93 Things I Now Know After Binge-Watching "Orphan Black"
BBC America asked BuzzFeed Creative Manager Josh Fjelstad to do what everyone dreams of doing every day: watch an entire season of a show for work. Experience season one through his eyes, then see what comes next in season two, Saturdays at 9/8c on BBC America.
[Obviously: LOTS of spoilers ahead. Like, every single one, actually.]
[9:35am] First latte made (the term "latte" is applied generously here).
[9:41] It begins.
1. Nothing paints a clearer picture of being in a city than accidentally swearing in front of a young child. I already like this chick.
[9:43] A WILD CLONE APPEARS.
2. Aaaaand she's gone. Went out like Zoe Barnes.
3. Apparently (and by "apparently," I mean our protagonist ran away with the deceased's bag), her name was "Elizabeth Childs."
4. Next she finds herself at a bar, which, to be fair, is also where I would head if I watched someone get hit by a train.
5. Next I'm acquainted with Felix, and learn our girl's name is "Sarah," though that doesn't explain who "Art" is. Or why he keeps calling Elizabeth's phone.
6. Cue Victor, who up until now has simply been known as "Vick the Dick" — Sarah's ex — and as he berates Felix, it's clear that his nickname holds up.
7. Meanwhile, Sarah discovers that Elizabeth has actually done VERY well for herself. To the tune of $75,000. So naturally, it's time to steal it.
[9:53] Step 1: Have your friend phone in your death.
Step 2: Confirm the body.
Step 3: ???
Step 4: PROFIT!
8. [Technically "step 3" is "meet up with a banker who looks strangely like Seth MacFarlane and then casually try to withdraw $75k from a stranger's account."]
9. Was Sarah never told not to get in cars with strangers? And he didn't even offer candy.
[10:01] "ART" IS A DETECTIVE. And so is Sar— "Beth," rather. ...Well, she's a detective who mistakenly shot someone. Whose deposition with the police force is today. So Sarah's like, "Nah, I'd prefer to chug this entire thing of soap." Same.
10. Once she squeaks her way outta that scene, she opens Beth's safety box only to discover some of "Katja's" personal items. If I were a gambling man, I'd say this Katja character is another clone.
[10:11] Heading home, we find Beth had a boyfriend, who just lets himself in whenever he wants. I'd say Beth had it all, except this guy kinda sucks. ...And that's not the only sucking going on here. ;)
11. Of course Vick the Dick forces Felix to hold a funeral for Sarah, despite her knowing it's a bad idea. This guy needs to cool it.
12. A "Ms. S." shows up with Sarah's daughter, Kira, in tow... and they're not happy.
[10:23] Neither is Katja (looking just like Sarah but with a decidedly European haircut), who also shows up uninvited, and demands answers from "Beth." And she's also coughing up blood? Two clones and a funeral.
[10:24] KATJA GETS SHOT. And they barely even got to know each other. Very rude. Sarah speeds off, which is probably a good decision.
[10:31] Second "latte." Already worried my heart isn't going to be able to handle this much stress.
13. Sarah has to bury Katja's body, and accordingly, it ain't pretty. This whole thing is sounding like a big mess.
14. Sarah barges into Felix's apartment, he retorts: "Aren't you supposed to wait three days before arising?", which is also what people tell me when I manage to make it back to work on a Monday.
15. Who the heck is Miss S. and why has she been keeping Kira for 10 months? And how come Sarah and Felix always refer to the three of them getting a fresh start? Scandalous.
[10:46] I'm sorry. But I must use the bathroom.
[10:50] I didn't want to leave either. But sometimes you do what you gotta do.
16. Based on how Miss S. speaks to Sarah, I believe the "S" stands for "Sassy." But in all seriousness, she seems like a nice lady — she took Sarah and Felix (and Kira?) across the pond in order to give them a fresh start? To get away from what?
[10:59] Apparently Beth was more of a "tweeker" than a "Twitterer." That was probably what caused her to shoot Maggie Chen, who was innocent. (And probably a bad joke, but that's beside the point.)
17. Why you never answer an unknown call: because you have to go to sketchy hotels to pick up some German's briefcase.
18. Katja was either extremely messy, or this hotel has simply awful room service.
19. Sarah throws out enough dankes to pull off the German look and retrieves the briefcase.
20. It's full of documents — Katja. Someone Austrian. Italian. Danielle Fournier — France? Alison Hendrix, Scarborough? Who are these people?
21. Next stop: Scarborough. Nice van, mom.
22. Oh, she's like, actually a soccer mom. And she's not here to make friends.
23. Sarah miraculously nails the police hearing, and decides to celebrate by visiting her newest "twin," Alison.
[11:22] HOW MANY ARE THERE?! AND WHY DOES THIS ONE HAVE DREADS?
[11:25] So Sarah's been in the Great White North since she was 12.
