jaina: (bones - baby!!!!!)
[personal profile] jaina
I know, a TV show episode reaction in my livejournal? Who am I? But I typed some stuff as I was rewatching 2x08 on cwtv.com (trying to help boost viewing numbers) and I think this is really the best place to put it vs facebook or tumblr. I honestly don't know if anyone still reading this even watches The 100 or is caught up through the S2 MSF so, you know, feel free to skip, esp if you are Maggie and aren't caught up yet, because spoilers. Uh also if you like Finn you should probably skip.

basically this is just a bunch of angry typing as I was rewatching the episode.

"it's a punishment for what happened in the village" NO. it's a punishment for WHAT YOU DID. Say it. WHAT YOU DID. It wasn't something that "just happened."

this bullshit scene with Murphy and Clarke blaming EACH OTHER for what FINN did holy shit i'm so irritated

lincoln is the only one speaking sense jfc

ew ugh i hate this clarke and finn scene so much "it was all for you, all these horrible things, so now i need you to forgive me" the worst kind of emotional manipulation Finn is such a gross Nice Guy

like i legitimately don't understand why everyone suddenly worships finn. I just don't. Everyone is defending the shit out of him and the narrative paints those who don't as being in the wrong

Kane: "i've gotten to know the commander" me: "YEAH I BET YOU HAVE"

why are they so against any kind of punishment for MASSACRING EIGHTEEN PEOPLE? like he should get off scot free? because he feels bad about it? look if some guy from the US went to Belgium and killed 18 Belgian people and then came back to the US, and then Belgium was like "uh, we're gonna need you to extradite this guy on account of him killing 18 innocent people" the US wouldn't be like "no, but see, he feels real bad about it, so we're just gonna let him stay here."

no but why are the writing Bellamy defending Finn, idgi at all, since when does he like Finn so much??

"let's go to the dropship!" yeah that...makes no sense and is a terrible idea. bellamy. you are a full on idiot for this episode. lots of people carrying the Idiot Ball this time.

'oh he's so selfless, he took the fall instead of Raven' IT WAS HIS FUCKING IDEA. such a Nice Guy. uuuuugggggggghhhhhh

Kane: "i spent time with your commander" me: "YEAH YOU DID"

I just really hate how they centered the entire episode around showing us how noble Finn was and how sad we should all be for him so that the ending would be Super Tragic but if he had been written well all along then we would already feel how tragic it is without the writers metaphorically grabbing us by the shoulders and going SEE? SEEEEEEE!!!

and if JUST ONCE he had actually come out and said, "What I did was wrong. I'm the only one responsible for my actions. It doesn't matter what my intentions were. I deserve the full consequences" then I would be so much less angry at all of this. COOL MOTIVE, STILL MURDER.

"i never meant to hurt you" not "i'm sorry I hurt you" just "i didn't mean it so forgive me" THIS IS WHY I HATE HIM

and that's where my patience ran out. but I will say that I spent most of my first viewing of the episode yelling "KILL HIM!" every five minutes and then when Clarke went over to Lexa at the end I was like "oh god I hope she kills him. can't get my hopes up. can't get my hopes up. KILL HIM!!!!!" and then when she DID Rogue and I burst out in cheers and clapping. i have not been that pleased to see a fictional character die in a long time.

Okay, all that said though, if you aren't watching The 100 YOU SHOULD BE WATCHING THE 100 because on the whole it's a pretty killer post-apocalyptic funtime teen drama. If you like: 1) post-apocalyptic stuff, 2) kids-on-their-own, 3) team-as-family 4) characters being Team Mom and Dad, you might like this show. S1 is all on Netflix and it's only 13 eps. My recommendation is to watch through the first 4 eps, and by then you'll either know if it's for you or not. Don't stop after the first 2 because 3 and 4 are much better.

Date: 2015-01-03 01:53 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] padawansguide.livejournal.com
I actually like how morally ambiguous this show is.

Finn should totally have taken ownership of his actions - but I kind of agree with one comment I saw that basically pointed out the giant chain of morally ambiguous (or outright horrible) choices that lead to that massacre. Like the adults sending kids down as guinea pigs instead of adults who were trained. The kids bumbled around and set off a war, with attrition on both sides. The Grounders did pretty brutal things starting with Jasper. And as Clarke pointed out, she has all kinds of Grounder blood on her hands. This is not necessarily a defense of Finn, but one could see his actions as a result of PTSD from being a kid fighting a war he wasn't trained or prepared for.

