Orphan Black

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Just one, I'm a few, no family too, who am I?
How many of us are there?

Orphan Black is a science fiction television series that stars Tatiana Maslany as Sarah, a woman who discovers she is one of several clones. The show premiered at WonderCon in Anaheim, California on 29 March 2013, with the television premiere of the first 10-episode season the following day, 30 March 2013.

Season 1[edit]

Natural Selection [1.01][edit]

Something really weird just happened at the train station.
(30 March 2013)
Felix: How's Vic the dick?
Sarah: Yeah. I hit him first this time. With an ashtray. So he's a little blue.

Sarah: Something really weird just happened at the train station.
Felix: What?
Sarah: I saw a girl kill herself.
Felix: Eeww. A jumper?
Sarah: Yeah, and she looked exactly like me, Felix.
Felix: What you mean? [Sarah takes out Elizabeth's wallet] Oh! You robbed her body.
Sarah: No, she left a bag on the platform.
Felix: Isn't that essentially robbing her body? [Sarah shows him Elizabeth's driver's license] Okay, that's … weird.
Sarah: Yeah, you think?
Felix: "Elizabeth Childs" — It's you with a nice haircut.
Sarah: That's a nice address. What the hell, Fee, did I have a twin sister?
Felix: Well, now, when you're a poor little orphan foster wretch, anything's possible. Or so we tell ourselves.

Felix: Do not snap towels at me, Bobby, I had a very traumatic childhood!

Instinct [1.02][edit]

Are you out of your mind? How dare you show your face in front of my children. How did you find me?
(6 April 2013)
  • Just one, I'm a few, no family too, who am I?
    • "Clone Club" pass-phrase, used by Katja and Cosima

Mrs. S: Kira is a gift.
Felix: Sarah knows that.
Mrs. S: No. She hasn't a clue.
Felix: She is trying, badly — granted, but in her own way, she really is — she's really trying. [Kira steps out] O-oh-ho. Caught ya. Come here. Come here, monkey.
Kira: When is mommy coming?
Mrs. S: You know when love.
Kira: When she's ready?
Mrs. S: And?
Kira: When you say she's ready?
Mrs. S: Sounds fair to me.

Sarah: I just want some answers.
Alison: Are you out of your mind? How dare you show your face in front of my children. How did you find me?
Sarah: The German had your address. I've got what you wanted, I have her briefcase.
Alison: Idiot! Do you even know who you're talking to? Hmm? Where is Beth?
Sarah: Uh, she's dead.
Alison: What?
Sarah: I'm sorry, she killed herself.
Alison: No. No, she wouldn't do that. That's impossible
Sarah: I'm sorry, I saw her do it.
Alison: No, that can't be.
Sarah: I can explain. My name's Sarah.
Alison: I don't care who you are. Why Lord? Why me? I never wanted any part of this. Do I wear a huge "Kick me" sign on my back?
Sarah: Please, just tell me, who are we to each other.
Alison: Are you kidding me? I'm not doing that, Nope, that is not my responsibility. You need to get out of here. Go, and wait for a call.
Sarah: Hey, tell me what the hell —
Alison: Let go! Don't touch me — this is my neighborhood. You wait for a call. Oh, and hide your ugly face, on the way out of here!
Sarah: Bitch.

Alison [brandishing a gun]: Be quiet, my kid's are sleeping.
Sarah: You're going to shoot me while your kids are sleeping?
Alison: You wake them or show your face, yes, I will shoot you.
Sarah: Well, I've never known a blood relation, but being your twin certainly sucks.
Alison: You really have no idea do you?
Cosima [stepping into room]: Hey. I'm Cosima.
Sarah: Bloody hell.
Cosima: We talked on the phone.
Sarah: How many of us are there?

