Unless you’ve been living under a rock, something will likely have popped up on your Facebook or Twitter feed in the last day or two about The 100.
The 100 is a US sci-fi television show aired on the CW network. On March 3rd, the show killed off lesbian character Lexa, played by Australian actress Alycia Debnam-Carey. Lexa had become an audience favourite and icon for the LGBT community – but in her last appearance on the show, she was unceremoniously shot in the back after having sex with her girlfriend, main character Clarke Griffin.
We all know characters get killed off shows all the time, it’s how showbiz works – but this time, fans have hit back, delivering the subsequent episode the show’s worst-ever ratings. Using the hashtag #LGBTfansdeservebetter, the fan community has voiced its outrage at seeing a prominent lesbian character die in what it says is a clichéd and degrading manner.
— uffairah misses lexa (@skyxprisa) March 12, 2016
@skyxprisa she came in and became the soul of the show. With her gone, nothing feels the same.
— Lexa & Clarke Always (@shaun_stegall) March 13, 2016
— Mo Ryan (@moryan) March 14, 2016
You could have honored Lexa by joining in solidarity with the LGBT community last night. Instead, silence. @jopinionated
— . (@escoption) March 12, 2016
However, the episode’s writer, Javier Grillo-Marxauch, has responded to the criticism, saying he believes Lexa died a hero “because she believed in peace and was steering her people on an unpopular, but necessary course to evolve their society.”
Mr Grillo-Marxauch doesn’t plan to write the recently-renewed show’s fourth season.
It might be a lesson in how much social media impacts television and the world these days. Words and opinions spread like wildfire with an almost limitless audience – within days of Lexa’s death, the network’s ratings dropped dramatically and two weeks later it is still a hot topic. – Kezia Hopperus Buma
Top photo of Alycia Debnam-Carey as Commander Lexa from The 100’s official Instagram account.