Orphan Black season 2 episode 6 review: To Hound Nature In Her Wanderings

Review Kaci Ferrell 26 May 2014 - 17:00

More happens in one episode of Orphan Black than in entire seasons of other shows. Here's Kaci's review...

This review contains spoilers.

2.6 To Hound Nature In Her Wanderings

I am a fan of complicated protagonists. Sure, it's nice sometimes to have a Hero-with-a-capital-H whose motives are always pure and whose desire to do good trumps all. Those kinds of characters have a time and a place and I can appreciate them when the time is right. But when it's not time for a classical hero, there's a particular void that only a complicated protagonist can fill. And what I mean by that is this: Sarah Manning is without a doubt the hero of this show. We, almost to a person, want her to succeed. But sometimes she does things that make us angry at her, that are just flat-out wrong. I like protagonists who aren't always the most likeable. I like characters that it's a challenge to support their decisions. Not everyone digs that, and that's fine because it's a matter of personal opinion, but it's where my heart truly lies. I like it even more when those complicated protagonists are women.

I love Sarah. I love rooting for her. But damn if I'm not really angry at her for the way she's treating Felix this season ("I've been downgraded from babysitter to bargaining chip,") and her abandonment of Helena in this episode.

It's unfortunate, because they started off really cute together. It was nice to see them being sisterly for once, and Helena making shadow puppets is easily one of my favorite things this show has ever done. And yes, I realize she was on a mission, but considering how quickly the Proletheans were able to bail her out, I don't think it would've been that difficult for Sarah to do. At the very least she could've gone over the the cops as they were putting Helena in the car.

Of course, this opinion is motivated by my sympathy for Helena; there's a case to be made that after everything she did in season one, Sarah was within her rights to leave her for not following directions. Sound off in the comments which side you come down on.

Meanwhile, Paul continues to be The Worst by stalking Sarah and making a deal with the Proletheans to let them have Helena, and then not accepting Mrs S's tea and biscuits. Has he even met the glory that is Mrs S? If that woman offers you tea and biscuits, you take it. If she offers you a knuckle sandwich with a side of moldy haggis, you take it.

Speaking of Mrs S, she's hanging out with her old friend, Rachel's dad. He worked at a mental institution back in the day, which served as a breeding ground for Project Leda. But then, wonder of wonders, somehow Rachel Duncan's once-warm, charming heart convinced him that it was a bad plan and he and his wife decided to go public with what they'd done. So Leekie set the lab on fire to kill them both. Every time I forget how evil Leekie is, I'm slapped with a reminder so...thanks for that, Orphan Black.

Back in rehab, Allison runs into Sarah's ex, Victor, who has apparently turned his life around by embracing Buddhism. Or, rather, by embracing Angie's promise to drop all charges against him in return for his spying on Allison. But at least the getting clean thing seems to be genuine.

Meanwhile, Cosima's friend Scott has been hired at Dyad, where he promptly tells Delphine that the stem cells being used to cure Cosima came from, likely, Kira.

And finally, partially motivated by Sarah's abandonment, Helena gives herself back to the Proletheans because she wants to see her "babies."

More happens in one episode of this show than entire seasons of others. And yet I still want it to be next Saturday already.

Read Kaci's review of the previous episode, Ipsa Scientia Potestas Est, here.

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To give Sarah her due, she did attempt to get Helena out by having Art pull his cop strings, but the Proletheans got to her first. And given the stakes for her I can understand why she didn't put herself at risk by trying to get her out.

The nurse in Allison's rehab clinic really shouldn't have told her she can't sleep with any other residents, since that is clearly going to make her want to sleep with Victor, it is a bit easier to see why Sarah may have fallen for him in the first place given how nice he is being (at least to her).

Leekie's past sins were revealed at the perfect time as well, given how we just started to trust him for treating Cosima so selflessly, or at least we thought. More manipulation by the Neolutionist Mengele.

Finally, I loved how Paul reacted when he saw Mrs S coming toward him. He clearly recognised how much of a threat she was, and never let his guard down for a moment. Paul is a very dangerous guy, yet it was obvious who the most dangerous person in that car was, and it was the one with a thermos, not the one with a gun.

When you're as close as Sarah was to getting a lot of information, I think most people would choose to desert Helena and go on. Helena is always going to be an unpredictable wildcard - which unfortunately makes her expendable. Sarah had no idea Paul and Mark/Gracie were on their trail, so presumably thought Helena would be nice and safe in jail until Art could get her out.

The interesting thing is this pushes Sarah into the role of "epic hero", and if we follow that archetype the hero normally ends up alone on their quest. Sarah really doesn't know who she can trust. Even now we - the audience - don't know who she can trust. And we're privy to a lot more than Sarah is.

