HEAR ME OUT: Abby’s Not Dying, She’s Pregnant
I KNOW THE FANDOM IS DIVIDED ON ABBY BABY THEORY BUT STICK WITH ME.
@brittanias and I have been hashing this out and here are some thoughts. All the symptoms we have seen Abby show so far - sleeplessness, tremors, anxiety, hallucination - could actually be symptoms of something completely different. Such as, for example, pregnancy. When Abby’s on the radio with Kane, what we see of her does not actually appear to present as a seizure; it presents much more like an anxiety attack. She’s restless, pacing, her jaw is clenching, her hands are shaking, and then when she hears Marcus she calms down. What we have NOT seen yet: weakness, collapsing, fainting, sweating, bleeding from the nose or mouth, foaming, rage/mania, or a scan of Abby’s brain.
THEORY: The reminder about Abby also getting fried with the EMP, just like Raven was, and the link of Abby’s symptoms with Raven’s symptoms are a narrative misdirect (perhaps its purpose is to give a reason why Abby’s contraception chip was fried and she didn’t know it); otherwise all the attention paid to the idea that this brain thing could present very differently in different people wouldn’t actually matter, unless it was so they could show us symptoms of something that was not a brain tumor and convince us to believe it was a brain tumor. So we see Raven hallucinate and then have a seizure, we have Abby explain why, we have Jackson say “but the same thing happened to you, I should check you,” and then we have Abby being stubborn and insisting she’s fine and refusing to let him check her. So it’s possible that the reason we see Abby’s first symptom - the hallucination (of her child, btw) in the same episode as Raven’s is to make sure we, the audience, are going “oh shit” and immediately assuming they are the exact same kind of hallucination. Even though hallucinations are a very common symptom of extreme sleeplessness and sleeplessness is a common symptom of a whole huge range of things.
[Edited to add, per Brittany’s suggestion just now: we don’t even know that it was a hallucination. She was alone in the lab; she straight-up could have been dreaming. (In that fancy bed.) Just a regular ol’ extremely vivid dream - another common pregnancy symptom.]
Another, slightly more extra, possible indicator that pregnancy is a possibility: the editing of the sex scene. We didn’t see leadup/cut to black/afterglow like the show usually does; we saw Kane finish. It’s possible the writers and directors are just plain old Kabby trash like we are, but it’s also possible it’s plot-relevant in some way that we have concrete proof that Kane came inside her.
So this is my prediction. I don’t think either of them are going to die. I think for Raven, the narrative purpose of the “oh no you have a brain thing” is not the possibility of death, it’s the seizures. It’s to put Raven in a situation where we know there is a danger she could completely lose control of her physical body, with all of humanity on the line. They made a big point of Raven having to switch the rocket to manual, which now means only Raven can fly it. They made a big point of how they needed all those barrels of hydrazine for the rocket and now they’re down one; what if they can coast on only the remaining fuel as long as the rocket is only carrying the weight of one passenger and they strip out all the unnecessary internal workings to make it lighter? Then Raven is in space, alone, with all the Nightblood, with brain that could go into seizure at any moment when she’s over-stressed. We also have Luna’s ability to soothe Raven with her words, and we have Murphy being in the room for every one of Raven’s failed flight simulator drills (playing with a toy car whose controls are very similar to the rocket). I don’t think it’s outside the bounds of possibility that they’re setting us up for Raven to have a seizure as the rocket is landing and even though it’s in manual, Murphy has to figure out how to land it himself while Raven’s incapacitated and Luna is trying over the headset to soothe her out of her seizure.
