BBC America's sci-fi thriller Orphan Black—and especially Tatiana Maslany's brilliant performances in it—has taken TV critics by storm recently, and we're just as enthralled by Sarah, Paul, Alison, Felix, Helena, Art, Cosima, et al. While the series is on hiatus until April 2014 (sob!), we here at H&H are eager to relive the glory of Season 1 with a hiatus rewatch led by Kiersten Hallie Krum, who also recaps Lost Girl, every Thursday for the next few weeks or so. Won't you join us?!
(Haven't watched the series yet, or looking for a way to watch it again? BBC America has a list of places where you can watch the episodes; plus, Season 1 is now out on Blu-ray/DVD for Region 1.)
Now onto the recap of episode 10, “Endless Forms Most Beautiful”...
Sarah watches over her sleeping daughter and thinks about her bound up sister and newly discovered birth mother, Amelia. Leaving Kira’s room, she rejoins her two moms and asks if Amelia is ready. Amelia is downright eager to see Helena. “I carried you both; I need to see her.” Siobhan is less on board with Amelia’s sudden maternal instincts. “I don’t think nine months of gestation entitles her to risk us all,” she says to Sarah between clenched teeth. But now that she knows Helena is her blood twin, Sarah thinks she deserves to know. “Because you shared a womb?” Siobhan counters. Siobhan asserts that Helena is dangerous (don’t forget batshit crazy) but Sarah insists that, like her, Helena’s had her whole world turned inside out. “How Helena takes this determines what we do with her,” she decides.
She gestures toward Amelia who hurries to catch up with Sarah as she leaves, giving Siobhan A Look as she slides by. Oooh. Amelia does not like Mrs. S, but my money’s on Siobhan, because I’m not an idiot. Sarah holds the basement door open for Amelia who clonks down the stairs to where Sarah has stashed a dazed and bound Helena. As Sarah joins Amelia at the bottom of the steps, her birth mother insists she needs to speak to Sarah privately, “away from here.” Sarah is suspicious and Amelia reveals that she has something for Sarah, “from back then about my in vitro treatments.” Helena listens in without giving away that she can hear them. Sarah agrees and says she has a place where she and Amelia can meet.
Sarah introduces Amelia to Helena. Helena looks up and over at Amelia with disbelief. Amelia’s brow furrows as she gets her first good look of this second daughter. Helena takes Amelia in—and crazy giggles. Sarah demands her sister listen to what Amelia has to say, “or I put you right back into the trunk and I take you straight back to Leekie.” Amelia takes the chair Sarah sets before Helena. “How can you be my birth mother?” Helena asks in a flat voice. Amelia explains that she’s birth mother to both clones.
Upstairs, Mrs. S. searches Amelia’s bag, as any good paranoid, former-dissident would do, and extracts a hard-back journal. Opening the cover, she finds an aged envelope and extracts an old photograph of…a young Siobhan circa 1970-something wearing a lab coat while working in kind of scientific facility with an armed soldier on guard behind her and the colleague with whom she’s consulting. Um, shouldn’t a radical dissident not actually be in working for The Man?
“Who’s here?” Kira quietly asks, startling Mrs. S. She quickly replaces the picture and gently chides Kira for being up. You did just get run over by a car, kid. Take the afternoon. But Kira has a bad feeling. “I think something bad is gonna happen again,” she tells Mrs. S.
Downstairs, Sarah harshly explains the connection Helena feels is between them stems from the fact that they were implanted by doctors, “all of us”. Amelia adds that Helena and Sarah split inside her, “into two baby girls.” I gather they’re going on the assumption that Tomas never sat Helena down to go over the book Where Did I Come From? “And I hid you because I felt you were in danger.” But Helena has latched onto what is most important to her. “You are my twin sister,” she relishes to Sarah. “I don’t want to be your sister, meathead,” Sarah retorts. HA! She just wants Helena to know she’s not the original. “You were born of science, not of some…immaculate womb or whatever bullshit Tomas fed you.” But their Come to Jesus moment is interrupted by insistent knocking from above. The three women trade alarmed glances before Sarah hurries upstairs to see who’s arrived now. As soon as she and Amelia are gone, Helena kicks the chair away and begins to struggle against her bonds in earnest.
