The premier starts a few moments after the season 3 finale’s end. Night of the Living Baseheads is over, but there are rivers of blood in the street and the body count is prodigious.
Bellamy and Clark waste no time agreeing that they need to keep the truth from the people as long as possible, afraid of the chaos it would cause if every clan knew the Earth was going into nuclear meltdown in 6 scant months.
Fresh from killing Chancellor Pike, Octavia descends the latter into the city and sees Indra off in the distance being taken down from a cross. She runs across the courtyard to be by her side. I love them together.
Back at Arkadia, Monte and Harper are helping Raven repair things. Music blares and Jasper comes in chipper and dancing. Raven ejects all of them from her work station, encouraging them to go relax so she can concentrate. Jasper comments on how Raven can suddenly read code. He laments that he didn’t get an ‘upgrade’ from ALIE. Then, when Raven isn’t looking he steals the gun off the table and leaves the room.
Considering Jasper was supposed to shoot himself at the end of last season, it makes sense this would be where we pick up his story.
Back at Polis Jaha asks himself “What have I done?” as he stares around agog at the death and destruction he wrought. If ever there was a tale that exemplified the road to Hell being paved with good intentions, it is Thelonious Jaha’s journey toward the City of Light. To think, it all started with that random wasteland family.
Kane wants to share that guilt and pass it around saying “What have we done?” Two things rang false to me about these Polis scenes: the lack of people immediately offing themselves out of sheer despair, and no one rushing to tear Jaha apart. Hell, they were more hostile to Clark and despite their feelings for her in general, they knew that she was the one who ‘saved’ them. Though Echo says it best when she spits, “If it weren’t for skaikru there would be nothing to save us from.”
Echo suddenly finds herself the top ranking Azgedian –possibly top ranking Grounder period. She wastes no time declaring Polis under Azgada rule. A peeved Ambassador from one of the 12 nations begs to differ. Echo answers her push back by swiftly separating her head from her body. She orders skaikru captured.
Back to Jaha, he has assigned himself to burial detail. Again, I have a hard time understanding why these traumatized, deeply religious, stone age, barbarians are allowing this. Murphy happens along and Jaha asks his intermittent mentee and nemesis to help. Murphy tells him to go float himself. I love that bit of profanity and how it has no contextual relevance anymore but is still the favored curse.
Murphy catches up with Emori who is looting dead bodies like an RPG heroine after a battle. He convinces her to come back to Arkadia with him, but about faces later in the episode. He and Emori run off into the night.
Clark and the other Arkadians head to the secret passage under the Flame Keeper’s sanctum. How they got away is beyond me. When Indra meets up with them she and Kane give each other a big hug. Awww! The core leadership, including Indra, let the civilian Arkadians flee while they stay behind in the temple to hold a war counsel of sorts.
Clark tells them about their impending doom. She feels the only way forward is to heal Roan so they have a Grounder ally that can keep the rest of the clans off their back while they figure out how to survive the radiation. She says they must surrender to Echo now.
Back in the city, Jaha carries Ontari’s body to Echo while she and the healer stand over Roan’s prone body. She tells her henchmen to put it with the other bodies then tells her other henchmen to beat Jaha’s ass. She is called away because a runner comes in to tell her that Kane and Co. have surrendered. Jokes on those left behind because “Ontari” cuts through the cloth she’s wrapped in revealing that Jaha smuggled Octavia into the room.
Octavia makes quick and flashy work of the two guards and the healer, duel wielding some pretty vicious daggers and launching a spear across the room. She then lets Clark and Abby in to perform surgery on Roan. They seem a bit taken aback by the carnage that greets them.
Bellamy’s job is to keep Echo negotiating so Abby can work her surgical magic. Echo acts surprisingly soft toward him, seeming remorseful that she had lie to him and kill his girlfriend to help with the destruction of Mt. Weather. Still, as a loyal general, it was her duty to Azgeda’s former queen.
She’s not so sorrowful over what she did to budge from a pretty strong stance against skaikru for all their fuckery. After Bellamy offers guns in exchange for being accepted back into the grounder fold, she counters with, ‘OK, no, but we promise we’ll leave your children alive.’ Well OK then! Jus drein jus daun, after all.
Speaking of fuckery… Monte and Harper are putting in work back at Arkadia. Right after they’re done, they agree to go steady and it’s sweet. The moment is crushed when Raven comes running in telling them to get dressed, because they’re all about to die.
Jasper is busy setting the scene for his suicide, facing a painting from Maya’s collection (Remember Maya?), pushing his gun against his head, ready to just end it all. Monte interrupts him by coming to get him for this emergency meeting.
Raven tells them about the impending end of the world (again). They are understandably devastated except for Jasper who busts out laughing and puts the gun back on the table. Monte, Harper, and Raven look almost comically thunderstruck.
Back in Polis, Echo catches Abby and Clark working on Roan and accuses them of trying to kill him.Thankfully, Abby is a medical wizard and Azgeda’s king wakes up just as Echo is about to take Clark’s head off. Instead of executions for everyone, he orders them taken to the dungeons.
In Roan’s chamber, Echo tries to convince him to kill off trikru for their weakness and skaikru because they’re the most hated so that he can solidify his shaky reign. Killing Clark and taking her power as the wanheda will get all of the clans in line, united under his banner. Roan sends for Clark.
Everyone is chained up in the dungeon. Clark has a moment to breathe so she cries to her mother about how she loved Lexa. Abby knows and comforts her sweetly. Clark’s mourning is cut short as Echo comes in to retrieve her.
Roan wants to speak to Clark alone, much to Echo’s displeasure. He’s leaning toward killing her and following the path Echo has laid out for him, but they are friends of a sort so he wants to hear her out. She tells him about the nuclear threat but in terms he can understand “the primefire” is what grounders call ALIE’s apocalypse in their lore. I love the world building on this show.
Clark insists they need science and cooperation to stop the second coming of this prime fire and Roan reluctantly agrees, especially after she gives him the Flame to protect him from reprisal of the other clans.
In the end, he addresses the Polis citizenry, welcoming skaikru back into the coalition and announcing himself as not only the king of Azgeda but the Keeper of the Flame. There is some rumbling about it being blasphemy as he is not a cleric, but there isn’t any nightbloods or Keepers after all the recent shenanigans.
Everyone is in an uneasy alliance now. Before Bellamy and Clark head back to Arkadia, Kane insists to Bellamy that they can all have redemption.
There is a nice call back to the first season with Bellamy calling Clark princess and asking her what they’re going to do now. She responds “We survive.”
May we meet again.
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