Lexa leaving 'The 100' is the best thing that could have happened to the show, and I'm not sorry...
It's sad I have to do this, but I am going to preface this article saying I know, and am fully aware, that I am most likely going to receive death threats over this piece. Saying anything remotely negative about the late character Lexa from The 100 guarantees her swarm of Twitter fans to your doorstep wielding weapons, hateful language, and wishes for self-harm. That being said, I'm a big girl, and I can take it. So here goes. The death of Lexa was the absolute best thing that could have happened to The 100, and if you aren't watching, YOU SHOULD BE!
Now, this post is not meant to re-hash the insane controversy from Lexa, a lesbian character's, death. I think we've all moved on right? Right. And many shows have since committed to doing better for LGBT characters, so there is some good that came from Lexa after all. This also isn't about my dislike for Lexa, because I didn't dislike her until the writers ruined her, and the show using her. You see, Lexa was very important to Season 2. Clarke and Lexa's arc together was excellent, and Lexa caused a multitude of effects in the season that drove the it to greatness! She was an anti-hero, a necessary evil.
Pointedly, Lexa served her purpose wonderfully by the end of season 2, and the writers did an excellent job of closing her storyline. Her damage to the characters was done, and they were left in her wake to clean up the mess. There was absolutely NO NEED to bring Lexa back for season 3 other than fanservice, and the writers almost ruined the best show on TV doing it. If you are caught up in the show, then yes, you know there was actually a very specific reason Lexa was actually back in season 3, BUT, that could have been done in 3 episodes or less, it should not have taken almost an ENTIRE season to reveal Lexa was the A.I. So I say best wishes to Alycia Debnam-Carey on her new career endeavors, she clearly has a successful career ahead, but I am so glad Lexa is gone.
If I'm being honest, and if you're being honest, the first half of season 3 might as well have been called The Lexa Show. Even the lead characters the show is based around, Clarke and Bellamy, were pushed to the wayside in order to make room for a very uneventful and pointless 7 episode run of nothing but Lexa doing...well...nothing! She did nada to move the show or season forward, if anything, she held it back.
Coming from an explosive season 2, this was severely disappointing. I patiently waited for Clarke to do something beside stand around and open her mouth for a one-liner when Lexa would allow her. The show was stunted. The writers were stunted. So while Clarke twiddled her thumbs cooped up with Lexa in Polis, back in Arkadia, characters like Bellamy, Raven, Kane, and Abby struggled to push the show forward towards its actual season 3 plotline during the 1 or 2 scenes (if they were lucky) allotted to them in each episode.
They carried the weight of the entire season on their shoulders, but between Lexa scenes, there just wasn't enough time to convey much of anything to the audience at all, so we were left confused and blindsided. Season 3 was looking like a dud, and I had all but given up when BOOM!
The shot heard around the world. The shot that basically saved the show. After the episode of Lexa's death by bullet, it was as if the show came alive once more. Ironic, huh? Suddenly, there was all this time for the show's core characters to grow, and for us to see and understand the motivations behind their actions! Suddenly there was plenty of room in every episode for the show to communicate to the audience what the heck was actually going on. More importantly, suddenly, Clarke was the lead of her show again. Every episode since Lexa's death has been The 100 at its best, and has reminded me why I love it so much. It's unpredictable, alive, and written unbelievably well.
I can't believe I am saying that about a CW show, but it's true. 'Nevermore' saw Lindsey Morgan (Raven) and her co-stars give some of their best performances to date. Last night's episode 13 'Join or Die' was the most deep and emotional episode of the series, and holy character growth! Still, the consequences of the Lexa show do linger, for example Lincoln's death being overshadowed and holding less weight since we had so little time with Lincoln in season 3. Pike, who has been an antagonist or anti-hero all season, was finally given a backstory, one that turned out to be very important, and one that should have been told EPISODES AGO! Also, this last half of the season, while incredible, is a bit rushed. They have been trying to cram in what should have been fit into a whole season into a half.
Still, probably the most important thing we have learned is that Clarke and Bellamy should never be separated, and that the show thrives on their connection and leadership. Their interactions are electric and powerful, and at the very core of what make The 100 so great. Clarke and Bellamy are the beating heart, pumping blood and oxygen to all the other characters, keeping them vibrant and alive. Whatever choices these actors have made in regards to eachother, Lord please let them keep it up.
I am not just referring to their romantic connection either, while that is very clear, but the fact that their relationship has developed into something so much deeper since they first butted heads after landing on earth. In last night's episode, a scene where Bellamy offered Clarke forgiveness, and Clarke offered Bellamy hope on a beach, proved why it is so important to keep these two in the same general vicinity at all times on the show, because it is some of the best TV out there.
The writers have done an amazing job with the parallels between the two leaders and their journeys through season 3, and I am only sad it took over half the season for us to be able to see it. No looking back now though, as we are three episodes from the season finale, and all hell is breaking loose!
Since Lexa's exit from the show, we have been able to see Jasper, Monty, Raven, Abby, Kane, and more beyond just Clarke and Bellamy shine in the past few episodes, and The 100 is back to what made it so great in the first place. My only regret is that we barely get a half of a season to see it all, when it should have been like this in the beginning. There is no denying the focus on Lexa stole precious time from the show. Still, The 100 is the real deal folks, there is no other show like it, and now it is stronger than ever, back to a gripping story of loss and survival, of love and sacrifice.
Next week, Skaikru continues their fight against A.L.L.I.E to save their people from the city of light, and bring them back to reality in 'Red Sky At Morning'. With Clarke and Bellamy leading the pack again, BRING IT ON!