Siobhan races down from upstairs as Art calls through the door that they have a warrant for Sarah’s arrest. As soon as she hears this, Mrs. S. turns from the door and calls for Sarah who has just come up from the basement. Downstairs, Helena gets more violent in her efforts so that the zip cuffs cut into her wrists, making her bleed. Upstairs, Siobhan and Sarah meet in the middle of the hall and exchange a speaking look. Rattled, Sarah shoves Amelia into the kitchen with the order to sit, “you’re just visiting,” as Art calls out his last warning. Armed SWAT along with Angie and Art burst into the house through both back and front entrances shouting Sarah’s full name. Sarah immediately throws up her hands as Amelia collapses into the kitchen chair. Downstairs, Helena is on her feet, braced between beams as she works to break the zip cuffs with such strength, the beams lift out of the concrete floor. Art and Angie get up in Sarah’s face as Art orders her to turn around and put her hands on her head. Kira comes down the steps and has an entire wordless conversation with her mother as Art straps Sarah into cuffs. “Let’s go,” he says more quietly and pushes Sarah out the door. In the basement, the small window above the washer is broken, blood streaming down sharp edges of the broken glass with Helena nowhere in sight.
Art slowly enters the interrogation room where Sarah is handcuff to the table. He admits he still sees Beth when he looks at her and Sarah quietly states, in her native accent, that she didn’t kill her Clone Sister. “No, you watched her commit suicide and then you went straight for her wallet,” Art retorts. He slams the case folder down onto the table in front of Sarah and she flinches. Art flips the file open to reveal the finalized reconstruction of Katja’s facial imaging and demands Sarah identify Katja. Sarah remains silent. “You’ve been obstructing this investigation from the moment you took over Beth’s life,” he accurately accuses. “You’re the prime suspect, Sarah.” Sarah shouts that she didn’t kill Katja and Art immediately asks if she knows who did. Yeah, she knows. Art reveals that they have Felix in custody and that Kira will be left completely alone (a threat against Siobhan?) unless Sarah spills. “You wouldn’t believe it,” Sarah tells him with conviction. He invites her to try him.
Alison is rockin’ her Hip Hop Abs exercise DVD in her den (so I guess she’s moved home from Felix’s Fun Flat) when her doorbell rings (not like that). Still bopping around, she answers the door to Doctor Leekie. He’s quite friendly but the moment he introduces himself, Alison blocks the door and coldly warns him that she’s armed. And she’s not even in America. She demands to know what he wants. “To make amends,” he smarms. Alison considers him for a moment and then invites him in. Leekie wants Alison to sign a contract. “More like a treaty,” he clarifies. “Rules both sides will abide by.” Alison cheerfully points out how everything he’s done is illegal and mocks that Leekie expects her to be that stupid. “Stupid Suburban Alison.” Doctor Leekie counters that it’s just the opposite. “You're a pragmatic and decisive individual.” Now that she’s self-aware, Leekie is eager to answer some of her questions, but only if she signs the contract. But Alison tearfully objects that she doesn’t want answers anymore. “I want my life back! I want my family back, I want my privacy back. I want you out of my life. And I want things to be normal again.” Sums up Alison pretty well there, actually.
Leekie is quite glad Alison has said all that. He hands over the contract and promises that it “enshrines your family’s freedom, guarantees protection from the likes of Helena and ensures you’ll be unmonitored.” Wow, he really knows which buttons to push, doesn’t he? “Unmonitored?” she repeats easing back to sit next to him at the table. Leekie knows he’s got her but this time he caveats that Alison would have to agree to twice yearly, noninvasive, private medical tests. He doesn’t want to alarm Alison but there are some medical issues they need to monitor. “Katja’s respiratory disorder; Helena’s mental illness.” He insists regular testing is in everyone’s interest. He invites her to read every word of the document and even to consult with Sarah and Cosima about it. As a gesture of good faith, he’s even lifted her monitor. “She has?” Alison asks with naked relief. Leekie merely smiles and grunts then tells Alison not to get up and exits. Notice he didn’t acknowledge Alison’s pronoun use in relation to her monitor. Alison sighs and pokes contemplatively at the contract whose header reads “Research Disclosure Agreement”.
At the cop shop, Angie confronts Felix (who’s appropriated her desk chair) about purposefully misidentifying Beth’s body as Sarah’s. “It was a terrible case of mistaken identity,” he insists. She counters that it’s actually fraud by misrepresentation which would net Felix 2 to 5 years in jail given his existing record. Felix doesn’t even blink at the threat, but insists he thought it was his sister. “You know, Angela DeAngelis,” he croons, “I’m actually quite a fan.” Angie hums, unmoved. “But you really need to get laid,” Felix finishes. Angie snickers. “Yeah, tell me about it. But all I seem to meet are gay men.” Heh. Preach it, sistah. She offers to call Felix a public defender. “We’ll getcha a real shitty one,” she promises. Mildly quelled, Felix sits back as she dials and looks worried.