Variation Under Nature [1.03][edit]

Who is the original? Who's created us? Who's killing us? We need to know, but we lost our cop, so however you managed to get into her shoes, we really need you to stay there.
(13 April 2013)
Alison: Can we get back to Beth please? Suicide? I don't accept that. This one is some sort of low-life grifter. How do we know she didn't push her?
Sarah: Oi, I already told you — I didn't want to be her. I got stuck. I was running from my own shit.
Alison: I can only imagine.
Cosima: Alison. I'm very sorry about Beth. Okay. But she was … losing it — like clinically.
Alison: She was a cop. She had tools. If she couldn't cope, I mean —mmph.
Sarah: Look, can you just tell me what the hell this is?
Alison: Don't tell her anything.
Cosima: Short answer? No.
Sarah: How are we all related?
Alison: We're not!
Cosima: Well, we are, by nature. She's referring to nurture.
Alison: Just give us the brief case you got from the German.
Sarah: I'm not giving you shit until you give me some answers.
Alison: You don't rate answers.
Cosima: Alison…
Alison: Fine. She wants in? [steps towards Sarah angrily] We're clones! We're someone's experiment and they're killing us off! Is that helpful? Hmm?
Gemma: Mummy?
Alison: Gemma!
Gemma: Who are those ladies?
Sarah: D'd'd… They're just mommy's friends.
Cosima: Sorry. I wanted to float that whole clone thing a lot softer.

Cosima: Okay, so, six months ago Katja contacted Beth with this crazy story about her genetic identicals being hunted in Europe.
Sarah: Hunted? Oh … brilliant.
Cosima: So, Beth used facial recognition software to find driver's licenses in North America. Two matches.
Sarah: You and soccer bitch.
Cosima: Yes. Right. But who is the original? Who's created us? Who's killing us? We need to know, but we lost our cop, so however you managed to get into her shoes, we really need you to stay there.
Sarah: Stay a cop to help you?
Cosima: To help us. Help us find out who's killing us.
Sarah: How? I'm not a cop! Beth's partner is going to figure that out. Being Beth is what got me into this mess in the first place.
Cosima: I know, I know, I get it, but … you can't run away from her.

Helena [about to stab Sarah]: Good riddance, Elizabeth Childs.
Sarah: I'm not Beth!
Helena [pauses, stares at her]: Dirty little copy-cop. Who are you? [Sarah grabs a steel bar and impales Helena, Helena draws a gun and points it at her] Not yet, not-Beth. [Flees the scene]

Effects of External Conditions [1.04][edit]

Cosima: Wow. Rich, man. This looks like a new blade inset in a much older handle. So the fish, is a bitch, semiotically speaking, with a universal wave acts symbol of fecundity. But these…
Felix: Seriously, what is she on about?
Sarah: Quiet, she's just weird.
Cosima: Sorry, sorry, sorry. Okay going off on a tangent there. If she's not dead, we need to find her. Find out what she knows.
Felix: Are you mad? She's a homicidal maniac.
Cosima: Yeah, but we need to find out who she is Sarah. She's, she found us. She's got answers.
Sarah: The only way I'm going to do that is going back to being a cop.
Felix: No. No way. You're not going back to being Beth. Impersonating a dead officer — that's like a whole new crime.
Sarah: I think I'm safest with the cops, to be honest with you.
Felix: Did that actually just come out of your mouth?
Sarah: Look, Art's already looking for the killer. I shadow him as Beth and let them figure out what's happened to her, and then, when I find that out, I can jump off and deal.
Felix: Deal? I'm beginning to realize crazy is genetic.
Cosima: Well, yeah, bad brain chemistry can be genetic, um, but environment, that's individual, right? I mean that's the whole nature/nurture question right there.
Felix: Okay, let's talk nature. Out of nine so far, one's a psycho who killed four others, one committed suicide, one is a bloody soccer-mum, and then there's you. My crazy sister is sane by comparison.
Sarah: Thanks Fee.
Cosima: But… [holds up photograph of Helena's knife] I think this might help figure out where she's coming from, so — I'll look into it.

Art: It's a good day to be alive Beth. My kids thank you, Beth, even my ex thanks you.
Sarah: Yeah. Don't mention it.
Art: I didn't. They did. I've got a present for you. Our killer made a pit-stop. That's his bike.
Sarah: You got him?
Art: No, but we got a witness. Just follow the bloody brick road.
Angela: Hey! There he is, our walking wounded. You all good, Art?
Art: Yeah.
Angela: Yeah? [to Sarah] Hey. Glad you're okay, we're going to get this guy, so don't worry, alright? So — your guy wore gloves — no prints, but he's not exactly covering his tracks. Go take a look.
Art: [pointing at bloody sink top] Self-surgery. The guy is what, military?
Angela: Looks like it's got to hurt. Oh, the witness is ready.
Sarah [reluctant to be seen by him]: Art, you want to take him?
Art: No. Come on.
Trevor's mother: I slept through the whole thing. I can't believe it. Trevor came into my room and it was dark, and he was all wet — with blood. He said it was an "angry angel."
Art: Hey, Trevor. Can you tell me what the angry angel looked like? [Trevor sees Sarah, points to her] Beth? The person in your bathroom was a woman? [Trevor nods, Art turns to Sarah] Is that possible?
Sarah: Let me talk…
Art: Okay, sure.
Sarah: [kneels down towards Trevor, whispers] It's okay, darling. I'm not her.
Trevor: She said you would come.