As far as Abby, I think the narrative purpose of “oh no you also have the brain thing” could very plausibly be to set us up in the only conceivable situation where Abby would have to consent to let Jackson give her a full medical scan. If there wasn’t a chance she was seriously sick, she’d never allow it. There’d be no point. But if she got pregnant in Polis, then she’s less than 2 months along, which means she might not be showing and most of her symptoms might easily look like something else, especially if she already thought there was a chance she did have something else. So my guess is that she’s going to end up pushing herself and pushing herself until she has some kind of a meltdown or collapses from exhaustion or something happens where she finally has to face the thing she’s been trying not to have to face, her fear that she might also have what Raven has. But she’d never say “sure go ahead give me a full physical” unless she had a very good reason and Jackson had reached a point of no longer being willing to be talked out of it. Exhaustion, anxiety/tremors, and lack of sleep could all very easily be a combination of stress, overwork and pregnancy; hallucinations or lucid dreams sometimes are as well. Especially given that the content of the dream was her child, in danger.
In terms of the narrative purpose to be served by Abby possibly being pregnant, there are a couple possibilities. One important thing to remember, which I had forgotten until an anon just reminded me of it, is that all the Sky People are universal blood donors, while the Grounders are not. It’s possible that the “disappointing setback” the episode description for 408 mentions with regard to the experiment on the Grounder redshirt is because maybe a Grounder can’t take another Grounder’s blood if they aren’t type-compatible. So that means they can’t go to space to manufacture Nightblood synthetically, and they can’t use Luna’s bone marrow to save all the Grounders; they could save all the Sky People, and they could save Grounders compatible with Luna’s blood type, but that’s all. But if they had, oh, let’s say, Nightblood embryonic stem cells from a baby of two Skaikru universal-donor parents, then by the magic of television science (I DON’T THINK ANY OF THIS IS REAL, I JUST MEAN BY THE RULES OF HOW THIS SHOW WORKS), that could crack the code for a vaccine that could save everyone, as Clarke always intended – not just the Sky People.
Another factor is that a number of people have tossed around the idea of long-term cryosleep and the theories about a five-year time jump in the finale being connected; that is, maybe one of the “lifeboats” they come up with to save some portion of the group is related to putting people in long-term stasis. @knowlesian has a fantastic theory I’ll be making her elucidate when she guest-hosts Meta Station next week about how it’s possible that Cadogan’s secret “thirteenth level” was not merely a fancier bunker, but pods for long-term space travel in cryosleep similar to the ones we learned about in that story about the asteroid miners for whom Becca invented Nightblood in the first place. It was to protect them from solar radiation while in cryosleep for long space journeys. (One factor to consider here is the constant reiteration that Raven’s brain could heal itself if she just took it easy, which of course she never fuckin’ does; however, a five-year nap in cryostasis is probably enough time for her to wake up rested and ready for the writers not have to keep writing seizures into her storyline for Season 5.) Again, using the magic of Television Science, something something handwave handwave the Nightblood in the placenta keeps the fetus safely in stasis while Abby goes under so they don’t have to deal with the fact that she’ll still only be 2 months along when the death wave comes. This also makes room for the most crackpot of my crackpot Pregnant Abby theories, the idea that the season’s continued thematic parallels of Abby with Bellamy (up to and including very literal moments like Abby napping on the couch and dreaming of the 100 vs. Bellamy napping on the couch while Clarke drafts the list of the new 100) are actually clues as well. There were 100 spots on the dropship but 101 passengers, because Bellamy stowed away. If Cadogan left 100 cryosleep pods, there would be 101 passengers if Abby’s pregnant.
On a thematic level, of course, a baby symbolizes hope and possibility and the future; it’s a nice narrative device to tie the theme of hope which has always been primarily centered on Kane and Abby’s relationship over the course of the show and make it literal. The first Skaikru baby being born to the Chancellors feels right, and it ramps up the emotional stakes for both of them to stratospheric levels because everything is more risky for a pregnant woman. It’s also a nice way to set up a long-term possibility for Season 5 where we get to see Skaikru emerging from the wreckage, trying to rebuild a home, and a radiation-immune Nightblood baby as a sign that the human race will continue is a nice sort of thematic illustration of that sense of possibility.
I KNOW IT SOUNDS CRAZY AND I COULD BE LAUGHABLY WRONG
BUT IF IT TURNS OUT ABBY IS NOT DYING, SHE’S PREGNANT, I’M GOING TO BE SO