This show improves with each episode. Sure there are plot holes you could drive a truck through. Sure it's a bit contrived and teenage 'dramay' but it is beginning to do what most of the shows I love do - show us our own humanity, flaws and all.
The Ark is not a very nice place. There are divisions between the workers and the rulers. The rulers can, and often do, decide who lives and who dies. It's not very clean, the air is bad and if you are a teenager and rebel, you end up in prison. You also end up in prison or dead for many other reasons. However, up until now it has been the only game in town and the rulers have comforted themselves that they are operating in humanity's best interests (they often do this). This episode makes it clear that all that is going to change.
You have to wonder about a society that imprisons its children. You really have to wonder about a society that is willing to send its children to almost certain death. I'm sure being cooped up in a tin can in space can make a person a little crazy and having the fate of humanity on your shoulders when resources are running low and the end is near would only worsen that craziness. I really liked this episode because it was ordinary people who showed the best way to deal with this crisis. While the rulers have been, for the most part, showing us the worst of humanity, they showed us the best. Too bad it was all for naught.
On the ground the delinquents have been doing a pretty good job. They are still alive. They have created some sort of structure and living arrangements. They aren't paragons of virtue or anything but they seem to be doing better than the adults above them. There's been violence and more than a little sex but they seem to be settling in. As in many sci-fi shows/movies/books, our misfits seem to be our best bet in a crisis. Of course, the ground is also where the teen drama comes in. Raven assumes that Finn is happy to see her and Clarke, though obviously hurt, steps out of the way. I'm sure this triangle will develop in the future hopefully in surprising ways.
Generally, the characters are starting to fill out. Evil Kane is not actually evil, just desperate to do what he thinks is right. The self-sacrifice of the volunteers for section 17 obviously has an effect on him. Jaha is a good leader but he is also a man who is tired of living with the decisions he has had to make and far too ready to die. Abby is willing to risk her own life as she realizes she should have let her husband send out his message. Bellamy tried to kill the president in order to protect his sister and in trying to save her and himself has failed to prevent the death of 320 people. And that leads to what I really like about this episode. The reality is that we often make mistakes sometimes with horrible consequences and things don't always turn out rosy. We also have to find some way to continue with the knowledge that things could have been different and how exactly do we do that?
Bits and Pieces
The volunteers for section 17 left their shoes at the door - not sure why but perhaps it was intended to remind us of the German gas chambers for the Jews - it certainly reminded me of that.
Now when people go ballistic it is called 'pulling a Murphy'.
I love the joy on people's faces when they first step on to Earth. It reminds me to be grateful that I do that all the time.
The dad saying good-bye to his daughter was heartbreaking. It made me angry to know that it didn't need to happen.
Octavia is face to face with a grounder. I don't think her brother is going to be happy about that.
Sign on the control panel: "Kiss your ass goodbye."
Clarke: "But it's just a rock burning up in the atmosphere, why would that make your wish come true?"
One of Bellamy's babes: "Please tell me they brought down some shampoo."
Clarke: "I screwed up. I let myself get distracted."
Jaha: "Jake Griffin inspired them and I killed him. I killed my friend."
Kane: "One decision does not define a man. Jake Griffin is gone. You're still here. Our survival depends on having a leader who can inspire people to self-sacrifice. You're that man, not me." (in other words someone who is 'weakened' by sentiment).
Abby: "Did you see that?"