Before the panel for “The 100,” CW’s midseason futuristic drama, the full premiere episode was screened for the audience. Afterward, Thomas McDonell (Finn), Eliza Taylor (Clarke), Marie Avgeropoulos (Octavia), executive producers Jason Rothenberg and Matt Miller, Isaiah Washington (Chancellor Jaha), Henry Ian Cusick (Councillor Kane) sat down to take questions about the show. While potential fans definitely seemed to be present in the half-full room, the future (for the show and in the show) is still unclear.
The show takes place 97 years after a nuclear war, when a spaceship housing humanity’s lone survivors sends 100 juvenile delinquents back to Earth in hopes of possibly re-populating the planet. The first episode is a mix of fun teen hijinks in the wild (hey, let’s take off our pants and go swimming! Let’s play in the rain! Whoot!) and a dark story of population control, a bleak future in space. and corrupt grown-ups. The show is a very CW take on the future with a “Lord of the Flies” twist (which the producers acknowledged) and plenty of hot teenagers.
Based on a book (which show creators admitted they aren’t “handcuffed to at all”), the show has a strong adult cast and plenty of attractive younger players. Still, scifi fans might struggle with some of the creative liberties taken with the story. I’m also not sure if, in 100 years, teens will still be saying stuff like “We’re back, bitches!” and “That is so not game.”s
But during the brief panel, the show creators were more concerned with a tonal problem. “The concern was it would feel like two different shows [the kids on Earth and the adults in the sky]. Jason has always talked about it as Battlestar Galactica and you’ve got Lost. In going forward it’s important they don’t feel like two different shows. We have to figure out a way to bring them together, via flashbacks or if people on the arc learn if Earth is survivable, what do they do about that?”
Washington, whose character discovers that Cusick’s character Kane has betrayed him while he was in surgery, discussed his potentially complex character, who has allowed his own son to be sent to Earth. “This gives me an opportunity to be as pliable… I have to be the one who makes the hard decisions… I’m very interested to see how I’ll be pushed and pulled in all the dynamics of these characters.”
Avgeropoulos, who appeared to be injured, explained what happened. “My parachute didn’t deploy. You didn’t see it?” she joked. “I’m shooting this movie ‘Tracers’ with Taylor Lautner, doing all my own stunts, and I rolled it during my workout doing squats. “
The actress also discussed how Octavia will interact with her brother — a rare relationship given that the population had a strict one child rule and Octavia’s mother was put to death for the violation. “Octavia in one way or another was locked up her life, she was hidden until she was 13 in the floorboards, and when she was busted they floated or killed her mother. She wants to do whatever the hell she wants now that she’s free, and will. I’m sure he’ll try to be the protective older brother, and I’m sure she’ll be like ugh.” Now it’s up to audiences to decide if this midseason show is worth protecting or is, ultimately, like ugh.