One of my friends has a cousin who did a couple of tours in Iraq. Ground stuff. And he was discharged because he was losing it. And instead of treating him, they just stuck him back in society. And then one day he snapped and went into a subway (as if he were on patrol or something) and shot it up and killed several people. He's in jail for the rest of his life. And while he is responsible for his actions, I do feel that PTSD (and not being treated for it when there were clear signs he had it) played a significant role.

Clearly there are other issues with Finn - as the flashback showed, he had a history of rash actions made for women he loved. (And in fact even getting involved with Clarke while having a girlfriend was sort of a rash action.) So clearly he was a guy that didn't think. But toss in some PTSD (and I would be amazed if every single kid DIDN'T have it after what they've all been through) and you have a recipe for disaster.

Also, who was dumb enough to put guns in his hands because rescuing her daughter trumped everything and everyone? Abby.

Again, I'm not a huge Finn fan, but I see a lot of people culpable in what happened in that village even if Finn is a reckless dumbass.

And everyone has blood on their hands. Even Bellamy - if he hadn't destroyed that radio, then the culling wouldn't have happened.

I don't disagree that Finn's got a bit of a "nice guy" things going. And they pushed too hard to make him the dreamy hearthrob. Which is why I kind of liked that at the end he did something so bad that there was no more waving it off. I liked that the show didn't back off from him having to die. And I liked that ultimately he turned himself in even knowing that he would probably be killed horribly.

I like the way it happened, because then it was about Clarke and her having to be strong. And also, I don't think anyone deserves torture no matter how bad they are - so I was glad she was able to kill him, because it would have been really sickening to watch them brutalize him.

The worst part of all this of course is that I have to wait for new episodes now! And I won't be able to marathon them!

ETA: All that was a way of saying, I like that Finn wasn't all dreamy hero or all bad guy - he was a confusing mix that made him hard to root for. And most of the characters are like that. And hardly any of the choices any one make are easy or perfectly moral ones.
Edited Date: 2015-01-03 01:57 am (UTC)

Date: 2015-01-03 02:08 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] brightcupenny.livejournal.com
I'm totally with you, I love that everything and everyone is shades of gray on the show. My issue was and is basically with the writing of Finn's character-- they just didn't do as good a job with it. And my perception is skewed because I made the mistake of following the showrunner on twitter for a bit and either he was trolling hardcore or he just refused to understand why people were having such an issue with the Finn storyline. (And writing off those who disagreed with him as shippers who were just mad because Finn was in the way of their OTP, which oh man, there's a quick way to get me mad.) Looking back over the whole series, I'm no longer as bothered by Finn's character as I was, because I see now where they were trying to go with him. I just don't think they did it as well as they could have. In the end, he turned out to be a plot device for Clarke's character development. Which I'm okay with.

This was kind of the crux of it for me: "I just really hate how they centered the entire episode around showing us how noble Finn was and how sad we should all be for him so that the ending would be Super Tragic but if he had been written well all along then we would already feel how tragic it is without the writers metaphorically grabbing us by the shoulders and going SEE? SEEEEEEE!!!"

I like that Finn wasn't all dreamy hero or all bad guy - he was a confusing mix that made him hard to root for.

Exactly, I'm totally with you. The thing for me was that while the episodes were airing, before I knew how it was all going to turn out, I couldn't tell if the show really did want to make it hard to root for Finn. Because the twitter postings really made it sounds like we were supposed to take his side. So the thing was, I just didn't know if I could trust the writers on this one. I've been burned by shows before where the narrative doesn't address the bad stuff done by the protagonists and I was so worried this was going to be another show where that happened. Obviously I'm very glad that's not what happened! Just in the moment of it, it was a tortuous episode to watch because I knew what I wanted/needed to happen but I didn't trust the writing staff to do it.

ETA: So the moral of the story is, don't follow showrunners on twitter. It just fucks with your enjoyment of the show.
Edited Date: 2015-01-03 02:14 am (UTC)

Date: 2015-01-03 02:16 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] padawansguide.livejournal.com
I agree he could have been better written. And frankly, he could have been better acted. A fantastic actor might have sold this "romantic hero is is rash and as a result does something REALLY bad" better so that we felt for him. The right actor could have had people rooting for him even if he was doing bad stuff. I wasn't there with this actor.

