Things are looking pretty bleak for Clarke Griffin on "The 100." She finally threw herself into a moment of romantic bliss with grounder leader Lexa, only to have her new love literally die in her arms after being struck by a fatal stray bullet.
It's been a period of pure agony for the show's fans -- including some very personal social media reactions by viewers who feel Lexa's death played into disappointing tropes applies to LGBT characters. It's been a tremendous opportunity for Eliza Taylor, the actress behind Clarke, to demonstrate her considerable effectiveness as an actress.
Chatting with Moviefone at WonderCon, Taylor offered hints at how Clarke will soldier forward in the wake of her devastating loss, plus some decidedly lighter behind-the-scenes tidbits, including an encounter with surprising celebrity super-fans and how the show's morphing her Aussie accent.
Moviefone: Dark times on the show!
Eliza Taylor: Yeah, a little bit!
Tell me about how Clarke carries on after the loss of Lexa.
It's very difficult. Obviously she's devastated. I think what's different about this is it's not necessarily something that's going to make her stronger. It's just going to change her. But the good thing is she has actually decided that Lexa is in this AI, and she is going to hopefully find a way to be in contact with her again.
So a little glimmer of hope is kind of nice for her to hold close.
She needs it. Otherwise, she's not going to be able to function or carry on with anything else that she's doing.
Is it a glimmer of hope for you as well?
Yeah, absolutely. Oh my God. I cry so much in this show. That'd be great.
How hard was the goodbye to shoot?
I cried, yeah. It was really difficult. There were lots of tears. But she's become one of my closest friends now, so I'm really happy about that. I'm so happy to have her in my life.
What are some of the things that Clarke throws herself into to keep moving forward? Can you give me a little hint of the road she goes down?
The main thing to worry about right now is whether or not Ontari will become the next commander. So all she is focused on is that not happening, and to get the AI as far away from her as possible.
How are her other relationships challenged by this turn of events?
She's got a lot to catch up on. She's been away for seven episodes. So she doesn't know really the extent of what's going on. So there's going to be a lot of standing up to certain people and a lot of reaching out to others.
What do you love about her at this point in the series?
I love her. Just her ability to carry on. I would definitely be like dead in a ditch somewhere. I don't have her strength and power. I love that I get to play that. It's made me stronger, for sure.
Obviously, some of the fans were not happy with the turn of events regarding Lexa. What's it like to have that dialogue with the fans, to hear what they're saying, and to have that very direct social media communication that your show has enjoyed with them all this time?
I think it's great. I mean, obviously it's been a little difficult recently because people are upset, and so they should be. But knowing that they have a voice that we can hear is pretty incredible. Ten years ago, we didn't have this. I was signing autographs and sending them in the mail. Now, people can ask you a question and you can answer them immediately. It's a powerful phenomenon.
This show is so addictive. Have you encountered some celebrity fans?
Oh yeah, definitely. It's crazy. I'm so glad. It's definitely a novelty for me at this point. John Travolta, actually. Last year I was at an Oscars party and he came up to me and was like, "I'm so sorry, but my daughter's such a big fan of the show." I took a photo with him and his daughter. Kelly Preston came over and she was like, "I'm so sorry to bother you." I was like, "Guys! It's totally fine!" It was amazing.
Do you have any fun behind-the-scenes rituals that you guys have gotten into over the past three seasons?
Yeah, I mean, in season one I had this thing called Sunday Classic where we would have all the cast over and I would cook everyone dinner. It was just like our family dinner every Sunday. But it became so popular that we had to sort of have a waiting list after a while because all the crew found out about it and they were like, "When are we coming over to Sunday Classic?" It was a really nice ritual to have. The last couple of seasons we've been so busy that we haven't been able to do it.
On the show, we never hear your charming Australian accent. How often does your accent slip at work?
A lot. Yeah, but I catch myself and I fix it. It's not a big deal, but yeah. It's weird -- I just adopted a weird hybrid. Like, my r's have gotten really hard. Stuff like that. My mom calls me and she's like, "Are you turning into an American?" She doesn't like it. But I can't help it. I'm surrounded by them!
Are there times when you find it coming out really strong?
Oh, yeah, definitely. And if I'm with other Australians, I start really talking like this. It's not cute.
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