The 100 sound design Asbjoern Andersen


‘THE 100’ is a popular, post-apocalyptic series from The CW, currently in its third season. Peter Lago has worked on sound design for the entire series, with the exception of the pilot – and in this special post, he reflects on his sound for ‘THE 100’, and how your sonic mindset can change everything.

He also shares two rare, powerful-sounding behind-the-scenes listens to snippets of the show with just his sound design. This post originally ran on Peter’s own blog, and is reprinted here with his kind permission. Here’s Peter Lago, on the sound for ‘THE 100’:

Video Thumbnail

The trailer for The 100, season 1


(note: the following contains spoilers)

I have had the privilege of being part of the dynamic and creative team on the CW’s THE 100, serving as sound designer on 44 of the 45 episodes. It has been an exciting and challenging job, but one that has required quite a bit of soul-searching along the way on my part in order to bring out the best sonic fingerprint possible. With sound editorial and mixing on three seasons complete, I would like to share a little bit about my thought process, motivations and discoveries with regard to the soundscape for THE 100.

Just as actors do, all of us craftspeople (writers, directors, cinematographers, editors, Et al.) have to dig into our arsenals of experience in order to breathe exuberant life into our individual cogs in the giant wheel that is THE 100. With regard to sound design, there are a number of things that inform and influence my work. For THE 100, it began with reading the first novel by Kass Morgan, watching the pilot episode (which I did not work on), and reading a handful of the show’s scripts.

The show was definitely steeped in sci-fi, but with an overall sense of the dilapidated, the run-down and melancholy

This provided a sense of the world I was supposed to build and expand upon. It also gave me initial impressions on specific sound design elements (technology, creatures, mood, etc.). The show was definitely steeped in sci-fi, but with an overall sense of the dilapidated, the run-down and melancholy. It felt scary, yet rambunctious, exciting and big. Old and new. Unique. Okay, these were broad-stroke concepts, but enough for me to get started.

Video Thumbnail

A scene from the show with just sound design

Sound editorial for each episode normally begins with a spotting session, where a number of our key post production crew meet and discus specific issues, ideas, concepts, and approaches to making the episodes sonically awesome. I don’t normally go to these sessions, as my editorial schedule is pretty full, but I do get the notes from my sound supervisor, Charlie Crutcher (who also shares my enthusiasm for this show).

The picture cut is also a vital component in informing my approach to design, as the picture editors are in fact the architects who sculpt and structure the footage into a cohesive and artistic representation of the original script.

The overall sound design approach became bigger, bolder, more active and bombastic. Hard-hitting and violent.

They provide a timing, a heartbeat if you will, and I feed off their impressions. So far, so good. The shows were coming in, and we were all good.
But at some point in the first season, it all went to hell. Things became darker, bleaker, harder, painful and threatening. The faceless enemy proved terrifying and haunting, and the Dropship became a claustrophobic prison in a Brave New World. It all changed, and I had to adjust my thought process accordingly. And it was exciting. The overall sound design approach became bigger, bolder, more active and bombastic. Hard-hitting and violent. Okay, cool. I can do that.

The final episode of Season One was epic for me, but once again, just as I’d settled into my design groove, and just as we were about to wrap up on that first season, a massive cliffhanger presented a potential shift in the upcoming season’s sound design.

Mount Weather changed everything.

Video Thumbnail

Another scene from the show, with just sound effects, Foley & Backgrounds

It was clean, pristine and not so mean (at first). Woah. Totally different than the big, bombastic First Season. It was at that point that I had a sudden epiphany about what THE 100 really was, and what I could have been defining my editorial style as during that first season… and it drastically redefined my approached to the sound design on both Seasons 2 and 3.

THE 100 is pulp fiction.

Not the incredibly awesome 1994 Quentin Tarantino film, but the grimy, shocking, violent and cynical gangster/crime paperbacks of the 1930s.