Cosima de-boards a bus and collects her luggage. She starts to cough and leans against the doorjamb as it becomes violent. Looking down, she sees blood on her hand from where she covered her mouth, just as Katja had before Helena shot her. Leekie intercepts her at the terminal’s curb and asks that she not be alarmed by his stalking. “I’m beyond alarmed; I’m pissed!” she retorts. He offers to give her a lift to her hotel. “I have an offer you may find interesting.” Oh, I so wish he’d said “that you can’t refuse” but then I would’ve mocked that too. No win sitch there.
Art re-enters Sarah’s interrogation room perusing her phone. “It’s Beth’s phone, actually.” He asks Sarah to help him wrap his head around the message she’d left him before she went to confront Helena for the first time in Maggie Chen’s apartment. “Art, if you’re hearing this, you found a body. It’s not Beth. It’s me. My name is Sarah Manning and you’re about the only person I trust to figure this whole thing out.” Art takes the seat across from Sarah. “Sarah, my partner killed herself, and I didn’t see it coming. Help me. Help Beth. I know you care.” Sarah takes a moment and then confesses there’s a reason why they all look the same. She starts to cry with the release of her revelation and pure fear. “Why the prints match and the DNA’s all screwed up.” Through her tears, she fiercely begs Art to promise to protect her and Kira. Art easily agrees. “If that’s what you need, I promise.” He means it too. Sarah cries and steals herself to reveal all…which is when the lieutenant and another man burst into the room.
“Ms. Manning, I’m your lawyer, Daniel Rosen,” the stranger informs her. He ends the interrogation and instructs for Sarah to be released as she’s leaving with him. Speechless with shock, Sarah gapes with apology at Art. I was going to tell you, I swear. She gets up and leaves with Rosen.
In the town car, Leekie is giving Cosima the hard sell. He holds up an employment contract with the Dyad Institute. “Very generous compensation.” He insists they want to work with her and Cosima laughs in his face. Leekie hands over a portable drive. “This is your complete sequenced genome. 3.2 billion base pairs.” Oh, you sweet talker, you. His offer to Cosima is the freedom to study herself and her Clone Sisters. “Unfettered research.” Cosima turns away from him and Leekie scrambles for another carrot. He tells Cosima they share the same concerns and questions about organism stability, “but nobody, nobody, is more invested in your own biology than you.” He offers her the drive again and asks that she think about it.
Rosen leads Sarah into a downtown high-rise office building. She demands to know where they’re going but Rosen merely explains that “we” had Felix released too. “Who’s ‘we’?” Sarah asks for us all. “You work for Doctor Leekie?” Rosen: “Indirectly.” Rosen escorts Sarah off the lift and onto an abandoned floor where they turn the corner…and bump straight into Paul. “Great, should’ve known,” Sarah snarks. Come on, you totally left him hanging with Leekie! What did you expect? Paul asks Rosen for a minute with Sarah. “You left me hanging with Leekie when you didn’t show up with Helena,” he reminds her. Huh. Why does that sound familiar? She asks if Paul works for Leekie now. Clearly miserable, he reminds Sarah that “they” still have Afghanistan on him. “Understand?” But Sarah doesn’t know what that means and Paul isn’t ready to share that dark moment with her yet. “You changed the game for everyone, Sarah. Now I can only help you from here.” I think he’s sincere. He’s trapped between what he’s done and what and who he wants now. He advises Sarah to listen to what “they” have to say, and she flatly acknowledges that she doesn’t really have a choice. She shakes her head as Paul grimaces with apology and then, with a last glance back at him, Sarah heads off across the empty room to the lone desk on the far side.
A woman stands looking out at the city below. She turns as Sarah approaches. Sarah stops in her tracks as she gets her first look at this new clone. “Right,” the woman says in an upper-class British accent. “Sarah Manning. I’m Rachel Duncan. And we are going to come to terms.” Rachel flips through Sarah’s version of the Neolution/Dyad contract. “The agreement defines mutual disclosure. It formalizes contact with what I call ‘topside’.” Past her initial shock, Sarah remains unaffected. “So is the part where 20 more of you robot bitches walk in for affect?” Heh. Ignoring the jibe, Rachel reminds Sarah that she’s not an orphan anymore. “We found you. And my role is to transition you to self-awareness.” Sarah: “Clone fixer. Brilliant.” She suggests that maybe it’s time for her to embrace her “clone-age” and go public. “We could be famous, you and me,” she tells Rachel. Rachel tells Sarah that “they” are not the enemy, rather it’s Helena and her ilk that are the problem, “and we’re going to help with that.” Sarah responds that if Rachel really wants to help, she’ll answer Sarah’s questions. “Why don’t you tell me why? What am I doing sat here lookin’ at you? What are we here for?” Rachel merely pushes the agreement across the table and repeats that disclosure is defined herein. “We want your trust; you want precious answers that cut to the core of who you are,” Rachel sums up, getting up to stroll back to her view as Sarah looks over the contract. “But above all, I know you want to make the right choice for Kira.”
