The 100: The Other Side Review
The CW‘s The 100, Season 4, Episode 11, ‘The Other Side,’ was pretty much the other side of almost everything that made the previous episode the stand-out of the season. “Where was all this, this whole time?” I found myself asking of that ep, while this one left me thinking “Oy, this again.” Not to say that this ep was a total loss; but it made me realize that the previous one profited as much for what it lacked, as for what it had going for it.
Another mitigating factor was that ‘The Other Side’ kept its better half self-contained, while continuing to raise Octavia’s (Marie Avgeropoulos) stock price, in the series. I’ll get to what that could mean, later on; but I’ll start with that better half.
So while Raven (Lindsey Morgan) was doing her wirelessly-jacked-into-the-Matrix thing, something occurred to me. Becca (Erica Cerra) would look great in a slinky red dress, wouldn’t she? Never mind the pervy angle (I’d be lying if I said there wasn’t one), but there’s an extra dimension, to taking someone at face value, when two people share that same face. Well, facial recognition probably gets wonky, when your own brain is the problem; so the faces you take, from your personal Ancient Gallery, get subjective. A quick welcome back to Sinclair (Alessandro Juliani), and it was time for a Faustian bidding war inside of Raven’s head.
Trust me, it was much less convoluted – and much more rewarding – than the larger survival effort, involving everyone else.
Without getting into the latest round of What-Clarke (Eliza Taylor)-Did-to Piss-off-Everybody-She-Didn’t-Try-to-Save, it did take the Greater Good Gang a while to get to the Bad Ol’ Days of the Ark comparison. I figured somebody would’ve brought up Mt. Weather, first; but Thelonious “They All Float, Down Here” Jaha (Isaiah Washington) wasn’t a part of that – so why not just go right for the full circle message.
Thing is, Jaha was being consistent. From Chancellor, to Moses, to Pill Prophet, to bunker crasher – he has always been the Greater Good guy, with Good Intentions. I understand that Clarke has been steadily drifting through darkening shades of grey water, since touching down, but there has been a seeming outbreak of sanctimonious impulsiveness lately. It was bad enough when Monty (Christopher Larkin) turned on Clarke, but then Abby (Paige Turco) took maternity leave of her senses, Harper (Chelsey Reist) quit on Monty, and now the likes of Miller (Jarod Joseph) have joined in on the 3G scheme.
I knew the showrunners were bound to find a way to give Bellamy (Bob Morley) the moral high ground, again; but it’s all been a bit much. Abby willing to jeopardize the greater good, for Kane (Henry Ian Cusick), made the whole thing hollow. We know Bellamy would turn on anyone for Octavia or Clarke (I’d love to see him really have to choose between those two); so I guess Abby gets an extra knee-jerk motivator, as well.
As much as I appreciated the show toying with new ways to keep the series title relevant, without a clear villain, this time around, I suppose the season could afford to end with nothing but fallout. Even though a short exile seems like an unlikely end, for someone like Echo (Tasya Teles), I’d be impressed if the showrunners ended the season with a climax, rather than a resolution. Things just don’t get as climactic as that whole Conclave deal, at this stage; but the follow up did kill the momentum, some.
I might as well get to it – the single biggest factor, in the disparity between this ep & last: Jasper (Devon Bostick). Yes, the Jasper Cult’s absence kept things flowing, last episode, despite the still inexplicable Luna tick off the edge. It was bad enough when Harper volunteered to be a Jasper sub-plot hostage; but when Monty decided to stay, as the chaperone bridge to sense, it was clear we were meant to go along with this negotiation with terrorists deal. Sorry, Monty, but watching them all die horribly – instead of walking out on your GF & BFF – seems like the really dumb option you could’ve easily figured as the worse of the two.
He wasn’t smart enough to see through Harper’s effort to cut him loose, either.
Wasn’t it obvious, from the start, that once Jas opted to go out having fun, he would inevitably figure on going out without paying the price for that fun? The fact that he stumbled into going Jim Jones, then, seemed a little insulting, to me.
I won’t say that the long goodbye wasn’t touching; but only in the sense that it was another self-inflicted wound to Monty. I guess he wasn’t smart enough to see this as an inevitable conclusion, either. Sorry, Monty.
Sorry, but I’m not sorry that Jasper’s finally out of everyone’s misery. Hate me all you want, apologists, but trading Jasper for Raven, while promoting Octavia, was the great redemption of the episode. Better still, Monty managed to walk away with one out of two lost causes – and the one that only flirted with all that death cult nonsense, at that.
You’re a hell of a lot lighter, now, Monty. Save the cheerleader, save the World, and no more wasting your talents on the weakest link. I’m not celebrating Jasper’s fate; I’m celebrating Monty’s prospects.
Mazel tov, Monty.
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