he's going to die a "good" guy versus the creepy bad guy we first were introduced to earlier this season. His and the rest of the Mountain Men's guilt concerning the treatment of the Grounders really plays into our own subjectivity (which is also the writers')...

I completely agree about the subjectivity, and I'd really like for the show to examine that more deeply. The surviving Mountain Men would be a great catalyst for raising questions about, e.g., cultural superiority of the "civilized" Sky People and Mountain Men over the "uncivilized" Grounders. But that would mean letting the Mountain Men survive, and letting them (and the show) acknowledge their atrocities. And I get the sense that we're on course for either killing off most of the Mountain Men (like you mentioned), or reframing the abuse of the Grounders as the work of a few rogue actors.

the City of Light, what is it?

My guess is that it's somewhere appealing enough for a large segment of the Sky People (and maybe remaining Mountain Men) to want to decamp to. The (immediate) peril wouldn't be for the people who leave Camp Jaha, but for those left behind with a diminished population less capable of fending for themselves.
posted by Banknote of the year at 2:49 PM on February 16, 2015 [2 favorites]


At this point I figure everyone at Mount Weather is gonna die of radiation. Sucks to be a preschooler or Maya when that happens, but that seems to be where it's going (she says, not having watched past this point yet).

Abby needs to remember what Raven said about how Clarke hasn't been a kid since she got dropped to the ground. You can't just re-assert your adult/momma/"chancellor" authority at this point, those days are gone. A child is leading you all, by god.
posted by jenfullmoon at 9:01 PM on February 20, 2016 [1 favorite]


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