Orphan Black Season 2 Finale Recap: Unconditional Surrender

Orphan Black

By Means Which Have Never Been Tried
Season 2 Episode 10
Editor’s Rating 4 stars

Orphan Black

By Means Which Have Never Been Tried
Season 2 Episode 10
Editor’s Rating 4 stars

Project LEDA has met its match, and it’s Project OHHHHHHH SHIIIIIIIT.

I’m not sure how I feel about this season. It was sort of a slow roll to a great ending; there weren’t as many explicitly feminist moments as there were in the first season, but it made some very feminist statements overall and yes that is important to me. I feel like we kept going over the same territory but with lower stakes, so I’m glad that the season ended in a way that expanded the world instead of continuing to marginalize it.

Sarah was stripped down, handcuffed, and interrogated about her sex life with the kind of questions old Republican senators use to decide if a woman should have any autonomy — how old were you when you first had sex (14), have you ever had an abortion (yes), when did you start menstruating (very young), do you have any mental illness (HELLO I’M A CLONE, WHAT DO YOU THINK). The purpose of this unconditional surrender was to get to Kira, but they had their own agenda first. A man who looked like a 1970s Guess Who? game card come to life introduced himself as Dr. Nealon; we met him when he examined Sarah in her sleep, so the creep factor is already off the charts. Dr. Nealon wants to harvest Sarah’s eggs, and he makes her sign before he agrees to take her to Kira. Sarah is able to look at Kira from behind a mirror, and is privy to the ultra-manipulative Rachel telling Kira that her mom sure runs away from her a lot!

Kira refused a swab of the inside of her mouth, which was really a ruse to get the nurse close enough for her to snatch the phone out of her pocket. Kira, baby girl! Since she’s smarter than all of us she uses it to call Cal, who motors over to Mrs. S’s house, introduces himself as Kira’s dad, and shows her the picture Kira drew of her aunts. He’s onto it — Cal knows all about the clones, and Dyad knows he’s her father. He did some digging into Dyad via the hacker that hacked him, and he’s told to ask Mrs. S about Castor, but he doesn’t know what that means. Well we’re all about to find out!

Mrs. S insists that she has an inside man, and she does — PAUL.  Her inside man is Paul! Paul finally came out of hiding! Well, he came out of hiding from us — he’s been working the military angle this whole time. When a limo pulls up with Marian inside, he tells her he wants Sarah and Kira released and protected, and he’s willing to hand over a folder full of secret information as leverage.

Cosima is trying to keep it together while a bunch of suits take some of Kira’s bone marrow out of the lab. She finds out that she has a new physician, Dr. Nealon, and that he’s taking the samples in one fell swoop, all of which are Rachel’s orders. Rachel also manages to send her to Frankfurt immediately, not giving her a chance to say goodbye to Cosima. Delphine has always been shady, but she uses her last few minutes for good when she emails Rachel’s itinerary to Cosima, so they know where to find Kira and Sarah. Godspeed, Delphine; you’ve been used like a cheap rag but true love led the way in the end.

Rachel is also trying to use her dad and pump him for information, but Duncan isn’t talking. He asks for hot water only during the tea set-up, insisting that he has his own bag; after he tells her that there’s no way she’ll ever get the key to his cipher and tearfully asks if she remembers the feeling of how much they loved her, he croaks, having used his drug-laced teabag to commit suicide. That is the most hardcore, polite, British way to kill yourself of all time. Rachel sheds real tears for the first time, having lost her father again, and for good, but then she gets angry. And when Rachel gets angry, someone has to pay.

Right now that someone is Sarah, who is strapped to a gurney and taken in for surgery to remove one of her ovaries. How is that even a legit thing to do when you’re trying to study someone’s fertility? Dr. Nealon, who is basically Dr. Giggles with a nicer face, is ready to rip out one of her perfectly healthy ovaries based on Rachel’s revenge tactics, but he has no idea what’s coming next. In a series of flashbacks we see how Cosima and Scott rigged a fire extinguisher to become a pneumatic device that would shoot a pencil across the room with great force, all of which Cosima semi-explains to Kira while they’re playing. When Rachel comes in, she gives Sarah a picture that Kira just drew, and in the picture is a fire extinguisher; Scott is in the room when Sarah is wheeled in, and through a series of intense eye motions he indicates that she should pull the tag on the extinguisher.

