If you think when starting The 100 that you’re going to get a typical teen drama that’s a little too heavy on the drama and not heavy enough on an engaging plot line then I suggest you think again and give this one a real chance. I will be honest with you dear readers, that when I watched a bunch of rebel space age teens go bananas on what’s left of a nearly century year old post-apocalyptic Earth to Imagine Dragons’ ‘Radioactive’ I thought my binge time was up, but this show hit maturity like it was Neville Longbottom. It doesn’t promote itself as high end science fiction drama and doesn’t need to either as it is enticing and addictive in its own right.
With a successful second season over and preparations for its third now underway this CW series continues to hit viewings targets and gather positive reviews from critics across the board; also lest we not forget the Primetime Emmy nomination! Suffice to say the series is doing better than what many would have predicted after judging the teen drama predecessors.
Based on the novels of the same name by Kass Morgan the series begins as thus…It has been ninety seven years after nuclear war has left Earth and its civilization in tatters, that the remaining survivors held up on a failing super space station named the Ark send down a hundred of its teenage delinquents as expendable lab rats to discover whether it is once again habitable. While most wallow in their new found freedom and beauty of their home planet as only teenagers can there are those who are more so focused on survival.
Enter Clarke Griffin.
The 100 kept me as a firm viewer by Clarke Griffin alone, as played by Eliza Taylor this likable powerhouse of a protagonist never seems to let me down as so many do. Can you name a protagonist that you don’t end up getting mildly irritated by or wish they had less screen time? I will be genuinely surprised if I heard that she doesn’t feature in anyone’s top three favourite characters…I really would. Unafraid to make the difficult and impossible decisions, Clarke takes her sudden situation in her stride and proves herself to be the in-expendable of the expendables. Even after being forcibly bestowed with the nickname ‘Princess’ she tears up the underestimating stereotype and presides over the camp as an unassuming leader who elects to place: logic, survival and reason before hooting about the fire of teenage rebellion with the rest.
Despite Clarke needing considerable attention there are others out of the one hundred that you should take note of. Self-declared leader Bellamy Blake as played by Bob Morley who went to extreme lengths to join his sister Octavia as played by Marie Avgeropoulos whose very existence is forbidden under the Ark’s child limitation laws. Finn as played by Thomas McDonell covers the need for a ‘space dude’ and goggle wearing Jasper Jordan as played by Devon Bostick adds light hearted fun into the mix.
Fun Fact x2: Eliza Taylor is known for playing Rosie Cartwright in ‘The Sleepover Club’ and Devon Bostick is known for playing Greg Heffley’s drumming older brother Rodrick in ‘Diary of a Wimpy Kid’.
The growing of this series doesn’t stop with season one, The 100 thrives on the development of its characters, causing viewers including myself to love or hate a character within the course of an episode and it only journeys deeper in the second by carrying with it some unexpected character moments that you wouldn’t usually see in a typical teen drama; making it an evolution of its kind.
You can watch The 100 on the CW Network in the US and Channel 4/E4 in the UK or both seasons are available to purchase on DVD. Also, when you’re done you might want to check out this quiz to test to see what character you would be most like in the series. I was Clarke…I am more than happy with that result.
What do you think? Are there other teen dramas out there that rival The 100? Let me know what you think in the comments! Also check out my twitter @bingebox for live tweeting of my binges and general television goodness. Thanks!