What comes down must... go back up again?

By Dalene Rovenstine
May 17, 2017 at 11:17 PM EDT
Diyah Pera/The CW
S4 E12
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Four seasons ago, 100 delinquents were sent to the ground to see if it was habitable and if they could live there. It was, and they did, but now the earth has become uninhabitable yet again, and a handful of these kids are heading back to space to see if it’s still habitable there. It’s poetic and full circle in a way that this show loves. It was unexpected, but good because five years of The Real World: Becca’s Bunker couldn’t be that interesting. Let’s get to tonight’s episode, “The Chosen.”

Since Octavia’s proclamation that everyone will share the bunker, Grounders are taking over and kicking Skaikru out. They’re all locked out from the main floors and left in the entryway to decide which 100 will stay. Err, make that 80. Abby says they’re going to let all children under 16 in (thank god because that kid Ethan is adorable) and “essential personnel,” a.k.a. people we know, so that leaves 80 spots.

Clarke and Bellamy have spots, but they want to go get Raven before the door closes in 23 hours. Abby helps them suit up and tells them they’ll have just enough time to make the 10-hour drive and get back. Emori and Murphy decide to join them — Abby says she’ll make sure Murphy’s name is in the lottery, but she can’t guarantee Emori’s.

When the four teens are safe above ground, Murphy tells Bellamy they really just want to get to the bunker on the island. He knows it won’t keep them alive, but it’s the best chance they have. And who should overhear that but the show’s very own cockroach Echo.

Underground, Kane is telling his people about the lottery. People aren’t pleased and take it out on Niylah, whom they begin attacking. Grounder Queen Octavia comes in and shuts it down. She says Niylah is with her and they have one spot less to fill. Jaha begs her to allow her people into the bunker. “I’m one of you?” she spits at him. “You made me hide under the floor. You floated my mother. I’m not hiding now.” How the room didn’t burst out into applause for her is beyond me.

Kane begins the process — every Arkadian writes his or her name on a piece of paper and slips it into the large bowl. When Miller’s dad comes in, he puts his son’s name on the paper instead of his own. He wants to give Nate the best chance to survive. That sound you might hear is my sobbing. Miller’s Dad, I never could remember your first name, but I’m going to miss you.

After Miller’s dad (his name is David, but that just sounds weird) leaves the room, Abby tells Kane that he needs to draw 81 names because she’s not going to stay in the bunker. She says her life isn’t worth more than anyone else’s, because that brain lesion has apparently made her forget she’s the only doctor alive.

Before the names are read, Jaha cooks up a scheme with Ethan’s dad, Jeff. Angry his people are dying with Grounders in the bunker, Jaha has a plan to open the doors and take it over. So when Kane starts reading names, he sees Jaha nod to Jeff and then disappear. Kane asks Jackson to take over reading names and goes to investigate. (Recap continued on page 2.)

As soon as Kane is out of the room, Jeff walks up to the podium and says Jaha has a plan. He riles everyone up to start chanting, “Fight, fight, fight,” like they’re a group of middle school students behind the gym. In the command room, Jaha is telling Kane about his plan: He’s going to gas the bunker and then tell the Grounders still standing they’ll destroy the crops unless they make room. Kane points out what a terrible plan that is and convinces him that saving humanity is about more than just saving Arkadians.

So when Indra and Octavia open the bunker doors to answer the battle cries, they find everyone passed out on the ground. The only way Jaha and Kane knew how to stop their own people was to gas them. (This looks eerily like the culling and the Mount Weather massacre.) And instead of using the lottery list, they decide to use the list Clarke made in the beginning of the season. “It was always our best chance for survival,” Kane says. I’m not sure how we got there, but as long as Miller’s Dad gets in, I’m happy.

Kane and Jaha tell the Grounders (who I guess are Octavia’s guards now?) which bodies to keep in the bunker and which to put outside the doors. Miller’s Dad gets sent out, and WHAT I AM NOT HAPPY. I really can’t handle this roller coaster. Anyway, Kane tells them Abby stays. She’s going to be so mad when she wakes up. Well, everyone probably will be.

Unaware any of this is happening, Clarke and Bellamy have a heart-to-heart about the fact she shot at him the day before (bygones!) when they run over someone with the rover. Bellamy gets out to check on the damage and is attacked. A group of Grounders swarm the rover and fight all four of them. Just as Emori is about to be choked to death, arrows start flying and ECHO saves them. That’s right, ECHO.

She’s been following them since the temple and wants to find a place in Murphy and Emori’s love bunker. Clarke helps her into the extra suit while Bellamy radios for Monty and Harper to come pick them up. Without warning, Emori starts coughing up blood. During her fight with the Grounders, her helmet was broken, and she’s been exposed. Murphy wants Echo to give up her helmet, but instead Clarke removes her own. She figures it’s as good a time as any to test out her Nightblood radiation-fighting skills.

About this time, Bellamy realizes they’ve missed their window to pick up Raven and get back to the bunker before the death wave comes. Clarke says if nightblood does work, they could go straight to Polis, make everyone Nightblood, and then come back to save Raven. But then Clarke starts coughing up blood, and that plan goes out the window.

When Monty and Harper arrive, they give Clarke the extra helmet they have (it was for Jasper — sad face emoji) and they devise a new plan: head to the island. When they get there, Raven is shocked; she knows there isn’t enough time for them to get back to Polis. “We’re not going back,” Clarke says. “We’re going up.”

They may not have a way back down, but as Harper points out, they’ll have five years to figure that out. They think there’s enough food and water aboard what’s left of the Ark in space, and Monty thinks they can take the oxygenator from the island bunker up to space. What could possibly go wrong?

See you all back here next week for the finale! (Maybe then we can learn what happened to Bryan?)

Episode Recaps

After a nuclear apocalypse, a group of people who have been living in space return to Earth—and quickly learn they’re not alone.
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  • 6
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  • 03/19/14
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