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Orphan Black: The Stigmata of Progress

“That is a haywire plan.”

With the first episode to feature our main five clones this season, I think we can definitively say that last season’s semi-slump is over.

Rachel’s predicament was definitely the thing that had me most excited for season four, aside from finding out whether Delphine is alive or dead, an issue the show is refusing to settle which is understandable but also absolutely infuriating. Sorry, back to Rachel. Rachel is still being held…somewhere. Somewhere well decorated, at least, although I’m sure Rachel is missing Dyad’s floor to ceiling windows. We know how she feels about windows. Her rehabilitation is being overseen by a new Castor clone, Ira. Can we give a round of applause to Ari Millen for being so creepy in each incarnation of Castor but in a different way? Who knew there were so many ways to creep me out. Charlotte is staying with, or at least spending a lot of time with, Rachel and the two have formed enough of a bond that Charlotte is sending out secret messages on Rachel’s behalf. As Rachel is all about control, I don’t know how she’s managing being held captive and watched 24/7 by her own mother, one of the few people she had had a positive relationship with in the past. She’s gonna need a lot of therapy if she makes it out of there alive.

Finally, finally the show has come up with something for Alison and Donnie to do that is funny and relevant to the plot. You’ll remember that my big complaint last season was how their antics, while amusing, took us out of the life or death drama and felt rather unnecessary. The murder investigation has the gravity needed to make our visits out to Scarborough feel worthwhile and, as seen here, has the potential to create wacky mistaken clone situations, which everyone loves. I just wish the show could’ve involved Angie somehow. Maybe her past harassment of the Hendrixes would make her bosses less likely to assign her to a case involving them, but it would have been fun. As if the cops grilling Helena “Alison” wasn’t enough, Alison has decided the best thing they can do to help Sarah is to exhume Leekie. This part of the episode was just…sublime. Tatiana Maslany and Kristian Bruun make a perfect comedy duo. Their explanation to Cosima? Priceless. I really had to restrain myself from reproducing the entire scene in the quotes section. I love that this show produces hour after hour of well written, flawlessly acted drama while at the same time indulging its audience in absolute silliness.

I am so disappointed in Sarah. Her behavior toward Kira and Felix this week was really not what I want from my favorite clone. Shame on you. It has to be said, however, that as you’re watching your favorite character be, frankly, a total bitch, it’s marvelous to know that her bad behavior is totally in character and has been set up in the past. On some shows, the writers have to radically change their characters to create drama (side eyes The 100), but, thankfully, Orphan Black is above that. Sarah’s single-mindedness and selfishness were well established in the first episode of the first season of the series. That single-mindedness has lately been channelled towards a good cause, whether that be protecting the sestrahood, saving Helena, or getting answers, but this week it turns to herself and we see just how destructive it can be. Brushing off Kira, and abandoning Felix are things we can believe Sarah would do because she’s done them already, before the series even started. Am I being too hard on her? She did just find out she has some sort of robotic worm in her cheek, after all. Still, it’s been there for months with no ill consequences, the least she can do for those around her is to give them the respect they deserve as she pursues getting that thing the hell out of her face.

That’s not to say that Felix isn’t to blame for the situation as well. Rachel established this week that it’s been six weeks since last season ended so his decision to find his family and his success in doing so seems less sudden than it might have. And, of course, Felix should have the freedom to look for his own family and have a part of his life that doesn’t revolve around Clone Club and the craziness that brings. But when Sarah shows up saying it’s important, he should know she doesn’t mean that lightly. Yeah, he’s probably still mad about her reaction to his family search, but I wish he’d had the maturity to get past it just to listen to her. As for Sarah thinking Adele might be a Neolution plant, I mean, that’s certainly possible, but, god, Sarah, not everything revolves around you. You know you’re just jealous that Fe has a shiny new sister, one who can reach the top shelf. The more I think about the situation the more I find myself wanting Mrs. S to grab both of them and knock some sense into them.

As for Kira…no doubt about it, she is creepier this season. Her sort of psychic ability has resurfaced, this time in a truly disturbing dream where “all the aunties” set Sarah on fire. That’s certainly medieval of them. Just throwing out there that we learned last season that fire is one of the two ways to destroy DNA, the other being chemical reaction (i.e. acid).

Neolutionist Bits and Proleathean Pieces

Kira seems to have the same (lack of) appreciation of role playing games as her Aunt Rachel.

Rachel and Susan talked about Helsinki.

Art ran into Duko. Apparently Beth didn’t kill him.

Sarah really must be sleep deprived if she trusted that obviously shifty dental hygienist. I’ve never been happier to see Ferdinand.

Clone Quotes

Alison: “Go rent a jackhammer.”
Donnie: “Maybe we should just buy one.”

four out of four jackhammers

sunbunny, who is probably not played by Tatiana Maslany

1 comment:

  1. So many great things in this one. Alison, Donnie and Helena have become quite the comedy team. Though it is one thing for Helena to play Mrs Donnie at the doctors, wouldn't the cops know that Alison is not a foreigner, so why the heavy accent? Rachel is such an intriguing character. Is there a real vulnerable person under her armor and is she capable of showing or feeling any real emotions? Well see. I miss the old Felix who always seemed to take care of everybody. He does deserve to follow his own path, though. It's funny that such an outrageous personality most of the time seems to be the sanest person in the room.


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