Sarah is terrified by the confirmation that “they” know about Kira. She glares at Rachel who drawls that Sarah is very lucky. “Motherhood is wonderful.” How would she know? Sarah’s narrowed gaze seems to ask the same question but Rachel merely smiles slightly, her expression a neutral slate. At this point, I’m wondering if they breed her. She tells Sarah the forces behind Helena will never stop. “The most important thing in this for you is protection for you and your daughter.” Sarah sighs and tosses the contract back on the desk. “Yeah, no thanks. I’ll get by on my own.” Rachel: “Scrambling to stay alive?” She again offers that Sarah will be allowed to remain free with Kira, provided for and unmonitored but available. “Call it ‘Sovereignty Association’” she suggests. Sarah gets to her feet and, more combative, repeats that she’s not interested. Rachel insists she take 24 hours to properly consider it first. “Midnight tomorrow,” she calls after Sarah as she leaves.
At Felix’s Fun Flat, Alison believes that “they” are offering the Clone Sisters security, “a truce.” Sarah sits on the arm of the couch and decides that Rachel didn’t feel like a truce. “Felt like a gun to the head.” Felix reminds them that while he and Sarah were being arrested, Helena escaped. There’s a hard knock on the door. Sarah thanks Fee as she gets up to unlock and answer it. “Would you also like to remind me that my birth mom popped round and Helena’s my twin sister?” Alison sighs. “Oh, Jesus Murphy.” HA!
Sarah pulls the door open to reveal an expected Cosima. They greet one another and Sarah steps out of the way so that Cos can slip by and greet the others. “Sarah, I so should’ve listened to you about Delphine,” Cosima admits right from the bat. She frets with leftover distress from Delphine’s betrayal and Sarah sighs heavily. “Yeah, all right,” she forgives and even embraces (if somewhat stiffly) her Clone Sister in comfort. Cosima holds on and visibly relaxes.
Sarah looks over Cosima’s employment contract. “A career at the Dyad Institute?” Cosima confirms that is the offer. “Studying us.” Clutching a wine bottle, Alison asks what Cosima is going to do. Cos holds her wine glass out for Alison to refill and states that they have to know their own biology. “Maybe I can help us best from the inside,” she suggests, scooting over on the couch so Alison has a place in which to settle. Sarah tosses the contract on the coffee table as Felix says he wants to know what she’s going to do. Sarah knows she can’t trust this Rachel bitch. “Not if Kira’s the first child of a clone,” Cosima emphatically agrees. “Scientifically unclassified, she could be what Rachel is actually after.” Alison asks that someone tell her who Rachel is, “so that she doesn’t just show up at my door and I have no idea who she even is!” This actually happens to Alison a lot, now that I think of it. Sarah reveals that Amelia told her she’d overheard doctors discussing a child raised by Neolution. “She’s a pro clone?” Felix clarifies. “God, you three are weird enough.” HA! Even more hilarious is that none of the three Clone Sisters disagree with him.
Do we need to acknowledge just how brilliant the blocking and performance of this scene is given that one woman is playing all three Clone Sisters interacting with each other? Oh look, I just did.
Alison admits that if Neolution/Dyad can guarantee her a life free of spies where her kids are safe, she’s regrettably inclined to take the offer. After a shocked pause, Cosima tells her it’s okay and totally Alison’s choice. “Yeah, no judgment,” Sarah echoes, and she almost means it. Cosima’s mobile beeps with a text message from Delphine that she’s in town and urgently needs to speak with Cos. “Oh shit,” Cosima says reading it. Heh. “Delphine just got off a plane!” Felix: “Here?! Stupid lady bitch.” Ha! That’s the last straw for Sarah. “She wants to help,” she says of Delphine in an unfriendly tone while she downs the last of her wine and gets to her feet. “Just like Art and Paul and Rachel and everybody wants to help.” She announces that she’s going to Mrs. S.’s to be there when Kira wakes up. I’m pretty sure Kira didn’t get back to sleep after her mom got arrested right before her eyes, but whatever. Probably not the first time that happened. Felix says he’ll catch up to her there. Sarah announces to her sisters that they each make their own decisions regarding the contracts and agreements. “But I wouldn’t trust anybody.”
