The 100 “Thirteen” Review (Season 3 Episode 7)

I’ll be straight when I say that The 100 absolutely gutted me tonight. I had another intro written, one that talked about the nice symmetry between the two main narratives of “Thirteen,” ones focusing on the dangers of the thirteenth station in the past and the thirteenth tribe – Arkadia – in the present. That all applies to the first two-thirds of this episode, but then things went in a completely different direction, one I’m still not even sure how to react to.

Because Lexa, one of the greatest characters in a show full of great characters, died tonight… but did she?

It’s that ambiguity that takes away from what comes before. In the moment, I was absolutely wrecked to see that bullet hit Lexa. Not only is she my favorite character, but her relationship with Clarke has been absolutely fascinating, and so easy to cheer for even after the end of last season. I don’t ship characters, but I ship Clexa hard. So yes, the emotional impact of losing such a great character hit me hard.

And as a seasoned television viewer, I absolutely should have seen it coming. Not only are Lexa’s people turning on her, but things were just a bit too happy for Lexa tonight. Happiness is such a rarity on this show that anytime someone achieves it, you know things are going to get far worse soon after. There’s no greater moment of happiness than seeing Clarke and Lexa consummating their relationship.

And all of that would be fine. I wouldn’t be happy that Lexa died, but I would accept that her death will lead to only more chaos and conflict in this show’s world. But then Titus pulled an A.I. chip out of Lexa’s neck, tying things back to the flashbacks in a bizarre way. It muddles everything about Lexa’s death and leaves us with some strange questions. Is Lexa truly dead now? Is her personality on that chip? Or was she just a vessel for the AI that Becca first brought down in the past?

And I’m not saying that it doesn’t tie together logically with everything we’ve been shown so far; the A.I. chips, Polaris pod, and Alie’s mission have all been set-up before now. But by introducing this element now, it muddles what needs to be one of the show’s most affecting deaths with the sci-fi elements. Lexa deserved to be more than a plot point, and that ending, even extended over two acts as it is, feels like a disservice.

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