Cosima: So. The woman Beth shot and Helena are connected. Holy watershed! Beth probably shot Maggie Chen on purpose. She never told us anything about this.
Sarah: Yeah. She never told her partner either. I can't keep doing this. Cosima, Helena was here. She was "Beth." She's going to get us both busted unless I meet her, alone.
Cosima: Oh my god, bad idea.
Sarah: She thinks we have a "connection."
Cosima: Do you?
Sarah: Yeah — we're clones.
Cosima: Right. So. What do the cops know?
Sarah: She's a churchy psychopath — duh. It's personal, she's a loner, probably abused as a child.
Cosima: Okay — the fish reads Christian, and crafted onto a weapon, a personal crusade.
Sarah: Great, a zealot.
Cosima: You know, when I've seen this branded onto Maggie Chen, I'm thinking she's not a lone warrior. To extreme creationist types, we would be abominations. Like, not God's children, but Satan's.
Sarah: So, they hate us, and she's killing us, even though she's identical to us.
Cosima: Well, but if you were a messed up abused loner whose faith compelled you to belong, and somebody that you trusted told you that this was the only way to redeem yourself in the eyes of God, I mean…
Sarah: Yeah, I might become an angry angel too. Okay, got it. Thanks.

Kira: Where's my mum? [scene shifts to her mother]
Sarah [speaking into her phone recorder]: 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 the whole thing out. [scene shifts back to Kira and Alison]
Alison: Kira, your mother couldn't be here, right now.
Kira: Why? …
Alison: Because she is out there right now, doing something very brave. She's making sure everything is safe. So you two can be together. [scene shifts to Sarah confronting Helena with her gun drawn]
Helena: I'm unarmed.
Sarah: Turn around. Turn around! All the way! Kneel. I'm guessing you know how.
Helena: This isn't necessary.
Sarah: Kneel down!
Helena: You're different from the others.
Sarah: Yeah. I am. [punches her in stomach] You wanted to talk, let's talk.
Helena: I think I'm dying.
Sarah: Yeah? I think I'll watch.
Helena: Where did you come from?
Sarah: I came out of the woodwork. Where did you come from?
Helena: God sent me.
Sarah: Right. So you don't know either.
Helena: You don't know God.
Sarah: This God? The one branded on your friend Maggie Chen?
Helena: Maggie helped make you. Then she saw the light and came to our side.
Sarah: Beth killed her to protect us…?
Helena: I can save you.
Sarah: Right —  'cause we have a connection.
Helena: I can see light in you.
Sarah: There's a light in all of us.
Helena: No. NO! The otherspoor copies of God's image of human beings!
Sarah: But not you? You're special? [Helena smiles] They told you you were the original didn't they? … Your people — it's not true what they said. We're genetic identicals.
Helena: Let me save you.
Sarah: You, me, Beth, the German you killed, were all made the same. Whoever told you different hates you as much as they hate us.
Helena: You're wrong.
Sarah: What happened to you Helena? [Helena approachers her] Stay back.
Helena: [presses Sarah's gun to her forehead] Can you feel it?
Art [knocking on door]: Beth! Beth? Beth? Beth, Are you in there?
Sarah: [pushes Helena towards the window] Go! Run!
Helena: You do feel it.

Kira: How can you be my Auntie Alison? My mum doesn't have any sisters. My mum doesn't even have a mum.
Alison: Well it's very complicated. Um, but Kira, I'm sorry about this, but it's very important you keep it a secret, right? Promise?
Mrs S: Get now for bedtime, Kira, love. Up and go. Get your PJ's.
Alison: Ah, pinkies?
Kira: Bye, mummy.

Conditions of Existence [1.05][edit]

Felix:Colin is the first nice boy I've met in ages.
Sarah: What, like six weeks?
Felix: No. At least eight.