At the cop shop, Art and Angie have finally identified Katja from the facial reconstruction. “Finally ID our Jane Doe and she falls under federal jurisdiction,” Art moans. Angie thinks the whole thing stinks. Honey, you have no idea. Art asks if Angie still wants to get to the bottom of Sarah Manning. Duh. He opens up the file to show Vic the Dick’s mug shot. “I found a known associate.” Vic the Dick is at a Narcotics Anonymous meeting where he’s sharing how his turning point was when the love of his life, “let’s just call her Sarah,” broke up with him by faking her own death. Angie and Art enter as Vic the Dick goes on to say how this faked death initiated events that included losing his finger and ended with him at the wrong end of a nail gun. Hmm. Bad ass Paul. Good times. This was when Vic the Dick realized he needed help.
At home now, Alison brings four empty wine bottles out to the recycle bin and spies a FOR SALE sign at Aynsley’s house marked SOLD OVER ASKNG so somebody wanted that house damn bad. She carries the bin to the curb and makes her way across the street to see what’s what. It occurs to me that this would be confirmation for Alison that Leekie is releasing her from being monitored, given her paranoia about her neighbor. Aynsley enters the open garage from the kitchen as Alison arrives and needlessly observes her former friend’s moving status. Aynsley updates that Chad got his own place with the dog and I for one am sure they will be very happy together for many years. Aynsley got a very handsome offer on the house. I bet. . Probably from Neolution/Dyad. Actually, that’s probably what happened. Aynsley thinks it’s a great chance to get her kids out of the neighborhood’s toxic environment and she eyes Alison up and down to make it clear she means her former BFF. Alison: “Mmm. That’s priceless.” Aynsley tells Alison goodbye and goes inside. After a xcmoment, Alison follows. For someone so desperate to be free of her supposed monitor, Alison sure is keen to pursue her.
Inside, Aynsley wearily orders Alison to get out, but instead Alison demands Aynsley admit it. “Admit what?” Aynsley asks for us all. She mockingly apologizes for caring to organize Alison’s intervention. Alison tries another tactic and says how Doctor Leekie came to see her. Naturally, Aynsley has no idea who he is. “Cray cray!” she chirps. “If it’s professional help, I’m all for it.” Heh. Wouldn’t that be the group session? Alison screams that she wants the truth. “The truth?! The truth is that you screwed my husband and I’m moving because of you!” Aynsley screams back. She starts to wade through a box of gifts Alison’s given her over the years. “A felt Christmas angel!” Alison screams that she made it for Aynsley. “Well, to hell with you and your Christmas angel,” Aynsley retorts.
She tosses the angel in the sink, flips on the garbage dispenser, and grabs a wooden spoon from the jar. Alison watches, shocked, as Aynsley angrily shoves the angel down the dispenser with the spoon while babbling about how Alison turned everything around onto Aynsley because Alison is barren and can’t have children and is thus jealous of Aynsley. But what Aynsley failed to take into account when she leaned over the sink, the better to shove the angel down, is that the dangling ends of her long, lovely, no doubt cashmere, navy scarf are perilously close to—yup, they got caught in the dispenser. As Aynsley begins to choke, she begs Alison for help. Horrified, Alison hurries over to the switch but, at the last moment, she hesitates. Slowly her hand retreats from the switch. The dispenser churns away. Alison watches as Aynsley fruitlessly struggles, choking out Alison’s name, as the caught scarf slowly strangles her. Aynsley goes deathly still and Alison tentatively calls her name, even pokes her shoulder. Concluding (satisfied?) that her “monitor” is now dead, Alison stiffly creeps out of the house the way she came in, having the presence of mind to wipe her prints from the door knob and with no one the wiser for her having been there in the first place.
Angie and Art approach Vic the Dick who’s getting coffee at the NA meeting. Art insincerely compliments Vic the Dick on his speech. “Yeah, I’m moved personally,” Angie snarks. I may love this woman. Is it wrong that I am vastly amused by the fact that Vic the Dick now has both hands bandaged, one from the lost finger and the other from Paul’s nail gun? Unperturbed, Vic the Dick notes that these meetings are supposed to be off limits to cops, “some sort of sacred ground?” Relax, Vic the Dick. This isn’t Highlander. Angie tells him the rule doesn’t apply if he’s got an outstanding warrant, “for selling stolen meat?” she sneers. Vic the Dick corrects that it was smoked pork and he didn’t know it was stolen. Art snorts at the lame excuse and goes to arrest a protesting Vic the Dick. “I’m tryin’ to turn my life around!” Angie agrees to cut him some slack if he gives them intel on “your femme fatale, Sarah Manning.” Vic the Dick snickers over the fact that naturally it’s all about Sarah again and the fact that he has to apologize to Sarah for the shit he’s done to her in order to stick to The Program. “But since she’s not going to apologize to me…last time I saw Sarah she was playing housewife in the suburbs. Husband, kids, minivan…whole shebang.” Art and Angie exchange looks behind Vic the Dick’s head.
