This is the way the world... doesn't end?

By Dalene Rovenstine
February 15, 2017 at 10:00 PM EST
Diyah Pera/The CW
S4 E3
B+
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  • TV Show
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Genre

Becca may have inadvertently led to the end of the world, but she might also now be the savior.

It was obvious in the season 4 premiere that the flame and the need for Nightbloods wouldn’t just disappear. It’s always been important to Grounder politics, but “The Four Horsemen” revealed just how important Luna and her nightblood could be to the entire human population.

But that’s not all episode 3 revealed: Indra has a daughter! A daughter who refuses to be a warrior! A daughter who is the new flamekeeper!

We’ve known Indra since season 2, and as much as she’s taken Octavia under her wing, she’s never seemed exactly “maternal,” so learning that she has a daughter was more than a little shocking. So shocking we should just go ahead and start the recap there…

Roan finds Octavia sharpening her sword (literally) and commissions her services. See, the flame was stolen from his chambers, so he needs someone to quietly track it down. She comes as a package deal with Indra, who knows that if word were to get out that the king had lost the sacred flame then Roan would lose his throne. He tells her to find the new female flamekeeper.

Can we just pause for a second to marvel at how women are still ruling this world? Even with a king, nevertheless, they persisted.

As Octavia sets off on her mission, Roan keeps Indra aside to applaud her for training O to be a warrior, specifically one who can quietly assassinate people in power. “One kill to prevent thousands? That’s good politics.” That doesn’t sound very Azgeda-esque.

Octavia is able to quickly track down the flamekeeper and follows her into the temple. The flamekeeper knows what O is there for and fights her for it. If only she were trained by the best, maybe she could beat Octavia. But O gets the drop on her and is about to kill the flamekeeper when Indra walks in and stops her. “She’s my daughter.” Omg — she was trained by the best.

Indra and Gaia have a very tense exchange, and here’s what we/Octavia learn: Gaia was supposed to follow in her mother’s footsteps and lead Trikru. Instead, she became a scout for the flamekeeper, which means she’s been wandering the earth searching for Nightbloods. This is definitely not a happy family reunion.

Octavia has been sent to kill the flamekeeper, something Roan will demand, but she wants to figure out another solution — this is her mentor’s daughter after all. They don’t have much time to formulate a plan, though, because Ilian and other Grounders are banging at the door of the temple. They’re on a mission to kill all tech (so nothing can ever control them again), and they get in quickly. While others hold Indra and Octavia at sword-point, Ilian grabs Gaia’s bag, pulls out the flame, and smashes it. After they leave, Octavia proves how good she is at thinking on her feet: She had switched the real flame with a fake one Gaia wore as a totem.

Gaia escapes with the true flame and Octavia tells Roan a looter destroyed the real thing. Roan’s not too worried about the lost flame, though, because he’s convinced Clarke is definitely working on a plan for everyone.

Speaking of… Preparation for the end of the world isn’t going so great at Arkadia. Nylah has taught them how to preserve food, but the hunters are coming back with less and less. Raven says at this rate they’ll have to eat one meal every other day for the next five years. And there’s still the issue of only 100 people being able to fit into Alpha Station. She urges Clarke to make a list of who those 100 will be, but Clarke isn’t ready to accept that reality.

Things are about as bad for Murphy and Emori — they aren’t able to find any food to hunt, not even bugs. After some awkward talk about Murphy’s time with Ontari at Polis, he decides to head to Arkadia to raid their food supply.

But he’s shocked at the scene he finds there. Nyko has arrived with Luna and her people… or what’s left of them at least. They have acute radiation sickness from eating the radiated fish, which Luna tells them are now dead and floating on the water as far as the eye can see. While Abby tries to treat them, Raven inputs this new information into her calculations. She reveals to Clarke and Bellamy that the end of the world is coming on faster than they thought: They now have two months of survivability left.

According to Raven, it’s high time for Clarke to make The List. “Choosing who gets to live or die is your specialty,” she says in the world’s sickest (and realest) burn. And she says all of their man hours will have to be tripled to get Alpha Station ready in time, which is why she isn’t pleased when she hears Jaha’s plan.