Seeing and hearing the show in this fashion suddenly opened my eyes to a million thing I should have seen/heard from the start

Those short, dime-store rags were chock full of gritty and hard-hitting, politically and socially questionable storylines, with colorful and shady characters, mayhem, murder, lust, revenge and not-so-happy endings.

Seeing and hearing the show in this fashion suddenly opened my eyes to a million thing I should have seen/heard from the start. I’ve always loved old, gritty black-and-white gangster films, as well as the film of Kurasawa, and the more modern martial arts films that have come out of Hong Kong as of late. Needless to say, my creative juices started flowing and I was extra-motivated to dive into this further. I’ve always wanted to cut on something “grindhouse-y”, and suddenly, THE 100 became just that. Suddenly Lexa wasn’t just the Commander; she was a bad-ass Amazon warrior queen with ninja skills. Titus wasn’t just the Flamekeeper; he was a fighting Shaolin monk. Lincoln and Bellamy weren’t men; they were Titans. Raven, Octavia, Miller, Harper, Monty, Jasper… they were The Avengers. And why not?? Things sound better when they’re supercharged.

 

Popular on A Sound Effect right now - article continues below:

 

Latest releases:  
  • House 01 – A virtual grab bag of normal. A complete house as a document. Doors, windows, more doors. Lots of perspectives and various strengths and positions of just about everything.

    20 %
    OFF
    Ends 1598047199
    Add to cart
  • The All Metal sound effects library features 765 sounds of metal clashing, clanging and resonating as metal pieces are rummaged through, dropped, and tossed. Create with the various distinct sonic properties of metal objects — from squeaky gates, rattley wires, ringing wrenches, warbling sheet metal, clattering swords and more.

    Each sound was pristinely recorded at 192kHz with lots of variations for more creative freedom. Uncover the sonic treasures that await as you pitch and process the squeals, squeaks and moans of the metallic debris for limitless sound design opportunities. Strengthen your projects with the distinct buzzing, scraping and reverberation of metal impacts for both literal use and creative implementation as layers for intense sound design.

    Each sound file is embedded with diligent metadata to help you find the exact sound effect you need with fast, pinpoint search. Advanced metadata fields ensure compatibility across any database search platform such as Search by PSE, Soundminer, BaseHead, Netmix, Workspace (Pro Tools), Find Tool (Media Composer), Media Bay (Nuendo), Reaper, Adobe Premiere, and beyond.

    Key Features:

    • 765 sound effects (2GB)
    • 24 bit/96k, 24 bit/192k broadcast .wav files
    • Descriptive embedded metadata
    • 100% Royalty-Free

    Credits:

    • Saro Sahihi
    Add to cart
  • Chicago Ambisonics is a library of B-format city ambiences with “virtual microphone” software.

    Included software allows users to tweak perspective in real time for greater control and creativity. The Ambisonics format offers versatile use of the library, as the recordings can be decoded to mono, stereo, 5.1, 7.1 and beyond. The creative possibilities are endless!

    Featuring 35 high-quality urban ambiences (over 3 hours total), Chicago Ambisonics includes SurroundZone2 software by TSL Products that allows you to point “virtual microphones” any direction with a wide range of polar patterns. Unparalleled flexibility lets users match backgrounds with the specific setting of any scene.

    With more productions filming in Chicago than ever before, a Chicago sound effects library is an asset for any sound editor. Chicago Ambisonics features 24-bit/96 kHz city atmospheres captured all over Chicago including recordings from from Magnificent Mile, Chinatown, the L Train, West Loop, Kennedy Expressway, O’Hare International Airport, Lake View, & Wrigley Field.

    This library is also perfect for use in 3D Audio applications including VR experiences and 360º video – prepare your sound effects library for the future of immersive media! Pre-rendered stereo versions of all of the recordings are included as well.