Alison reads over her contract, full wine glass in hand, the better to wash down the involuntary manslaughter of her former best friend. Setting the wine down, she intently cuts coupons and inadvertently cuts her finger. Alison steps outside to stare intently across the street at Aynsley’s as yet undisturbed house. Unnoticed in their stake out, Angie and Art gape as Alison needlessly checks her mailbox. “That—that isn’t Sarah Manning, is it?” Angie asks rhetorically. Art agrees that she is not. “That is another person entirely.” Angie: “You gotta be frickin’ kidding me!” Yup. Officially love her.
Sarah packs a bag for Kira as her daughter tells Felix that when the police come, “Mommy goes away.” Fee assures her that’s not the case this time. “She’s back,” he points out, seeing as Sarah is right there in the room with them. Kira notes that her mom’s returned to keep them safe from Helena and Sarah quickly reassures her daughter not to worry about her Crazy Clone Aunt. “I don’t,” Kira replies matter-of-fact. “She’s not a real monster.” Both Sarah and Fee decline to respond to that. Sarah tells Kira they have to hide her travel bag because they might have to
run go on a trip, “but you can’t tell anybody, not even Mrs. S.” Kira, wise beyond her years, promises not to tell and runs off to get her spare toothbrush.
Downstairs, Mrs. S. anxiously waits, shotgun at the ready as Sarah descends and explains she’s off to meet Amelia. Siobhan nods and Sarah asks if she’s all right. “Just edgy with Helena in the wind,” Siobhan allows. Interestingly, she doesn’t object to Sarah meeting Amelia off site, not to mention Sarah sharing the information about her “private” meeting when Amelia was so clearly keen Mrs. S. not be involved. Mrs. S. does advise Sarah to mind her birth mother. “She didn’t raise you,” she says bluntly. Sarah understands Siobhan’s fear. “Yeah, I know. You did,” she reassures gently. Mrs. S. sighs that it was all a long time ago. I think she means whatever happened in that old photograph Amelia has but Sarah takes it as Siobhan’s insecurity about Amelia’s impact on Sarah’s life. She slowly reaches for Siobhan’s hands and squeezes them without comment before leaving. Don’t worry. I know who my real mother is.
At Felix’s Fun Flat, Cosima is having a coughing attack and spits blood into Fee’s sink. He checks on her but she shrugs it off as someone knocks on the door. So I guess enough time has passed for him to have returned from Mrs. S.’s. Fee greets the newly arrived Delphine with attitude. He’s quite protective of all of his sister’s Clone Sisters at this point. Maybe not Helena. “Oh,” he snits looking Delphine up and down. “Now I get it.” Heh. Confused, Delphine stumbles over her inquiry about Cosima but Fee cuts her off. “It’s Delphine!” he shouts to Cosima. “She’s got baggage.” HA! Cos comes out to meet her as with one last scornful look for Delphine, Fee gathers up his scarf and coat. “You know,” he tosses at Delphine, “if Sarah were here, she’d kick your willowy ass.” Open-mouthed, Delphine glances between the departing Fee and Cos, a little shocked to learn Cosima has shared everything with him and Sarah.
Felix leaves and Delphine immediately cuts to the chase. “I promise I did not tell Leekie about Sarah’s child.” Cos dully asks what difference that makes and why Delphine is there. “Because I…” Delphine stops whatever her first, instinctive answer was and regroups. “Because Leekie is a liar and I think you can prove it scientifically with that—your synthetic sequence.” She points to the box that Leekie gave Cosima. “He gave me my whole genome,” Cos confirms. Delphine suggests that even so, Cosima can’t find the bar code sequence anymore and acknowledges that Leekie would’ve scrubbed it before giving Cosima the genome sequence. Frustrated, Cos shoves her research papers onto the floor. Delphine rubs her neck in comfort, but Cos pulls away. “I’m on your side now,” Delphine insists. “Please believe me.”Cos looks at her with such naked longing. She so wants to believe her. “You need to trust someone.” Cosima reveals that she thinks the missing sequence is a message. She mentions another biologist who watermarked his synthetic DNA. “It’s a key to our origins,” she decides, picking up her scattered papers with renewed drive. Delphine asks permission to access Cosima’s laptop and, after a brief hesitation, Cos agrees. Delphine smiles, recognizing that this is Cosima’s way of forgiving and trusting her again, and they get to work together.
