For a show premised on a hundred convicted teens sent back to Earth to determine if it is habitable nearly 97 years after a nuclear holocaust, and where each seems to be picked off week after week by one disastrous tragedy after another, the one surprising survival was for a character that was originally marked for death. The character of Jasper was supposed to die at the end of the first episode, but after watching Devon Bostick’s fun-loving performance, the writers of the show changed their mind and resurrected his character in a fun twist for the second episode. Normally a character that gets speared through the chest by a 12 foot stake never survives, but no one was ready to say goodbye to this beloved character just yet.
So in an exclusive interview, star Devon Bostick talked about learning Jasper would live to fight another day and the discovery that his character would be a romantic hero.
What initially drew you to the role of Jasper and THE 100?
DEVON: I auditioned for the role of Monty (Christopher Larkin), which I guess was the regular role to audition for. He and Jasper are pretty similar in their bromance. But I really liked that character and I got a call about three weeks or so after and they said they wanted me to play the role of Jasper; and I didn’t know what that meant. But they sent me the script and said, “it’s just a guest star and he dies at the end of the episode.” I was actually kind of excited about that. So I read the script and I just loved the diversity between space and Earth. It’s just so green on Earth and so stale up in space with them dying up there in a spaceship; and it was cool. It’s a sci-fi, action version of “Lord of the Flies.” I loved Jasper’s heart in it and I loved playing that fun guy amongst the darkness. I just wanted people to love him so much that when he died it would really suck. Then when I got speared, everyone was like, “We really don’t want to kill you.” So I said, “Okay, then don’t.” And then they wrote in his miraculous recovery so he wouldn’t die.
When exactly did they tell you that they were keeping your character?
DEVON: There were small talks about it near the end of shooting the pilot. But nothing is ever definitive. I was just happy to be a part of that one episode and kind of setting that bar of “what else is out there?” and that anything could happen — that it’s not so great if they are killing off such a fun character. But I was happy they were bringing him back. They said near the end and once the pilot was done, I signed on. But that’s what is so great about the show. You don’t know what is going to happen to anyone. I loved that about Jasper ’cause he seemed like the guy that would never really die. But it’s cool. Like one guy can be the lead and then he’s gone. And it makes it scary.
The death toll does seem a little high on your show, but it makes sense given the circumstances.
DEVON: There’s a lot of danger whether it’s just the people in the camp. It’s these teenagers that have been locked up and there’s such turmoil between them and there’s politics. Like if you do something, is there any consequence? If you kill someone, what is going to happen? And that’s what the next episode is about. Then there’s the other dangers of “what else is out there?” Beyond these walls there might be so much more that they should be watching out for. It’s cool.
Now that we know Jasper survived, and he’s healing, what really gives him that inner strength? What was he clinging to as he was on the verge of death?
DEVON: I think Octavia (Marie Avgeropoulos). He’s in love with this girl who seems like such a free soul and is so much fun. She’s beautiful and he wants to be like her and he wants to be with her. That’s kind of why he crossed the river and why he does a lot of things. So I think Octavia really is his drive.
How soon did you find out that your character was going to be this romantic hero?
DEVON: During the pilot there was little hints of it. I was really excited about that because that’s not really a role that I normally do — be the romantic, nerdy hero. But it’s cool to do something for someone because all his actions are for this girl.
What does Jasper see in Octavia? What is he drawn to?
DEVON: She’s kind of wild, free and funny. She doesn’t really care about rules or anything and it’s kind of exciting.
Will we get to see Octavia and Jasper get closer as the series goes on? Will their relationship extend beyond friendship and perhaps into a bit more of a romantic love?
DEVON: It’s tough because he really does love her, but she’s a free soul and she won’t be locked down. Also there is so much to get done. So sometimes you have to put your crush aside and deal with the danger that is at hand. Or just be there for someone. But it is a cool relationship between them.
Jasper is one of the few that has gotten close to the Grounders because of his ordeal. How does he feel about them?
DEVON: He’s scared shitless. After getting speared once, it is like you don’t want to get speared again. So he’s extremely afraid. He has a little post-traumatic stress disorder and isn’t maybe as adventurous as he once was just because getting speared is not a pretty experience.
Given that Jasper has been so severely wounded, how soon will it be before he feels adventurous enough to explore this new world around them?
DEVON: In this next episode, you will see Octavia trying to get Jasper out of his shell a little bit. But there is so much scary shit going on inside of the camp that it is hard to be anywhere for Jasper. He just wants some peace after dealing with his experience. There’s a lot of danger on the outside and inside the camp. We will probably see him get out there in a couple of episodes. There’s enough going on in the inside of the camp that will scare you.
There seems to be some animosity between Jasper and Murphy (Richard Harmon). Is that something that will be ongoing throughout the season or will they kind of get over that?
DEVON: Oh yeah. There’s some interesting stuff between Jasper and Murphy throughout the season. I know in this next episode and a few down the line, Murphy is always trouble.
Which is hysterical ’cause I’ve interviewed Richard Harmon and he’s a really nice guy.
DEVON: He’s the nicest dude. Richard is the nicest guy, but the scariest villain. Just ruthless. We have some great stuff coming up.
I also saw the tweets that William Shatner is going to be watching your show this week. How does that feel?
DEVON: One, as a Canadian I am pretty proud because he’s a great Canuck as well. And I was like, “Wow, William Shatner is tweeting at us?!” Just the whole STAR TREK thing. He’s Captain Kirk. He is exactly who we need on the Ark. So it is pretty cool to see him interested.
As a final teaser, what would you say fans should look out for in this week’s episode “Murphy’s Law”?
DEVON: It’s really about the reaction to the last death that happened: who is the murderer and what will be the repercussions? There’s no laws yet, but the laws that we may come up with could be pretty scary. Should there be capital punishment? Like if you kill someone, or do we just let them get away with it? What are the laws on Earth? We have not defined any yet. So that is what the next episode is about.
To see what laws they ultimately decide on and how they are enforced will be chilling. So look for all new episodes of THE 100 air on Wednesday nights at 9:00 p.m. on the CW.