Blink, and you will miss it all.
Not really, but Exit Wounds explored an astounding amount of arcs in a small amount of time. The beats for the episode went through scene by scene; this wasn't one story being told when in fact it was multiple all gearing up for the future.
The strength of this episode though came in the way that it managed to make every shifting journey make sense. One plan seamlessly flowed into the next, it made sense for everything to be explored this quickly because there wasn't enough time to slow down.
Exit Wounds also zeroed in on things that were led up to this moment, the shift in Bellamy and the anxiety in Clarke. Stuff hit the fan as soon as Octavia appeared in the picture again, and this episode didn't disappoint when it came to her as that driving force.
The 100 Season 5 Episode 6 handled all the different pieces of the puzzle so well, arranging them in an engaging way that still left room for question. Not everything made sense right away because not everything should have. Drew Lindo crafted a combination of intrigue and foreshadowing, which made the episode an intense one.
Octavia Hears An Echo In The Distance
Octavia was really having a day.
There was a lot on her plate today, yet she managed to still be one of the standout characters across the board.
Her leadership abilities were called into question, and she couldn't even fully focus on that because she also had to figure out where she stood with Echo.
Even though it isn't always easy to agree with Octavia, she is still the one in control in this situation which raises the question of how she continues to stay there.
While Octavia is more worried about the way that Wonkru is seen versus the people actually in her clan, this is all meant to ring exactly that way.
Octavia's biggest concern right now isn't providing the best for her people; she first still has to have loyal people.
It will happen again unless you take control.Kara
The ground changes everything, and it isn't only for Bellamy that this rings true this time around.
Octavia had a good thing going down in that bunker, and while for now, they are back there again, everything is different.
Cracks are already forming so trusting Echo was probably her best bet. This doesn't mean that she will follow through, but for now, she can get more from allowing Echo to do her bidding.
And even though they got to that point, the Blake siblings sparring it out first was a needed moment if only because Octavia named names.
Gina, Ilian, her.
The Blake sibling relationship may have figured out a way not to banish Echo, yet also not to forgive her but for how long will that last?
This didn't set up a happily ever after to their issues though, which isn't surprising considering Octavia's present state.
She would have to hit rock bottom as a leader before she could start to see her brother as a person who is there for her. Love is truly a weakness for Octavia right now, which is why her focus seems to be entirely on the reputation that she carved out for herself.
Maybe Echo will manage to help Octavia out, but even that can't exactly last forever.
Sooner or later Charmaine and Octavia will face one another again, and I am here for it.
Because at the end of the day this is where all the chaos is coming from, these two opposing forces that are working through other people and the people of the land in between them.
Nothing will get solved until Charmaine and Octavia meet again, but something huge would have to happen for them to find some common ground long enough to face one another.
And what about the damage that will happen before that? Characters like Kane and Echo are like chess pieces in the larger game, and Charmaine and Octavia are in charge of who goes where.
If I were the people in between, I would consider being really worried.
Madi In The Middle
Clarke and Madi are the purest little beings on the show right about now.
Their relationship is healthy, safe, and even hopeful somehow.
Madi took this episode to prove that she is her own person, she isn't just an arc for Clarke in which to move around. Clarke may have a plan but Madi has one too and they both meet in the middle with the way that they are doing this for the other.
Now trusting Octavia has to be the wrong move, especially since she told Clarke she would keep her secret safe. From whom?
Isn't the biggest danger in all this Octavia?
Yes, having the grounders in that bunker find out about a true Nightblood isn't ideal, but their power in all this is limited. Octavia is the one with the ability to change tides, to shift relationships, and to simply wreak havoc all around.
Wonkru, I banished this murderer from the bunker six years ago. My judgment still stands.Octavia
Clarke was right in believing that the enemy in all this right now is Octavia, not because she has any actual plan but because of the potential that she could have on later.
Octavia switches ideas and opinion at the drop of a hat if it means helping the Wonkru reputation. What happens when keeping Madi's secret is no longer the best decision?
For now keeping this secret helps Octavia stay in power, but there is always that discussion about something not being introduced just for the sake of not exploring it.
If there is a secret, it is going to come out, and it is going to be messy.
There was that glimpse of that with Niylah, someone who should have brought comfort with her but instead seeped with danger.