And I agree they could have written this episode a little better - but I think we had to see him through Raven's eyes (he took the fall for her - though he was the one responsible for that "joyride anyway). And even Clarke's - that misguided though it was, he had good intentions. Of course we know that good intentions can make you do some pretty bad stuff whether intentionally or not.

And I think the flashback really solidified this history of rash thoughtless action - and that he's someone who probably floated through life being handsome, destroying things without realizing it as he went. Like he clearly didn't think through the spacewalk. Or hooking up with Clarke and the impact that might have on Clarke or Raven, even if he didn't think he'd see Raven again. Or the impact a hasty PTSD-fueled search for Clarke might have.

It was hard to root for Finn, but I think it was good to not make him an outright bad guy. He was just a guy who never thought things through. And if the writers/show was still trying to push him as a romantic hero after all that...

Maybe it's also hard because Bellamy started out as a douche who is learning how to be a leader. And Finn started out as the "nice guy" who becomes a douche. So by the end, no, I wasn't really rooting for Finn.

Date: 2015-01-03 02:21 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] padawansguide.livejournal.com
Also liked this comment from Onion AV Club:

"It took me a while to realize it but Clarke, Bellamy, Raven; they consistently rationalize Finn's actions because they LIKE Finn. He's their friend. Yes, he killed 18 people but fuck them; they were Grounders and Grounders have been trying to kill us since we landed.

Abby doesn't want to give Finn up because of her relationships with Clarke and Raven; THEY care about him, so she does too. Sprinkle in a liberal amount of guilt over sending Finn out to find Clarke/sending the kids to the ground in the first place there we go.

Jaha, Kaine, the Ark survivors; they're ready to throw Finn to the wolves because fuck that guy! He's a murderer. EVEN WORSE, he's keeping the Grounder from accepting the truce. They don't really care about the people he killed- because, again, they're Grounders so fuck'em- but they care that his presence is keeping them from being safe.

The only group that treats the massacre with any weight are the Grounders because they are the only group that was personally effected.

For me, this line of thought changed the Finn storyline from a shoddy bore into a clever examination of moral myopia."

Date: 2015-01-03 02:23 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] padawansguide.livejournal.com
Which dovetailed with a different comment that was like - all those character LIKED Finn so they hand-waved bad stuff. Murphy's an asshole, so they're fine throwing him to the wolves. He's done bad stuff sure, and he's also a sociopath, but what Finn did was way worse. But Finn is a "nice guy."

Moral myopia indeed.

So looking back, there are lots of elements of Finn that worked - but maybe only in retrospect.

Date: 2015-01-03 02:33 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] brightcupenny.livejournal.com
Yeah! That's it exactly. Looking at it from that angle makes it a much better storyline. I get where the writers were coming from and what they were trying to do. But for me, at the time, in the moment, it just didn't work the way they intended.

(Also the most jarring thing for me was how vehemently Bellamy defended Finn. Because Clarke, Raven, absolutely. They both like him. Unless we missed a lot during their funtime trip through the woods earlier this season, Bellamy has never had a whole lot of personal love for Finn. His usefulness, yes, him as a person, no. Maybe it was meant to show how protective he is of all the remaining members of the original 100?)

Date: 2015-01-03 02:41 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] padawansguide.livejournal.com
I think with Bellamy it is that they're *his*. He sort of took over the de facto leadership and with the adults coming in and messing with things and making decisions. I think he is fiercely protective. I think it's like one of those sibling things where only you are allowed to pick on your sibling - but if anyone outside tries to... Finn is one of them, the people sent down sacrificially. Bad shit happened to them as a result and I think they're way more banded together as their numbers dwindle, then they were on Day 1.

This show is funny - because episode by episode there have been things that don't work (ie, all this stuff with Finn, and the teen cliche characters (slutty popular mean girl! bully popular douche guy! bully sidekick guy! nerd guy! cool goofy cute reckless guy! sassy girl!) that 2 episodes in totally threw those all away as Bellamy and Murphy went Lord of the Flies, and Octavia went awesome, etc. In retrospect that contrast is stark and really works. As does the moral ambigiousness around Finn. But in the moment, before the story unfolds, less so...

