In The 100’s fifth and strongest installment of season seven, storylines begin to merge as the plot finally moves forward (even via flashbacks) and stops stalling by using bottle episodes and cyclic storylines. To top the entertaining and fast-paced episode off with a much-awaited, albeit brief, return, “Welcome to Bardo” finds its strength as relationships drive the plot for what feels like the first time all season.
BARDO: 45 DAYS AGO
We learn in this episode that time on Bardo runs slower than Sanctum, but not quite as slow as on Penance. One year on Penance is approximately two days on Bardo, complicating the timelines even further.
Picking up right from where “The Garden” left off, Diyoza and Octavia enter Bardo after getting dragged through the anomaly by the Disciples. Diyoza quickly exists the screen, barely giving us a glimpse of her face, yet her voice rings out as she commands Octavia not to divulge any information.
Octavia behaves in typical Octavia fashion and ten years in relative peace on a deserted planet doesn’t dampen her abilities (although quickly learned on Earth). She fights off the Disciples one by one, first ducking into an elevator she can’t seem to operate before heading up to level two, where she runs into a vast arboretum.
In a significant moment when the score transitions from the typical fight-scene action score to a solemn moment with higher notes signifies a moment of reflection as Octavia darts into a place similar to what she’d probably call home. I’m not a huge Octavia fan, especially in earlier seasons, but even this moment elicited a fond remembrance mainly in part by the music, which Tree Adams still crafts beautifully. Unfortunately, this imitation of Earth is not all sweet callbacks and reflective moments. Octavia runs, but is quickly surrounded by many Disciples in ghost mode, ending the episode’s introductory sequence.
“Welcome to Bardo,” one of the Disciples greet her as he peers upon the incapacitated girl. It’s not a very warm welcome. Then again, Octavia doesn’t invite warm greetings. Fighting has become part of her core and, not unlike other characters, even peace won’t pacify her draw to chaos and resistance. Which, in this case, may help stall for her rescue, but won’t absolve Octavia of any pain.
M-CAP: 45 DAYS AGO
Octavia, now captured, still resists as Levitt, the M-Cap technician, and Anders, the first Disciple, begin questioning her. Inferring from the dialogue, Octavia is a unique subject, as Anders typically isn’t around for this process. He wants to know about their origins and their knowledge of the bridge system (the anomaly). Levitt, on the other hand, appears as a more sympathetic individual, as sympathetic as you can be when painfully extracting people’s memories barring their consent. He acts as the henchmen with a good heart buried underneath, attempting to prevent her from harm. If she struggles too much physically, the lasers used in memory capture could lobotomize her.
Asking Octavia a baseline question, her deep relationship with Bellamy comes to light, and the technology converts her memories to holographic images. We finally see Bellamy (!), even if the continuity is mismatched and images display moments yet to happen in the timeline. Octavia continues to struggle as they drive deeper.
Bellamy’s return to the narrative is refreshing, save for Echo’s broody comments about doing whatever it takes to rescue him (and she meant whatever). Bellamy’s sorely missed presence on The 100 becomes even more glaringly obvious. It only takes refocusing the narrative and name-dropping (or image-dropping) him to guide the story down a path that feels more akin to The 100 most fans know and love. “Welcome to Bardo” continues to remind us why Bellamy is vital, just as much the key as Clarke is.
M-CAP: 34 DAYS AGO
Levitt continues to implore Octavia to open up, once again mentioning how horrible the M-Cap procedure can be if done by someone other than him. He indicates the process could burn through her brain. Adding in the possibility of lobotomy described earlier, it’s easiest to conclude that these mentions serve more than a warning to Octavia, but as a foreshadowing of things to come. What has M-Cap done to Diyoza? She’s been missing for days at this point. With Diyoza’s fate yet to be revealed and these not-so-subtle disclaimers of side-effects, one can only presume these apply to her story more than Octavia’s.
