Orphan Black: “The Antisocialism of Sex” Review

orphan black season 4

This week’s episode is all about failure. After last week’s action-packed, info-dump-y episode, now we’re given a chance to let it sink in and see what all of these consequences mean for our beloved Clone Club, et al. I’m not sure it can get much lower than this.

Spoilers for this week and trigger warning for suicide after the jump.

sarah bridge

Sarah’s plot is front and center this week, with lots of throwbacks to her first few episodes. Sarah blames herself for Kendall’s death, and so does Siobhan. After a particularly biting remark from her foster mom (“You came to me an orphan; it’s all you’ll ever be”), Sarah takes off and gets crunk at a crappy club. Meanwhile, Felix comes home to find Sarah gone and chastises Siobhan for letting her go. He insists that Sarah’s the glue that holds them all together, and he goes out to find her. At her club, Sarah gets really drunk, really high, and has an anonymous threesome with some people she meets there. She goes home with M.K.’s friend Dizzy, takes more drugs, and tries to have sex with him, but he keeps asking questions about Neolution. Sarah gets fed up and storms out, finding her way to a bridge over some train tracks. She’s been hallucinating images of Beth all night, and finally the hallucination starts talking to her. The moments really highlight how sad it is that Sarah and Beth really never got to meet. The two are so different on the surface, but are probably the most similar of all the sestras. Beth tells Sarah that she’s got to keep them together, and that this will hopefully be the last time they see each other. Sarah’s clearly contemplating throwing herself off the bridge, but Felix finally catches up with her. Between Beth and Felix, Sarah’s talked off the ledge and collapses in Felix’s hug. It’s clear she doesn’t know what to do next, but she won’t run away from her family.

Cosima’s deeply grieving the loss of Delphine, with sides of grief over Kendall’s death and the loss of all of her research. Scott tries to get Cosima to look on the bright side and do something constructive, but she shuts him down. When he goes to get food, she locks herself in her lab-basement and prepares to cut open her cheek and implant Sarah’s worm-bot. She has no idea what it’ll do, and in fact it’ll probably kill her, but Cosima hopes her death will give them more knowledge about how the disease and the bot really work. Really I think she’s just feeling as reckless as Sarah, and looking for a way out. While Felix is out looking for Sarah, he remembers “oh yeah I forgot to tell Cosima something really important,” and just as Cosima’s about to implant the bot, he breaks the news that Krystal saw Delphine get shot but she also saw her carried away by someone. Delphine might be alive! Cosima breaks down in tears again, and halts her procedure. While I’m glad Cophine has hope for a resurrection, the revelation felt a little contrived. Really, Felix, you “forgot” to tell Cosima that the love of her life may not actually be dead? I’m not sure how much time has actually gone by between his conversation with Krystal and his conversation with Cosima, but you’d think that would have been his first phone call once he found out. Oh well.

orphan black rachel

Rachel discovers the doors to her prison are open, Evie Cho has thoroughly beaten Susan Duncan at her own game, and Duncan sees no sense in keeping Rachel under lock and key anymore. As Rachel explores the house, we see an old book with images of the myth of Leda and the Swan (trigger warning for rape in the link). Duncan explains that Neolution is centuries old and was established to breed a better human. Evie Cho’s the next scientist to take on the mantle. Susan has a kind of “circle of life” attitude toward it all, which I find a bit odd since her life’s work has been halted and will soon be obliterated. Cho videocalls Susan, Rachel, and Ira out of “courtesy” to inform them of her dismantling and liquidation of Neolution and Project Leda. The clones in the dark about it all are to be left alone, but Clone Club is too dangerous and must be killed. Rachel tries to talk her way into Cho’s team, but Cho has zero interest in treating clones like humans, let alone using them in her research. The next morning Rachel falls, hits her head, and her bionic eye sees an image of a swan. It seems to be computer-generated, so who put it there?

orphan black alison sleepover

Alison’s clearly grieving the loss of Kendall, but refuses to accept anyone’s help or even acknowledge that she’s clearly not “fine.” Donnie suggests canceling their daughter’s soccer-themed slumber party, but Alison is hearing none of it. There are hotdogs in the freezer! The show must go on! Donnie invites their local pastor over to “help with ghost stories,” but Alison’s annoyed and rebuffs his attempts to reach her. Just when Donnie finishes a rousing ghost story for the kids, the police burst into the house, guns blazing, terrifying all the kids, and arrest him for drug dealing. Detective Duko, who Art vindictively kicked earlier in the episode, walks in and drops some nasty hints to Alison about knowing all about Clone Club.

Alison’s tried so hard to lead a normal life, helping her sisters only when absolutely necessary. She gives Helena a stable home when no one else can, helps plan an infiltration of Brightborn, and unearths Leekie’s disgusting corpse to get his cheek bot for Cosima to study. Alison isn’t afraid of doing the dirty work, but only when there really aren’t any other options. It’ll be interesting to see where this takes her in next week’s episode. Alison’s always been the clone most apt to make a deal, if there’s one to be made. She’s brave and ruthless when it comes to helping those she loves, and now the man she loves most is in prison. Next week’s preview has Donnie in an orange jumpsuit with a guy with a Neolution tattoo, so it seems like Alison’s loyalties are going to be stretched. Alison’s story has filled the B-plot with comic relief for so long, that I’m interested to see how she handles being sucked back into the day-to-day Clone Club operations. We’ll see what happens next week!

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1 thought on “Orphan Black: “The Antisocialism of Sex” Review

  1. Pingback: Orphan Black: “The Redesign of Natural Objects” Review | Lady Geek Girl and Friends

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