    Key Features:

    • 35 pristine recordings in B-Format (FuMa) & Stereo (14GB)
    • Over 3 hours of immersive Chicago ambiences
    • Average recording length of 6 minutes
    • Diverse Chicago atmospheres: Including streets, parks, & subways
    • 24-bit/96kHz broadcast .wav files
    • SurroundZone2 software by TSL Products: Gives you full control over “virtual microphone” position and polar patterns
    • 100% Royalty-Free

    Notes:

    • Your DAW must support Quad (4-channel) tracks in order to use SurroundZone2 plug-in.
  • RAW CELLO FX features manipulated and mangled cello sound effects designed to provide the full character of the instrument and harmonic richness in order to create a completely unique set of organic samples between music and noise, intimate and vivid bold sounds expanding new possibilities out of this instrument.

    Different techniques and less-than-conventional microphone placement have been used to create gorgeous harmonics and a wide array of interesting sounds. We “played” with fingers and hands, different bows against the strings, objects and kitchen utensils, bowing, scraping or hitting single and multiple strings or parts of the wood body. 

    The collection features designed hits, bow, crescendo, screech, woosh, swell, bonus fx folder and is ready for trailer and soundtrack projects.

     

     

    Add to cart
  • This is a collection of old and modern doors.

    The collection includes wood doors , glass doors and metal doors recorded in an old theater , a cottage and an appartment.
    There are 124 files of slamming doors, doors opening and closing, creaking doors, doors handles and locks.

    Add to cart


Need specific sound effects? Try a search below:
 

In the real world, no one would be able to survive the harsh physical/emotional damage and destruction everyone on this show sustained… and in this extremely short amount of time they’ve been on the ground? Less than a year? Ridiculous! But in a pulp world, it’s totally logical. All caution is thrown to the wind and it’s totally okay. This makes the approach to the series fun for me, and I took this as a cue to go big or go home. It’s a comic book. It’s a superhero tale. It’s a graphic novel (PLEASE!!). It’s pulp fiction.

This makes the approach to the series fun for me, and I took this as a cue to go big or go home

Furthermore, I came to realize that each season of THE 100 was in fact a self-contained volume of short stories in a hopefully much-broader collection of pulp stories set on Earth in the future.

No long, drawn-out, overly-inflated storylines, but lean, mean kick-ass tales of survival that come to an often blood or violent resolution before starting all over again the following season. Like The Martian Chronicles meets Mad Max meets Kill Bill.

PULP SCIENCE FICTION, if you will.

I love when a show can tell a strong and compelling multi-dimensional tale in a short number of episodes, and so far, this season has delivered with the hard-hitting, politically and socially-charged storylines, colorful and shady characters, mayhem, murder, lust, revenge and not-so-happy endings. Yes, this season has seen its share of controversy, and though totally heartbreaking to most of us, in the big picture, those moments of controversy are integral to the gritty pulp fiction genre. I’m not saying I agree or disagree with some of the story decisions, but man, what a ride! You gotta give the writers that much. City of Lights, ALIE, Skaikru history, Grounder religion, Commander lineage, nightbloods… All this and more to come… That’s a lot to chew on for 16 episodes (10 aired so far!), so I say we all just sit back and enjoy the craziness!

I always look forward to the sonic challenges presented in THE 100, and with each new season, I’ve been able to expand my editorial style and grow as an editor. I hope Season Four brings on a mountain of new, terrifying and delicious challenges for the extraordinary characters we love so dearly, and I hope I’m successful in making them sound good. Stay pulp, friends!

 

Please share this:


 

A big thanks to Peter Lago for letting me share this post about THE 100!

About Peter Lago
Peter Lago is a sound effects editor/designer with extensive experience in features, TV, documentaries, and new media. He has developed a strong reputation for delivering high quality, well-detailed and expressive tracks in a timely and efficient manner. Some of Peter’s credits include: The 100, The Shannara Chronicles, Arrow, Witches of East End, Sushi Girl, Climate Refugees and The Celestine Prophecy. Peter has received two MPSE Golden Reel awards for excellence in sound editorial.

