After the events which closed The 100's second season (destruction of Mount Weather, Lexa's betrayal, death, death and more death), it would be almost impossible to pick up the story exactly where we left things. So it's no surprise that, when we meet up with everyone again, it's been a three-month gap -- just enough time to breathe, but not so much that it feels like a cheap narrative device.
So, what's been happening? Where my sky people at?
Let's talk about Clarke. She ding-dong ditched her people (and their new ground digs, Arkadia) after she wiped out an entire underground civilization. How's she doing, post-genocide? “She’s pretty messed up over Mount Weather, and she obviously left because she wasn’t able to face her demons and wasn’t able to deal with what she’s done," says actor Eliza Taylor. "She’s in a state of pure survival mode. She’s just out in the woods hunting, trying to find somewhere dry to sleep.”
On top of that, Clarke's earned herself a real grounder merit badge in the form of a new nickname -- Wanheda. “Wanheda essentially means ‘The Death Commander,’ because I brought down the mountain.Which is cool!" laughs Taylor. "I read that and was like, ‘Oh! The Commander of Death? Wow!’ She’s actually feared by most of the Grounders. She’s become, like, this myth or a legend, which is really cool. But [the nickname is] unbeknownst to Clarke until she’s faced with the Grounders."
And speaking of those Grounders, sounds like we'll be getting to see the diversity of the different groups, especially the Ice Nation. Clarke will have some kind of relationship (uh-huh) with their Queen, played by Brenda Strong. Apparently the Ice Nation doesn't really excel at following the rules. Clarke's kind of the same way, so that may not be a bad thing. According to Taylor, “The 12 different clans and the way they go about things are very different. Their aesthetic is very different, and they’re from very different parts of the world. The great thing about it is when they all come together and they’re all under the commander’s coalition, they have a mutual respect for each other -- whereas the vibe I get is outside of that is they don’t all necessarily get along, especially the Ice Nation. The Ice Nation is just a little bit scary.”
Meanwhile, back at Arkadia, two of its leaders are in the thick of it. Kane, who played a very pragmatic (at times cold) role on the ark, is settling into a very new life back on Earth. Henry Ian Cusick is thrilled about the evolution, saying, "I really enjoy that Kane is now a man of peace after finding out everything he believed was wrong. I know I keep harping onto this, but I think it’s quite an important thing for Kane, his 180-degree turn. Now, he is a man who is dealing with the present and the reality of this world, and the only way for his people to survive is by brokering peace with the Grounders. That, I think, is a great storyline and something I believe in. I’m delighted to play that role."
Abby, on the other hand, is doing her best to adapt to her new role as chancellor, a role she's not immediately in love with. Says Paide Turco, "That’s part of her struggle. She wears two hats—well, three hats, being a mom as well. I think that’s what’s interesting in what my character’s going through at the beginning of the season. She’s trying to manage and balance being the doctor, being the chancellor, and trying to find a way to do both, which is exhausting."
And then there's the wild card -- Murphy. He's been the bad guy, he's been the slilghtly less bad (but still pretty bad) guy, and he's been a disciple of sorts to the equally wild-carded Jaha. And while Jaha is potentially working with a deadly A.I., Murphy is left on his own. "He’s very crafty. He’ll do what it takes," says Richard Harmon. "I think you’ll see this season that Murphy will start to, maybe, put the well being of others, not on the same level as himself, but bring it up a little bit. Because he couldn’t care what happened to other people before, but now, he’s getting lonely, honestly,” Harmon said. “I think he’s been lonely, and he’s seeing that with the tease of the friendship he had with Jaha, it was nice to have someone to talk to. You’ll see Murphy open up avenues to other people and take them in and look to protect people."
Murphy may not, however, be back to Arkadia any time soon. According to Harmon, "I will say that this season, we expand this world even further, and to do that a lot of characters got to be a lot of different places."
What do you think? Which character are you most anxious to follow this year? The 100 is back Jan. 21 at 9 p.m. EST.