24. FINALLY someone just admits that they're all clones. Dreads (Cosima) has a good head on her shoulders, even though what's on top of that head is not so good.
25. Meanwhile, Art is holding Beth's $75k until she's back on active duty. And everyone else in the force is even meaner. They won't even help her put on her holster. She's TRYING, guys.
26. And like, honestly? Someone just HAD to put a construction site where Katya's buried?
27. All right. I'm sure I'm gonna need to remember this later, so here goes: Dreads says Katja learned that her genetic identicals were being hunted in Europe and contacted Beth, who found two other matches in North America. Sarah needs to be a cop because the Clone Club needs to have the access she has. Else, how are they going to find out who the original is, and who cloned them? Why? HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO NOT KNOW THE ANSWERS TO ALL THIS IMMEDIATELY?
28. Ms. S. still doesn't think Sarah is ready to be a mother. "New clothes and a Jaguar do not a mother make." God, I love how the British say "Jag-U-are."
29. Art finds a doll head that looks suspiciously like Katja in the grass by where she was shot. Speaking of shooting, if Sarah doesn't learn how to soon, he's gonna figure out she's not truly a detective.
[11:53] Oh sh*t. The $75k was what Soccer Mom and Dreads were using to keep themselves safe.
30. Art and Beth are on the case, and it appears the shooter must've been going through a midlife crisis, because that stolen motorcycle sticks out like a sore thumb.
[11:59] ART GOES DOWN.
[12:03pm] THE SHOOTER IS A CLONE? AND STILL HAS A HAIRCUT FROM THE '80S?
31. This detective thing is working out all right. Other than the shootings and stabbings. But at least Sarah's got the Club's funding back on track, and she didn't even get more than a couple of knife wounds!
[12:07] '80s Hair has some serious, uh, back problems.
[12:09] Bathroom break. I'm only human.
[12:11] And we're back in Black. To not knowing what's going on.
32. We find '80s Hair getting herself cleaned up in a house with a curious kid in it. Something tells me she doesn't live here.
33. The Angry Angel ['80s Hair] is, coincidentally, a religious fanatic — and a damn good killer. "A calculated female killer who loves playing games."
34. Angry Angel (I know it's Helena, but come on, that name owns) gives Sarah a call and says they have a "connection."
35. Aside from the whole trying-to-kill-her-thing, the Angry Angel is causing other problems: her case is keeping Sarah from seeing her daughter.
36. Fortunately, Alison isn't gonna let that happen. If she can stop portraying Sarah as a weird Cockney character, that is.
37. How does Kira know that Alison isn't her mum? Aside from that "Monkey Bum Face" is a bad guess for a nickname.
[12:46] *~*orders Seamless*~*
[12:48] Beth just left a message admitting that she's actually Sarah Manning. But supposedly Art will only receive it if he finds Angry Angel?
38. So Angry Angel thinks she's the original. And someone told her the other clones are abominations, who must be eliminated. Piss off.
39. Soccer Mom pulls it off. Art catches up to Sarah. Sarah resigns her position. And Angry Angel P.T.F.O. in an alleyway, only to be picked up and shoved into a van. Naturally.
[1:01] Um, Sarah, awkward question: Have you been eating electrodes again? [But seriously, how did a bunch of scientists get into her house?]
40. So the big thing this episode is figuring out who to trust. Sarah suspects that Paul is a "monitor." Alison is pretty suspicious of her husband, Donnie, but he seems a bit too dumb to be causing any trouble.
41. Paul was in the freaking military? Apparently that whole thing about men in uniform is true, then.
42. Alison starts doing her own snooping, but Big Boob Blowies is only the beginning of Alison's problems with her marriage.
43. What's the deal with this brown-nosing French woman? Why is she all up in Cosima's grill? I don't like it.
[1:19] Kira and Sarah are finally reunited and Kira can tell it's her real mom and no that's not a tear it's just that I'm really upset my Seamless hasn't arrived yet.
[1:23] OH MY GOD VICTOR STILL OWED DRUG MONEY AND HE LOST THE DRUGS BECAUSE SARAH HAD THEM AND OH GOD THERE GOES HIS FINGER OAIMKLFMOKAENRKAKLMDLASD66.
[1:27] We learn that Paul reports to someone named Olivier, and I don't trust the lot of 'em.
[1:30] Once again, Victor barges into someone's house. This isn't a Zelda game. So rude.
44. Victor: "We were in love." Sarah: "Not me." OH SH*T.
[1:34] THE FOOD IS HERE. Mac and cheese, obviously.
45. HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO EAT WITH ALL OF THESE ACCUSATIONS, PAUL?
[1:44] It looks like I was right about Paul — he couldn't be trusted, but it's mostly because he couldn't trust "Beth" anymore. Perhaps, now, they can, with time, learn to trust each other.