Sarah opens the condo door to admit Amelia who thanks Sarah for meeting her. Sarah leads the way inside and pulls out a chair for Amelia, offering her a drink. “That poor child, Helena,” Amelia frets as Sarah gets her a glass. “How can two fates be so different? You two are like…night and day.” Sarah joins her at the table. Amelia apologizes for bringing such burdens but feels compelled to warn Sarah. “Your foster mother, Mrs. S., she’s not who she says she is!” She has something Sarah should see, but as she goes for the photo, Sarah rubs her hand. “How did scientists put babies inside you?” she asks, and it’s Helena’s accent in her mouth. Amelia is confused but before she can process that this is indeed not Sarah, Helena pulls out the fish knife and stabs her in the gut. As Amelia struggles, she pulls off the dark wig to reveal Helena completely, including the now shockingly visibly cuts on the backs of her arms. “You gave me to them,” Helena accuses. “Let them make me this way.” She releases Amelia who falls back as Helena exhales with release.
Hours later, Sarah arrives at the darkened condo and violently recoils when she finds the large blood stain on the floor. Her phone rings. Scanning the read out, she answers the call by demanding to know what Helena has done. “We missed you sister,” Helena croons. “Come join us.”
Back in her kitchen with her wine, Alison is finally reacting to Aynsley’s death. She breaks just as Donnie arrives home, crying and shaking so badly she can barely talk. “I’m a horrible person!” she cries. Donnie thinks she’s still upset about the intervention and takes responsibility for letting them into their home in the first place. “They had no right to intervention you. They don’t know the real you.” Very true. “Oh Judas Priest, what have I done?!” Alison cries out. Donnie soothes that it doesn’t matter and that they can put it all behind them. Overwhelmed, Alison embraces her husband.
Cosima identifies the synthetic sequence and highlights the differentiated portion of it. Delphine explains that it’s an encrypted ID tag, which is how they know which clone is which. Cosima doesn’t know how to decode it with only the four nucleotides she has to work with (G,C,T, and A) and no idea how they’ve been encrypted. “There’s thousands of permutations and we’re running out of time.” Y’all, I’m typing this down as I hear it. That doesn’t mean I understand a word of what they’re saying.
Delphine reveals that she knows Cosima’s tag number because she saw it so many times, and it’s numeric so, “if we know how that translates then we can figure out the rest.” Sure you can. She rattles off Cosima’s number 324B21 (She’s Jean Valjean!) and Cosima deflates to hear herself reduced to a mere number. Delphine apologizes softly but Cos shrugs it off to run the letters through a decryption program.
Sarah enters the ground floor of some abandoned warehouse. I’m not sure where she is, but it’s unlikely Helena could have gotten very far with a wounded Amelia in tow. It looks like some industrial site with catwalks and mysterious piles of asbestos-like dust. She calls for Helena and, when she sees another large blood stain, Sarah pulls out the Lady Glock Alison gave her not so long ago and slowly advances. On one pillar are more of Helena’s stick figure drawings. These now depict one female figure at the top (presumably, Amelia) and two smaller female figures branching off from each side of her (Sarah and Helena respectively). On another pillar is a second drawing of a female and a male figure with a young girl between them (Sarah and Fee flanking Kira, no doubt) and beneath that a final drawing of Helena in a cage. Noises echo throughout the room and Sarah is seriously freaking out, aiming the gun at every clatter.
Delphine growls in frustration as none of the results match Cosima’s ID tag. They regroup and Cosima posits on molecular encoding from 30 years ago. Delphine realizes they’re approaching it from a modern perspective. Cosima concludes that they weren’t coding nucleotides back then, “it was all base pairs?” Delphine asks. Not four letters but two. “A/T and G/C,” Cosima concludes. “Ones and zeros,” Delphine clarifies for all of us at home. “Binary,” Cosima repeats, grinning back. “They were coding in ASCII!!” Excited, they apply ASCII to the encoding and the sequence reveals itself.
Back in the basement, Sarah finally finds the dying Amelia propped up against a pillar. She stashes the gun and hurries to her birth mother. Remarkably, Amelia is still alive. As Sarah tries to give her aid, Amelia pulls out the photo of the young Mrs. S. in the lab. “Your foster mother,” she manages. “She was…she was…” Sarah pulls the photo out from the envelope. On the back, two professor’s names are blacked out and beneath that is typed “PROJECT LEDA July 22, 1977”. Amelia tries to explain about Mrs. S., but Helena arrives, lighting a flare to announce her arrival with authority.
“Miy sestra” Helena drawls. “My twin.” Amelia exhales one last breath and dies as Sarah watches. “I’m sorry, Mother isn’t feeling very well,” Helena says flatly as she descends the stairs and Sarah gets to her feet. “She’s dead, you psycho,” Sarah cries, sobbing. “You killed someone I’ve been dreaming about my whole life!” Helena crouches down next to Amelia. “She separated us,” she says and spits on her birth mother. “She tore us apart.” But now she and Sarah are together. “You’re nothing to me,” Sarah spits back. “Just some crazy bitch wearing my t-shirt.” Helena glances down at the Clash emblem on her shirt. “London calling.” Ha!
