One of the things that I tend to do a lot, one of my personality traits as it were, is that I have a tendency to develop obsessions for things. This is usually a T.V. show, a film, a book series, or occasionally just a random topic that catches my interest, actually it can be anything. Whatever my current obsession is tends to consume me, it becomes all I want to talk about, all I want to watch, all I want to read about. It becomes everything. My obsessions tend to last a few weeks to a few months at a time, but I often cycle back to the same few one’s time and time again.
My current obsession at the moment is for a post-apocalyptic, sci-fi T.V. show, The 100. It’s one I’ve had before, on more than one occasion, usually around the time a new season is released, however at the moment it’s fuelled mostly by the fact that I’m going down to London for a convention for The 100 next weekend. At the minute I’m currently binge watching all four seasons to try get myself up to speed with everything that has happened on the show before the question and answer sessions with some of the cast. And yeah, I’m a giant nerd, but hey that’s cool. Kind of.
Re watching it is great, I absolutely love the show, but it also brings up a lot of emotions. For some reason I have a lot of specific, strong memories attached to the show. Me and my Dad used to watch it together, and so sometimes watching it, especially season one, takes me right back to being sat in my Dad’s living room, on that burgundy couch, with the fire going. How we watched it every week before I went away to uni, how we’d watch it if it was on when I came home from uni. I remember thinking Finn was alright, Kane was a prick, and that Raven Reyes was pretty damn awesome. It’s funny how things change. Next season I’ll be watching it in that same living room, without that burgundy couch, and without my Dad sat on the other end of it. Nowadays I think Finn is a prick, Kane’s alright, and Raven Reyes is still pretty damn amazing.
Anyone who knows me will know that Raven Reyes is my absolute favourite T.V. character of all time, simply because she reminds me of myself a lot of the time. Sometimes this is a good thing, especially when I accidentally say the same snarky response she gives in response to something on the show. Other times it’s not so good. She’s a great character, smart, funny, sarcastic, and determined, but like most of the characters on the show she’s human and flawed. She might be a genius, but she’s also stubborn as hell. If she’s working on a problem then she won’t stop until she finds a solution, but she also refuses to accept any help from others, preferring to work by herself. If things aren’t going right she gets frustrated, annoyed, upset, and so she lashes out, hits things, breaks things, and takes it out to those that are near to her. She takes failures as a sign of weakness, something that she’s not prepared to show. She hate’s admitting that she can’t do something by herself, or that she’s hurting, and when she’s hurting she wants those around her to hurt too. She makes digs, says stuff she doesn’t really mean to try make those around her feel just as bad as she does. She pushes people away, hurts them before they can hurt her, and a lot of the time she refuses to ask for help because she believes she deserves the pain, to try make up for things she’s done in the past. And she often uses her ego to mask her own insecurities and fears.
But whilst she has a lot of personal issues, a lot of her own demons, she also has a whole host of good things about her. She’s witty and funny, coming out with some of the most amazing one-liners and deadpan comments and she always seems to have a sarcastic, snarky response for people. She has confidence in her own abilities for the most part, and she knows that she can push the boundaries with her boss and mentor, because whilst her methods aren’t always conventional, she get’s results. She thrives on solving problems, using her brain, and the more difficult a problem is the happier she gets. Especially if said project involves making something go boom. She’s fiercely loyal to those that she’s close too, and will forgive them for almost anything. She get’s put through so much shit and yet, she always seems to come out stronger at the other side.
In fact, one of my favourite lines from the show comes from towards the end of the last season, after she’s accepted that she’s dying so she’s staying in a bunker by herself, trying to enjoy her last few days. Only then she changes her mind, decides she’s not gonna give up without a fight, she essentially tries to reset her brain, stops her heart and restarts it. Once she’s coming round, she radio’s back to the others with the line “This is Raven Reyes, and I am alive.” For me that line is full of hope and determination ad spirit. A reminder to always keep fighting and to never give up.
Then again, the show is full of reminders never to give up. The whole show is set in a world where everyone is fighting to survive. One of my favourite phrases from the show is one that the Grounders have in their own language, “ge smak daun, gyon op nodataim,” which roughly translates to “get knocked down, get back up again.” It’s a fundamental part of their warrior training, and a phrase I like to remember when things aren’t going quite to plan.