You helped me through a difficult night—and were damn entertaining in the process.
Sometime last year, I tried to watch Orphan Black (OnDemand) because everyone was talking about it. I got as far as the second scene of the first episode, where Vic the Dick comes to Felix’s apartment looking for Sarah. Then, last week, Natalie tweeted (or retweeted?) something to the effect of “You know what I like about #OrphanBlack? Everything!” So I decided to give it another try.
I’m glad I did. About the time Sarah discovered Beth was a cop, I was intrigued. By the end of the first episode (when Katja was shot), I was hooked. I’d planned to discipline my watching to one or two episodes a day. Of course that didn’t happen.
Watching season 1 was fairly sane, taking perhaps 3 days or so. Season 2, though, provided a much needed break from real life and my thoughts, and occurred more quickly. In particular, it occupied my mind last Thursday night, when my cat Kimmi was in the hospital awaiting surgery the next day. I watched well into the early Friday morning hours, in hopes of tiring myself enough to not toss and turn once I went to bed. It worked (along with a dose of ZzzQuil).*
I finished season 2 the next day, just in time for the finale on BBC America. And now I’m standing alongside the millions of fans who have to wait nine months or so before season 3.
What’s surprised me most is how I’ve come to enjoy two characters I initially hated. Felix (and Vic) were like fingernails on a chalk board. Vic was indeed a dick, and Felix was nearly every other gay queen on television. But Felix quickly grew on me. Not only was he unconditional support for foster sister Sarah, he totally accepted all the clones, each with her own idiosyncrasies and problems. Most surprising was his relationship with uptight soccer mom Alison. The way he supported her through her various crises was endearing, and their relationship became one of the show’s many highlight.
Second on that list is Helena. I was so thankful Sarah shot Helena in the season 1 finale. I thought we’d be rid of her forever, but nooo. When she staggered into the hospital in the season 2 premiere, I was not happy. But her mid-season escape from the Proletheans showed us a new side to this strange character who’d been mistreated all her life. She blossomed on her road trip with Sarah. She even found a bit of romance with Jesse, the tow-truck driver. (I’d love for Jesse to return next season. You gotta love a guy who isn’t threatened by losing an arm-wrestling match with a woman!)
After season 1’s cliffhanger finale, I was quite worried about what would happen in season 2’s final episode. For the most part, the clones ended the season on positive notes, yet there was still enough intrigue to keep us hanging.
Alison and Donnie bonded last week by burying Leekie’s body under the concrete in their garage (and sealing it with a heart!). Cosima found Duncan’s key to the synthetic DNA that could cure her illness. Sarah ended the season reunited with her daughter, a new ally, and the discovery of a new clone (which Tatiana Maslany won’t have to play). I think Helena left a nitrogen tank filled with her eggs or embryos for the other clones. And Rachel was the recipient of a pressure-powered pencil to the eye. In my book, that’s a happy ending for Rachel.
Things weren’t so fortunate for poor Helena, who was kidnapped. Again! Helena being tossed around and held against her will is getting old. It’s possibly my one complaint with the show.
Both Art and Paul, series regulars who don’t appear regularly, showed up in the finale. I was delighted to see Art, and totally surprised to see Paul in his Army uniform. I think that’s a good fit for him. Will Cal be a series regular next season? I’d be fine with that. I’m not quite as thrilled to have Michelle Forbes around, although she currently seems to be on the good side. But with this show, you have to wonder if and how long that will last.
I think I’m going to spend the next few days rewatching all the episodes. With all the twists and turns, I’ve somehow lost an understanding of the Bigger Picture.
In case you haven’t seen it, BBC America has a video of an extended version of the Clone Dance Party, complete with hints as to how it was all filmed.