I don't think Sarah wanted any cop drama slowing her down since she is on a quest to save Felix from Ruthless Rachel. I thought it was sad that she was leaving Helena there but I think she figured she'd be safer in Jail and she could send her new buddy Art to pick her up. Helena is like a child that needs to be watched and Sarah needed to get some serious business out of the way finding Old Man Duncan. Little did she know the Proletheans would get to Helena first. I think Sarah has done a complete 360 since the beginning of the series and is motivated by a sense of family she now feels for all the clones as well as Felix, Kira and even Mrs. S. Her reaction last week when Leekie told her about Cosima being sick and her touching conversation with Cosima this week as well as her description of Cosima to Duncan you can hear how much she admires and cares about her now as well as Allison and now Helena too. I think once she finds out the Proletheans have her again she'll go all bad a$$ on them getting Helena back.

Sarah leaving Helena at the police station didn't bother me. She didn't know the proletheans were on their trail or even what Helena had done to get there in the first place. From where Sarah was standing, and considering her sister's propensity for violence, Helena was being lead into a cop car. She had no way of knowing just how bad the situation was. She could have murdered someone for all she knew. Also i doubt Sarah would have had money for bail.

Leaving her in the car in the first place was a dumb move. sarah is fairly good at talking herself into and out of situations, surely she could have made up a reason for Helena to be with her. hopefully Sarah finds out where Helena is and rescues her

Sarah's treatment of Felix? To be honest, I'm struggling to sympathise with Felix anymore and believe me, I was feeling pretty bad for the guy a few episodes ago. It is not that he has done anything in particular to change my mind, but I look at all the people around him who have stepped up to support Sarah this season when the stakes are much higher while he has backed out a little. People like Art, Mrs. S, Cal. Sarah doesn't always show her appreciation for their efforts either and in Mrs. S's case she doesn't even acknowledge all that she's doing, yet none of them are holding a grudge and remain quite selfless.
Then, it struck me how Cosima doesn't want to make a big deal about her potentially fatal illness and worries about how it gives Sarah another thing to worry about. She's dealing with a lot herself and still understands that Sarah has enough on her plate. Meanwhile, her own brother isn't showing half as much compassion. Suddenly, being "demoted from babysitter to bargaining chip" doesn't seem all that bad.
Season 1 he absolutely stood by her side, always. This season? Not so much, and when it seems like they haven't even interacted much so far I don't really see what exactly there is for us to be angry at Sarah for. Yes, it is awful that he was almost framed for murder and had to spend a night in jail because of Sarah. But then it was Sarah who put everything one side and worked to get him out of there, too. He's not in some abusive relationship with her. I think we can see that he clearly means a lot to her even if she is not able to repay all his favors.

I really feel the show crossed the line with the disgusting pornographic scene last week, (Tatiana Maslany lost all attractiveness and a previously solid fan).

This week--despite the appearance of one of my favorite actors Patrick J. Adams--the episode was empty for me. Things were painfully slow so I kept zoning out and re-watching the last 5 minutes only to find that I hadn't missed anything. Then at the end of the episode things finally started to roll and it was over. I honestly thought my stream was interrupted. I was able to freak out about paying good money when I realized it wasn't an interruption but the end of a no content episode.

I understand that they couldn't have much Kira in the episode because the wanted to the viewer to think that she might be Leaky's mysterious source of stem cells. However, that line of thought is so weak that anybody can predict against it. We know Kira is a star and won't die anytime soon (except in the case of season finales when sometimes stars do die). I guess what I'm trying to get at is Kira is cute, innocent, interesting, and possibly enhanced somehow. If they are going to do a filler episode, they should focus more on her.

Also, I hope they don't let Skyler Wexler actually watch the show now that it's got explicit/adult content. I always cringe when I think of what some parents involve their children in.

It's hardly an explicit show and it always had adult content - it's not a kid's show. That was the first explicit sex scene all season so far. Compared to something like, say, Game of Thrones, or other shows it was pretty tame and at least it had a purpose. t demonstrated Paul's subservience and Rachel's control freakery and her creepiness.

There are rules governing the care of kids in tv shows and Skyler Wexler is far to young to be allowed to watch an adult programme. Plus, it's not like she's involved in any of the scenes you call explicit.

Tatiana Maslany expertly juggles playing several different characters with several different accents and ably copes with the dramatic storylines she has to deliver yet she has lost "attractiveness" to you because of one 5 minute mild sex scene? Maslany is a terrific actress in this programme and I would think a so-called fan would appreciate that rather reducing her outstanding performance to mere aesthetics.

You are entitled to your opinion but it seems a little extreme. I wouldn't call the show "disgusting" or "pornographic" and is probably one of the most interesting shows storywise on at the moment.

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