She can't be trusted, and there isn't even a real way to put your finger on why.
There is something about the way that Niylah views Wonkru that screams that she isn't the safe choice to trust in all this. On the outside, she still feels like someone you could trust, but there is something right beneath the surface that threatens to ruin Madi's life.
That is where Gaia comes in and where the best twist of the night appeared.
I loved the way that Gaia wasn't the clear enemy, she may not agree with Clarke, but she is also not going to force Madi into anything.
Much like her mother, Gaia goes against what we expect her to so that she could warn someone else.
The fact that it was the Griffin ladies both times is kind of fantastic.
Also, it is great to have a character who so far is out in the open with her intentions.
Octavia, Kara, and even Niylah could change their direction if the wind blows in the wrong direction.
They are dynamic characters, but they aren't allies for someone like Clarke. She needs a person that doesn't have this belief system, which is why it is so ironic that it happens to be Gaia.
It has been six years, and Gaia is still upholding her faith, yet in contrast to Blodreina and her followers, she has an objective way about it.
Sticking that chip into Madi was the easy choice, and yet that wasn't what Gaia seeking.
In fact, so far it seems like Gaia is simply trying to help and I appreciate meeting a character who I can trust.
There aren't too many of those around right now, and much like Clarke, it helps to find even one.
Going forward, my only hope is for Madi to take a step back. Her trust in Octavia is a huge risk, and while Clarke may put on a brave face, I don't want Madi to realize it when it becomes too late.
Bellamy Ruining The Party Once Again
I know. I know. I know.
That sucked. There really isn't any better way to describe it besides predicting that it would happen since The CW has a shirtless quota and Bellamy and Echo are breaking up soon so that needed to be added in quick.
Still, Echo has been at the root of Bellamy's trauma, from his girlfriend and his people getting killed because he trusted Echo to her trying to kill his sister twice.
Six years is a long time, but it is simply not a good point when talking about what the viewer saw.
Bellamy may have moved on from everything, but objectively the audience only knows what happened in Season 4 and then this blank space where Bellamy and Echo are meant to matter?
Of course, they aren't, and we know this, and the narrative continues to tell us that.
Your secret is safe with me.Octavia
Still, when we have Bellamy in this strange position where no one can recognize him, and it all keeps getting brushed over with a time jump excuse, this arc becomes the weak point of a fairly stunning season.
Because trying to sell Echo as a redeemed character by attaching her to the well-loved male lead does three things:
It forces Bellamy to be written in a way that doesn't make sense to his character in order to sell the story, it does a disservice to Echo who could have had actual scenes of growth but instead kissed Bellamy then disappeared, and it pulls the season down because of the screen time wasted.
It doesn't even then explain how this epic relationship is stripped of any solid interaction for five episodes, then is used for shock value again and then they separate again with a cheesy line about finding each other again that is meant to mirror the line about nothing changing.
As soon as there is an overdramatic proclamation, the foreshadowing comes out and slaps us in the face.
But again, this then becomes screen time that could be used to craft Echo as her own character instead of taking all agency away from Bellamy.
That could also allow for the Blake siblings to have an arc that doesn't become Octavia coming off as the sister that just doesn't get it or where Bellamy becomes the brother that is unaware of their shared trauma.
All in all, this episode didn't change my thoughts on the direction that this is all heading.
It all felt uneven and out of character when Bellamy spent the entire time servicing another character's growth this season, but it was more than that.
Even from a not biased perspective, their moments all felt like they were leading up to an end. They were saying goodbye, metaphorically but distinctively.
They will see each other again, but they won't be the people that came down off the ring thinking everything would just stay the same that it always was when there was no chaos and no need to have a survival instinct that led them to become enemies in the first place.
Even the sex scene, while upsetting, felt short and definitively proving that they knew whatever comes next isn't promising for them.
To me, it was about the small details, the way that the scene was structured as this mourning goodbye that was cut short by the transition to Madi and Clarke.
The music, another kind of story that gets told throughout each episode, went right with the transition. That doesn't have to say much, but the beginning of the end felt clear.
This wasn't what we wanted to see, but to make us invested in Bellamy and Echo growing apart, first you have to make us care.
