Synopsis of 2×08: Camp Jaha butt heads over what to do with Finn, as flashbacks show his and Raven’s relationship on the Ark.
Major spoilers below for the mid-season finale of The 100!
I’ll be honest, I wasn’t really sure how to even react to this episode.
From last week’s conclusion, it seemed Finn’s future was pretty much set in stone, as far as the Grounders were concerned. A truce would be had if Camp Jaha appeased their blood for blood request. And if this was any other show, I’d expect them to make a turn around this episode in an effort to save Finn, and in a way they kind of did.
After bringing the request back to the camp, it becomes very obvious that giving up Finn to the Grounders is a necessary evil. We haven’t really seen serious repercussions for Finn’s actions at the village; it seems like everyone is willing to push the fact that he killed eighteen people in cold blood aside when they were reunited. If it had been an unfair trade, if Finn had killed a murderer, if those villagers had had weapons, if it had been anything other than Finn gunning down unarmed people because he had a mental break; it may have been just to consider getting out of the Grounders’ request.
But, as we are reminded through the Grounders and the flashbacks and through Abby and Jaha’s conversations, this is a new world, and there’s no wiggle room. Is it so outlandish to request justice for the villagers when the citizens of the Ark would have requested the same from Raven had she been caught in the space suit? The answer, of course, is no.
It seems that Clarke, Raven, Bellamy, Octavia, and even Murphy were all ready to do what ever it cost to save Finn. It didn’t help that Lincoln revealed that Finn would be tortured through the night upon being turned into the Grounders and killed in the morning for his crimes. And while Finn did once lobby for Lincoln’s protection and for his life in the past, not even that is enough to soften Lincoln’s heart to Finn’s actions, especially after facing his own demons. He knows the choices that Lexa faces as the leader of a Grounder.
I couldn’t not really reason why Bellamy and Murphy were so ready to protect Finn other than the fact that they had simply had developed a blind loyalty to the their own people. A year ago this would have been an laughable assumption, but after all that they have been through, it’s clear that the surviving delinquents will trust their own before they trust the rest of Camp Jaha. Clarke was ready to sacrifice herself in place of Finn for the pure fact that the actions he committed were because of her. His loyalty and willingness to do whatever it takes for the people he loves was always his best trait. Raven’s loyalty to Finn is more support of that fact.
The flashbacks in the episode of the events of a year ago tell us Finn was arrested, and give us a proper look into just how close Finn and Raven’s relationship has been. It also reasons Raven tricking Murphy into going to the drop ship in an attempt to trade him for Finn, it reasons Raven handing Clarke a blade to kill Lexa in order to save Finn. Since the beginning, we’ve always been told that Finn and Raven were close, but after meeting Clarke and thinking he’d lost Raven for good, it’s always been hard to identify who he was before he met Clarke. In the flashbacks, we got to see a lighter Finn and Raven, and the Finn that Raven had known for most of her life. The Finn you would do anything for.
In many ways this episode redeemed Finn for me. His romance with Clarke was never a huge selling point for me and his pacifist, fun-loving attitude felt out of place in the first season given their situation. It seemed inevitable that he’d have some kind of break down; the fact that it came at the hands of eighteen innocent lives was in true The 100 style: definitely not half-assed. His own readiness to sacrifice himself reminded me was a call to the old Finn. He understood the consequences of his actions, and he wasn’t about to let more people die for his own mistakes.
It seemed that we might have gotten Finn back at least for a trial by Camp Jaha when Kane appeared from the Grounders camp. After talking with Lexa, he negotiated the possibility of trying Finn on war crimes within Camp Jaha as an act of mercy. I have been really sad at the loss of Anya, but it seems that after the results of this episode that Lexa will be developing a good relationship with Camp Jaha, especially Clarke. Before they can make any real decision on what to do, the kids have already taken Finn out of Camp Jaha to defend him at the drop ship.
It’s hard to believe that Clarke, Bellamy, and Raven all fell for Finn’s plan of defending the drop ship by splitting up. It was clear that Finn was ready to give himself up.
In the last ditch effort to try and save Finn, Clarke tried to exchange herself for Lexa, telling her tearfully that Finn killed those people for her, to which Lexa replies unflinchingly, “Then he dies for you.” Allowing her to say her final goodbye to Finn, Clarke did the most merciful thing she could do. Farewell, Spacewalker. The reactions from Camp Jaha, I think, showed the Ark survivors just what kind of people the delinquents have been forced to be. It showed Lexa and the Grounders what kind of person Clarke was. It seems that Lexa will let her act go, stating after it is revealed Finn is dead that “it is done”, but was justice really done? Blood must have blood, but was the merciful death of Finn equal to the justice they wanted?
I’m more than ready to move on past Finn. Like I said, he was my least favorite character. I really applaud Jason Rothenberg for doing what had to be done with Finn’s character. It’s become a darker world, and it’ll either make you stronger, or break you completely. We’ll see what happens to Clarke after the events of Finn’s death and if it’ll strengthen or break her.
The 100 returns January 21st with “Remember Me”.