Ranked: The 15 Saddest Deaths on CW’s The 100

The 100 -- "The Last War" -- Image Number: HU716a_0159r.jpg -- Pictured (L-R): Eliza Taylor as Clarke and Lola Flanery as Madi -- Photo: Bettina Strauss/The CW -- © 2020 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved.
The 100 -- "The Last War" -- Image Number: HU716a_0159r.jpg -- Pictured (L-R): Eliza Taylor as Clarke and Lola Flanery as Madi -- Photo: Bettina Strauss/The CW -- © 2020 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved. /
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The 100
The 100 — Photo: Diyah Pera/The CW — © 2014 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved /

What are our 15 saddest deaths on The 100? Check out our ranking!

Love or hate the series, The 100 has had a devoted following throughout its seven-season run, but it was also plagued by controversy.

Much of this largely stemmed from its handling of death with certain characters and the sheer amount of grim, dark storytelling that rarely allowed for moments of catharsis, joy, or hope the longer the series went on.

It’s very difficult to discuss The 100 without also talking about loss. The series and its characters are defined by death, whether it was executed by their own hands, the hands of others, self-sacrifice, or suicide. As such we’ve compiled 15 of the saddest deaths on The 100.

To give some perspective on our selections, our interpretation of sad includes fan reaction, impact on the show’s direction, and consideration of common harmful tropes. We’ll be ranking from sad to saddest, but before we begin, let’s start with an honorable mention.

The 100
The 100 — Photo: Jack Rowand/The CW — © 2020 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved. /

Honorable Mention – Clarke Griffin

Technically, Clarke Griffin survived the series but that doesn’t mean her character was anything but a dead woman walking in the final season.

Let’s be clear. Clarke is the heart of The 100. Since the beginning, her choices have had a major effect on storylines in positive and horrific ways. She was the driving force of the series who carried the weight of decisions that shaped the lives of her people and her loved ones. But if you’ve watched season seven then you know that the Clarke the audience fell in love with was barely a part of the story.

Relegated to the sidelines, Clarke Griffin was an afterthought in The 100‘s last run on our screens. Arguably, she could have died in season six and not much would have changed in the final season. Think about it. Out of all of the storylines that make up the last 16 episodes of this beloved show, Clarke wasn’t at the head of any of them. Minor characters and antagonists were.

She was absent for much of the Sanctum arc which was lead by Murphy, Emori, Indra, and Sheidheda. The Bardo/Sky Ring arc was led by Octavia, Hope, Echo, Diyoza, and Cadogan. If we’re being generous, Clarke was a part of the effort to find Bellamy, but if you cut out her journey from Sanctum to Nakara to Bardo and just had her be abducted and sent to the planet nothing really changes.

In the end, Clarke wasn’t even the character that saved the world. The one thing that is usually the case on The 100–Clarke’s propensity for being the clutch member of the crew who saves the day–didn’t happen. Raven and Octavia ensured their people ascended while Clarke lamented her losses and cradled her daughter in her arms. She gave up, something Clarke rarely does for long and certainly not with her people’s lives hanging in the balance.

We’ve included Clarke Griffin as an honorable mention on this list because of character assassination. It is sad that as lead, Clarke was given so little to do and was written so far out of character that she was nearly unrecognizable. For such an impactful and meaningful character to be written in a way that makes her unnecessary to her own show in its final season is not only disappointing, and disheartening, but also infuriating.

She became a shade of her former self and the series is poorer for it. In my experience, if you’re a fan of Clarke Griffin, season seven is basically unwatchable. I’m glad she survived to the end, but the Clarke in season seven is not the Clarke of seasons one through six. She’s just not.

While Eliza Taylor delivered a performance that raised the quality of what she was given by leaps and bounds, it’s incredibly unfortunate that the stand out sci-fi character she played had an ending like this. No one would have imagined a lackluster finish for Clarke Griffin especially when the only thing that makes her a hinge pin in the final season is the murder of a big bad and her best friend, two deaths done for shock value. So, Clarke is alive, but the character we knew is very much dead.