Variations Under Domestication [1.06][edit]

Sarah:Alison, you need to take a deep breath.
Alison: I hate yoga.

Parts Developed in an Unusual Manner [1.07][edit]

Paul:There's nine of you.
Sarah: No! There's only one of me.

Entangled Bank [1.08][edit]

Felix: [Alison calling Sarah] Oh, brilliant. Invite her too. Then maybe we can all cuddle up with Weight Watchers and Grey's Anatomy.

Felix: Divorces do really strange things to normals, Sarah. They lose their fake happiness, they forget the way to the mall, and then they come downtown to find themselves.

Unconscious Selection [1.09][edit]

Felix: I need to change. Fetch me something gay.

Felix: [to the people in Alison's house] Felix. Gay friend.
Alison: Acting coach.
Reverend Mike: Oh, that's perfectly fine here.
Felix: Which one?

Felix: [Alison takes out a pill bottle] Hey! Share-zies? [Alison gives him a pill]

Endless Forms Most Beautiful [1.10][edit]

Felix: [to Cosima when Delphine arrives] It's Delphine. She's got baggage.

Art: It's your phone. Well it's Beth's phone actually. So help me wrap my head around this.
Phone Recording: Art, if you're hearing this you've found the body. It's not Beth. It's me. My name is Sarah Manning and you're about the only person I trust to figure the whole thing out.
Art: Sarah, my partner killed herself and I didn't see it coming. Help me. Help Beth. I know you care.
Sarah: There's a reason we look exactly the same Art. Why the prints match and the DNA is screwed up. But you have to promise to protect me and my daughter.
Art: I will if that's what you need, I promise.

  • Cosima [quoting message found in the clone DNA] : THIS ORGANISM AND DERIVATIVE GENETIC MATERIAL IS RESTRICTED INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY.

Season 2[edit]

Nature Under Constraint and Vexed [2.01][edit]

Felix: Holy shit, what's with the balls of your thumbs, they're so bouncy.
Alison: Felix, are you high?
Felix: Well I didn't know there was going to be a huge emergency, did I?

Alison: I'm doing a musical.
Felix: Oh my God, not Cats.

Alison: I have a friend. Let's call him Ramon.
Felix: You know a gun dealer named Ramon?
Alison: He's a gun enthusiast. He has many jobs, he's very hard working.

Sarah: Hey, can I borrow your phone?
Kid on bus: Can I touch your boob?

Governed by Sound Reason and True Religion [2.02][edit]

Sarah: Mrs. S has loads of secrets. Some of them are good, yeah?
Kira: Maybe, but I don't think so.

Mingling Its Own Nature With It [2.03][edit]

Felix: You brought us here on purpose. You wanted Kira to meet her father.
Sarah: I didn't even know he'd be here, Fe.
Felix: Bollocks! That is bollocks, Sarah, and you know it. For eight years. Eight years you pretended you didn't know who he was? You let me narrow it down to Ziggy the drummer or that guy that you met in Orange County, at that bar.

Governed as It Were by Chance [2.04][edit]

Sarah: What's the first rule of war, Fe?
Felix: Don't mix your camouflage?

Felix: Cosima and Delphine are locked in some kind of transgressive lesbian geek spiral, bound to end in tears.

Quotes about Orphan Black[edit]