[1:48] Alison may or may not be overreacting to this whole "monitor" thing as she decides to SLAP DONNIE ACROSS THE FACE WITH A GOLF CLUB.
46. "Dreads" will henceforth be known as "Geek Monkey."
47. Next step on Alison's potluck prep list: Torture Donnie with a glue gun.
48. Sarah posing as Alison sounds like a great setup for some side-splitting antics! And obviously nothing will go wrong!
49. Geek Monkey and Delphine (the French lady) go to a "Dr. Leekie's" lecture on "neovolution." The attendees look like something out of X-Men. I guess that's probably the point.
50. Sarah, explaining why she needs Felix to dress "suburban" and come bartend at this potluck: "Sh*t, as they say, is completely sideways, Fe."
51. Important sidenote: The soundtrack this episode is bomb.
52. What is this French chick going for? I don't think she's just a friend. Biz Markie would have a lot to say about this.
53. Donnie — admitting to nothing other than an affinity for big boobs and blowies — only says, "I… bought… mulled wine."
54. Here Vick is, letting himself into other people's homes [Alison's] again.
55. Vick and Paul interacting isn't exactly a meeting of the minds.
[2:24] Whenever I think I have Paul figured out, he goes and does something Good. In this instance, tying up Victor and PROCEEDING TO NAIL HIS HAND TO A CHAIR. I really hope this much torture doesn't normally go down in suburban neighborhoods.
[2:36] Ugh. Of course Delphine and Dr. Leekie are in cahoots. Never trust the French. Or neovolutionists.
[2:36] I am not waiting one second to start this episode.
56: Paul and Felix decide to check out the local nightclub, which is apparently where Olivier has set up shop. It's full of "techno-progressives," "body mods," "bio hackers"… kids these days.
57: So Olivier doesn't want his "subjects" dead, but what DOES he want with them? Clearly not a white picket fence and a dog.
58: Maggie Chen is — excuse me, was — friends with this Hannibal Lecter-type [Olivier] and the Angry Angel. It seems like it's coming down to some kind of a new theater to fight the eternal battle of science versus religion.
59: Helena asks Sarah to lunch and, while slurping up all the Jell-O in the house, offers a deal: reveal the names of the other clones and be spared. Otherwise Sarah goes first.
60: Freaking Olivier knows that Paul knew Beth was Sarah, and he's not having it. Especially because he's the one who owns the house they had been living in.
[3:02] "A CHILD IN THE BLACK. A CHILD TO HIDE." Ms. S. finally reveals how the show got its name.
[3:09] Olivier wants to arrange a meeting with Sarah. Listen, Paul. I think you should take it. It seems like they just want to help Sarah! (Maybe!)
61: Olivier, what are you even going to DO with a tail? On second thought, you can keep that to yourself.
[3:17] EW THE TAIL NO THE TAIL NO N ONO NO NO N O N O NO N O N
62: After Olivier loses his most prized appendage (and it isn't what you'd think), we learn that the dude who messed Helena up is named Thomas. And he hates Dr. Leekie and all that he stands for.
[3:20] Sarah and Paul, sitting in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G.
[3:21] Cosima and Delphine, sitting in a— oh.
[3:23] And of course, the police finally figure out who Sarah Manning is.
[3:27] We return to find Ainslie — Alison's best friend and maybe also her Monitor — just casually reading her mail. I guess she thinks the NSA isn't the only one who gets to be a spy.
63: The look on Ms. S.'s face when Art shows up just screams, "What did she do this time?" Also, it's only been two weeks?!
64: V. rude of Leekie to suggest playing with Cosima's heart strings just to find out where the other clones are.
65: I mean, it's actually 4:20 for Alison.
67: Alison exacts her revenges in a very dignified manner. Despite her cloudy judgment. >;)
68: A lot of "action" in this episode already. I know I'm supposed to be focused on the *passion*, but I just can't take my eyes off Cosima's lava lamp. Still? Really?
69: CAT FIGHT. Sarah: "I severely underestimated you. I hope you kicked her ass." Alison: "I kinda did." Note: Alison totally did kick Ainslie's ass.
70: Delphine makes Cosima go out to get her ice cream (rude), then proceeds to go through all her files to find clone contact info (really rude). I was just about to throw her out the window until she decided not to tell Leekie about Kira. At least she isn't a total loss.
71: Alison "effed" it — literally and figuratively — and now she needs to post up at Felix's, which is basically what the whole city is doing at this point.
[4:03] Dr. Leekie sends his regards to Olivier, which means he's dead. That tail will serve him well where he's going.
[4:05] DON'T OPEN THE DOOR KIRA.