Levitt’s conversation with Octavia brings up a memory with Hope, which is finally the bargaining tool needed for the Disciples to access the necessary memories. Octavia bargains with Levitt, offering him all of her other memories as long as he leaves out her time with Hope. This, in turn, saves Hope, allowing her to live out her time with Dev with no disturbance. Octavia warns Levitt he won’t approve of her life, but like a typical fanboy binging her story on The 100, that’s not the case.
M-CAP: 31 DAYS AGO
It’s been three days since Octavia agreed to cooperate. Meanwhile, Levitt has binged Octavia’s life from the beginning up until almost the final moments of the season three finale. As the image on Levitt’s screen displays Clarke at the throne, the Disciple’s interest in Clarke, and mostly like the way she utilized Becca’s technology, is further solidified.
But Levitt, unlike Anders, is more interested in Octavia’s life story and he cheers as he witnesses Octavia murder Pike. However, Octavia sheds a tear, perhaps from still working through her guilt, as she hasn’t faced Pike via the hallucination she witnessed after returning from the anomaly last season.
She still subscribes to her identity as a killer, even though she’s begun to move past it through her newfound family. Levitt gives her a long-winded speech about how her heart is pure, but it feels misplaced. Octavia has had good intentions, but she’s also had bad ones. However, Levitt only views one perspective of her history while peering into her head. Even as Octavia taunts him about what he has yet to see, Levitt guides the conversation back to Clarke and the day she destroyed the City of Light.
Circling back to a theory I introduced in my review of “Hesperides,” this day could be essential in deciphering The Disciples’ intentions for Clarke and why they want to seek her out. If Clarke’s connection to Becca and her technology is imperative to their final war (as perhaps alluded to), this day would be one of the most significant ones of hers to Anders. This is the day she used both AIs developed by Becca to end a conflict.
Becca’s conflicts tend to have world-ending consequences, which are also a sore spot for The Disciples as Anders reveal they use technology created by the past inhabitants of the planet who destroyed its surface. If Clarke’s access and mastering of these technologies elevate her importance, then it’s no wonder Levitt wanted to focus on this memory. As the memory capture is interrupted before he can move forward, it’s possible Clarke could still be integrated with the flame. Fortunately for us, it’s buried in the dirt on another moon.
Interrupted by Hope, the session stops, and the two women share an emotional moment. Hope threatens Levitt and forces him to take them to the bridge room to send Octavia home before Hope pursues her mother. Unfortunately, for Octavia’s safe return and Diyoza’s rescue, Octavia must sacrifice her memories so Hope can meet all of her goals. Levitt, however, finds a way to record Hope’s mind-code and imprint it on Octavia’s back in the hopes she could decipher it and reunite with her family. Octavia beats Levitt up (for appearance’s sake) before saying an emotional goodbye to Hope. She receives her ugly season six coat back, shoehorned in for continuity’s sake, and stumbles through the anomaly, leaving the other side into Gabriel’s arms.
Out of all the new dynamics introduced so far this season, Hope and Octavia are my favorite. The relationship is familial, but not that of mother and daughter. Marie Avgeropolous continues to be one of the strongest actresses on The 100 despite not always being a fan of her character arcs, so this is no surprise. The emotion reads easily as the two women are close, saying goodbye to each other, not knowing if they will ever reunite or, more importantly, remember. Their relationship fares better than the newfound dynamics between Echo, Hope, and Gabriel, as well as dynamics finding a new focus, like Clarke and Gaia. It can’t be easy to play a relationship spanning years with a lot of unseen development.
By contrast, other relationships in the past have failed (I’m looking at you Spacekru), where Octavia’s relationship with Hope has flourished. Her relationship with Octavia is perhaps the most natural for her to connect to. Hope, now presented narratively as a (if not the) protagonist, doesn’t have much else regarding unique qualities or intriguing relationships. Marie’s portrayal of Octavia, which shows her growth as a character, provides the dynamic Hope needs to become closer to a successful late-series addition to the story and the case.
