TV Recaps

The 100 Recap: ‘Red Queen’

The 100 -- "Red Queen" -- Image Number: HUN502a_0224.jpg -- Pictured: Marie Avgeropoulos as Octavia -- Photo: Michael Courtney/The CW -- © 2018 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved.

Busy week, no excuse, but we’re keeping this short and sweet. Let’s just dive right into a brief recap 5×02, ‘Red Queen’ of The 100 and then check in with fan reactions (I love those videos) and how we did in ratings.

The 100 Recap – “Red Queen”
Air Date: May 1, 2018

Long Live the Queen
Octavia walked a fine line for most of this episode. She was getting pressure from both Kane and Indra to be the type of leader that they believed she should be: Kane wanting someone to act as a Chancellor and Indra wanting someone to act as a Commander.

Throughout Red Queen, you can see Octavia struggle to be what everyone wants her to be while still struggling to be more than just a warrior. After members of Skaikru staged a mutiny and shut themselves off from the rest of the bunker-and keeping the food supply for themselves-she was forced to make a decision in how she was going to act. She declared to the Grounders who were trying to break in to the cafeteria where the Skaikru members had sanctioned themselves off that yes, Skaikru was her people. But so were they. “You are with Wonkru or you are the enemy of Wonkru. Choose.” This was her repeated mantra as she fought her way through the angry crowd to the doors, growing more and more confident and fierce with each utterance of the phrase.

After several deaths-so many deaths- they bowed to her as their rightful leader, allowing her the chance to open the door via a dying Jaha. Rounding up the culprits who staged the seize, she placed all of them in a fighting arena and thus bloodreina was born. Wearing the armor of “the blood of her enemies” she threw her sword down in to the pit below and told them the rules. “Conclave rules. You win, you live.”

Jaha
I couldn’t think of a good enough title for this section because all the needs to be said is his name. Jaha is a very polarizing character. You hate him, or you love him, but regardless, by the end of this episode, you at least GOT him.

One thing that The 100 is excellent at is making you empathize with characters that you have otherwise written off, particularly right before their deaths. Jaha has taken on the role of uncle for the child Ethan who lost his father in Praimfaya. He proves his love for the child not by coddling him or shielding him (refusing to let Kane go without food just so Ethan could have more of their halved portions) but by trying to strengthen his resolve and get him adapted to their new way of life. Essentially, he was being a good parental figure. While reading The Giving Tree to Ethan that night, Grounders who were furious at Skaikrus mutiny, attacked, one stabbing Jaha in the stomach while Ethan hid with Niylah under the bed. Octavia was able to fend off the attackers, teaming up with Jaha to figure out the best way to get in to the cafeteria and to stop the takeover Skaikru had launched. Jaha helped Octavia to get to the electric center, saying he would surge the power so that the doors would release but only upon her word that she would only punish those who were guilty, not the ones who had no say in being trapped in the cafeteria.

“I’m a warrior. They won’t listen to me,” said Octavia.

“So make them listen. A warrior needs a war – on the Ark, we made death the enemy. Your mother broke the law, she brought us one step closer to death,” replied Jaha.

It’s always easy to cast Jaha in the role of villain but with that one sentence, you finally understood: it wasn’t personal and maybe it wasn’t fair, but they did what they had to do to survive. Finally, the audience understood…and so did Octavia. Giving her word and sniping at Jaha to not die before she could make them listen, she went off, doing what she swore she would. Upon rescuing Kane and Abby from their confines, she led them back to Jaha, hoping that they would be able to save him, but it was too late for him. Jaha pleaded with Kane to lead him home, back to his wife and back to his son Wells. With a final breath and a solemn chorus of, “May we meet again.” From those gathered, Jaha – a character that has been with us since the pilot, left us.

It’s A Couple Thing
Ahhhhhh. Where to begin? Kane and Abby and their tense-but getting on the right track-relationship? Miller and Jackson and their new and blooming love? Niylah and the vibes I was picking up between her and Octavia? So many options to pick from.

Things with Abby and Kane could be better at the start of the episode. Abby is still clearly pissed that Kane took her choice from her in deciding to die in Praimfaya. In fact, after hearing someone trying to get in to the bunker, Abby rushes up to the door, convinced it’s Clarke. Which, of course it was. Kane tries to help Abby in to the hazmat suit to which she snaps, “I’ve got it!” and Kane responds, “That’s the most you’ve said to me in a month.” They put their differences to the side while trying to open the bunker door only to come to the chilling realization that they’re trapped. It won’t matter if it’s five years or 100 years, there’s no way for them to get out of the bunker. Luckily, they have a lot of time to hash-out their problems when Kara-the leader of the Skaikru mutiny- handcuffs them together in the back of cafeteria. It’s a tense conversation: if Abby was so valuable as a doctor why was Kane going to float her on the Ark? Does Abby regret saving Kane’s life? An almost kiss was interrupted by Kara almost shooting them but then deciding to shoot herself, which she didn’t have the opportunity to, thanks to some killer knife throwing schools from Octavia. The episode ends on a giant cliffhanger with the six-year flash-forward showing Kane now in the fighting ring because he has somehow put Wonkru in danger. KANE. WHAT DID YOU DO?!

Jackson and Miller sprung up at the end of season four and have apparently flourished down in the bunker. They have even dropped the l word. Clearly this is a couple to watch going forward since it’s clear that their relationship is going to be a focal point and maybe even cause shifts in alliances going forward. After all, Jackson was reaching for Kara’s gun so that he could revolt against the mutiny to get back to Miller on the other side of the door. What happens in the future if one of them is in danger again? How will that effect their actions?

Niylah and Octavia…there’s not too much I can say about this just yet. I don’t know if the writers are actually putting down something that I can pick up, but the sense that I got is that they’re going there. Maybe. Or I’m wrong. Time will tell.

How We Did
The 100 stayed in the Nielsen Top 5, granted by the skin of their teeth. Preliminary numbers had ratings at an unchanged 0.4 though it later adjusted down to a very high 0.3. With next week being hyped up as the long-awaited reunion episode and “the true start of the story” via showrunner Jason Rothenberg, here’s hoping we get back up to that 0.4.

For Your Viewing Pleasure:

New site, same me. I’m still reaction video trash. And to kick off this segment of FYVP, I’m bringing back an oldie but goodie. I adore these girls. I will switch it up every week so post a reaction and I might just pick you next!

Watch The 100 Tuesdays at 9/8c on The CW.

About the author

Heather Mason

Heather Mason joined the TV Source Magazine team in December 2017 with plans to cover The CW's 100.