[4:08] OH MY ****ING GOD ARE YOU KIDDING ME. KIRA ESCAPES ONLY TO BE HIT BY A RECKLESS DRIVER. NOo
[4:09] I CAN'T LIVE LIKE THIS. AMAZON ISN'T LOADING. I AM GOING TO LOSE MY MIND.
[4:11] IT'S BACK.
72: The doctor needs to see WHAT. I don't know what that means but at least she's gonna be OK. GOD.
73: "Yeah, Helena's gotta go." WE ALL KNEW THAT ALREADY, SARAH.
74: Alison helps Felix around the house: "Your drug paraphernalia is in a drawer. So is the paraphernalia that was by your bed."
75: Does Kira's miraculous recovery mean she's part clone? This is reminding me of the Cylons all over again and I AM NOT PREPARED.
76: This Alison intervention is one of the best things I've ever seen. The suburb stuff is hysterical. I mean, in a really sad, lives-and-families-are-falling-apart kind of way.
77: Cosima discovers that the clones' DNA has barcodes identifying them in it. At least it's barcodes and not QR codes, right?
78: The perplexing and guarded way Leekie talks with Sarah makes me think that SHE'S the original one. Which may also explain why she was able to have a kid, while Alison had to adopt.
79: Thomas and his ilk are called "Proletheans." Sure.
80: Meanwhile, Art finally decides to look at the security tapes from the train station where Beth killed herself. Pretty convenient that these security dudes never looked at the tape from the angle that more clearly shows that the other woman also looked like her, but I'll allow it. I want to see how Art is going to figure into this whole thing. But what I won't allow is for Sarah to willingly help Helena kill the other clones.
81: Meanwhile, Alison rightfully tells everyone in Suburbia to piss off.
[4:50] Helena, I never knew you had it in you. Go, girl. THOMAS IS OUT.
[4:52] Leekie takes a phone call from SOMEONE WHO SOUNDS JUST LIKE THE OTHER CLONES. STOP.
[4:53] Then, we meet the Mother. Sarah was "a child unfettered by tradition." And a twin. And the twin is Helena — one to the state, and one to the church.
[4:55] This is too real. I'm gonna need chips, and I'm gonna need a Cherry Coke.
[5:02] Now, I am properly prepared.
82: We're two minutes into this thing and I'm already overwhelmed. Helena knows she's Sarah's sister, and apparently possesses superhuman strength (well, sure, I guess that makes sense). She escapes. Sarah is arrested. But what of her mom(s)?
83: I certainly don't trust Leekie's "agreement." Any organization like this will know every single way to exploit loopholes.
84: Ah, so we finally get back to that message Sarah left episodes ago at Maggie's apartment. We all knew Art was the only one who would be able to piece it all together.
85: Sarah actually likes what Leekie is saying? IS SHE SELLING OUT?
86: Apparently what happens in Afghanistan stays in Afghanistan, because it seems we're never going to find out what Paul did while he was in the military.
[5:17] SAY F**KING WHAT. THEY'RE ALL OPERATING UNDER A CLONE? A "PROCLONE," Rachel. "You're not an orphan anymore, Sarah. We found you."
87: Rachel, the proclone, offers Sarah a "sovereignty association." I like the sound of that. But I'm a sucker for big words.
88: Just when I thought Victor was actually out of the picture, he comes crawling back — using only nine fingers, no less.
89: OK. It appears, after unforeseen events, Ainslie is out of the picture.
90: Meanwhile, Sarah's mum claims Ms. S. isn't who she says she is? BUT SHE'S THE ONLY ONE LEFT TO TRUST.
[5:34] OH MY GOD. I HATE HELENA. HER MOM WAS SO NICE.
91: Their genes are encrypted. Not some bad QR code joke. "Of course! They were coding an ASCII." Just leaving that out there.
[5:39] IS MS. S. SARAH'S MONITOR?
[5:41] London called, but Sarah didn't hear it. Helena is the next clone to die.
92: After taking care of business, Sarah realizes she needs to offer Kira a better life, and accepts Rachel's offer. Alison does, too.
93: Paul: "I killed six marines, friendly fire. They covered it up. That's what they've got on me."
[5:45] "We're property." Well of COURSE they patented you. How else would they protect their investment?
[5:48] WHERE. DID. THEY. GO. MS. S. WHAT. HAVE. YOU. DONE.
[IN CONCLUSION] It's been one wild ride. As Felix would say, I could go for a shower and a Xanax after all that. First of all, I've never sat on the couch for 10 hours straight (at least, not in any capacity I'm admitting to here). Second, I canNOT imagine what it would have been like watching this show and waiting a week between episodes — I was barely holding on in the mere minutes between them. Third, I'm pretty sure any of my own theories I've feebly tried to assemble (like Sarah being the "original") will be smashed to smithereens in the second season. (At least, I hope Ms. S. isn't a Monitor. Please. I don't ask for much.) Anyway, I hope my words do this show justice. It's a good one.