Levitt, on the other hand, stands out as the weakest link of the episode, mostly due to writing. While the character is portrayed well by Jason Diaz, Levitt’s character experiences an issue prevalent among the first several episodes of season seven: convenience. Levitt is a character that is utterly convenient to Octavia’s storyline, to a point where he’s almost obviously a cliché. It’s not a coincidence that the first time this process is revealed to the audience, it is done through a conventionally attractive, kind-hearted man. Is this a first-time occurrence for Levitt? If not, it’s hard to believe that Anders and the other disciples haven’t yet questioned his devotion to The Shepard. By all indications, Levitt should have landed himself in Penance by now.
That said, it’s not the only glaring issue with his role in the episode. Levitt’s a fanboy. Octavia’s kidnappers always seem to fall in love with her and this is no different. Even beyond kindness, we see him relating to Octavia only in a way that her fans relate to her after seeing her journey on the show. Once again, this feels out of place. Yes, he did peer through her mind for three days straight, but her actions don’t deserve applause, especially ones of violence and lashing out. Levitt could turn out to be a well-needed foil to the other Disciples at Bardo, but his obnoxious infatuation with the woman needs to be toned down, along with his corny lines stolen from her past.
BARDO: 7 DAYS AGO
After being captured for twenty-four days, Hope agrees to go on a mission for Anders. She retrieves Octavia for him and nothing happens to Hope’s mother, who still hasn’t appeared since her capture. Octavia is essential purely for her knowledge, as Hope’s memory capture doesn’t provide anything fruitful. Hope “tags” Octavia, stabbing her, which brings her back to Bardo, a sequence we’ve seen in season six’s finale. Wasting no time, Anders sends her to medical, and then to memory capture to continue his pry for information regarding Clarke.
Octavia once again finds herself in M-Cap with Levitt, who by now is no longer on Team Disciples. Earlier that day, he helps Hope by implanting the “Trust Bellamy” message in her arm and then attempts to aid Octavia. While Levitt is unable to remain on Octavia’s case, he imparts her with essential information: if she repeats a mantra, she can lock the M-Cap machine out from her brain. After being interrupted again, Anders enters proclaiming that her brother (Yes, Bellamy!) is here and causing trouble. They need Octavia to calm him down.
Entering the room, we finally see Bellamy Blake. And god, was he missed! Somehow, he was able to knock out the Disciples who took him in traditional Bellamy Blake fashion. He holds a conductor (Disciples who control the anomaly) captive as Anders and Octavia enter. Anders wants to talk to Bellamy, but Bellamy resists, demanding the release of his sister. While all of the major players in the scene exchange looks, Octavia offers her memories up for Bellamy’s safety and makes sure to mention Clarke’s name, which alerts Bellamy.
Anders obliges and enters a code into the anomaly stone against the protest of Bellamy’s hostage. But before anything happens, one of the soldiers Bellamy knocked out sets off a type of energy bomb, pushing everyone back. But by the time the environment clears, Bellamy is gone, presumably dead. However, he’s obviously not dead. With no body and no nuclear catastrophe to ensure his demise, Bellamy is simply gone. If anything, he was able to escape to the anomaly, or the explosion pushed him into it. But this begs the question: where is Bellamy now?
This entire scene is questionable. The looks exchanged between the conductor and Anders, as well as the seemingly coded dialogue between Octavia and Bellamy, begs the question: what was the plan?
Anders initially wanted to speak with Bellamy, so it’s hard to believe he ever intended to send Bellamy back to Sanctum. The goal is to rendition everyone to Bardo. Now that Anders has him in his grasp, he wouldn’t want to let go. The conductor is always aware of some other plan going on and it probably isn’t challenging to pick up that Clarke has significance to him (way more than significance) based on Octavia’s explicit statement regarding Clarke and Bellamy’s confused yet panicked reaction.
