'Orphan Black' creators on that 'twisted' clone threeway
[SPOILER ALERT: Read on only if you have already watched Saturday’s “Transitory Sacrifices of Crisis” episode of Orphan Black.]
Another clone bit the dust in the latest episode of Orphan Black, but this death may have also provided a clue as to what the male clones of Project Castor want with the female sestras of Project Leda. Mustached marvel Seth experienced more “glitching” near the end of the episode, causing his twin brother Rudy to put him out of his misery. What does it all mean? We went to the men who hold all the answers—Orphan Black creators Graeme Manson and John Fawcett. We also asked them about Alison’s new campaign and business enterprise, Helena’s situation, and that super-creepy clone threeway.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Well, congratulations gentlemen on filming the world’s first clone threeway scene. Whose twisted idea was this scene, which shows two of the male clone brothers going at it with a very confused lady.
JOHN FAWCETT: Whose idea was this, Graeme?
GRAEME MANSON: I think we have to take co-control of this situation. It was both of ours. And there was a lot of debate about this season and how we were going to do it and how we were going to honor our themes. We are pushing buttons in that scene for sure.
Did it require any logistical filming tricks to get that scene? I mean, obviously you always have some tricks when you do these multi-clone scenes but a clone threeway is pretty unique.
FAWCETT: Nothing different than we’ve done in the past. But what was different about it is that we’re introducing a new actor into the technical glorious world of cloning. So for Ari Millen, who plays Rudy and Seth, this was a big deal for him—not just this scene, but this episode is heavy for him in terms of introducing the characters and having him play off of himself. And so for us it was fun introducing a brand new actor and showing him the ropes and saying, “Hey, here’s how we do it.” But dramatically the scene was fun just because it is so twisted and it’s frightening. And it’s always great to unsettle an audience and to leave them guessing and go in a direction that they’re not expecting.
Let’s stay on the male clones for a minute because we see Paul show up and give the Rudy and Seth clones some sort of test that Helena later gets. What is this test all about?
MANSON: Well, that part of our scientific mystery and that’s really the tip of the iceberg in terms of what is up with the Castor boys’ condition. We know for sure it’s neurological and that it differs in that way from what our girls our suffering.
Yeah, because we see Seth glitching throughout the episode, so bad that his brother Rudy eventually shoots him to put him out of his misery. Is this glitching situation the male clone equivalent of the respiratory problems plaguing some of the female clones?
MANSON: It could be that parallel. And certainly that was a mercy killing, so we know it’s fatal.
FAWCETT: And there is something fundamentally wrong with the boys—maybe even more so than the females.
MANSON: Besides being perverts and rapists, there’s more wrong with them.
FAWCETT: Well, there is, and ultimately seeing Rudy have to put down Seth at the end is a very emotional mercy kill situation that I think the boys have become accustomed to. And because they’ve grown up in a military environment that is something that is in their language.
Why the red Xs on Rudy’s eyes? Was this just to look super-badass?
GRAEME: He likes to put people on edge and he likes to freak people out and he saw that painting of Sarah that Felix did in season 1. He sees that painting and he sees the Xs over her eyes and Rudy just goes into Rudyland and just gets strange on our asses.
When we end on Mark burning off his clone mark, is that a sign that he is going to try to escape that life of Project Castor?
FAWCETT: I think that is the way certainly that we want to lead the audience, that Mark is actually trying to break free of the pack and has fallen in love and wants to live his own life, I think. The boys have grown up together.
MANSON: It’s much harder for the Castor boys to be their own individuals than it is for the Leda girls.
FAWCETT: The Leda girls have grown up separately and come together. It’s completely the opposite for the boys.
We haven’t talked about my favorite clone yet. So is Alison now pushing pills and running for school trustee?
MANSON: They go hand in hand, don’t they?
I don’t know where this is going but I love it already.
FAWCETT: Glad to hear it. We’re excited about the trajectory of Alison this season and we laughed about it a lot last year. The one thing we really knew is that we really wanted Alison to drive a school bus. That was part of the excitement of season 3. But also the concept that she would be doing something kind of within the community, running for some sort of notable position in an election—I think it was just the next best thing to do with the character, And the fact that Team Hendrix has come upon hard times financially and is needing to find other ways to finance the election and their life—I think the fact that they take this big gamble is going to be part of the fun of watching this season.
MANSON: Yeah, it really is. And the fact that they’re doing it together this season and it’s Team Hendrix moving forward through thick and thin—that killing Leekie really bonded them last year.
What can you say about Helena, where she’s being held by the military of Project Castor and we meet this Dr. Virginia Cody, who tires to cozy up to Helena a bit? What is her motivation here?
MANSON: Well, we’re just really introducing that character so we don’t really want to know her motivation yet. Her motivation is part of this series trajectory and we have a really great actor in Kyra Harper.
FAWCETT: She’s a fabulous new addition and we’re really excited about this character. It’s a little bit mysterious. We don’t know her intentions. We don’t know what she’s about by the end of episode 2. Following her and seeing how she interweaves with the cast is really going to be something to keep your eye on.
Okay, so before we finish up, give us a little tease on what we can expect to see in next week’s episode.
MANSON: Some corn. [Laughs]
FAWCETT: Honestly, though, in episode 3, we get to see more of Sarah and Art working together, which is really cool. We get a return to some strong police-work. They actually—in a very brief and interesting way—get back together as partners. So that’s fun and you can watch for that. We also get to explore and follow Mark and Gracie a little bit more, which we set up at the end of episode 2
MANSON: A little runaway Prolethean action.
For more ‘Orphan Black’ scoop, follow Dalton on Twitter @DaltonRoss.