A woman and several men holding weapons and preparing to fight.

The 100: Series Finale Holds a Mirror Up to Society

The series finale of The 100 aired last night, and I can’t stop thinking about it! There are so many things I love about it, but I want to touch on a few messages that stood out to me. There are spoilers ahead, so if you haven’t watched the latest season or the final episode, turn back now!

A good chunk of the fanbase ended up hating the show because of what happened to Bellamy Blake. They have their reasons and valid criticisms, but in general, I think people get so wrapped up in their favorite characters and ships, they lose sight of the bigger picture and the important messages woven in between.

I’m one of the few who liked Bellamy’s storyline. Do I like seeing my favorite characters die? No. Far from it. If I could give my favorite characters happy endings, I would, but this isn’t my story to tell. What I love most about this show is how it holds a mirror up to society. It shows us how religion, love, and everything that makes us human can actually betray us and put us in the position of betraying each other. 

When Bellamy started following Cadogan and his disciples, most fans thought he was acting out of character. The thing is people are capable of change (regardless whether it’s good or bad) and seeing different perspectives as they grow. People also don’t stop learning when they hit a certain age. We’re constantly being presented with information that helps shape and mold our personality and behavior. In Bellamy’s case, he was presented with new and life-changing information about the next evolutionary state of the human race. He had an epiphany that changed his outlook and gave him something tangible to believe in. 

Bellamy’s newfound belief system and drive to achieve what he witnessed isn’t strange at all. At least, not to me. I have family members who have radically changed their behavior and approach in life because of religion. I’m not saying religion is bad, but it has a way of enticing people and changing their perspectives. In some extreme cases, religion even has the power to persuade people to do terrible things, like in Bellamy’s situation.

Like Clarke, I also thought Bellamy lost his way and placed his faith in mumbo jumbo. But in the end, Bellamy was right.

It’s a bittersweet and tragic realization for Clarke and the audience, but with this understanding comes a very important lesson. Clarke refused to believe and called the faith Bellamy believed in “nonsense.” She completely dismissed the whole idea because it sounded ridiculous. On the other side, you have Bellamy and Cadogan forcing their beliefs on Clarke and the others, punishing anyone who doesn’t cooperate. Both Clarke and Bellamy are wrong in how they approached each other. They reflect what our society is currently experiencing and something we’ve seen throughout our own history.

Let’s say you believe in something with all your heart. Cool! More power to you. I will respect that and I won’t dismiss your beliefs, but you also have no right to impose your religion and ideals on me. Clarke and Bellamy represent those two extreme sides that are constantly in conflict with each other in our own real, everyday world. 

So while some fans insist Bellamy died for no reason, I see it differently. Bellamy served a purpose. He reminded us to be careful with our convictions.

Our belief systems determine how we are going to respond to anything that happen to us, so they are extremely important for our survival. We have in our heads a pre-manufactured idea of who we are and how is it that we have to act in the world to survive, but we have to be aware that our belief systems are not the ultimate truth… they are sort of tools that we use mentally to thrive.

“Be careful with your beliefs” by Ricardo Guaderrama Caraveo (Medium)

Is this the message the writers intended? Probably not, but this is the message I took from Bellamy’s storyline and something I appreciate from his final episodes. He also reminds me of that saying, “The road to hell is paved with good intentions.”

And it hurts knowing Bellamy wasn’t there at the end to greet Clarke on the lake shore, but that’s what Clarke has to live with now. She made a horrible mistake, and we should take the opportunity to learn from that experience. In other words, don’t dismiss other people’s claims just because you don’t believe in them. Don’t let your emotions consume and blind you to get what you want because you’ll end up hurting yourself and the people around you.

The series finale also reflected how we, as a society, deal with our problems. We fight. Violence begets violence and hate begets hate, but Octavia said it best, “The only way to win is not to fight.” You can replace “win” with anything and it’s still true: the only way to live, to survive, to grow is not to fight. After thousands of years on this planet, it’s a lesson I wish humanity would learn by now, so I applaud Jason Rothenberg and the writing crew for getting our beloved characters to that point. Do I want us to turn into glowing balls of light? No (although, that would be pretty cool), but I would like for humanity to reach a point where we don’t use our differences to discriminate against others and where we don’t destroy what we are unable to understand. Think of how much we would accomplish if we just collectively decided to grow up!

“When you end a show, you get the luxury of ending it the way you want. If you get an opportunity to say something, the way the story ends is what that story means. We really are living in a world where we are all in this together. We are Wonkru.

Jason Rothenberg in “The Last War Sneak Peek” (The CW)

Anyway, those are my main thoughts regarding the series finale. There’s definitely more I could say, like how much I adore Murphy’s growth and how Raven and Octavia are my queens for being badasses and saving humanity, but for now, I’ll end this with a huge thank you to The 100 crew and “May we meet again.”

Featured Image: Warner Bros. Television

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