Heading into its fifth season tonight (The CW, 9/8c), The 100 is giving fans a “very different” premiere, switching up its storytelling strategy and spending much of the hour focusing on one character’s journey.
“There was a time when it was just going to be [Clarke] for the entire episode, but we chose to weave in other stories,” showrunner Jason Rothenberg tells TVLine. “Still, it was a bold and exciting choice for us to play with that one character for that amount of time. It was a great challenge for [actress] Eliza Taylor, but we knew she could handle it.”
He adds that Tuesday’s premiere “tracks Clarke’s emotional journey over [the six-year time jump] really nicely. We quickly understand why she’s so deeply bonded to [Madi]. I think Eliza is as good as it gets, and I’m excited for people to see her tour de force performance.”
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Speaking of Madi, Rothenberg explains that Clarke’s relationship with the young Nightblood — the only other person Clarke encounters on the ground in those six years — leads to a shifting of priorities for her.
“She’s obviously not a biological mother, but she has such an emotional connection to this child,” he explains. “She now has a clan of one. In that way, everything has changed for her. She’s always recognized that the things she does are done for her people, even though they’re fairly hard choices she has to make to keep her people alive — just like people on the other side have made similarly difficult choices to keep their people alive.”
But priorities aren’t just shifting on the ground. Rothenberg says that a lot has changed for the gang up in space, most notably within Murphy. Not only has he developed a friendship with Raven — you know, the girl he shot all those seasons ago — but he’s demonstrating great signs of personal growth:
As Rothenberg notes, “Murphy is expanding his priorities, first to include Emori, and now to include this little family in space.”
Your hopes for tonight’s season premiere? The 100‘s fifth season in general? Drop ’em in a comment below.