Rachel thinks Duncan gave Sarah the key to the cipher, and she smashes all of the bone marrow Kira donated in retaliation. Sarah calls her back to the room, and when Rachel turns around, Sarah pulls the trigger on the extinguisher, taped to the bottom of a cart Scott left near her, and puts a pencil right through Rachel’s eye before leaving with the Dyad card Scott stole for her. Rachel is still alive, and I assume that next season she will finally get the eye patch most villains receive when they cross the threshold of evil.

Sarah snatches Kira out of her room even though Marian is there. Marian is impressed with Sarah, and, after explaining that she’s from a group called Topside, says wants to meet with her the next day.  Sarah should hop in Cal’s janky van and take Kira to the outer reaches of the world while she still can, but she goes to Felix’s house instead.

Helena, fresh from burning the fish farm to the ground, stopped by at Art’s house to eat her way through his cereal stash before Felix picked her up. All of the clones are at Felix’s apartment! It’s a party. Cosima and Helena meet for the first time, which is sweet and full of loving hugs. Sarah is sad that Kira can’t donate bone marrow for another six weeks, but Cosima is still in high spirits. So high, in fact, that she puts on some music, and all of the clones dance together with wild abandon. Even Alison gets down! Later, after everyone goes to bed, Helena takes the nitrogen canisters out of her bag and leaves the apartment, only to be kidnapped by ominous men who really know how to put a hood on unsuspecting victims.

The next day, Cosima almost dies; she saw Delphine in her vision, and when Delphine told her not to be afraid I screamed to my television, “Be afraid! Don’t trust this motherfucker!” Thankfully, Kira is there to encourage her back to the land of the living, and asks her to read her The Island of Dr. Moreau book that Duncan gave her; when Cosima opens the book, she sees Duncan’s codes and ciphers all over it. Her only job now is to stay alive long enough to apply it.

Sarah is in a limo on her way to Marian’s house when this is happening, consumed with questions about Topside and what she’s about to see. Marian leads her into the house where she meets Charlotte, another Sarah clone who is still a kid. Charlotte is the only clone to survive the 400 attempts made to make more, and Marian is raising her as her child. When Marian reveals that Topside steers Dyad, Sarah figures out that Topside is the kabal Mrs. S was talking about. That should make next season interesting — how many projects is Topside monitoring? Are they all clone projects?

But it doesn’t end there. Marian walks Sarah towards a glass-encased room with a man doing pull ups, facing away from them. It turns out the military never shut down Project LEDA, and it was split into two operations — Dyad handled the female side and the military handled the male. In rapid succession we see Sarah recognizing this man in the glass case, Mrs. S and Paul watching as Helena is loaded into the belly of a military plane, and Marc getting married to Gracie. When the man in the case faces Sarah, we finally see his face, and it’s Marc’s face.

Marc is Project Castor. He’s a clone!

Remember last week when he casually mentioned that he had gone AWOL from the military? Is it any wonder that Marc told Gracie he can accept her and the child inside of her, knowing that the child inside of her is a clone, too?

Right now we know of three Marcs: the one with Gracie, the one in Marian’s house, and the military guy posted outside of Helena’s plane. How many Marc clones were successful? Does the Marc with Gracie know he’s a clone? Are the Sarah clones going to find and save Gracie? Is Helena pregnant? Did the crazy Marc in Marian’s house become that way through something they did to him, or something faulty about his clone process?

Next season just cracked wide open.

This was so much fun, and I’m glad that you were here with me through it. Have a wonderful summer away from your TVs! Seriously, nothing is on — go out and have fun! See you in September.

Orphan Black Season 2 Finale Recap