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Orphan Black “Things Which Have Never Yet Been Done” Review (2×09)

15 Jun

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When Orphan Black is on its game, there are very few shows that can touch it. Whereas last week was a bit of a misfire, this week throws us right back into the thick of things with gusto, brilliantly setting up what should be a satisfying and exciting season finale.

Over the course of the season, our characters have been trying to find answers, trying to just do something in a world of artificiality; science and religion are clashing over and over, and basic humanity is perpetually quenched if you don’t have the resolve to soldier on. In the season’s penultimate episode, we see the clones taking action in a way they haven’t before, working to combat the larger forces circling their heads.

Alison, for example, has always attempted to distance and distract herself from the clone business–as we saw with the play, which, by the way, I need to see a full performance of in the DVD extras–and Donnie has always remained, for the most part, oblivious. “Things Which Have Never Yet Been Done” sees them actually cooperating to dispose of Leekie’s body, and we see exactly why they’re perfect for each other. It’s a brilliant handling of dark comedy, and whether it’s Donnie’s various suggestions (he hasn’t seen Dexter), Alison’s responses (do they even have a boat?), Donnie standing up to Angie and Vic, or Donnie and Alison being messy at the end of it all, it’s endlessly entertaining to watch unfold. Twisted and dark, but hilarious in its own way.

Of course, I’d certainly like to see Alison play a larger role in the season finale, and it looks like that’ll be the case. When things come crashing down next week, Leekie’s disappearance should factor in, and Alison Hendrix will be pulled into the fray along with everyone else. It’s been fun watching her do her own thing, but the simple truth is that she’s at her best when she’s interacting with the rest of the clones; even a simple video call between her, Cosima, and Sarah is like returning home after a long trip.

Elsewhere, Sarah takes action in a way we haven’t seen before. Early on, she might not have agreed to let Kira’s bone marrow be used to save Cosima, not because she has anything against Cosima, but rather because she’s so protective of Kira. Now, though, her compassion is shining through, and that hard exterior has been shedding itself, allowing her to swallow her fears and nod when Kira says she wants to go through the procedure. Her daughter’s a good kid, and the very thing that allows Sarah to soldier on is also what allows Cosima to; in addition, it’s what motivates those around Cosima to save her.

At the end of it all, though, everything is thrown for a loop by none other than Rachel Duncan. Rachel’s someone who, according to Marion, was “bred into this, given every advantage”, and now, Sarah’s more intriguing than she is. She’s a “product of chance”, and these words strike Rachel straight in the heart. She grows increasingly bitter, and she eventually cracks as she watches her home videos, breaking into a smile that’s terrifying, thrilling, and sad all at once. Maslany is excellent there, and she transfers that into Rachel’s impersonation of Sarah; once again, we see the subtle differences as she makes her way up to Kira’s room, and it’s a brilliant performance of a shocking moment. As we move into the finale, Kira’s gone, Felix is laying on the ground drugged, and Sarah is wondering if she’ll ever see her daughter again.

GRADE: A-

OTHER THOUGHTS:

-Hi, Kathryn Alexandre, Maslany’s double! She plays Alexis in this episode.

-I couldn’t fit Helena into the review (she’s back! Thank God), but that doesn’t mean her scenes aren’t important. She, Gracie, and Mark escape from the Prolethean compound, and Henrik is left stabbed in a very bad place (he deserves it, but man: painful doesn’t even begin to describe it). It makes sense why Helena would take action here, because since she’s surrounded by so many kids, it reminds her of her own, the ones Henrik puts into every woman. Henrik is a presence that threatens the dissolution of another family, and Helena can’t take it anymore.

-Vic posing for the picture: love it.

-However, does Helena burn everything down? We need to see a bit more of that, because I’m sure she wouldn’t kill the kids.

-One more episode! It should be a good one.

Photo credit: BBC America, Orphan Black 

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2 Responses to “Orphan Black “Things Which Have Never Yet Been Done” Review (2×09)”

  1. Crowd of Full Pockets/Shattenjager June 17, 2014 at 10:36 pm #

    Great review, and I felt like this was the best episode in a month or so.
    I have a feeling Vic has posed for similar pictures before!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. TV Episode Review: “Orphan Black” “Things Which Have Never Yet Been Done” (02.09, 2014) | Crowd of Full Pockets - June 17, 2014

    […] friend Polar Bears Watch TV has an excellent review this week, so check that out. Somehow, I forgot to talk about […]

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