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Orphan Black – S1E3 – Variation Under Nature

Previously on Orphan Black, ‘Instinct’

The third episode opens at Alison’s pad. Alison and the new one are questioning Sarah about her upbringing. Alison and Sarah keep butting heads, but the new gal is pretty chill about the whole situation. We at last get some answers as to what the fuck is going on. They are clones! I’m glad this show is happy to use the C-word (clones, not the other one), I was pretty worried that it would be like in horror movies when the protagonists refuse to use the word zombie!

Two minutes in and I am already in love with Cosima, she’s pretty swell!

Orphan Black Cosima

Outside in the car, Felix is questioned by one of Alison’s nosy neighbours, or as Felix refers to her: the bitch that guards hell. He decides to go see what Sarah’s up to. Unfortunately, he isn’t great at the whole sneaking thing, and Alison pulls a gun on him. It’s a pretty tense standoff, but Sarah manages to get her to lower her weapon. She then proceeds to hit Alison and threaten her with a whole lot of pain if she ever points a gun at Felix again. She’s a tough cookie, this one! Alison runs off inside, but Cosima tells Sarah that she’s broken the first rule of Clone Club (ha!); telling an outsider about it. Cosima gives her her things and tells her that she’ll give Sarah the answers she wants if she hands over the briefcase.

Back at Felix’s apartment, him and Sarah are having a mild freak-out about the whole clone thing. Felix says that “dreadlocked science geek Sarah” is arguably more attractive that real Sarah, which she isn’t too happy about. Felix doesn’t want Sarah to ignore what’s going on, but she is adamant that their getaway plan remains the same.

Sarah is back to being Beth. She heads to the precinct to see Art, but he still won’t give her back the money. Luckily enough the chief decides that now is a great time to reinstate her, and her and Art head off to investigate a 1045, whatever that is. Sarah ducks into a bathroom to try to figure out how to put on her holster. In the car, SarahBeth has some difficulty using the radio. Art is mildly perturbed that she keeps saying “Roger” at the end of things.

OH SHIT! They just drove up to where she dumped Katja’s body! This can’t end well. Turns out that she buried her at an active quarry, and the body got caught up by a digger. Luckily, the thing messed up the body enough for it not to be recognizable, thank God for small mercies! It seems that Art is pretty good at severed hand puns; I feel like I’m watching CSI. Sarah rings Cosima to see how similar clones’ fingerprints are. They are pretty similar, which isn’t great given Sarah’s criminal record. Cosima tells her to bring the briefcase and they can talk about what to do next.

Art notices that Sarah hasn’t got her guns loaded, which is apparently a cop faux pas. He’s pretty pissed, and puts her on desk duty.

Orphan Black S1E3

Cosima and Sarah meet for a drink at some dingy bar. We learn a little more about Cosima. She is a PHD student in evolutionary developmental biology at the university of Minnesota, which is awfully handy given the whole clone bizzo. It seems that the European clones were being hunted, and that whoever was doing it may have followed Katja to the U.S. Beth used some kind of snazzy facial recognition software to search for clones in North America, and that’s how she found Alison and Cosima. They don’t know who created them or who is killing them, so really they don’t know much. Cosima begs Sarah to keep up the Beth charade, at least for long enough to stop the fingerprints from being identified, and she grudgingly agrees.

At the station, Sarah brings Art a coffee peace offering. He says that he’s booked her some time at the gun range. A phone call comes in from some creep using a voice changer, and they tell them that the body was killed at some park, so Art and the other cop lady head over there. Sarah flirts with the cute IT guy in order to get the password to her own computer, and to learn about how the fingerprinting works. Man this chick can run a con! She heads down to the lab and manages to delete the positive ID before anyone can see it.

Meanwhile, at the park, Art finds the glass from where Sarah’s window had been shot out. He finds the place where the killer had set themselves up for their sniping.

Sarah meets up with Mrs. S for some passive aggressive bird watching. She says that the only way she’ll give Sarah custody of Kira is if she proves that she can stick around. Sarah calls Cosima. Apparently they know someone who can help her to learn to shoot.

Oh God! Art finds a severed doll head with short read hair impaled on a stick. That shit is creepy as fuck! The face is burned with a cigarette in a very unsettling manner.

Sarah calls up Alison to get her help with how to use a gun. She doesn’t want to do it because she won’t be able to get a sitter. Her husband is pretty useless. Felix to the rescue! This should lead to some wacky hijinks! The kids are pretty quiet so Felix suggests some good old-fashioned cross-dressing! I’m sure Alison will love this.

Orphan Black Alison With Gun

Raj the IT guy helps Sarah with some info. Alison takes Sarah out to some field and they begin shooting at a soft toy. Alison knows quite a bit about guns, seemingly learned from Beth. Alison seems to have been close with Beth, no wonder she doesn’t get along with Sarah. Sarah’s skill at shooting seems to directly correlate with how annoyed she is with Alison. Funny that.

The $75K turns out to be Alison’s contribution to Clone Club. She would very much like it back. Alison is not too happy to come home to a pair of gender swapped kids, but seem to have had a great time!

Felix and Sarah are chatting about what Sarah’s going to do with the money, when Paul comes home. Felix hides in their expansive closet while Paul and Sarah have a bit of a tiff. Their argument soon turns into a hot wall make out, which Felix kinda creepily listens in on. Paul leaves and Felix has some fun teasing Sarah about “Big Dick Paul.”

Orphan Black S1E3 Paul

At the range, Sarah puts Alison’s lessons to good use. She and Art trace a stolen motorbike to a house downtown, and begin to check out the renters. In one of the rooms they find a sinister annotated bible bookmarked by a photocopy of Katja’s ID, which Sarah quickly hides. The wall also has some very serial killer-esque decorations. They begin to check this out, but are shot at from outside the room. Sarah pulls Art to the ground but he gets grazed by a bullet. He tells her to follow the shooter. She runs after the person on foot while Art calls it in.

While Sarah is distracted calling, Art she gets hit from behind by the hooded attacker. The person is a woman with an eastern European accent. She knows who Beth is (or should be), and is about to stab her when Sarah shouts that she isn’t Beth. She pulls off her hood, and it’s another clone!! I would never have guessed that they’d be able to make Tatiana Maslany unattractive, but it turns out curly bleached hair and insanity are not a good look on her. She calls Sarah a “dirty little copy-cop”, whilst menacing her with a knife.

Orphan Black S1E3 Sarah

Orphan Black Crazy Clone

Sarah is not having much fun. She grabs a piece of metal off the ground and stabs it into Crazy Clone’s stomach. CC pulls a gun, but decides to not kill her yet, and runs off, leaving her elaborately carved knife behind. Sarah hides the knife before Art can see it. Art runs over and grabs a severely shaken Sarah. Art feels pretty bad about sending SarahBeth off without backup, and gives her her cash back. Sarah and Felix head over to Mrs. S’. She’s going to snatch up Kira, but thinks better of it when she sees how happy Kira is. She decides to do the right thing and stick around.

Meanwhile in cookooland, Crazy Clone is doing some emergency first aid on herself. WTF, she has angel wings cut into her back!! Ew.

Orphan Black Variation Under Nature

Next time on Orphan Black: More Crazy Clone!

About Alison Millward (103 Articles)
Alison is a big nerd living in Melbourne, Australia. She is a lover of all things television, particularly anything in the "hot young people in depressing sci-fi situations" genre. When not watching tv, Alison enjoys long walks on the beach, corrupting young minds, and actively avoiding thinking about her future.
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