Knowing that the anomaly doesn’t always spit out people in the exact location of the stone (see: Sanctum, Nakara, and Penance), is it possible that the anomaly can take people to a different place on the same planet? While this would trick Octavia and she would be none the wiser, he also could keep the older Blake from within his grasp. There is something fishy going on, no matter the location Bellamy ended up in. Wherever it is, it’s not Sanctum, and I fear for the plans Anders has for the older Blake, and what horrors he may go through when he resists M-Cap.
Then again, we may not have the full story. This scene was viewed as a memory recording in the M-Cap system and there is much not yet learned about the Disciple’s technological capabilities. Could this scene have been edited in a specific way to cover-up the real occurrences, similar to the memory Josephine showed Clarke in the mind space? Perhaps we don’t have the complete picture as this was pulled from Octavia’s memory, showing only her perspective. With Octavia currently repeating her mantra to protect her memories, how did the Disciples access this moment despite this?
Like with Hope, there are many possibilities of hidden intentions and missing information leading to unreliable narration. We think we know what’s going on in Bardo, but do we? As wonderful as it was to see Bellamy again, I can’t help but think that this set up is to prolong his absence and allow another reveal later in the season.
While his appearance is brief, it’s striking as Bellamy cares a certain weight and a whole lot of the heart of The 100. With an episode centered around Octavia and Bellamy’s reintroduction into the narrative, The 100 begins to feel like itself again. This is where the narrative ought to remain (along with Clarke). As the first four episodes and promotional material continue to prove, Bob Morley is a necessity for The 100 to be successful. Let’s hope he returns much sooner than expected. Viewers can’t live off of Bellamy mentions and holograms forever.
BARDO: PRESENT DAY
This timeline picks up where Echo, Hope, and Gabriel left off, with them entering the anomaly. Hope, possibly having caught the kill-bug, immediately stabs a Disciple. While Echo and Gabriel only knocked out the two Disciples they encountered, Echo quickly moves to cut the knocked-out soldiers’ throats, in the same haunting way she had previously on Penance.
“Without Orlando, we don’t need to take unnecessary risks.” – Hope
“Leaving Orlando was an unnecessary risk.” – Gabriel
Gabriel is the only one who is upset with the unnecessary slaughter and he makes a good point about their mission becoming riskier due to the lack of an inside man. Logistically, it probably would have made more sense to get rid of Orlando later in the game, as they later find out that Orlando didn’t inform them of every detail regarding Bardo.
In an interesting admission, Echo refers to Levitt as their inside man, but that’s a gamble. Gabriel, however, didn’t know about him, implying that Echo and Hope have made plans of their own, circumventing Gabriel in the process. With Gabriel adverse to the two women’s tactics, the cracks begin to form in the trio, setting it up for a tenuous dynamic moving forward. Chuku Modu plays a frustrated man quite well, lagging slightly behind as he’s now backed into a corner.
They all had the same goal before: get to Bardo. Now that they’re there, their intents diverge with a clear difference in priorities. The situation has backed Gabriel into a corner and now he’s stuck with two people he thought he knew, but no longer trusts. Meanwhile, Echo and Hope are both trying to save someone, but different people, which will color their behavior moving forward. The trio attempt to head to M-Cap, but are stopped by other Disciples and to maintain cover, and must go to a meeting in the arboretum.
The meeting is led by Anders, who we’ve seen before. He clearly holds power within the society and I can think of none other to play him other than Neal McDonough, who’s known for playing villainous roles in series like Legends of Tomorrow.
