There’s a lot of scheming and backstabbing in this week’s Orphan Black as a new clone is introduced and outliers are brought into the main plot.
Let’s bitch it out…
It appears that last week‘s Alison & Cosima (Tatiana Maslany)-centric episode paid off nicely as both remain deeply invested in the main S3 plot this week. With only a few episodes remaining in the season, the writers have shrewdly doubled down on Cosima’s tenuous position in the lab with Scott (Josh Vokey) and continue complicating Alison’s life by introducing not just Gracie (Zoé De Grand Maison), but also Helena into the mix. While the latter doesn’t necessarily pay dividends this week, there’s a suggestion that Helena’s presence – and her newfound interest in Donnie (Kristian Bruun) – will play an interesting role moving forward.
That means that Cosima is front and center this week. Cosima probably isn’t my first pick to pull off a femme fatale role, but she makes it work in order to distract Delphine (Evelyne Brochu) as the Clone Club smuggles Rachel out of Dyad so she can decode Duncan’s text. In addition to complicating the evolving love triangle between Cosima, Delphine and Shay (Ksenia Solo) – and we can debate how much of Cosima and Delphine’s emotional manipulation, including the kiss, was legitimate – it finally pays off some of the slower elements within the lab. Cosima has always been a great character, and Maslany plays her as the emotional core of the show, but her scenes frequently feel repetitive. By involving Cosima and Scott in the effort to sneak Rachel out, it gives the characters something fresh to do without forcing them into unrealistic situations. Plus watching Scott play spy is worth the price of admission alone.
Interestingly both covert operations in this episode ultimately fail. Clone Club’s rescue of Rachel is met with only partial success before Rachel is recaptured. It turns out that Rachel’s escape was a ruse orchestrated by Delphine in order to smoke out Clone Club’s alternate copy of Duncan’s code. Thankfully Rachel is able to provide Sarah and S (Maria Doyle Kennedy) with enough info to make a reasonable guess of where to find the Castor original: London, aka home.
Amusingly enough, Delphine’s own attempt at subterfuge is also undermined. Upon retrieving Rachel, the injured clone’s health deteriorates, forcing Dr. Nealon (Tom McCamus) to keep her sedated in a coma. The final scene reveals that Nealon has his own agenda – which may or may not involve helping Rachel. Initially it looks like they have been working together, planning an elaborate swap with poor unfortunate new clone Crystal, the perky nail technician introduced earlier in the episode. This has seemingly allowed Rachel to escape Delphine’s homicidal grasp, but in the closing moment, we see that Nealon has another agenda and he is working in cahoots with a mystery woman to whom he has delivered Rachel on a platter. Does this have something to do with the failed trials that Delphine discusses with Cosima? Those involved experimenting on unnamed foreign clones and always resulted in death. If this is one and the same, then Rachel may think that she’s escaped, but in reality she may have jumped from the frying pan into the fire.
- How fun is it to hear Jordan Gavaris’ real voice (sans accent)? His undercover operation to steal Crystal’s identity is easily the most enjoyable part of the episode. Surprisingly, it is also one of the most emotional as he struggles to keep the isolated Clone Club member in the dark and protected.
- As expected, Dr. Coady (Kyra Harper) survived Hot Paul’s grenade back at the Castor compound, though she is looking a little worse for wear. During her meeting with David, Hot Paul’s contact from 3×06 ‘Certain Agony of the Battlefield’, the bureaucrat mentions that he has a mole inside Dyad. Three guesses who he’s referring to, but you should only need one <cough Shay cough>
- Rudy (Ari Millen) also survived the blast, and in one of the most uncomfortable scenes of the episode, he breaks into Scott’s basement apartment. It’s always much more threatening and tense when animals are put in danger, so I was holding my breath when it seemed like Rudy would kill Scott’s cat, Denise. Thankfully Denise survives her encounter with the psycho, albeit at the cost of handing over the original copy of Duncan’s Island of Doctor Moreau.
- Finally, I legitimately do not care about Jason (Justin Chatwin). I kinda hope that POTENTIAL SPOILER the image of Helena carrying a bloody blade in next week’s preview is because she’s murdered him in the wake of his throw down with Donnie.
- Scott (talking about Delphine and Cosima): “It’s all drama between those two.”
- Shay (when Scott asks to sequence her genome): “Thank you. I draw the line at sharing that information with a corporation.”
- Helena (hitting on Donnie): “You are strong like baby ox.”
- Donnie (adopting Helena’s accent): “It’s not usually this thick, so maybe we need two baby ox”
- Crystal (playing at her prom name): “Can it be anything, like Bitch, Mistress of Cum-a-lot?”
- Scott: “Umm…can you go faster?” Rachel (slowly): “This is top speed.”
Your turn: did you enjoy all of the covert operations? Did you anticipate that Delphine was playing Cosima? Did you figure that Rachel would have a back-up plan? Was Jordan Gavaris’ real Canadian accent a treat? Do you feel sorry for poor Crystal? How do you feel about Jason’s subplot? Excited to see more of Helena at the Hendrix’s? Sound off below.
Orphan Black airs Saturdays at 9pm EST on BBC America. Next week: Sarah, S and Felix jaunt off to London and Cosima tries to deal with being fired.