Exit Wounds felt like that attempt to explain where they stood and why they mattered before they were once again doing their own thing. That also says a lot; you would think a couple that we are meant to care about would stick around together.
To me, it always feels like a rush with them, and along the way, they have these big declarations that foreshadow exactly what will ruin them later.
Trying to convince one another that the ground won't change anything and that they will find one another again feels like a consistent reminder that they won't.
The 100 is all about not going where we expect it to, and right now these characters were thinking they had nothing to worry about.
Then this mission came up, and it truly became them coming to that understanding about how they can't avoid the obvious.
Even just that last sequence where Echo snapped right into that spy position when she hid the thing in that girl's wound. She cared about her, but she also saw her a way to achieve something else.
Her loyalty may have switched off, but she is slipping back into that high that comes from getting the job down. The shift is already there, and it is only just starting if the synopsis for the next episode is anything to go by.
Now the only real issue is Bellamy; it is obvious that he will find some agency by the end of the season. But for now, it feels like he is bouncing around from Octavia to Echo.
He is there to vocalize stuff about them or push their story forward, and he deserves more.
This episode specifically pushed Bellamy to the background, and while he isn't always necessary, he is the lead.
He still needs to have something for himself, and it came off as if he was pushing an agenda more than he was doing anything else.
Again, this may have been different on the ring but they are all on the ground now, and that shows.
That doesn't mean it wasn't difficult to see, trust me I know. But from a practical point of view, there is still plenty to come, and this really isn't the new normal.
The Clarke Sub Highlights
Then there is the Clarke factor, which reminded us that while Bellamy is off making no sense, Clarke continues to linger on this happiness.
Like us, she doesn't get this and even more, so it reflects her feelings about this person she doesn't know anymore.
In a way, Clarke embodies us, especially when we consider our feelings about Bellamy and the way that we are distancing ourselves from him. Similarly, Clarke isn't finding that understanding with him anymore, and she is isolating herself more than ever.
Except for this time that comes off more emotionally.
Take for a second the Madi secret, this time around Bellamy isn't in the know even though before he would be the first person that Clarke would reach out to with this.
Maybe it was a time thing, or maybe Clarke is feeling just like us about Bellamy.
Madi is a big fan. She has heard every story about the girl under the floor.Clarke
That inability to place him lingers on her mind, especially as she watches him with Echo. But it doesn't even have to be about Echo; it is about what it symbolizes.
Bellamy has this new life, and Clarke can't seem to find where she fits into it, and to be fair he isn't attempting to show her.
During The 100 Season 5 Episode 7, it sounds like they spend some more time together, which is where I could see another Shifting Sands highlight.
It may be hard to feel that disconnect from them right now, but you are meant to feel it.
You are meant not to get this weird jagged way that these two soulmates don't come together like they always do. You are supposed to question this discomfort and strange vibe.
Clarke and Bellamy are not on the same wavelength right now, but that doesn't mean that it isn't where they are headed.
Everything on this show will end up out in the open, and we all know that Clarke and Bellamy don't disappoint when that time comes.
- Miller isn't around much, but he is testing my patience.
Niylah, I did not wait this long to see you again for you to just appear as this different person. Nope, I am not about it at all.
And who exactly is her family? Octavia? They don't seem to be hanging out as much anymore, and yet Niylah gives me that same worrisome chill every time I see her now.
- Where is not Zeke and Raven? Are they getting enough food? Have they fallen in love yet? Do they need anything? I am just asking because I felt their absence this time around. It feels like a long winter hoping to see their happy faces again.
- Kane is making so many new friends, but how long will that last? Same goes for Kara; she is just not on my favorites list right now. If Octavia isn't careful, she will lose control to the same person that is by her side right now.
- I've missed Monty and Harper; it would be great to see more of them again. The same goes for Emori and Murphy slaying the entire episode in those woods like true couple goals. Is it too late for a double date?
What did you think of the episode? Do you have any thoughts on Bellamy? Where do you see Octavia heading now that she is cool and knows all the secrets? Do you trust Niylah? Are you worried about Echo? Where do you think Raven is? Let us know what you think below!
And don't forget that you can watch The 100 online, right here at TV Fanatic.
Yana Grebenyuk is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.