“Like our ancestors on the Earth, they destroyed their world. Even before they were wiped out by Gen 9 and turned into crystal giants, their atmosphere was so polluted they were forced to build forests underground in order to breathe. Even the rain that should fall from the sky; it falls instead by their technology. For that, we thank them … They didn’t have faith, so they lost their last great battle. The same is coming after us. But in the light of the Shepard, we will not lose. We are close now. We have located the key. After hundreds of years, it has returned. Ours is the generation that will win the last war.” – Anders
Insteringly enough, a decent amount of information comes to light as Anders speaks to his Disciples. Through his speech, we learn that the Disciples came to this planet via the anomaly and their technology was left for them to use. However, the now-extinct Bardonians once had a beautiful world and they destroyed it. If The Disciples are the descendants, it’s interesting they chose to remain in a bunker-like home instead of venturing to a different planet or moon with plenty of natural amenities such as Sanctum or Penance. Even Octavia and her people opted to leave their bunker despite only spending six years there.
Could Clarke or the flame be the key they are looking for? This still connects to Becca, as Cadogan burned her at the stake. Could the Bardonians advanced, integrated technology also similarly caused their downfall as ALIE created Earth’s?
We also get a confirmation at this moment that The Disciples aren’t from Eligius, which leads Gabriel to conclude that Earth has or had an anomaly stone. So, how long until we go back? However, something grips Hope pushing her to inch forward in the crowd in what appears as a short-sighted attempt to take him out. Echo stops her, however, reminding her of the mission.
We’re still missing something when it comes to Hope. Having left Bardo seven days prior, Hope was stuck there for 24 days and we’ve seen nothing of that time. It’s possible there is still pertinent information regarding this time she spent in Bardo and it’s purposely still concealed. What could have happened in that time? Too many to count, considering how much happens in such short periods on The 100.
While we’ve seen her beginnings, something happened to her in Bardo that impacted who she is now. Is Hope’s only priority rescuing her mother? Or could something be buried underneath that not even Echo is aware of? There are too many questions to take Hope purely at face value and too many suspicious gaps in the narrative regarding Hope. It wouldn’t be surprising if she turned out to take on a more antagonistic role before the series wraps.
M-CAP: PRESENT DAY
After the meeting, Echo, Hope, and Gabriel make it to M-Cap, where Octavia is still bound to the machine. She’s taken Levitt’s advice, repeating, “I am not afraid,” over and over again. Her voice is raw, as if she’s been doing this for days, and the entire vibe of her condition is eery and concerning. It looks like Octavia broke off the deal she made for Bellamy’s life, believing him to be dead. Echo, not knowing this, speaks to the new technician overseeing Octavia, immediately threatening him and demanding to know Bellamy’s whereabouts.
The Disciple shows Echo what we presume is Octavia’s memory of Bellamy’s “death” and, if we thought Echo lost it before, she indeed loses it at this moment. Echo doesn’t believe that what she saw was real and it’s unclear that it was, but I’m also not convinced that Echo isn’t just breaking down after spending five years waiting to chase after Bellamy. Gabriel suggests taking the Disciple in the M-Cap as a hostage, but Echo has her blinders on and proceeds to attack the Disciple. Hope protests now, too, as Echo can’t stop killing their inside men. Let’s hope Levitt doesn’t face her wrath as well.
Despite the others, Echo stabs the Disciple with the M-Cap machine, killing him. Hope admits defeat because rescuing her mother is unlikely now without an inside man. Echo lets out a scream. If they weren’t caught before, they’re caught now. While many could argue that Echo went too far and didn’t think pragmatically about her decisions last week, it’s even more evident now. She’s always fallen victim to a “my people vs. your people” mentality, a stark difference between other characters following their growth. However, Echo goes farther than this.
She hadn’t betrayed the family she gained in space, but they all had the same goal and their goals didn’t put the person she followed in jeopardy. It’s noteworthy to mention that she couldn’t extend this to the people she had grown close to over her second time-jump. But here, her selfishness does lead her to betray Hope.
Due to her inability to cope with the loss of Bellamy, she ensures that Hope would fail a second time, always opting to kill the people they could manipulate or convince to help them. Hope protests as she kills the Disciple, but Echo is overcome and doesn’t listen, or can’t listen. Hope will now have to cope with her own loss of her mother due to Echo’s rabid actions.
