If you still haven’t seen The 100 midseason finale, please stop reading now and go watch it. Spoilers will be included in this review.
This episode deals completely with the repercussions of Finn’s (Thomas McDonell) massacre of an entire Grounder village. The situation is simple, the Sky People give over Finn to be executed by the Grounders (blood for blood) and the Grounders and Sky People will have a truce. Once they have their truce, they’ll band together and fight Mount Weather. Despite my complete frustration with how most of the characters have been acting, I still think what this episode did was very bold. In a Walking Dead type move, they flat out killed a main character who was also a major love interest of Clarke’s (Eliza Taylor).
As for who was killed, of course it was Finn. There was no other way for him to get redemption for the atrocities he committed. Apart from his actions, the character as a whole has always been very bland. He was introduced as the “peacemaker” or the one with the morals, but most of the time, those morals seemed very grey. He was a terrible romantic interest. For one, he didn’t really have chemistry with Clarke and we were subjected to watching their forced romance; and second, he cheated on his girlfriend after being away from her for about a week. Whatever it is that you may ship, I think most viewers did feel a stab of pain when he died, but they also let go a little sigh of relief that that was over with. It had to happen.
Before his death, we were given flashbacks of his time with Raven (Lindsey Morgan) back on the Ark and we learned the true meaning behind his nickname “Spacewalker.” After a little trip out of the Ark even though she wasn’t supposed to, Raven was the true Spacewalker. Finn never did it, but he did take the blame for it. Raven, at the time, was 18-years-old, which meant she could be tried as an adult and then ultimately floated or killed. Finn, who was 17, saved her life when he took her place, but he also sealed his fate and what happened when he got on the Ground. I can see why they included these scenes, to get the viewers somewhat emotionally invested in Finn again — the Finn he used to be, so when he did die, we’d be able to feel the brunt force of it. I think the flashbacks did work.
I’ve never been a fan of Finn romantically involved with anyone, but I really enjoyed seeing him with Raven as best friends and sort of family members. We can see why Raven feels so emotionally invested in him, because he saved her life. But that also brings me to the topic I really didn’t enjoy: the way his friends just blatantly ignored his actions and tried everything in their power for him to be excused of what he had done to those Grounders.
Since they got Finn back, we saw Bellamy (Bob Morley) and Raven be forgiving toward Finn, but Clarke be absolutely repulsed by him. She couldn’t even look at him. And then in this episode, she was totally willing to risk everyone else’s life to save Finn’s. Now I understand she cares about him deeply, but her forgiveness of him was too quick. I feel like we’re missing certain steps. Even the adults tried everything in their power to get the Grounders to stop asking for him. I mean, I guess I would understand if it was my friend going through this, but at the same time this isn’t the Finn he used to be.
My main issue with how the characters were treating all of this is in large part because of the way they were reacting to Grounder tactics. If we leave Finn aside for one moment, the characters were really fast in calling the Grounders “savage” (wow, Clarke) and thinking this whole execution process is “insane” (probably the stupidest thing Bellamy’s ever said). I may be pulling at straws here, but this is hinting at the idea of colonialism. The Sky People need to remember that the Grounders have been here a long time. Their culture is different than theirs. Their culture believes in the idea of blood for blood and an eye for an eye. I know you have different ideas of how this should all play out, like completely forgive Finn and let him roam free, but the Grounders don’t. Of course they’re angry 18 innocent men, women, and children were killed. When they talk to Lincoln (Ricky Whittle) about what will be done to Finn, he describes a very painful and prolonged death. I’m not surprised. “If death has no cost, life has no worth.” And it’s because of this new information that Clarke acts the way she does at the end of the episode.
Despite milking every last option of keeping Finn safe, including almost giving them Murphy instead of Finn (Raven, I usually love you, but this was also pretty stupid), Finn ultimately gives himself up to the Grounders. In one last effort to change things, Clarke heads over to the Grounders awaiting the execution of Finn and tells Lexa of how she too murdered Grounders and “He did it for me.” Lexa simply responds, “Then he dies for you.” There’s no other way. Before she headed over, Raven planted a knife under Clarke’s sleeve that she could use on Lexa if she refused to let Finn go. Instead of killing Lexa, Clarke kisses Finn, tells him she loves him too, and stabs him in the stomach. I was actually a lot more pleased with this outcome than if they were to torture him. This parallels the moment when Clarke, in season 1, had to mercy kill Atom in the woods. It’s a huge step for Clarke to have killed the boy she loves and I’m really excited to see how this changes her and her relationships with other characters, particularly Raven.
The acting on Eliza and Lindsey’s part completely sold this scene for me. Their reactions to the death and killing of Finn made me incredibly emotional, even though I was never a fan of Finn’s to begin with. I deeply felt for them. Despite continuously disregarding the fact that the Grounders’ culture is different and their ways of settling things are also different, I’m glad it ended in Finn’s death either way — and at Clarke’s hand, no less.