Peter works out of the Warner Bros. Studio lot.

For more information, please visit Peter’s blog


 
 
THE WORLD’S EASIEST WAY TO GET INDEPENDENT SOUND EFFECTS:
 
A Sound Effect gives you easy access to an absolutely huge sound effects catalog from a myriad of independent sound creators, all covered by one license agreement - a few highlights:
 
 
  • Badlands Sound went to the future to recorded 42 room tones of various spaces like computer rooms, engine rooms, bathrooms, and much more all in 24bit / 96k. We also recorded electrical buzzes and distorted sci-fi winds. More than 2 hours of futuristic room tones and ambiences included in total.

    83 %
    OFF
    Add to cart
  • BEAMS is a comprehensive toolkit for beam sound design. Sounds are separated into activation oneshot, activation/deactivation mechanism, and active loop categories. Each category contains subcategories for small, medium, and large beams. You can design anything from the smallest spy-watch laser cutter to a planet destroying column of chaos. As a bonus, you’ll also get a diverse collection of burning ignition sounds as source for beam environmental destruction.

    Add to cart
  • Footsteps Ultimate Footsteps Play Track 1176-3056+ sounds included, 237-610 mins total From: $160

    Need footstep sound effects? Get 5 Shoes, 25+ surfaces, 15+ variations – created by Foley Supervisor Joshua Reinhardt and professional Foley walker Lara Dale.

    Deep heavy metal, crunchy snow, old boat wood, crisp grass, gritty dirt, clean tile – this library has it all. Not only does this library contain walking but it's got pretty much every performance you can think of, from scuffs to jumps and lands and scrapes. With this library you can cut Foley for pretty much any film or game that comes your way.

    Highlights:

    • 17 different Performances – From slow walk to RUN, 5 scrapes, bodyfall/land, stomps and more
    • Every file is labeled with a description of the shoe, surface and performance type.
    • Every folder has a picture of the shoe and surface plus a description of the distance of the mic from the Foley walker.
    • Combine wood creak sweeteners with Ultimate Interiors wood for scary creaky wood or add grit to a clean interior to give character.
    • Same recording studio mics and preamps used in over 50 major motion pictures
    • Same boots that were used for Sylvester Stallone in The Expendable
    • Mix and match shoes, surfaces and sweeteners to make your own custom characters
    • Can be used as a stereo or separated and mixed/matched as a mono depending which mic works best for your project

    Specs:

    Foot wear type:
    Boots, Dress Shoes, Flats, Heels, Sneakers.

    Performances:
    Extremely Slow Walk, Medium Slow Walk, Walk, Jog, Run, Stairs Slow, Stairs Fast, Stomp, Land, Scuff, Scrape 1, Scrape 2, Scrape 3, Scrape 4, Scrape 5.

    Surface Types:
    Asphalt, Carpet 1, Carpet 2, Concrete, Hardwood, Hardwood house, Hardwood deep, Hardwood parquet, Hardwood boat wood, Hardwood Dock, Lino, Marble, Tile, Dirt, Grass, Metal grate, Diamond plate Metal, Metal Slab, Wood Creak 1 old, Wood Creak 2, Gravel, Rocks, SNOW!!, Puddle, Water shallow, Water Deep.

 
Explore the full, unique collection here

Latest sound effects libraries:
 
  • House 01 – A virtual grab bag of normal. A complete house as a document. Doors, windows, more doors. Lots of perspectives and various strengths and positions of just about everything.

    20 %
    OFF
    Ends 1598047199
  • The All Metal sound effects library features 765 sounds of metal clashing, clanging and resonating as metal pieces are rummaged through, dropped, and tossed. Create with the various distinct sonic properties of metal objects — from squeaky gates, rattley wires, ringing wrenches, warbling sheet metal, clattering swords and more.

