Orphan Black Review: The Clones are Back

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Everybody is running and searching and Felix is dancing in assless chaps. Welcome to Orphan Black Season 2 Episode 1!

The Season 2 opener brings with it all of the drama, humor, mystery and phenomenal acting by Tatiana Maslany that you could want, as well as a frenetic energy that should set the pacing going forward.

Everything is of an urgent nature now. Kira and Mrs. S. are missing, Cosima is sick with whatever killed two of the other clones, Alison has killed her neighbor and has grabbed the lead in her local musical and Art and Angie are slinking around town on a closed case, which might end up being a damned good thing for Sarah in the end.

Did I mention those assless chaps? Any Felix is a fun Felix, but slap him in some assless chaps in front of Alison while he's high as a kite and Jordan Gavaris' chemistry with Maslany is nearly perfect. For some reason, I cannot wait to see Felix run into Rachel. 

Paul is now working for Rachel Duncan, who we met ever so briefly in Orphan Black Season 1. Rachel wasted precious time trying to get Sarah to her side and keeping Sarah from finding Kira. Rachel is the clone who thinks she has it all together because she's been in on the game her entire life. However, she wants what Sarah has, the ability to be a fully functioning natural woman.

She's not going to get it by poking and prodding and sucking out her genetics. It's too late to float her boat. Rachel pretends to be all about the corporation, but I don't buy it. She's only as cold as the environment in which she was raised, and no doubt it was sterile.

Sarah and Paul still have an undeniable pull toward one another. Sarah knows that no matter where he's working, she can count on him. Even in the face of genetically identical women, Paul doesn't switch his favor from one to the other but remains true to Sarah. I wish we could have known more about him with Beth to get a true read on his character, but the way he lets Sarah off the hook in spite of what might happen to him is pretty telling.

It still amazes me that these clones are all played by Maslany, because I never once get confused about who's who or get that sinking feeling that a scene is going to fall apart because the same person is in the frame more than once. There can be a handful of clones in the room and it feels like different actors are playing each role. 

It feels like the main story this season will run between Sarah and Rachel, because Sarah will never go willingly into the dark hands of science, even if she is patented by someone. Truly, that's scary stuff. There are so many papers written on the patenting of DNA and gene sequences and they aren't even talking about artificial ones. They should just skip the research and watch Orphan Black. Patenting genes is bad, mmmkay?

Alison is healthy and happy, watching the EMT trucks pull up to Aynsley's house knowing what they'll find in there. The good news is Alison got the lead in the local in the wake of Aynsley's death. Art wasn't kidding when he said, "It ain't Cats." WTH kind of musical has the lead singing and dancing with an asthma inhaler? Cosima might not look kindly on that role right now as she's rotting from a respiratory disease.

The scene when Alison was attacked by the unknown thugs attempting to get Sarah was brilliant. As she spun in little circles, a rape whistle in her mouth and spraying the most ineffectual mace I've ever seen I realized these guys are really stupid. The clones should never be caught by them if they can't tell them apart by now.

I'm really impressed that Art has Sarah's back. He's leaving Angie out in the cold a bit while he helps Sarah out and he's determined that it wasn't Dyad who kidnapped her daughter. The next time we see him, he should have the full scoop on Sarah/Beth/Alison and his mind should be blown.

By the end of the hour we learn that the guys chasing Sarah and who have Kira and Mrs. S. are with the group who raised Helena. Or something. They're part of her religious background. Proving you can't keep a good clone down, Sarah's womb twin crawls into a hospital with a gunshot wound to the chest, thug trailing behind. 

Helena's alive! 

Is it wrong to have such a soft spot for Helena? It's difficult to choose which clone I want to root for when they've all gotten the shaft at some point.

Alison is in bed with Dyad and Cosima may soon be following her. I'm unsure whether Delphine is really helping Cosima or helping Dyad. Cosima was pretty determined to keep her blood out of Dyad's hands, but that's right where Delphine delivered it. 

Something tells me Rachel won't be the hardass she seems to be right now. She's not been privy to the lives of the clones -- her sisters -- on an up-close and personal level, so the more she knows the more likely she is to crack a little. Sarah's not going to give an ounce, that's for sure. 

It was a thrilling hour and we've only just begun! Make sure you watch Orphan Black online, talk about the show in the comments below and come back every week so we can chat it out. I'd love to blend your thoughts and opinions into later reviews.

Which current clone is your favorite?

Nature Under Constraint and Vexed Review

Editor Rating: 4.8 / 5.0
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Rating: 4.7 / 5.0 (55 Votes)

Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer and critic for TV Fanatic. She's a member of the Critic's Choice Association, enjoys mentoring writers, conversing with cats, and passionately discussing the nuances of television and film with anyone who will listen. Follow her on Twitter and email her here at TV Fanatic.

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Orphan Black Season 2 Episode 1 Quotes

Alison: Felix, are you high?
Felix: I didn't know there was going to be a huge emergency, did I?

C'mon. Get your shit together you silly tit!