Echo has sealed the final crack in the trio. Her actions previously pushed Gabriel away and he has no choice but to assist her and Hope if he ever wants to find out more, or even get out of Bardo alive. But, Echo has also pushed Hope away after developing a seemingly deep connection. It was Echo’s unwarranted and violent reactions that threaten their chances of success. Echo isn’t a skilled spy or operative. How has she lasted this long? She’s arguably in her late thirties by now. Because of Echo, Hope may lose her mother for the third time.
Echo was unhinged and obstinant before. That said, there’s no way to move forward while ignoring this. And, considering the episode description for episode seven, it’s possible that Echo will finally face the unavailable repercussions of her actions that have piled up continuously this season.
Echo does have a habit of being able to avoid in-show criticism and consequences. The writers seem to think that ignoring her moral misalignment from the other protagonists is the best way to have the audience accept her as part of the ensemble. Perhaps the writers assume the audience will relate to Echo during these moments due to their love for Bellamy. But this still misses the mark and it still does not pass as relatable as she slaughters incapacitated soldiers and betrays people she should also have consideration for.
SANCTUM: PRESENT DAY
In a surprising breath of fresh air, Indra leads the Sanctum plot in “Welcome to Bardo.” And not so surprisingly, Russheda bides his time as warring factions use his life to vie for power of the compound. With Clarke, and most responsible people capable of making decisions, gone, Indra takes control and attempts to maintain peace. Indra, while having previously been a person who was guided by clan loyalties, has grown throughout the show to put her in a position not to prioritize her own clan. At least for now.
All in the same heartbeat, Nelson, the now-designated leader of the Children of Gabriel, demands her to uphold their deal (Russell’s life for Murphy and Emori’s) while the Faithful demand for Russell’s freedom. Except the Faithful are willing to go to extreme lengths to free their leader, including sacrificing themselves every hour until their demands are met.
Indra is not in the best place to calm either group, as Wonkru remains dissolved, and everyone asks for Clarke. Indra always fills in as the back-up, whether it’s for Madi or the missing blonde. This proves troublesome as the Faithful’s leader speaks with Indra, pointing out that there was peace before the arrival of Wonkru and Eligius. He’s not wrong.
Which begs the question: were our heroes in the right to try to free the Sanctum residents from what they perceive as shackles of weaponized religion? Was Gabriel right in his motivations? Or should these devout types of people be left on their own, even if what fuels them isn’t rooted in truth? It’s not a question to ask just the Sanctum dwellers, as very similar break-down rippled across Wonkru as Gaia revealed the truth of their faith. Indra wanted to mask the truth for them. And this wasn’t even the full truth, as their faith in a reincarnated being actually is faith in a piece of technology – coding.
No matter the answer, the ball is already rolling and it wouldn’t be surprising if the full truth enlightens everyone on these planets by the end of the series, for better or for worse.
Not all hope is lost, however. Just as the grounders previously set aside differences, the potential is there for reunification between the Faithful and the Children of Gabriel. As one of the Faithful follows through with their plan, sacrificing herself by setting herself on fire, Nelson quickly acts, attempting to put out the fire while Indra watches her in horror. Maybe there is still an opportunity of blurring these faction lines. The glimpses are quick, but there. It would be nice for them to have a common enemy they could unite against.
Later, Indra commends his bravery, but Nelson reveals, “They may hate us, but they’re still our people.” This comment even prompts questions from Emori. She was cast out, similar to the Children of Gabriel. And as much as Emori has grown and was able to find acceptance in a found family, she still doesn’t understand the sentiments from Nelson, as their situations resulted in a similar result.
