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The Plot-holes and Unanswered Questions of The 100

Raven and ALIE.png edited

Once again: Lindsey Morgan was incredible in the latest episode of The 100!  Her performance was the best part of the episode for the second week in a row!

Raven and Clarke.png editedOverall, the storyline of episode 3×11 was more intriguing than the past few episodes.  It was interesting seeing the main characters together again after drifting apart in season 2.  But like the previous episodes, there were major plot holes that left me with more questions than answers.  Not only are they confusing me, but they are also ruining the experience of the show because I’m left frustrated at the end of each episode as I try to understand the storyline.  So, instead of criticizing the episode, let me share the major questions that have been bothering me this season.

1) How does ALIE know about Lexa?  How did she and Raven know about Clarke and Lexa’s relationship?  How did they even know she died?  And how did they know to use Lexa’s death against Clarke?

Unless I’m missing something, ALIE was never aware of Clarke and no one, besides Murphy and Titus, knew about her relationship with Lexa.  Raven has been so far removed from the Polis/Clarke storyline this season and this was the first time she even interacted with Clarke since before the attack on Mount Weather.

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2)  I thought one of the things Lexa’s return this season would allow the show to explore was how a Commander is chosen.  Do we even know how a Commander is chosen or what the conclave actually is?

Is the conclave just a fight to the death where the last person standing automatically becomes the Commander? Ontari just slaughtered all of the nightbloods and just assumed she would become the Commander…

3) Also, why do the nightbloods kill each other?  What would happen if the new commander died shortly after being chosen?  Since he or she would have presumably killed the other nightbloods in order to ascend, who would be next in line to become the Commander?

4) If the AI in Lexa’s neck is so important to the conclave and the role of the flamekeeper, why was Titus never around in season 2 when Lexa could have died at any time?  Shouldn’t Titus have been with Lexa at all times?  What would have happened if she died at Mount Weather or in the bombing of TonDC?  If it is such an important ritual, why wasn’t his character around since Lexa’s introduction?

5)  What is Jaha getting out of the City of Light?  Why did he partner up with ALIE?

6) And what even is the City of Light?  There’s only five episodes left this season and I still don’t understand…COL.png edited7) And where is Indra?! That isn’t a plot-hole exactly but she just sort of disappeared after finding out Lexa died. Where did she go?  Is she back at Polis?  When is she coming back?

I really want to be excited about the show again but these plot-holes and unanswered questions (among other things) are making it impossible for me to get sucked back into the story.  I spend more time trying to answer questions similar to the ones above than I do actually enjoying the episodes themselves.

Again, maybe I missed something along the way this season, so if anyone has any answers to these questions, leave them in the comments because I’m at a loss.

Written by Lindsey Marie

A nerdy English major who is obsessed with too many TV shows. My current obsessions are Orphan Black, The 100, Fear the Walking Dead, The Walking Dead, Stranger Things, and Jane the Virgin. My love of fictional characters is endless. I’m in too deep.

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  1. 2) I thought one of the things Lexa’s return this season would allow the show to explore was how a Commander is chosen. Do we even know how a Commander is chosen or what the conclave actually is?

    Is the conclave just a fight to the death where the last person standing automatically becomes the Commander? Ontari just slaughtered all of the nightbloods and just assumed she would become the Commander…

    I believe it was confirmed by the writers that a conclave is a fight to the death. But similar to how the writers had to explain Bellamy’s masssacre motivations (and Farm Station’s extremism), if the writers have to explain it outside the context of the show then they failed miserably to show it *in* the context of the show. But a battle royale is a terrible system. What about Lexa’s three pillars of being the Commander? A fight to the death as the method of selection is at odds with testing wisdom and compassion. Heck it doesn’t even really test strength (which could be strength of character)…. it only tests individual combat skill and dumb luck. The only worse system of government I can think of is “strange women lying in ponds distributing swords.”


    3) Also, why do the nightbloods kill each other? What would happen if the new commander died shortly after being chosen? Since he or she would have presumably killed the other nightbloods in order to ascend, who would be next in line to become the Commander?

