We left off The 100 Season 5 Episode 10 with Octavia burning the last choice that her people had at a peaceful life. After Monty reveals to Wonkru that the farm is running and they can replicate the results in the soil with time, Octavia turned around and removed that chance.
This forced everyone to join her in her original plan, leaving the memories of the bunker behind and heading to march to Shallow Valley to get that land.
Over in Shallow Valley though, McCreary is only creating more havoc when Clarke and Madi finally arrive there. They end up finding Abby passed out after she struggled through the early signs of withdrawal, with Vinson helping her out by getting his fix when he bit into the guards so that Abby could access her pills.
Both of these arcs are meant to build up to the new episode, with a common thread bringing both Abby and Octavia's story together, although it is in a very different way.
Now The 100 Season 5 Episode 11 is using the title "The Dark Year," and it relies on a few flashbacks to gain some more insight into the year that has been teased about continuously because of the influence that it had on several characters.
Suffice to say, this episode will be heavy because of the topic that gets brought up, and more specifically the way it influenced everything going forward.
The synopsis for this specific episode is, "As Clarke races to save Abby, she learns more about the trials and tribulations Wonkru faced in the bunker, and the impossible decisions they were forced to make in the dark year."
There is also this very helpful trailer to help arrange our expectations.
This preview may contain some light teases about the eleventh episode, with a specific focus on characters and scenes that have been discussed before or have been included in promotional videos and/or photos.
Proceed with caution if you like to be kept in the dark, but really, who likes that?
The Role Abby Played
Abby is clearly in a less than desirable condition, with her addiction catching up to her in horrifying ways.
First, she had to go through withdrawal, or at least start to, which then was followed up by getting her fix because of Vinson. It got to such a point for her that she was completely unfazed by her friend literally biting into someone because she was too focused on the pills that she needed.
Of course, there may be other reasons why Abby was unfazed by this horror movie level scene in front of her.
Nevertheless, Abby took the pills, and when Clarke finds her, she isn't even conscious.
Based on the trailer and some other knowledge, Abby is going to deal with the aftermath of what her addiction was all building up to.
With Clarke there to look after her, Abby will feel like she should fill Clarke in on exactly what happened during The Dark Year and by extension how she became involved and what led to her dependency on these pills.
Teasing what Abby will reveal is difficult, with the simplest hint being the fact that this will be a rough ride.
The deeper dive into addiction has been a recurring theme this season, but this is similar to The 100 Season 5 Episode 10, in that it tells the story with an awareness that this is Abby's story.
Before, there was much more of an observation about the way that Abby's addiction affected those around her and how it played out in those terms.
Now though, Abby is front and center as she has to come to terms with what she had to do down there.
To call things complicated is oversimplifying what The Dark Years digs into, with a very intense tone set in both the trailer and the episode.
This is a lot coming up for Abby and to move forward, unfortunately, sometimes you have to move back.
The Position Octavia Finds Herself In
Similiar to Abby, Octavia found herself in a position where she was looking back before she could move forward.
Of course, that was explored more in the decision to burn down the farm that Monty promised would be able to keep everyone alive without there being a war.
Speculation about what led her to do this, outside of just general spite towards the turn that her people made as soon as they found out about what happened, turned to fear.
Shaping that into a concrete theory was a bit more difficult until now, with The Dark Year fitting in more details about how Octavia got to this point as well.
With The 100 Season 5 Episode 2, it was all about how Octavia became the ruthless leader who chose to sentence people to the fighting pits as a way to punish and also as a side note trim down the population in that bunker significantly.
Yet there was something about Octavia's decision with the farm that made her leadership even more confusing.
The Dark Year explores that fact, laying the groundwork for Octavia's journey down there in startling flashbacks.
Watching Octavia become the Red Queen was just scratching the surface, with sacrifices along the way that are weighing her down in a way that we haven't seen before.
Still, Octavia is marching with her people towards Eden in a move of war that not everyone is on board with yet.
Shallow Valley has its own drama going on, but that doesn't mean that the walk there is easy for Octavia.
Bellamy and the others are still angry at the choices she made that got them there, and this has to open the door for more conflict.
They may be going in the same direction, yet their motives once they enter Eden couldn't be more different.
Specifically, Bellamy and Octavia are in a place in their relationship where they don't see eye to eye. In fact, even the day to day decisions couldn't appear more scattered to the other once.
All of this means there is a chance for more scenes that pick away at the Blakes and the way they are functioning as siblings right about now.
The Situation Charmaine and Kane Can't Avoid
It is all Kane's fault.
Not really, but Kane set something back by not clueing in the space group about the plan that Clarke and Bellamy had crafted in that bunker.
Now, McCreary isn't just a nuisance; he is a full one threat.
Fan theories from scattered episode shots may prove to be right, with McCreary having the potential to create even more chaos now.
Gone is the villain who shot a bunch of people just for fun. Now, McCreary could be thinking long term, and he is probably the last person with any power amongst all the groups.
Charmaine and Kane are now in a position where they not only have to create peace; they have to stop actual danger from being further stirred by McCreary.
They don't have to handle that alone though, with Clarke and Madi potentially new members of this planning group.
They are with Abby in McCreary's neck of the woods though, so somehow they would have to reconnect with Charmaine.
Madi still has the flame in her though, which means her approach to creating a new strategy might differ from what Clarke may have in mind. That doesn't always manage to make its way into the narrative, but lately, the idea of Clarke and Madi agreeing is stranger than most things.
Also, we can't forget that Kane and Charmaine did still find themselves teaming up with the space group. Raven, Emori, Zeke, Murphy, and Echo are all prepared to assist in this possible war, and their capabilities in all this may resurface in surprising ways.
There has to be more hope for Charmaine since she has so many familiar faces on her side, McCreary is the guy who is literally hanging out all alone with no one to trust.
If so many people are working against a common enemy, and that is before Octavia or the bunker are mentioned, there has to be a solid plan that works out in their favor?
You would think.
Still, it can't be forgotten that McCreary probably has more of the upper hand, especially since he has no moral compass to make him waver in the opposite direction.
- It can't be possible for anyone to be able to watch The 100 and snack while doing so, but if you are one of the odds ones, then I suggest you sit out that habit this time around. Trust me.
- There may be a ship sailing in the night.
- There may be some time for a much-needed confrontation, with tea on the side.
- There may be more groundwork being laid down for future plots, both character driven and plot focused.
- There may be conflicting feelings about two characters in a situation, with surprising results for all fans.
- There may be a recurring focus on past choices and how they play into present dilemmas.
Yana Grebenyuk is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.