The 100 3×10 “Fallen”: Disregarding the Audience

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(*This post contains MAJOR SPOILERS for episode 3×10 of the 100. If you haven’t seen it yet, read no further!*)

(***The TRIGGER WARNINGS for episode 3×10 will be mentioned in this article!***)

You know there is a major problem when it is necessary for fans to issue multiple trigger warnings for a network TV show that is geared towards teens and young adults.  Throughout the day on Thursday, fans were warning each other about triggering moments of rape, torture, and self-harm that would occur in the latest episode of The 100, urging everyone to stay safe.

After watching the past few episodes, it seems that the writers are forgetting one fundamental aspect of their show:  it is not on cable.  It is not specifically created for a mature audience.  It is a TV show on the CW, not HBO, with a majority of their audience being young people.  It is clear that, by including these extreme, triggering acts, The 100 not only disregarded its audience but also ignored what is and is not appropriate.

For the past few weeks, a show that was once a source of comfort and excitement for fans has become a source of pain, trauma, and anger,  unnecessarily emphasizing gory, horrendous plots and characters.  The 100 has lost its intriguing entertainment value and has become an hour-long trauma-fest filled with underdeveloped storylines and an overabundance of shock-value.

Like last week episode, the latest was not intriguing and was filled with multiple plot holes; it was uneventful and flat, so much so that I have been having a tough time trying to think of something to write.  I guess I’ll just get into the positive and negatives.  (Positive. Singular.)

Positive: LINDSEY. MORGAN.  Lindsey Morgan was hands down the best part of episode 3×10.  Though we, yet again, saw Raven experiencing pain, this time on a whole new level, her acting was so captivating.  Between Raven trying to get ALIE out of her head in the beginning of the episode and ALIE controlling Raven’s body, Morgan was brilliant.  Her head tilts and body language were spot-on, leaving fans in awe of her performance.  Lindsey Morgan was just incredible, from beginning to end.

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MAJOR negatives (I don’t think negative is a strong enough word):  Unfortunately, all of the trigger warnings were true.  In the episode, Raven was tortured by ALIE, Abby was forced to take the City of Light chip against her will after watching ALIE slit Raven’s wrists while controlling her body, and, of course, we can’t forget to mention Ontari’s disgusting scene with Murphy.  Not only did Ontari coerce Murphy into having sex with her by threatening his life and pulling him by the chain around his neck, but the scene seemed to make light of it. It was appalling and disgusting. In typical The 100-fashion, these horrific acts were fast paced, occurring one after another.  Not only was it dark, but it was also entirely uncomfortable to watch.  A network TV show should not make the audience feel sickened by what they see, especially a show on the CW.

Clarke.png editedOther negatives: Clarke was in the episode for a minute.  And in that minute, she was (yet again) blamed for the deaths at Mount Weather and she has still not mourned the loss of Lexa, on-screen at least.  In addition to the lack of Clarke throughout the episode, Ontari has been disappointing.  Lexa was arguably one of the most complex characters on the show, and after her death, she was replaced with Ontari, whose character depth has been almost nonexistent.  Complexity and intrigue were replaced by a one-dimensional character whose sole purpose thus far was to ruin what the show set up in the first six episodes of the season.

Unfortunately, this has become a recurring theme: week after week the fans flock together to comfort each other in the wake of yet another traumatic, painful episode.  Many fans, myself included, miss the tone of the show’s first and second seasons.  We miss riveting storylines, the character driven plots, and comRaven 4.png editedpelling twists that do not glorify violence or shock value deaths.  We miss the days when we could simply watch the show and reflect on it together, sharing theories and interpretations, geeking out over our favorite characters.  We used to look forward to the episode all week, counting down the days and hours until we got to see the show we loved.  This hasn’t happened for over a month.  Now, if you check social media after or during The 100, you’ll see the fans defeated, comforting each other, warning others to not watch the episodes, all because their show, the one they loved and looked forward to, hurt them yet again.

Hopefully, next week there will be something else to write about other than the disappointment, disgust, and extreme problematic elements of the episode.  I really want to focus on something positive but after everything that has happened on the show, I don’t think it is possible for The 100 to redeem itself as fast as some of its characters seem to…


  1. I don’t even watch the show but i have seen enough of it on social media that i have pretty much seen the show lol and I just have to say: you nailed it once more. Ms. Marie!! This is excellent. I’m so glad that you’re highlighting all these problems. I’ve heard awesome things about Ms. Morgan’s acting in this episode so I don’t know whether to watch it or not (I think for my sanity I won’t…I hear there are some triggering things) but she’s amazing. I am a huge fan of hers and I am glad she’s getting her acting chops out. Honestly, she deserves better than this rapidly tanking ‘show’.

    Prof. Elizabeth Bridges said on twitter that it’s not even shocking for shock value anymore… it’s not shocking…for no value… and that really hit me because she’s totally right. First off whatever this AI storyline is *does not make sense* and whoever did the research for that is just… bonkers (but then Jaha and the missile to earth thing…) and quite frankly boring. But what most offends me is the sidelining of Clarke (POST EPISODE SEVEN) in which Clarke’s only screen time is as you say to get blamed for literally everything. Great – she returns to Arkadia, gets blamed for everything she’s ever done, gets it thrown in her face – guess thats what happens when the only person in the world who truly understood your burdens, leadership, sometimes loneliness, is gone and dead. Now the simple arkadians (god I really dislike Ontari – sure the actress is lovely but she’s so 2 dimensional) are just hating on Clarke and I’m just like…dude she saved all your sorry butts in the season 2 finale, shut up.

