Sometimes a season finale will leave you hanging, and sometimes a season finale will blow up literally everything you thought you knew about the show. In the case of The 100, the Season 6 finale falls into the latter category.
While half the episode followed Clarke (Eliza Taylor) as she desperately tried to save Madi (Lola Flanery) and her friends in space, the other half dealt with the melee on the ground. Eventually, once the Primes' most devout followers had been dealt with, Bellamy (Bob Morley), Octavia (Marie Avgeropoulos), and Gabriel (Chuku Modu) found themselves back at the heart of the Anomaly mystery, which took a turn for the weird in the final moments of the episode.
After entering a mysterious code tattooed on Octavia's back into what turned out to maybe be the key to the Anomaly, we saw that ambiguous green mist expand to include Gabriel's camp. And who should walk into his tent but a grown-up Hope (Shelby Flannery), whom Octavia seemed to know quite well. Well enough, at least, to share a hug that ended with Hope stabbing Octavia in the gut. And the real kicker? As Octavia lay dying in Bellamy's arms, she dissolved into that same green mist that seems to make up the Anomaly before it all receded back to its original territory.
What. The. Hell?!
TV Guide spoke with showrunner Jason Rothenberg to figure out what all of this means, and what kind of answers we can expect when the show returns for its seventh and final season.
First and most obvious question, is Octavia dead?
Jason Rothenberg: I feel like the answer to that is you have to tune in to Season 7 to find out. We definitely ask it. We knew for a while that we were going get a seventh season. We felt pretty confident about it as we were breaking the season. There's a bunch of things in this episode that are like obviously set up for the big — what we now know to be the big finish of the show next year, Season 7.
Can you say when we pick up in Season 7? Is it immediately after or can we expect a time jump?
Rothenberg: Well, time is acting funny isn't it? I can say that we will pick up that story right where we left off, in Season 7. There's lots of twists and turns and reveals, and you know clearly what's on the other side of the Anomaly is going to play in a big way. We're going to answer a lot of questions and fill in a lot of blanks in Season 7, like what happened to Octavia and Diyoza (Ivana Milicevic) when they went away for that time period. All of it. Why do Hope and Octavia appear to know each other? All of it.
It seems like we might be playing with time a little bit in Season 7. What can you sort of say about that?
Rothenberg: It's not time travel. I can say that. I don't know if it's a spoiler to say exactly what it is, so I'm not going to say what it is, but definitively not time travel. That said, time is not behaving normally, clearly. The rules of physics, for reasons that we will explain, sort of are not acting normally.
Did Octavia always remember what happened in the Anomaly or are her memories of that truly as hazy as she's been letting on?
Rothenberg: No, she didn't remember. One of the side effects of coming from that side to this side has to do with memory loss. She definitely did not remember, and there is a very good reason for that.
She obviously gained a little bit of clarity back and spoke that line, "Tell him it's done." Can we make any assumptions about who she's referring to?
Rothenberg: You can't assume anything. The audience can't assume anything... In that moment that they entered the code from Octavia's back into the Anomaly, it brings the Anomaly forward to them and ultimately, obviously, brings Hope with it, and there's a reason for that that we will get into, of course, in Season 7. We will understand, and [Octavia] does have her memory in those moments that the Anomaly is above them. That's all I can say about it, because really now we're talking about ... Season 7 and [Episode] 701 in a big way in this conversation.
Did this expansion of the Anomaly have any effect on the people in space?
Rothenberg: No. I mean, if they were to go into the Anomaly, it would affect them, but they are not yet. The Anomaly is essentially, I don't know if I can say what the Anomaly essentially is yet, but it's obviously some type of a passage between. There's another side to the Anomaly. Something's happening on the other side. Until you go through it, you're not through it — not to be ambiguous. Octavia has gone through it, Diyoza's gone through it, Hope's obviously come from it in the end of [Episode] 613, so there's something over there, and we're going to play with that in a big way in the next piece.
It was sort of heartbreaking to watch Bellamy lose his sister right after they just started to reconcile. How much of his storyline next year is going to be not only trying to figure out what happened to her, but also mourning her, if she truly is gone?
Rothenberg: As I said, we do pick up where we left off, so he will be driven to find out what the hell happened to her. Why did this girl just stab her? How was she 20-years-old three days after she was a fetus? All these big questions will certainly drive him to get answers right away... He'll get answers right away. It's about what he does with those answers.
Hope is a cool, new, mystery character, so what can you tease about her personality and what part she's going to play in next season?
Rothenberg: I think we'll end up liking her. I think she's the product of Diyoza, so she'll have some of Diyoza's wit, and she obviously has a connection to Octavia. I don't want to talk too much about it because she is sort of a mystery character, and answering those questions is a lot of what the first few episodes of the season are next year, next season.
Sheidheda was sort of an ambiguous entity this entire season, but it feels like we probably haven't seen the last of him. How much of a threat does he still pose?
Rothenberg: You correctly point out the fact that he's missing in the end of that sequence. I think it's a safe bet that we'll see him again. ... Interestingly, we always kind of set up throughout a season what the next season's story is going to be. We did that in two ways this season. The Anomaly being one and Sheidheda being the other.
You guys obviously have an ending in mind for the series now that you know it's the end. When did you guys land on that ending and how satisfied will fans be with the end of the journey?
Rothenberg: I hope they'll be satisfied. I am satisfied. I think it's a pretty powerful, emotional ending. One of the things I asked as we started the season was, "What do we want this show to say when it's all over?" I feel like the ending of a story is the moral of the story. We've been holding the mirror up to society saying, "Oh my god, aren't people terrible? Look what they'll do to survive. They'll kill anybody just to protect their people. My people, my people, my people." Ultimately, we want to say something I think a little bit different, but I can't go that much further without giving too much away. The answer to your question, as far as when we came up with it, I mean I've been circling sort of conceptually what the ending was going to be for a while, but it really didn't take shape in a big way until we sat down and started really talking about Season 7 in May/June of this year. In terms of figuring out what the details of it would be, and then at that point we knew it had to be the end. There's really very little — there's nowhere to go after this.
The 100 will return at midseason on The CW.
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