  • It must have been quite a shock to hundreds of thousands — perhaps millions — of people (and at least a handful of famous actresses) to wake up to the news on Emmy nomination morning that voters had snubbed Tatiana Maslany and Orphan Black.
    Who? What?
    But across the interwebs it was plain to see. Critics had embraced the somewhat obscure freshman season of Orphan Black — a show about identical orphans across the world — but, more than the show itself, had rallied behind its amazing star, Maslany, who plays numerous roles as clone variations of the same person (or at least that person's DNA).
    Often critics are the first to champion low-profile but high-quality shows on channels viewers struggle to find or identify with. In the exploding world of scripted program across countless channels, this can be a valuable consumer service — not to mention giving a much needed boost to the host channel, in this instance BBC America. 
    Yet what happened with Maslany was unlike most chatter about dark horse Emmy candidates. The drumbeat was ceaseless (as was that from rabid fans of the show) because Maslany was so off-the-charts incredible. She gave, in my view, the best performance by an actress on television last season. That's on any show, not just the best among a group of dark horse candidates.
    Was it a real long shot that Emmy voters would nominate her? Of course. Maslany was virtually unheard of. Orphan Black was a genre show — ooooh, clones, from the same channel that airs that nerdy, long-lasting Doctor Who and lots of other "sci-fi" shows. So sure, it was doomed. Hell, BBC America was running it on Saturday nights, for God's sake.
    All true, but that didn't make her jaw-dropping versatility any less great. And so Maslany, and to a lesser extent Orphan Black, were name-dropped extensively as disappointing snubs.
  • Although the essentials of John Fawcett and Graeme Manson's story are not new — a young woman discovers she is part of an international conspiracy/science experiment — "Orphan Black" takes on cloning, which gives it a very high difficulty rating, and around here we give big points for that.
    Monochromatically urban with requisite glowering skies (it's set in Toronto), "Orphan Black" opens rather ridiculously with Sarah (Tatiana Maslany), an angry young Brit, hanging fretfully around a train station just in time to see her doppelgänger commit suicide. … It's just as ridiculous as it sounds, chockablock with clichés, predictable exposition (two taps of the keyboard and entire histories are revealed) and some fairly whacked-out plot twists. But it doesn't matter because "Orphan Black" isn't so much about plot as it is performance, and as the series continues (BBC America sent out four episodes), the performances are pretty astonishing.
    Although there are some regrettable Russian/German accents involved, they belong, mercifully, to clones in passing. Between the three main identicals, Maslany shape-shifts with near-miraculous believability, becoming by turns the tough and narcissistic Sarah, the high-strung, multi-tasking mom Alison and the brilliant but sensible Cosima.
    As an added bonus, the show's take on the assumed identity issue, while still not technically believable, is as convincing as it gets. Sarah is not one of those genetically determined super-agents, so her mistakes with police procedure add a splash of humor, and a scene in which, clearly terrified, she must pursue an armed assailant is nerve-jangling in its realism. It's one thing to learn how to shoot a gun at a target, it's another to face a potential gun fight.
  • Maybe we should start calling her “Orphan Multicolor.” I’m talking about Tatiana Maslany, the break-out star of BBC America’s break-out series, Orphan Black.
    Who? Tatiana Maslany, that’s who — and she might be the best actress you never heard of, but the one who is burning up TV by playing (so far) six different characters who don’t sound alike or dress alike. They also do not share the same hairstyles, lifestyles, personalities or foreign accents.
    The women inside Maslany, in fact, have nothing in common — except identical DNA.
    No — we’re not talking Sybil, we’re talking clones.
    And even though there are six different characters, Maslany has hinted she might be playing up to 10 altogether — this season alone.
  • Orphan Black is, after all, a sci-fi story, and it’s no spoiler to tout it as a crazy, mixed-up thriller about clones. Sarah, now posing as Beth, soon begins encountering the others who look just like her — a German hipster, a suburban mom, a bespectacled Velma with dreadlocks. Maslany ably confronts the task of playing all these women at once — as well as having a go at all the different accents — and she has a casual way of making Sarah’s bewilderment somewhat believable.
    “Orphan Black” launches itself a little too fast and frantically, forcing Sarah into too many ludicrous situations at once, each of them straight out of pop culture’s crazy book of doppelgangers. Not only must she solve crime with her no-nonsense partner (Kevin Hanchard), but she also has to figure out why someone is trying to kill her and the clones. All Sarah wanted was to find enough money to run away and start her life over with her gay best friend (Jordan Gavaris) and the young daughter she left behind.
    Instead, she is trapped in one of those TV shows that is edited and styled in a too-crisp manner. “Orphan Black” has the same plain club soda flavor you get in most cable action dramas now, but I have to say that I’m enjoying some of its fizz.

Cast[edit]

  • Tatiana Maslany · Sarah Manning, Elizabeth Childs, Alison Hendrix, Katja Obinger, Cosima Niehaus, Rachel Duncan, Helena, et al.
  • Jordan Gavaris · Felix, Sarah's foster brother and confidante
  • Dylan Bruce · Paul, Beth's boyfriend
  • Kevin Hanchard · Art, Beth's partner
  • Maria Doyle Kennedy · Mrs. S, Sarah's foster mother
  • Michael Mando · Vic, Sarah's abusive ex-boyfriend

External links[edit]

Wikipedia
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