SPOILER ALERT: Please do not read on unless youâ€™ve seen the Season 3 premiere of Orphan Black, titled â€œThe Weight of This Combination.â€
Weâ€™re back in Clone Country, and things are just as complicated … perhaps too complicated. The plot and goings-on in the Orphan Black Season 3 premiere are somewhat muddled, and at times it feels like weâ€™re being over-explained to. To be fair, thereâ€™s a lot happening with the clones (now both male and female), Dyad, Topside, Mrs. S., Paul, the â€œcleanerâ€ Ferdinand, Delphine, and some strange plotline with school board trustee Marcie and our favourite suburban couple, Alison and Donnie.
Thank goodness for the Orphan Black humour and visuals, otherwise this would have been a very tough slog. Underneath all of the exposition thrust upon us, there is a simple thread to follow, one that I intend to focus on rather than all the extraneous information that doesnâ€™t really matter in the end. The bottom line is this: Rachel, Topside, Dyad and Project Castor are out to destroy the Project Leda clones, and the sisters have to band together in order to stop them. There. Easy, isnâ€™t it?
The bizarro baby shower dream opening scene is one for the ages: saturated colour, reference to ox liver, Felix at the barbecue, pregnant Helena in her Sunday best. I didnâ€™t believe it was real for one second, but hey, it was still entertaining. And only Helena would have a talking scorpion feeding her encouragement. This is the kind of fun I want from Orphan Black, but donâ€™t always get.
Going by the ads and commercials, I was expecting this episode to dedicate more time explaining Project Castor, their motivations, and who each of the male clones were. While we saw them all, except for Mark (Rudy talking to Sarah and doing naked yoga/exercise, Seth beating up Mrs. S., and Miller freeing Helena)â€”we didnâ€™t really get much. The show is still focusing on (and trying to make clear) the whole Topside debacle, along with the revelation about the Helsinki slaughter in 2006. I have a feeling Episode 2 will delve deeper into the guysâ€™ backstories.
But for now, we get a lot about Cosima and Delphine, which I donâ€™t mind. Their break-up scene was a heartbreaker, and hearing Tatianaâ€™s crushing â€œI love you,â€ complete with cracking voice and tears, was enough to make my chin quiver. For the first time (to me, anyway), Delphine was awesome, concocting elaborate schemes and pushing down on Rachelâ€™s empty eye socket. I was squirming away during that scene.
Straight-up, Iâ€™m worried that Rachel will kill Delphine. In fact, Iâ€™d bet money on it; but not before she and Cosima have their reunion. Their break-up seemed kind of unnecessary anyway, but I accepted it because Delphine is probably just trying to protect Cosima.
Alison and Donnieâ€™s school board trustee story is out of left field. At least itâ€™ll provide a less-intense side story when things heat up among the clones. It also brings us the glory of Kristian Bruun and his Donnie character, which I suspect is why theyâ€™re doing this story in the first place. No longer a monitor, Donnie needs to be integrated into the plot somehow. Also, Marcie? She looks so evil, sheâ€™s either A) involved with Topside somehow, B) involved with Project Castor somehow, or C) is both. Whatever the case, donâ€™t trust her.
And I know Iâ€™ve said this before, but can I just shout out one more time to Tatiana? I never tire of watching her play a clone playing a clone. She masters it, from the walk to the tone to the accent, and it is a marvellous display of acting. Bravo. Just never play Tony again.
Next week, one of the Project Castor clones has Xs over his eyes. WHY? Canâ€™t wait to find out.
Clone of the Week: Helena. Hands-down, she is the most entertaining clone, from the scorpion-talking to the dream sequence. More, please.
- Felix: â€œDelphine has your number? We definitely need new clone phones.â€
- Alison: â€œHoly diddle, here we go!â€
- Big nerd props to Scottâ€™s periodic table of elements T-shirt. Not gonna lie, I kind of want it.
- Donnie: â€œThey took the Taurus.â€
- Another clone! Crystal Goderich, blonde, sexy, seductress … hope we get to see more of her.
- Felix: â€œDonâ€™t these people know you didnâ€™t even finish high school?!â€
- Ari Millen didnâ€™t have much to do in this premiere, aside from looking crazy and doing naked pull-ups, but I especially liked his Seth character (the moustache). I think he has the most depth, and I enjoyed his mini-breakdown in the kitchen with Mrs. S.
- Wherever Sarah and Felix go drinking, down by that riverâ€”does NOT look appealing. Time for a new spot to set up the lawn chairs and talk clone.
Orphan Black airs Saturdays at 9 p.m. ET on Space.