please talk and meta about every kabby scene!!
Of course anon. But be warned that I am going to talk about literally Every. Single. Scene. In (too much) detail you ask you get I don’t do shit by halves, okay, onwards, this is going to be fun.
Bickering and Resolution:
Okay, first up it is the first instance of season 3 bickering and can I just take a moment to say how delighted I am that they’re still bickering? Let me explain okay, since the beginning one of the most fascinating things about this relationship dynamic was their friction and their tension, it’s what made their scenes so difficult to look away from and it’s one of the things that drew me in to them in the first place if I’m being totally honest with you.
That tension and friction is important to them because I think for them it’s a sign of equality and balance? They don’t just go along with what the other says, they test each other, they challenge each other, they push each other and that’s a good thing because these two need someone to reign them in every now and then, they need someone to grab the reigns and tug occasionally, they need someone that’s not afraid to step up and tell them to stop and someone who can actually make them listen.
I’ll admit this scene initially put my back up a little bit but I think that’s just because of the unfortunate storyline that’s been revolving around Abby thus far concerning her ability/inability to be a leader and a doctor to her people at the same time but taking it out of that context just for the purpose of this meta (which I’m going to do a couple of times because I think there’s a definite divide between my feelings towards Abby’s storyline and my feeling towards the Kabby dynamic and I can’t figure out how to talk about them together so I’m just going to have a complete division of church and state and separate them out to make life easier for me)
But, to ignore myself for a moment and actually consider this with context, the differences between this scene and the earlier attacks by Raven and Jackson in previous episodes is important to talk about I think. Because I don’t think Marcus is just attacking her here and there does seem to be some sort of basis for his concerns (it’s not just a sudden, largely out of the blue ‘Abby you’re useless and incompetent!) it’s actually in response to something that we the viewers have seen and can interact with ourselves, namely opening Mt Weather as a hospital and his worries echo her worries about it as well.
Remember this wasn’t a decision that Abby just impulsively rushed into because it felt right for her (!!!! Character development!!!!) it was something she was talked into and something she seriously considered the consequences for. Abby and Marcus have almost identical conversations about Mt Weather and what it means for the Grounders; Abby with Jackson in 3x02 and Marcus with the unfortunate Guard who tried to bring the med kit to Polis and they bring up very similar concerns.
This shows that Abby is aware of the potential consequences of her decision and it adds another level to her disagreement with Marcus; they both understand each other’s point of view, they can both see things from the other person’s side and it gives rise to a much more balanced and reasonable discussion between them where they do appear to hear, take on board, and consider the other person’s points.
This, for me, is actually good? It shows progress and development between them without completely assassinating either of their characters? They were always incredibly different, incredibly divided and they have softened and they have mellowed but they’re still very different people and they were always going to disagree on certain things politically but they’re handling it in a much healthier way now I think.
Then there’s the moment we see Marcus he’s crossed the line (!!!! More character development!!!!) and he immediately backs down and apologises to her, he tells her he shouldn’t have said that, he acknowledges her feelings and the personal nature of her involvement in this (which in itself is huge? Especially when you consider it against early season 2 where Marcus repeatedly ignored the emotional component of her concern about the kids and Clarke and just looked at everything based on pure reason and logic, this is another step forwards for him and for them)
And then we get that really beautiful moment where she actually opens up to him? I’ve said this already, but I think it’s really important that this scene shows not only that Abby listens to Marcus (something that she needed to do because that was a flaw in her character, her impulsiveness and rashness and complete disregard for consequences, even if she was right) but it also shows that she can confide in him?
There’s a very intimate sense with this scene, Marcus lowers his voice and the camera focuses entirely on them excluding any background personnel from their shots and it really helps to frame Abby’s vulnerability here and making it clear that this isn’t something she would have said to just anyone. Her fears about Clarke and her additional fears that the decision she made may actually negatively impact her daughter (again, she’s thinking as a leader here, not just a mother, not just a doctor which again is massive character development for her?)
The fact that she says this to Marcus when for almost two seasons now she’s just constantly taken these sorts of matters into her own hands and dealt with them in her own way, now she shares them with him, she brings him in to her confidences, she lets him see that vulnerability, she lets her strength falter for just a moment and it is so fucking important that she is given someone she can open to like that, for her own sake as much as anything else.
Then we have the shoulder touch. Like do I need to say anything about the shoulder touch other than ‘SHOULDER TOUCH!!!!’Yes as it happens I do because I enjoy the fact that they really seem to use physical connect as a tool for bringing these two together and visually showing the progression of their storyline?
I’ve talked about this before but the hand-holding in 1x13 was, I think, about acceptance, Abby accepting his choice and accepting his mentality that sometimes there isn’t another way, sometimes you do have to make a sacrifice for the greater good. 2x13 was about the opposite, it was the refusal to let go, showing that they’ve reached a point in the storyline that they need one another, that they’re important to one another, that they can get through things together. 2x16 was showing them united striding into camp together, firmly at one another’s sides and that’s what we see going into season 3, a united unit that ‘we’re in this together’ which was echoed in this episode by Marcus.
I think that having this as a much more minor, much more casual reinforcement of the same thing is really important to me? Just, he places a hand on her shoulder, reaching out, apology, comfort, reassurance all at once, and she just lightly rests her hand on top of his, accepting it, appreciating it, and the two of them turn from there and walk off side by side and we deliberately get that shot of the two of them balanced once more and walking together into what comes next and I think that’s so important.
more under the cut