    Again, this is a teerrrrrrible system. If Becca created this she failed horribly. If she didn’t come up with a decent system to replace herself, she failed horribly. A different tangent, it still hasn’t been confirmed what the chip actually does to enhance it’s host. Why was Becca made into the first Commander in the first place? To go from some semblance of a representational government to an authoritarian regime based on kids killing each other just doesn’t compute. Is this some kind of commentary on The Hunger Games?

    Returning to the shitty conclave system (meant to emulate the Papal succession I think) Titus said he’d served 5 or 6 commanders, and since he doesn’t appear very old, you can imply that there’s a pretty fast turnover. Lexa serving 5 or 6 years may have been one of the longest tenures. And we don’t know how people become a black blood. We saw Becca make herself a black blood via injection. But it almost can’t be something you can pass on genetically, 1. because of how it started and 2. because they kill off the people who have the trait. So it seems extremely likely that a Commander could die and there not be any nightbloods around to take the flame.


    4) If the AI in Lexa’s neck is so important to the conclave and the role of the flamekeeper, why was Titus never around in season 2 when Lexa could have died at any time? Shouldn’t Titus have been with Lexa at all times? What would have happened if she died at Mount Weather or in the bombing of TonDC? If it is such an important ritual, why wasn’t his character around since Lexa’s introduction?

    He was literally only invented to murder Lexa. 🙁 You can maybe make the case that the Commander’s body is always returned to Polis for death rites, but what happens in the case where the Commander’s body is destroyed? What if the Commander dies in a fire? What if the Commander is eaten by a Pauna? Just another point where this “system of government” was so poorly conceptualized and details were overlooked because they wanted to do a cool AI plot.

  2. Wasnt sinclair under the AI in previous episodes?
    Why did this episode show him as if he didnt see ALIE this whole time. He should have been fighting them as much as Raven was!

  3. I don’t know the answer to the first question, but the answers to the rest are there, granted, mostly in context.

    2/3) Yes, it’s a fight to the death, and that’s why Ontari thinks she gets to be the commander after slaughtering the other Nightbloods. Clarke basically points out how broken a system this is to Titus after Ontari becomes commander. She asks him why they have them kill each other if they Nightbloods are the only ones who can take the flame. It’s a horrible system, but it’s the system they have, and it’s the reason why all the shit is hitting the fan.

    I’m much more interested in why only Nightbloods can be commander. Why does the AI only work for them, and kill everyone else?

    4) This is basically just writing. Obviously, they created the character this season so it makes sense that he wasn’t around in season 2.

    Now, if you want to really get down into the narrative, I would assume you COULD say that he is arguably more important than the commander. They have a system (a stupid one, but a system regardless) for choosing a new commander, but they only have one Flamekeeper (again horrible planing, what is with these people?). If Lexa dies, then they can get a new commander. If Titus dies, then they’re fucked. Then again, it did seem like there was a time constraint on removing the AI, so …

    5) Jaha is getting what everyone else is getting: a life free of pain and discomfort. If you have enough of it, then it’s an easy sacrifice to make (look at Raven or Jasper), and since the AI takes away any memory of anything that’s associated with that pain, you don’t realize what it’s actually doing to you.

    6) The City of Light is a hive mind. ALIE is working on some sort of problem that we don’t understand yet. She uses the brains of people she’s inside to process the information she needs to figure out that problem. Kind of like devoting servers to an algorithm or a search or a puzzle. She needs more computing power to make the job go faster. The more people, the more power.

    7) Indra was pretty against doing much of anything after she was injured. I assume she went off to attend Lexa’s death rites, but then all the shit with Ontari. She’s only been gone for a little bit, so I would say she’ll be back before too long. I would assume, now that Lincoln is gone, that Indra is the only person who is likely to help them find Luna.

  4. I did love your articles wrt The 100 and I always think you’re spot on, so specifically for your stuff I’m always keen to hear your voice on it. And to be frank, the plot-holes aren’t plot-holes as much as they are plot-canyons. I admire your diplomacy in dissecting what is essentially a very inaccurate, incredibly unoriginal show.

