The New World Is No Sanctuary in ‘The 100’ Season 6 Premiere (RECAP)
[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for The 100 Season 6 Premiere, “Sanctum.”]
In its first season, The 100‘s mantra was “survival isn’t who you are: it’s who you become.” A century after that first group set foot on the ground, the remaining survivors are trying to heed Monty’s last wish and become better people on a whole new planet — but are they too late to earn redemption?
That’s a question Clarke and her pals ponder in “Sanctum,” the pulse-pounding Season 6 premiere. Now that they’re on a new planet they have a chance to finally be the good guys, but “good” is a tricky goal when the impact of the battle for Earth is testing bonds between old friends.
And of course, their safe haven isn’t particularly safe or heavenly… and for one character, the consequences of exploring it are deadly.
Be the Good Guys
The episode opens with many of the main survivors — Clarke, Bellamy, Raven, Echo, Murphy, Emori, Shaw, Jordan and Abby — watching Monty’s message. Raven’s arguably the most upset by Monty and Harper’s decision to live out their lives on the ship, but Shaw changes her mind… and they end up having some “alone time.”
An hour later, almost everyone’s in the hall, and it’s obvious 125 years hasn’t erased the bad blood between many in the group and Clarke — that hurt, it seems, won’t be an easy fix. Abby’s not eating because she’s worried about Kane, which makes Clarke worry about Abby. It seems that won’t be an easy fix, either, until Jordan hands her a solution to Kane’s problem. The algae Monty made would induce a coma, so Abby can perform surgery. There’s one problem solved!
As for the problem of whether or not the new world is survivable, the group makes plans to send a mission consisting of Clarke, Bellamy, Echo, Emori, Shaw and Murphy to the ground. Instead of taking Octavia to serve as their best fighter, they decide to wake up Miller. They also opt to take Jackson, and Abby says she’ll wake up Niylah to assist her with Kane’s surgery. The team says its goodbyes — Abby promises to take care of Madi if anything happens to Clarke — and they head down to a new planet.
Welcome to the New World, to the New World
When the crew first arrives, everything seems just fine: better than fine, in fact. The air’s breathable, which is a good start, the forests are green and lush, there’s a beautiful lake with a beach. There’s no sign of human life, but there are bugs, one of which Jackson studies as Team New World sits around a fire.
Miller and Jackson sit apart from the rest of the group, and while Jackson’s excited to have found life on the new planet, Miller can’t quite muster that same enthusiasm. He’s still haunted by what he did in the bunker, and his boyfriend’s attempts to console him fall on deaf ears. “I did things,” he says. “You didn’t stop things. There’s a difference.” The rest of the group is dealing with similar baggage. Clarke tries to apologize to Shaw for betraying him and Raven, but he doesn’t seem to want to hear it. Instead he tells her that Monty may have given her a second chance, but she hasn’t done anything to earn salvation yet.
In space, Abby tells Niylah they’ll need Skaikru blood to save Kane and asks her to wake them all up. Abby then goes to get blood from Raven and… to say things don’t go well would be an understatement. Raven clearly hasn’t forgiven Abby for using the shock collar on her last season, and though the good doc tries to apologize, the mechanic isn’t willing to hear it. The most happiness she gets is when she and Jordan discover their world is a moon, and there’s a whole other beautiful planet that they orbit.
Abby finishes surgery on Kane, but she knows when he wakes up, he’ll be in pain. When she goes to get the pain meds, she can’t find them: it’s somewhat obvious who took them. Angered, Abby confronts Raven. Raven’s convinced Abby will turn back to self-medicating soon enough, and tells her “the faster you fall off the wagon and kill yourself, the sooner we can move on.” Yikes. Being angry is one thing, but that’s taking anger too far, Raven.
Thankfully, Abby gets a little bit of happiness when Kane wakes up. They look out at the new world together, and Kane, as usual and despite everything he’s been through, is optimistic. “Everything that happened, happened so we could get here,” he says. Abby barely has time to agree with him before they’re interrupted by — surprise! — a vengeful Octavia, who Niylah woke up earlier. They argue about what happened to Wonkru and everything that happened in the bunker. The fighting only stops when Kane starts coughing up blood. Octavia and Abby manage to get him onto a stretcher, but he can only be saved by going back into cryo.
A Deadly Discovery
If only that was the worst things got this episode… but this is The 100, so of course things can always get worse! Inter-group drama aside, Clarke and kru end up caught in a fight for survival when the bugs start swarming them. They decide to head in the direction of a beacon from Eligius III in hopes of finding a bunker, but instead they find a radiation-powered force field that electrocutes Shaw. He survives long enough to give Clarke the code to switch it off and get the rest of the group safely inside, but he dies soon afterward. “Tell Raven she deserves happiness,” Shaw says with his dying breaths. “She doesn’t think she does, but she does.”
In spite of their loss, the group marches on and track the beacon to a castle. They come across an empty village and take a look around, noting the place is too well-maintained to be abandoned. Doing their best not to be invaders or thieves, they don’t kick down doors or barge their way in (though Murphy does, through the kicking-down-doors tactic, find a place that’s unlocked).
When the Stars Align and the Forest Wakes…
Meanwhile, Murphy’s picked up a music player from one of the houses. He starts playing one of the songs and singing, and as he does so, Clarke makes an unsettling discovery of strange cuffs and chains attached to the walls. She gets a small measure of comfort, though, when Bellamy walks in and chats with her about her six years of unanswered radio calls to him. Clarke says she knows it’s crazy that she called him for so long, but he disagrees: “A little pathetic, maybe,” he says with a smile, “but not crazy.” They both laugh, then she leaves to go watch Murphy karaoke.
Bellamy emerges from the building with a children’s book in hand, and as they read it, they realize it’s a warning instead of a nursery rhyme. “When the stars align and the forest wakes, it’s time to run away,” it reads. It soon becomes apparent why everyone’s left: there’s a toxin in the air that affects their minds, inducing psychosis… and driving Emori to stab Murphy as the episode ends.
- Not that this is news to anyone who’s watching this show in its sixth season, but Murphy really does have the best one-liners. Best of the episode might have been his interaction with Clarke, though. Murphy: “This is, like, your fifth chance.” Clarke: “Yours too, Murphy!“
- I was half-expecting “Radioactive” to play when Team Clarke stepped onto the ground, and then I half-expected it to play when Murphy picked up that pseudo-iPod. The Waterboys’ “This is the Sea” was a good choice, though. And there were plenty of other Pilot callbacks: Miller referencing Octavia’s “we’re back, bitches!” for one, Murphy diving into the water, another.
- I can’t help but wonder how big of an impact Kane’s last words to Octavia will have. Though they’re far from the sweet adoptive father-daughter relationship they once had, “You’re lost!” is a pretty unpleasant thing to hear… and it doesn’t seem inaccurate. Plus, for whatever it’s worth, O did help Abby get Kane onto the stretcher. If she hates him that much, why not just walk away and let him die?
- Speaking of Abby, the poor doc really went through it this episode. Not to say Clarke and her friends didn’t, but Abby was basically told by her adoptive daughter to kill herself, taunted by the woman who wanted her and Kane dead, got separated from Clarke and almost lost the man she loves again (she has Fox’s The Passage to blame for that). Can someone give her a hug?
- Okay, both of the Griffin women need a hug. Though Clarke has done questionable things, so has everyone else, and it seems hardly fair that the whole group has turned its back on her given everything she’s done for them and everything she’s gotten them through. Can someone wake up Madi to hug both of the Griffins, please?
The 100, Tuesdays, 9/8c, The CW