Date: 2015-01-03 02:50 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] brightcupenny.livejournal.com
I think you're right. I wish they'd been able to toss him a line like that to lend Bellamy a little more justification (and more character development, woop).

Your second paragraph, that's one thing I love, where they had these total stereotype characters and then they break down and explain why they were that way in the first place, and then put them through the wringer and their shells burned away and their true personalities came through. Like, this is a little headcanon-y, but in my mind basically everything Bellamy did early on in the show was because of Octavia, in one way or another. He seizes power, and planned to seize power from the moment he got on the ship, because it was the best way to ensure her safety. And then all the ridiculous sleeping around and posturing and "whatever the hell we want" was partially to maintain that persona he constructed to keep power, and partially because he really did just want to let loose and be young for a change. He likely had next to no close friends/relationships/whatever on the Ark because of Octavia, and then he lost basically everything in his life because of Octavia (not her fault ofc), and so finally he's like "FUCK YES whatever the hell we want" with a handy side effect of helping him gain and keep power.

I may have thought about this a fair bit.

Date: 2015-01-03 02:55 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] padawansguide.livejournal.com
Agreed on Bellamy.

Oh, very interesting.

Yeah, because Bellamy wasn't douchy popular guy on the ship, which doesn't gel very well with Bellamy on the dropship. Bellamy on the ship was the guy who made sure not to attract attention onto Octavia. But I like the head canon that this was his chance to be young and do whatever he wants. Clearly some of his actions were out of self-interest as well as protecting Octavia - because he didn't want the adults showing up and both taking his power and jailing him again. But so much of what he did was clearly in defense of Octavia. I like this headcanon.


Date: 2015-01-03 02:30 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] brightcupenny.livejournal.com
Definitely agree about the acting. There are some amazing actors on this show and the guy who played Finn was not one of them.

In retrospect, I don't know that the show PTB was necessarily trying to push him as a romantic hero (though it's definitely what I thought at the time), I just think they were really trying to make people be sad when he died. Which clearly worked for lots of people! It did not work for me.

Thoughtless is a good word for him. Not thinking through the consequences of his actions. That's been true from moment one-- he was partially responsible for 2 kids dying during the dropship descent back in the pilot, when they followed his lead by unfastening their restraints. I think he really wented to be the mature responsible leader guy (think of his pacifist phase in season 1) but didn't know how to then carry through with it.

And yeah, good intentions. The issue with Finn was that he believed that having good intentions (or at least not having bad intentions) absolved him of consequences. He didn't mean to hurt anyone, so he can't be blamed if he did hurt someone. That's a fine character type to explore. I wish they'd been able to pull it off a little better.

So much comes down to how the narrative frames something. Like, Murphy's a full on murderer, but he gets to stay and most everybody's fine with it because no one, including him, pretends he's anything other than what he is. When Bellamy busted the radio, that was painted as a stupid, selfish action, not "oh, well you had a good reason for it so okay." Framing is everything.

Date: 2015-01-03 02:36 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] padawansguide.livejournal.com
I don't think I was sad when he died because I sort of learned that anyone can die on this show, so I'm not overly attached to anyone. Though I love Octavia.

I think I was more sad that war and PTSD hurt everyone. And that Finn shouldn't have been in this situation. And that I didn't want him tortured because I feel so deeply that that is wrong.

Oh and I forgot that Finn was the idiot who undid his restraints on the dropship. Yep. Thoughtless idiot indeed. And I agree that he sort of wanted to be Bellamy, but could never really pull it off.

And yes, you're exactly right. Good intentions do not absolve you from consequences. And I think a better actor (and maybe better writing) could have explored that better.

And I think you're right about Murphy and that no one has illusions about him. But Finn is *nice* dammit! So it's easy to say he's more than his actions. When that's not really fair to absolve him because he's a nice guy with good intentions.

And you're right - Bellamy was called out for his selfishness.

Date: 2015-01-03 03:12 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] brightcupenny.livejournal.com
I am overly attached to Raven. If they kill Raven I will be very very very sad, because Raven is awesome.

For more 100 fun, this is my favorite recapper. Her photo recaps always make me giggle. http://www.tv.com/users/Toni_watches/posts/

Date: 2015-01-03 03:23 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] padawansguide.livejournal.com
I do love Raven too.

I'll check that out- thx for the link!


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