As the Children of Gabriel have been living their lives out in the woods for decades, Nelson still feels a connection to these people who view him as enemies. This can only speak to the type of leadership Gabriel once provided to them, as he deeply loved the Primes. However, he still chose to stand up against the inhumanities they were inflicting upon their people. Even cast out for decades, they are still one, as his actions were only ever for his people and maybe partly his own culpability in the matter.
If this sentimentality is something that Gabriel instilled upon his Children, the pain he must have felt when cornered into leaving Orlando behind is something that could very much shape his anger and disappointment at Hope and Echo’s behavior.
“Faith isn’t the problem, blind faith is.” – Indra
Discussing their next move, it’s finally decided that a Prime needs to talk down the Faithful, but Indra refuses to let Russell dictate their actions moving forward. Quick to volunteer, however sick, Emori offers her services. Ultimately, Murphy steps up to the plate, despite just conveying his lack of aversion to letting the Faithful carry out their plan. This is not without a quick comment about the absence of Clarke and her team. At least he acknowledged the missing’s existence this time, unlike before when Bellamy’s name wasn’t mentioned in Sanctum until the last possible moment.
PRESENT DAY SANCTUM: PLANS GO AWRY
Murphy heads to the tavern to help de-escalate the situation, with Indra hanging slightly back as his back-up. However, Murphy grows furious when he peers in and notices the Faithful preparing a young boy for sacrifice, pushing him to barge inside, which was not part of the plan. Murphy attempts to take the children away, but Daniel Prime’s lover suggests that Murphy is not Daniel. Murphy falls into his trap because he isn’t knowledgeable in their faith. Perhaps he should have studied up a bit.
Time passes and the Faithful are preparing to burn Murphy for his impersonation of The Primes. Thankfully, Indra, Emori (as Kaylee), and Russheda save the day. Russheda uses his status to talk down the Faithful using tapered violence and cruel words as he speaks to his followers. After Russell’s scolding, the faithful ask for forgiveness and Russheda commands them, “Kneel or die.”
Indra has heard these words before. Words uttered by Sheidheda. It clicks in her mind and she puts the pieces together. Speaking to him in trigedasleng — which has made a name for itself as the language to use to try to figure out if someone has been mind-wiped — she calls Russell out on it. With her fears confirmed, Indra begins her mission on executing the dark commander.
Peace no longer is Indra’s priority. The only way she can kill him and avenge the loss she had experienced as a Trikru member at his hands is to reveal the truth regarding his concealed identity. Before that can happen, she ensures that this time Sheidheda will be gone for good as she has the Children of Gabriel and a Jackson who’s forgotten his oath of “Do No Harm” extract his mind drive.
“Welcome to Bardo” is the first time The 100 tells a story involving Sheidheda successfully. The missing component that this episode finally focuses on is Indra. Stories often are best shown when real emotional stakes are involved and Indra’s direct personal relationship with the Dark Commander is what is needed to make this arc pop. Sheidheda impacted Indra in a personal way and while Clarke and Madi’s relationship was affected by Sheidheda, they still lacked the emotional connection to his character needed to make his storyline entertaining and worthy of the screen time used to tell his story.
In fact, Sanctum is at its best in “Welcome to Bardo,” as The 100 finally gives Indra the chance to lead a story. Adina Porter is magnificent and her performance stands out in this episode, particularly in scenes where she can play off of JR Bourne. They have wonderful antagonistic chemistry together and, as long as Indra leads this arc, it will be interesting, which is probably the first time a Sanctum plot has achieved this status in season seven.
Murphy didn’t leave me with many thoughts, however, as Porter and Bourne steal the show. I honestly can’t recall when Murphy became so passionate about children considering the Charlotte situation. Still, perhaps this is meant to show Murphy’s growth over the series, although when it comes to Murphy’s growth, it seems to go in waves, rising and waning depending on what the plot needs from him.
LOOKING FORWARD: NAKARA
What did you think of the episode? Is Hope hiding something? Where do you think Bellamy is? Tune in to “Nakara” next Wednesday at 9/8c on The CW.