The 100 Has Become a Teen-Oriented, Feminist Version of Game of Thrones

Friday, 12 February 2016 - 11:50AM
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Friday, 12 February 2016 - 11:50AM
The 100 Has Become a Teen-Oriented, Feminist Version of Game of Thrones
Last night's episode of The 100 was fantastic, and demonstrated just how far the show has come since its teen soap-esque first few episodes. It had its weak spots here and there, most notably the far-too-quick 180-degree turn by Bellamy into a Grounder-killing villain, but overall it solidified a transformation that has been gestating since the end of the second season: The 100 is officially a younger version of Game of Thrones.

Spoilers for The 100 season 3 follow!




In the aptly titled "Watch the Thrones," Lexa and Roan fought to the death in an amazingly choreographed fight that clearly evoked Oberyn vs The Mountain, albeit with a different ending. Lexa, like Oberyn, is up against a warrior who is much larger and stronger than her, but she more than holds her own. After a shaky start, in which she loses her weapons to Roan (but not before awesomely grabbing onto her sword like a staff, making her hand bleed), she barely escapes death, fights him for nearly a minute without any weapons, and then gets the best of him and wins the duel. Then, in true Game of Thrones fashion, she impales someone completely unexpected: the Ice Queen. It was not only the best fight scene on The 100 so far, but one of the best fight scenes I've seen on any show.

The 100

Jason Rothenberg previously implied in an interview that the "amazing" fight between Lexa and Roan was a deliberate homage to GOT:

Opening quote
"Our stunt crew is really firing on all cylinders. That scene is ridiculous," he said last week. "We shot that scene in six hours. I think Game of Thrones shot their similar fight scene in like eight days."
Closing quote



But at this point in the show, it's not just a simple homage. Between the moral ambiguity, the detailed world-building, the increased focus on the shifting power dynamics, and the unflinching brutality of the violence (just last week, fans and reviewers joked that Gina had been "red weddinged"), The 100 has essentially become a teen version of Game of Thrones. The fact that there is literally a "fight for the throne" in this season makes the theme more explicit, but the shared theme of different factions struggling for power has been there since the end of the first season. And with the addition of the behind-the-scenes wrangling for the Chancellor position and the power struggle between Kane/Abby and Pike, politics is increasingly becoming the driving force of the show, much as it is on Game of Thrones.



But that's not to say that The 100 is a poor facsimile of Game of Thrones; the fact that the characters are younger hardly matters for the quality of the show, and while Game of Thrones has the benefit of an HBO budget and cast on its side, there are things The 100 is doing right that Game of Thrones isn't. Game of Thrones and The 100 are both exemplary in their depiction of sexually fluid fantasy worlds, but The 100 definitely has GOT beat on racial diversity. Even more pronounced is the difference between the respective shows' treatment of gender; The 100 is one of the most feminist genre shows on television, while GOT is notoriously problematic in its depiction of violence against women, often using it for gratuitous shock value or for the sake of a male character's arc. As The 100 continues to become more complex, political, and, frankly, sadistic, it's not only become the "kids version" of Game of Thrones, but a more egalitarian alternative.
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