On The CW’s The 100, Australian actress Eliza Taylor stars as Clarke, one of the 100 juvenile delinquents of the title; sent down to a post-nuclear holocaust Earth to discover whether the planet is livable again.
We’ve quickly learned Clarke was locked up for trying to help her father — who was executed — warn the others onboard the space station the Ark just how dire their own situation is, and also seen her turn into quite a proactive character, who is the first to organize a rescue mission or go searching for supplies.
I spoke to Taylor about Clarke’s role among the 100 and the surprisingly dark content that is about to occur on the series.
IGN TV: When the 100 arrive, a lot of these kids have different ideas on what the right course of action is. What would you say is Clarke’s focus?
Eliza Taylor: I think Clarke’s focus is just, honestly, to save everyone. She wants to keep everyone safe no matter what. Sometimes I think it’s the wrong way to look at things, because it does end up getting her in trouble. I think she just wants people to keep on their wristbands. She wants people on the Ark to know that we are surviving Earth, and she wants them to come down and start a new life. It’s very pure, and it’s a sweet sentiment. It doesn’t end up working that way, but you know, it’s a really nice idea. [Laughs]
IGN: Is there a group of people listening to her?
Taylor: Yeah, I think there’s kind of Team Clarke and Team Bellamy, really. Whether we like it or not, we end up being the leaders of the group. We disagree on a lot of things, but at the end of the day, both of us have a responsibility to these people, because they listen to us. You never know, maybe they’ll end up actually getting along.
IGN: Is this a reluctant position she’s in, or is there a natural-born leader in her that’s able to rise to the occasion?
Taylor: It’s a total natural-born leader situation. I don’t think she ever really asked for this responsibility, and I think if she could choose, she probably wouldn’t be in this position of power — but she is. I think she does a really good job at it.
IGN: I’ve seen the first four episodes, and The 100 gets pretty dark. Have you been surprised by that?
Taylor: Yeah, absolutely. I think the pilot is fantastic, and I’m really proud of it, but I don’t think it represents the dark turn that the show takes and how crazy is gets, especially for The CW. I think it’s a really bold move that they’re allowing us to do these things and show this stuff. [Laughs] There’s some really, really gritty, dark stuff going on, and it’s cool. It’s a really fun story to tell.
With two confirmed deaths and one life still hanging in the balance, last week’s premiere of The CW’s The 100 made one thing abundantly clear: No one is safe. Star Eliza Taylor tells TVLine that trend will continue tonight (9/8c), as new dangers — and dangerous new relationships — come to light on this crazy planet we call Earth.
Below, Taylor gives us a taste of what’s to come in future episodes, including a few new surprise alliances in the works.
TVLINE | The last thing we saw was Jasper getting impaled by that huge spear. Is that where Episode 2 picks up?
[Laughs] Yes, it picks up directly after the spear. Basically, we all think we should run away from whatever that thing is, but then we hear a scream, and it’s possible Jasper’s still alive. So me, Octavia and Monty go on a mission to find him — and whatever it was that took him.
TVLINE | Since there was a spear involved, I assume this enemy is… human?
That’s highly possible.
TVLINE | Will the enemy remain a mystery, or will we learn about them soon?
What we will slowly learn about them is that, although they’re hostile, they’ve got good reason to be protecting their land. I’m sure, eventually, we’ll come into contact with them.
TVLINE | And can we expect other non-human threats? That giant fish creature gave me nightmares.
Absolutely. There’s a huge cloud that starts barreling towards us, so that’s one of the dangers. And there are a few other things that’ll jump out at us that you won’t expect.
TVLINE | Clarke seems to especially clash with Octavia. Can they ever become friends?
I think Octavia can be quite hostile when she wants to be, and Clarke can be quite bossy when she wants to be — so they butt heads. But one thing they have in common is that they both do care. I think, there will be times during the series when they set their differences aside and get along, but there will also be times when they continue to rub each other the wrong way.
TVLINE | I know survival is priority No. 1, but will there also be time for romance?
I think so. I think there’s a good chance of romance for a few characters, but there’s also a good chance it won’t last long, given the circumstances.
TVLINE | So, basically, don’t expect a third date.
[Laughs] Exactly, you might not survive long enough to see it.
TVLINE | Lastly, will the parents interact with the kids, or will their two world remain separate?
I think the writers have found clever ways to connect the two storylines. You’ll see us interacting more and more with the ark as the series goes on.