Helena head butts Sarah without warning, throws the flare away, and knees Sarah in the gut dropping her to the floor. As Sarah coughs for air, Helena grabs a nearby chain wraps it around Sarah’s throat and uses it to drag Sarah to her feet. “Scientists made one little baby and then we split into two,” she says. She swings Sarah around and throws her hard into a pillar. Helena admits that she can’t kill Sarah, “like you could not kill me.” Sarah reaches back and yanks out her gun. Helena raises a brow—oh yeah?—but backs up slightly even though she is not really afraid. “Sarah, we make a family, yes?” she protests flatly. Sarah: “I’ve already got a family.” She shoots Helena in the heart.
Sarah sits beside her dead birth mother. Sobbing, eyes locked on her dead Clone Sister, she pulls out her phone and dials.
In FFF, Cosima and Delphine have broken the code successfully displaying Cos’ ID tag. They apply the encryption key to the other genome codings.
In the high-rise, Rachel flips through paperwork, Rosen at her side, and answers Sarah’s call. She wants to know that Kira won’t have to live “like this”. Rachel and Rosin exchange cold glances. “We can do that,” Rachel says, non-committal. “I’m coming in,” Sarah sobs.
Alison signs the contract and scans it in to transfer to Rachel’s office. She looks outside at the emergency service vehicles that have gathered outside Aynsley’s house. Rachel’s computer beeps with the incoming scan of Alison’s contract. “One down; two to go,” she says to Rosen.
Donnie startles Alison’s observation of the cops entering Aynsley’s house. When he asks after the ruckus, she cheerfully tells him it’s none of their business. She happily notes that he’s wearing his track suit. Donnie tells her he’s going for a jog. “I’ve been a lump; you deserve better.” Alison confesses she feels as though a weight has been lifted and they kiss before Donnie leaves.
Sarah enters the high-rise but when the door to the elevator opens, she finds Paul waiting for her inside. “Going up,” he says in a miserable voice. She gets in and winces as she begins to feel her knocked up face. Seeing her wounds, Paul reaches for Sarah but, as Cosima did earlier with Delphine, she recoils. “Don’t,” she orders. He pushes the button and the doors close. “You asked me what happened in Afghanistan,” he begins. He explains he was a private contractor who killed six Marines in a friendly-fire incident and covered it up. “That’s what they have on me.” Now Sarah looks at him with feeling. “If you were born outside their control,” he offers, “then what do they really have on you?”
Cosima and Delphine have finally decoded the bar code sequence. By the looks on their faces, they really wish they hadn’t.
In the elevator, Sarah’s PinkMobile rings. “Sarah?!” Cosima calls. “You can’t make a deal!” Paul crowds in close as Sarah asks why. “Any freedom they offer is bullshit,” Cosima exclaims. “They’re liars. The sequence? The bar code I told you about? It’s a patent. We’re property. Our bodies, our biology, everything we are, everything we become belongs to them. Sarah, they could claim Kira.” Sarah disconnect without comment. “They patented us,” she says to Paul in a dull voice as though this last bit is just too much to take in.
Donnie limbers up on the front porch and sets off in a light jog past the uniforms and the ambulance and cop cars blinking all their lights and down the block to where a town car awaits him. He gets in next to Leekie. “Back on track, I think,” he says. “It’s the 7-year itch. It’s not easy. She’s not easy.” Toldja.
At the high-rise, Rachel checks her phone. Her head turns as she hears the elevator arrive. Rosen waits at the elevator bank to escort Sarah again as the doors open. Rachel checks a newly arrive email from Sarah. “UP YOURS PROCLONE.” Rosen turns into the opened elevator, but neither Sarah nor Paul is there. Rachel dials a number. “You know what to do,” she says.
Cosima reads: “This organism and derivative genetic material is restricted intellectual property.” She sits back on the couch with a weary sigh. “I’m sick, Delphine,” she confesses, crying. Delphine embraces her.
Sarah enters Mrs. S.’s house, sans Paul, to find evidence of a violent struggle; overturned furniture, and scattered papers blowing in the breeze from an opened window. She calls for Siobhan and races for Kira’s bedroom, screaming her daughter’s name. That room is also a mess, the desk lamp overturned onto the floor and the window above the desk wide open to the winter night. Sarah lunges for the opened window and screams. “KIRA!”
End Credits. End of Season 1.
Next: Orphan Black Season 2 in April 2014