NEXT: Jaha goes on another quest

Attempting to steal the rover, Jaha tells Clarke, Bellamy, and Raven that he’s figured out that Alpha Station won’t hold everyone, but he knows of a place that might. Before the end of the world (the first time), there was a doomsday cult called The Second Dawn, led by a man named Bill Cadogan, which had a bunker built to sustain 1,000 members. Raven thinks it’s a fool’s errand, but Clarke is desperate for a way to save everyone. She and Bellamy go along with Jaha to find it, and Clarke promises Raven she’ll make the list if nothing is there.

When they get where Jaha suspects the bunker to be, Clarke walks off to search for it. Jaha tells Bellamy that she is lucky to have him because “you keep her centered.” Bellamy won’t take credit for that, though, because he hasn’t fully forgiven himself for his Season 3 Mistakes, trademark pending. The king of mistakes, Jaha says that sometimes you just have to do what you think is best for your people at the time. “If you’re wrong and there is a hell, then I guess I’ll see you there,” Bellamy replies. (Is this the first conversation these two have ever had!?)

Meanwhile, Clarke has found steps that lead underground. Down below, they find a corpse holding a medallion just outside a set of bunker doors. Apparently you had to level up to the 12th seal in order to make it inside the doors. But even the 12th sealers didn’t make it. The bunker is full of dead bodies; Bill Cadogan was a false prophet.

They have no solution and this is going to make Raven — who’s not having the best day — even more upset. Abby is asking her for to give them anti-radiation medicine for Luna and her people, but Raven refuses. As the keeper of all rations, the mechanic says they’ll need all of their supply for their own people over the next five years. Abby begs for just one dose for Adria, the child, but Raven still won’t budge. She points out that even if the medicine could work on these people, they’ll still be dead within two months due to radiation (and the fact they won’t fit in Alpha Station). “The radiation isn’t killing that child,” Abby tells Raven. “You are.”

It’s an impossible situation — one that’s hard to pick sides of. But that doesn’t stop John Murphy from doing so. He was in the room stealing rations, natch, when he overheard the whole conversation. Once Abby leaves, Murphy steals the meds she needs and takes them to the sickbay. The fact that Murphy’s own father was floated for stealing meds is not lost on Abby. “Who knew he had it in him?” Jackson asks her. “I did,” Abby says.

Jackson and Abby administer the stolen drugs to the child and wait to use it on the others until they see if it worked. But, sadly, it doesn’t.

When Raven realizes her meds are gone and goes to retrieve them, she enters the sickbay right as Adria dies. “We only wasted one dose,” Abby tells her as she hands the pills back. Everyone else has died. Raven watches the scene as tears come to her eyes. She credits Clarke for being the one to make the tough decisions, but she has to do the same.

Back from their excursion, Clarke tries to write The List. She writes Bellamy as No. 99 and stares at the remaining slot. Bellamy comes up just then and tells her she has to be No. 100: “If I’m on that list, you’re on that list.” She can’t do it, so he writes her name down for.

“You still have hope?” she asks him.

“We still breathing?” he perfectly responds.

Clarke heads to sickbay, where Luna is saying prayers over all her deceased people. But when she turns to Clarke, she looks better… she’s regaining her color and her lesions are healing. As Abby says, there’s only one thing that separates Luna from the others: nightblood.

Could this be the way they all survive? (I asked Jason Rothenberg that exact question in my postmortem for episode 3.) Could Gaia’s Nightblood-scouting skills suddenly be very useful? Will the people of Polis keep the peace long enough to find an answer to these questions? Let’s pray to our flame totems that the answer to all these questions is yes.

100 (or just 6) extras:

• “Good technique. I know it well.” —Gaia to Octavia while fighting
• Is sheep’s milk a postcoital treat in Polis or something!?
• “I’m a better thief than I am a hunter.” —Murphy being Murphy
• How cute was it that Miller and his dad were working the gate together?
• Murphy goes back for Emori and they’re going to find a way to make themselves useful enough to get a spot in Alpha Station. I like these two a lot.
• Also, this happened. And I’m not mad about it.

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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seasons
  • 6
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  • 03/19/14
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