The 100 “Hakeldama” Review (Season 3 Episode 5)

The 100 has long been a show that deals in deeply-uncomfortable topics on a regular basis, but the show’s longstanding focus on war has made things manageable at a removed level. This season, however, the show’s larger political slant has added a new level of unease, with topics such as xenophobia and discrimination mirroring current US political trends in a disturbing way. “Hakeldama” continues this season’s focus on such topics, though one major problem continues to hold the show back.

Sadly, that problem comes in the form of one of the show’s best characters, Bellamy. Bellamy’s turn still feels like a plot manipulation, not a turn that’s true to the character. It just doesn’t feel like the show has done enough to justify the intensity of his sudden hate for Grounders because Gina wasn’t a character that viewers had any connection to. The only way I can see the show successfully selling the turn would be if it had been Octavia that died, but then the show would’ve lost one of its best characters. It’s unfortunate all around, because it feels like the ruination of a character who had evolved so far over the course of two seasons.

It doesn’t help that Pike has gone from zero to psychopath in an unbelievably quick time, advocating mass slaughter and internment within a day of becoming chancellor. His attack on the Grounder army isn’t just efficient, it’s ridiculously brutal. It feels like things are escalating far too quickly, to the point that one wonders why the people aren’t already shouting for a recall election. That said, Pike’s similarities to a certain real-world hate-mongering politician make an argument for people allowing themselves to be ruled by fear.

With all this going on, it’s no surprise that now would mark the perfect time for Jaha to return to Arkadia after an absence of several episodes. Of course, Jaha is clearly in service to an entirely different crazy ideology, so there’s no telling what damage he can do to the Sky Crew community on his own. And with Allie advising him, he’s clearly able to spread his message in smaller, more insidious ways, wisely bringing skeptic Raven to his side before moving on to the rest of the people. Of course, whatever Jaha is offering actually seems to work, so there’s question of what all he’s actually capable of now.

What did you think of this week’s episode? Let me know in the comments!