Vulture

Skip to content, or skip to search.

Orphan Black Recap: No Middle Ground

I once gave my mother a Mother’s Day card that said, “Well, I guess you did the best you could” and it still didn’t cause as much damage as this singular Project LEDA picture, the source of all mystery, the forefront of all misery for the clones and clone-adjacent.

After learning last week that Rachel’s parents were the two scientists in the Project LEDA picture AND that they also died in a fire that wiped out that lab, this week’s big reveal is twofold: Rachel is actually more powerful than Dr. Leekie and way, way more in charge, and the reason there’s so much mystery about the origin of the clones is due to the fact that the original genome was wiped out when the lab was wiped out. I imagine that sucks scientifically — I thought humans had two livers until, like, last year, so I’m not going to pretend I’m an expert on the science of DNA mapping — but shouldn’t someone have just confessed this way earlier on? Say, when Cosima agreed to work at Dyad? It’s like hiring someone to sweep your floor and forgetting to give them a broom.

Delphine and Cosima found out about the lost genome when they accidentally received some stem research intended for Dr. Leekie, and he folded like a T-shirt and told them everything. He also had a real "Fuck Tha Police" moment when he decided to help them with their research anyway, even though Rachel put the kibosh on any tests or research that could help Cosima until Sarah produces Kira and Helena. WHAT A BITCH. I still don’t think Leekie is totally redeemed; what kind of dude not only works for someone as cruel as Rachel, but also basically builds a religion around it? What kind of gun is she holding to his head?

The bigger reveal is that a basic cable network showed a gay man shooting a healthy amount of lube into his hand on the cusp of having sex. Praise Jah for treating us like informed adults! Colin the morgue dude was left hanging thanks to Paul’s newfound position as whip hand for Rachel — he stomped in, dragged Colin out, and, using Felix’s fingerprints on Daniel’s gun, framed Felix for the murder of that policeman last week in an attempt to drag Sarah out of hiding. Poor Felix, always getting cockblocked by some clone business out of his control.

You know who wasn’t getting cockblocked? Paul, who slipped right into Daniel’s monitor position and Rachel’s vagina after he was revealed to be dead for real. R.I.P. Daniel, I thought for sure you were made of sand and had a wind-up heart like Karl Ruprecht Kroenen from Hellboy, but I guess you were human after all. Paul took up the mantle and started robotically catering to Rachel’s every demand; is it possible that he’s doing this to get more information for Sarah? Is it possible that it’s still completely twisted and a little puke-worthy? Yes and yes!

Helena, now sporting a dip-dyed ombre blood-stained dress that the attendees of Coachella would sacrifice their entire allowance for, is dragged to Art’s house and handcuffed until she forks over some information about, well, anything. Art is onto something, but he doesn’t really know what he’s got, and he’s sort of throwing stuff at the wall to see if it will stick. After an impressive meal of snacks, Helena breaks free with the pull tab from a sardine can like a diabolical boss, grabs her best Barbie head and sniper rifle from storage, and heads off to shoot Rachel right in the dome. She’s been keeping her stuff in Maggie Chen’s storage unit and occasionally sleeping there, so when Sarah and Art track her there using one of her paper games, they find a bunch of stuff that could help with their Project LEDA information roundup. Helena was doing her creepy talk stuff about a Swan Man earlier, and they find a current picture that might prove that Rachel’s dad, the Swan Man, is still alive. The only thing that kept her from killing Rachel was Sarah’s insistence that it would land Felix, the “brutha sustra,” in jail for murder. Helena, I do not understand your emotional foundation, but I’m glad it kept you from killing the one person who might know everything you want to know about clones.

Kira and Cal are still in the woods, where she’s having premonitions about people knocking their door before it actually comes true and telling Cal about her aunts. In a show that features women getting their mouths sewn shut, Kira still freaks me out most of all.

Oh yeah, remember how Helena choked Gracie out last week during her big escape? Pastor Henrik and his wife decide the best way to get her to talk is to lock her in a stall and stitch her mouth shut. Like, with thick, black, ropey stitches. Marc the creep thought “Now’s my shot!” and he brings her a glass of milk with a straw before kissing her on the cheek. I’d say Gracie should call CPS and get placed somewhere else, but with all of the Mrs. S’s out there, who knows where she’d end up. Pastor Henrik and his fish farm freaks insist that if Helena isn’t brought back, Gracie has to carry the egg they’re fertilizing, which is just a big nope wrapped inside a little nope.

Finally, Sarah finds out that Cosima is sick when she shows up to tell Dr. Leekie that Ethan Duncan might still be alive and Dr. Leekie, unable to stop the diarrhea of the mouth he seems to have developed, fills her in on the latest drama. Paul snuck up after Sarah left to tell Leekie Rachel is having him followed, knowing he might make a deal behind her back. Well … YEAH, of course! Rachel is off the chain, playing God with the clones’ lives, and Leekie has effectively been neutered. What’s going to happen next — is Rachel going to cut him loose, or is Leekie too important to the cause?

Unanswered Questions

  • Was everyone’s hair game better this week, or was it just me? Rachel’s lace-front was on point, and I liked Felix’s curls.
  • Are the Shitgoblins ever going to play an actual gig on the show? I’d like to know if they are metal, trance, or something else entirely.
  • Helena popped out a nun’s eyeballs. There is no question here, only laughter.
  • What’s better Helena ephemera — her Blair Witch Project-style blood stick figures, or the Barbie heads?
  • Did anyone else see Paul Bellini standing outside while Colin was being dragged away?

  • Rachel had some videotapes marked “Roxanne” and “Brenda” — who do we think THEY are?
  • Does Rachel know her dad is still alive?

See you next week!