The 100 “Perverse Instantiation, Part 2” Review (Season 3 Episode 16)

The third season of The 100 has been far more hit-or-miss than last year. In fairness, the second season was pretty close to perfection, a masterful sixteen-episode stretch that built tension, fleshed out the world, and delivered one hell of a conclusion. Still, this season had a rough middle, one that felt a bit aimless and unsure of itself. Fortunately, the last stretch of episodes have seen the quality improve, and it all came to a satisfying head with “Perverse Instantiation, Part 2.”

The show has hugely benefited from bringing the focus in to a single storyline, and coming into season three, Alie was easily the most compelling new element. As such, it’s been great seeing this arc develop, particularly the horror elements that have been introduced in her wake. Alie was an extremely creepy adversary played terrifically by Erica Cerra, and her defeat brought the season to a great end.

Much of that satisfaction comes from how well the team worked together, with every non-chipped character having a moment to shine. From Raven giving Clarke access to the kill switch, to Bellamy and Octavia defending the throne room, to Murphy manually pumping Ontari’s heart, everyone had a role to play. Whereas last year’s finale came down to Clarke and Bellamy, this year was about the efforts of all of our heroes working in tandem.

Of course, there were two big takeaways from tonight’s episode that leave me excited for next season, if not as excited as I was going into this year. First, there was Alie’s reveal that the nuclear power plants of the world are beginning to meltdown. Though Clarke calls her out as lying to try and save her own existence, come on, this is The 100; things only ever get worse on this show. I have no idea how this will coalesce into a new enemy for next season yet, but I’m looking forward to finding out.

The other big moment was Octavia gutting Pike once Alie was defeated. Though Pike never developed into a three-dimensional villain early on, his horrible actions made him unworthy of the redemption arc the show seemed to be granting him. Instead, Octavia got revenge for Lincoln, and while this will no doubt shape her character arc in a big way going forward – forgiveness for Bellamy seems a far cry right now – it was good to see the show get rid of a problematic character.

One last high point was the return of Lexa in the City of Light, which was a great send-off for a character whose death was necessary due to contractual obligations, yet grossly mishandled in execution. Here, we got another chance to see all of the things that made the character such a fan-favorite, while also allowing for a proper goodbye to the character. May we meet again.

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