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Orphan Black recap: Scarred by Many Past Frustrations

Butter is a Girl’s Best Friend.

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©George Kraychyk for BBC AMERICA

Orphan Black

TV Show
Action, Drama, Sci-fi
run date:
Taitana Maslany, Jordan Gavaris
BBC America
Current Status:
In Season

This week’s episode title, “Scarred by Many Past Frustrations,” is again from President Eisenhower’s farewell address and refers to our ability to negotiate with other countries in the world, urging future leaders, however “scarred by many past frustrations,” to solve our issues at the conference table rather than on the battlefield. As it pertains to Orphan Black, there wasn’t a character featured in this episode that wasn’t airing her past frustrations.

Helena, the sestra with a crazy vindictive streak and a penchant for butter as a lubing mechanism sure wasn’t believing Sarah’s side of the story and was instead relying on her trusty scorpion for guidance. We finally could understand Sarah’s over-the-top mother hen behavior after she explained her never-ending guilt complex for abandoning Kira back when she was hanging with Vic during that drug-induced haze. Cosima tended to her frustrations in quite a different way with the start of a new love affair, one we already know will be poisoned by some unknown nefarious forces. And poor Prolethean Gracie unloaded years of frustrations in the form of mesh, leather and her first swigs of alcohol. Even Mrs. S revealed some of past secrets involving first loves as motivators for her present behavior.

But in the end, it’s the Castors’ release of frustration that will ultimately cause the biggest problems for all the women they come in contact with: Helena, the girl caught up in the unfortunate three-way, even Gracie’s long-delayed consummation of her marriage to Mark will have to end in some crazy blood-shot eyes and what I fear will be much worse symptoms to come. It was a jam-packed episode with quite a few revelations. Let’s put our clones through our Orphan Black Clone Status Hyper-Sequence Generator Calcutron and rank them based on their fun with condiments.

1. Helena

Helena gets the prize of the week for her shimmying abilities through very narrow spaces. The core work on that woman is astounding. Beyond the physical prowess everything about Helena this week was impressive. Her one-liners (“Hello Dirty Paul,” “You want to be my sandwich”), her escape plan, but most shocking was her inability to trust Sarah. To me it fit her character that she doesn’t forgive so easily and left Sarah in the cell after she helped her escape. “Now we are even, sestra.”

2. Sarah

If only she would have listened to Paul and stayed away. That mother-hen complex was too strong to resist and now she’s stuck in a cell where she’s a guinea pig to a project that’s even more complicated then we originally thought. Sure, we knew the Castors were a government experiment that’s gone wrong but we had no idea their disease was spreadable. Dr. Cody clearly did though, as she compelled her mutated children to record any sexual tryst in a little journal, yet wasn’t too concerned they were infecting others especially since she sent Rudy out on a two-day bender—the effects I’m sure will be gruesome. But Sarah’s despair when Helena left was palpable and it was great to see the two sestras working together—I sure missed the clone interaction. Did you?

3. Cosima

Cosima gives lesbian dating site Sapphire a whirl and who shows up but hot holistic healer Shay, played by Ksenia Solo (Black Swan). The two hit it off so well Cosima is ready to forget Delphine. (“She’s French, mostly just really great hair.”) But Cosima’s bliss is destined to be short-lived as Shay is not what she seems.

As you watchers know, no one gets to be too happy in Orphan Black for long.  My hope is Helena will be the one to ultimately save the day. She sure is turning into the most fascinating clone to watch. ‘Til next week, Clone Club, travel safe and carry butter. You never know when it will come in handy.