    To start with the Nightbloods–it simply doesn’t make sense, and even Clarke points that out. I would assume that since Becca injected herself with it, she was the first “natblida” and thus it was a genetic modification; years down the line it would have assumed heritage/she would’ve injected others–thus spreading the nightblood. However, the Conclave is a ridiculous idea. Why gather all feasible (is it all Nightbloods?) commanders and have them fight…to the death? Biologically it is nonsensical–it completely wipes out their population and endangers it; after the Anakin Skywalker rip-off Ontari exulted (again, still not shocking, still just pointlessly showing her 2D villainy) murder of the kid Nightbloods, does this mean Ontari is the *only* nightblood left except Luna? Literally the only 2 people left on the planet? Isn’t that kind of a messed up system or are they just gonna have to pop them babies out real quick?!

    4 is an excellent point because up until this season, we have known Anya, Indra and Gustus to be Lexa’s trustees. Even the briefly mentioned Tristan was a leader of some Trikru contingent. So Titus’ random appearance is completely nonsensical. I think Neil Sandilands is wonderful in the role, but to have him not mentioned once is baffling and lazy plotting. As for the search for Luna–it’s now getting to a point where I don’t know if the higher-ups think it’s a good idea to revisit series 1 namedrops but observing the fandom, it’s exhausted them to a point where nobody even cares anymore.

    My last point is just for your excellent observations re: ALIE. It is point-blank the most ridiculous, nonsensical, outrageous AI plot I have *ever* seen–and I’ve seen quite a few. First of all, it is entirely not feasible for ALIE 1.0 to just roam about without a gigantic backup of hardware stored in a secret location. Then there’s the problem of transport–the backpacks were funny for a while but how is her power being transferred? The chips cannot physically exert enough power in order to support ALIE; the power required to sustain an ASI would be immense and would fry the chip-taker to death. So that’s a hardware problem. Secondly, ALIE’s weird possession of Raven (and that was just disturbing and unnecessary to see) *is fundamentally not what AIs do!* AIs are artificial intelligences that observe the world either remotely or, if I’m going to go along with The 100’s insane narrative, via these backpacks. AIs *do not have the power to possess people*. That is entirely not what an AI is, at its very core, and it is driving so far from sci-fi into “completely bonkers witchery” that–I cannot even scientifically comprehend it. The idea of the chip being unlocked by a *password* is….laughable…and it just makes no sense. The entire AI story had promise. Imagine if they had split ALIE/civil war over two seasons and they overlapped; the theme of humanity remains strong yet what it will boil down to is the fact that ALIE 1.0 wants to destroy humanity (again) for her COL, and ALIE 2.0 (oh jeez…) wants to stop ALIE 1.0 making it a battle of the two AI’s (haven’t heard this storyline before). But in cramming this hideously researched storyline into a rushed civil war plot (did it just…kind of…melt away?) is disappointing.

    So many factors contribute towards a civil war. There could’ve been hugely intense episodes of build-up; of switch-up of perspective (especially wrt Ice Nation!!) and some real political swindling within the walls of Polis. We could’ve gotten a look into how Lexa forged this coalition together. We could’ve gotten actual world-building. In the meantime, ALIE 1.0 could’ve been messing with her “let’s kill humanity” scheme–but what if you integrated ALIE 1.0 within the central plot? What if ALIE 1.0 is somehow meddling and stirring the pot the civil war, by perhaps manipulating or using say, the Ice Nation? Then there could’ve been promises of battles, of a less boring Arkadia, of the moral squabbles Lexa must make as a leader, of the consequences of war–and I find that such an important point the show glosses over. In its fast pace it has also tripped over its own feet in its ‘hype’ of being ‘groundbreaking’. I fail to understand why one Arker death is so deeply mourned yet the planned genocide of 300 peacekeeping grounders is swept under the rug because apparently nobody cares. The show reeks of horrible colonialist themes, and it is so, so disappointing considering the hype and potential the show actually had, at the beginning of the season–even if the quality of the show was sub-par and it was on the CW. It still had promise.

    I don’t think I’ll ever understand points 5 and 6 lmao but I admire you for bringing those up. There are so many giant plotholes on the show that’ll never be covered and aren’t covered (or are, but they’re so predictable it’s insane) that you really make a good case for this article. I just get frustrated with this show because of its potential. It was frankly terrible to start with but grew into something that could’ve been. Now it is quite frankly widely labelled by big publications as the show ‘not to take an example of’–and it’s quite sad to see that 360 over the course of just 11(? 12?) episodes.

    Thank you as ever for providing a rational thoughtpiece!

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