    What is most offensive is the fact that the show made two people of colour (Pike and Hannah) the head of this ridiculous tyrannical reign over Arkadia, executed the man of colour Lincoln (how very torture porney and gross – did they look up the historical implications and exact examples of such acts?) and most offensively, how the perpetrators of a huge massacre in Hakeldama – I’d hasten to call it ethnic cleansing, to be honest – have gone scot-free from punishment. Good grief, when in all of history has that been unpunished? And I’m assuming this horribly paced show will redeem such characters in about 0.5 seconds. It is really rather a worrying message that a teen show sends out – let’s not pretend this show is anything else, c’mon – when it shows you that when you succumb to love, you get shot; it shows explicitly the exact nature of how to commit suicide (Raven); it consistently uses Raven, a woman of colour, as a torture toy; it did the same to Lincoln until they imprisoned him for simply who he was and then executed him. The racist and colonialist themes of this show are quite disgusting, considering they peddle themselves as groundbreaking or dark or edgy – you know, I overuse this but if there is no beacon of hope in this boring world of darkness, then there’s no point – the story just becomes… devoid of anything. I mean, it’s devoid of a plot, so…

    have to say typing this out is tiring me out…had a tiring day but i really wanted to air my thoughts on this because this show is increasingly offensive – to about every single minority there is out there. I won’t even mention the disgusting Ontari/Murphy stuff. Didn’t they say they didn’t wanna be GOT? Well, they’re not. They’re worse. And to be quite frank, all I’ve seen on social media is people watching the show illegally or on unofficial streams just to laugh at how bad at is. You know, there are still fan favourites like Clarke, Octavia and Raven on the show but when they’re getting this kinda treatment all for a single, lame redemption arc … these women aren’t “strong women in power”. These female characters are props for the males to redeem themselves and become heroes once more, because that’s what we need more of on TV.

    I love your reviews, Ms. Marie. I think they are blunt, to the point, concise and excellent. I don’t even mind that I’m exhausting myself typing out this post because this is so, so good and on it. Thank you so much for reviewing, and I’m sorry to had to sit through and actually watch that thing. I’d say you’re a close second because I feel worse for Raven, but I do feel bad for you.

    (I have a question: do American channels air warnings before/after a show? Here in the UK, especially on channel four and E4, on which The 100 airs, they air warnings – such as “this may trigger[…..]” and they also give links to hotlines and websites viewers can visit if traumatised by certain scenes. Is that a thing in America? It should be on the CW, to be frank. On every episode. “This episode may trigger some offence for the obscenely bad and inconsistent writing…”)

    A lovely positive, though. I will say that there’s been nothing but praise for Ms. Morgan’s incredible acting. Thank you for this review 🙂

    1. Thank you so much for commenting! It was difficult to watch and difficult to write about but thank you for the kind words! Whenever I think it can’t possibly get any worse, it does. As far as I know there were no actual trigger warnings aired before the show…I could be wrong! The only trigger warnings I was aware of were from the fans on tumblr and twitter. But you’re right: the show has become entirely offensive. It’s exhausting to watch. So disappointing.

  2. Lindsey Morgan, indeed all the women on this show, are being grossly underused this season. It’s a shame that they’ve failed so spectacularly at identifying the best parts of their own show. Lexa’s death was a blow but in truth the show jumped the shark the second Pike and Bellamy decided to go on a murder spree for reasons I still don’t understand. Clarke spending all season concerned about “her people” when those same people couldn’t care less about her is ridiculous. I’m not going to watch her be blamed for everything yet again.

    The season should have been Grounders/Arkers versus Ice Nation and Alie.

    1. I agree. This season had so much potential but it was ruined in a second. And the way they’ve treated the women on the show in the past few episodes is so upsetting. Clarke can’t catch a break and it constantly hurled into a new disaster where she is, again, blamed for everything. It’s so upsetting to watch week after week. Thanks for commenting!

  3. This show is getting more and more problematic each week. It’s all aestethics over storylines and cohesive story telling. The impact that the rape scene has is just disgusting. It’s sending the message that men can’t be raped if a hot women getting naked because of course we are all penis driven. How can one be so insensitive and dumb to write this scene so ambiguously? If you wanted to show the messed up dynamic/chemistry between Murphy/Ontari then there were thousand of other ways. Putting a rape scene in the mood of some ‘sexy foreplay’ just show the 100 writers immaturity and inability to handle a serious mature issue. Did they thought having one fighting scene similar to Game of Thrones got them on the same level of complexity and greatness of that show? Time to wake up and realize it’s not violence, killing off many characters or sexual assault scenes that is making a show’s dark tone.

    1. They’ve replaced intriguing storylines and good writing with unnecessary violence and brutality. You’re right: they’re sending the wrong messages and everything they set up in the previous seasons about life being about more than surviving has been disregarded and now I have no idea what the message is anymore! The show was already being compared to Game of Thrones because of their storytelling before this season even aired so why do they feel the need to darken the show to an unwatchable extent? Thanks for the comment!

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