    Each sound was pristinely recorded at 192kHz with lots of variations for more creative freedom. Uncover the sonic treasures that await as you pitch and process the squeals, squeaks and moans of the metallic debris for limitless sound design opportunities. Strengthen your projects with the distinct buzzing, scraping and reverberation of metal impacts for both literal use and creative implementation as layers for intense sound design.

    Each sound file is embedded with diligent metadata to help you find the exact sound effect you need with fast, pinpoint search. Advanced metadata fields ensure compatibility across any database search platform such as Search by PSE, Soundminer, BaseHead, Netmix, Workspace (Pro Tools), Find Tool (Media Composer), Media Bay (Nuendo), Reaper, Adobe Premiere, and beyond.

    Key Features:

    • 765 sound effects (2GB)
    • 24 bit/96k, 24 bit/192k broadcast .wav files
    • Descriptive embedded metadata
    • 100% Royalty-Free

    Credits:

    • Saro Sahihi
  • Chicago Ambisonics is a library of B-format city ambiences with “virtual microphone” software.

    Included software allows users to tweak perspective in real time for greater control and creativity. The Ambisonics format offers versatile use of the library, as the recordings can be decoded to mono, stereo, 5.1, 7.1 and beyond. The creative possibilities are endless!

    Featuring 35 high-quality urban ambiences (over 3 hours total), Chicago Ambisonics includes SurroundZone2 software by TSL Products that allows you to point “virtual microphones” any direction with a wide range of polar patterns. Unparalleled flexibility lets users match backgrounds with the specific setting of any scene.

    With more productions filming in Chicago than ever before, a Chicago sound effects library is an asset for any sound editor. Chicago Ambisonics features 24-bit/96 kHz city atmospheres captured all over Chicago including recordings from from Magnificent Mile, Chinatown, the L Train, West Loop, Kennedy Expressway, O’Hare International Airport, Lake View, & Wrigley Field.

    This library is also perfect for use in 3D Audio applications including VR experiences and 360º video – prepare your sound effects library for the future of immersive media! Pre-rendered stereo versions of all of the recordings are included as well.

    Key Features:

    • 35 pristine recordings in B-Format (FuMa) & Stereo (14GB)
    • Over 3 hours of immersive Chicago ambiences
    • Average recording length of 6 minutes
    • Diverse Chicago atmospheres: Including streets, parks, & subways
    • 24-bit/96kHz broadcast .wav files
    • SurroundZone2 software by TSL Products: Gives you full control over “virtual microphone” position and polar patterns
    • 100% Royalty-Free

    Notes:

    • Your DAW must support Quad (4-channel) tracks in order to use SurroundZone2 plug-in.
  • RAW CELLO FX features manipulated and mangled cello sound effects designed to provide the full character of the instrument and harmonic richness in order to create a completely unique set of organic samples between music and noise, intimate and vivid bold sounds expanding new possibilities out of this instrument.

    Different techniques and less-than-conventional microphone placement have been used to create gorgeous harmonics and a wide array of interesting sounds. We “played” with fingers and hands, different bows against the strings, objects and kitchen utensils, bowing, scraping or hitting single and multiple strings or parts of the wood body. 

    The collection features designed hits, bow, crescendo, screech, woosh, swell, bonus fx folder and is ready for trailer and soundtrack projects.

     

     

  • This is a collection of old and modern doors.

    The collection includes wood doors , glass doors and metal doors recorded in an old theater , a cottage and an appartment.
    There are 124 files of slamming doors, doors opening and closing, creaking doors, doors handles and locks.

 
FOLLOW OR SUBSCRIBE FOR THE LATEST IN FANTASTIC SOUND:
 
                              
 
GET THE MUCH-LOVED A SOUND EFFECT NEWSLETTER:
 
The A Sound Effect newsletter gets you a wealth of exclusive stories and insights
+ free sounds with every issue:
 
Subscribe here for free SFX with every issue

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

HTML tags are not allowed.