'Orphan Black' recap: 'Things Which Have Never Yet Been Done'

This ninth episode embraces the theme of family ties, both emotional and biological. The family model set forth by the religious extremist group of the Prometheans, by Donnie and Alison, and by the Clone Club sisters are all explored in three separate storylines that are interwoven. Here, I will present them in their entirety.

Helena-Promethean Storyline

The Clone Club sister that has always been on the fringe is Helena, naturally. We haven’t seen her for two episodes, but we finally are able to follow her as she tries to be a part of the Promethean family.

Our favorite psycho-assassin proves she has some familial tenderness, declaring she wants to go to “her babies,” or her eggs which were forcefully taken from her. So, she willingly journeys to the Promethean’s secluded farm-compound. Her eggs have been fertilized by patriarch Henrick, and we see them being medically inserted into her uterus.

The Prometheans are very communal, and Helena is taken to their “nursery,” where all the children are brought up and cared for. And disciplined. Helena quickly becomes fond of a certain little girl, and when one of the nannies shakes her, we see that such old-fashioned discipline is not acceptable to Helena. She grabs the nanny by the throat and pushes her against the wall. “If you ever touch her again, I will gut you like fish,” Helena says in her spooky Ukrainian accent.

Gracie, Henrick’s teenage daughter, watches this exchange, not intervening at all. Perhaps she is not as brainwashed as we thought.

In another room, Mark, the young protégée, and Henrick have a chat, man-to-man, in which Henrick flatters him. As Mark looks down sheepishly, Henrick says “It is no secret that you and Gracie are fond of each other. It is time for her to bear fruit, so will you stand by her as her husband?” Mark meets Henrick’s eyes with hope and incredulity.

We jump to the operating table, and we see Gracie in the same position Helena was in: it’s Gracie’s turn to be surgically impregnated. The Prometheans apparently have a room for pregnant women to hang out in, so Gracie and Helena become roommates, and Helena’s contentment irks Gracie. Gracie angrily tells the scientifically clueless Helena that she is now carrying an embryo that was made with Helena’s egg and her own father’s sperm.

This information hits Helena hard, and she realizes that she cannot stay in such a twisted place. “I don’t belong here,” she says to Gracie as she pulls on her boots. Gracie stares for a moment before pulling her own boots on. “I’m coming with you,” says the girl, and Helena smiles.

As they reach the door of their room, a shotgun-toting Henrick appears to block their way. It dark, and the fear is plain on Gracie’s face, even as she and Helena verbally defy him. It escalates quickly when Henrick knocks out Helena with the butt of his gun, and Gracie begins screaming as he drags her by her hair to the cell. Mark enters, and stands by the cell that holds his sweetheart, gazing at his master. You can see him struggling to decide what is the right thing to do. Ultimately, he chooses to free Gracie, and runs away with her when Helena pounces on Hendrick and choke-holds him to unconsciousness.

In the satisfying and disturbing ending to the Helena-Promethean narrative of this episode, Helena ties Hendrick in the same position that she and Gracie were in: the position for medical impregnation. As he begs her to stop, Helena inserts something into his nether regions and he shouts in pain. The next shot shows her smiling as she overlooks Promethean’s barn, which she had set aflame.

Donnie-Alison Storyline

In this episode, the squabbling couple team up to dispose of Leekie’s body (if you don’t remember, Donnie had accidentally shot Leekie). Alison has the idea to bury the late Dyad director under their garage. Alison is cool and composed, while Donnie nearly throws up. It is considerably more humerous than Helena’s narrative.

Their work is interrupted when Vic comes to their house, talking about a wanting to discuss their grievances in order to emotionally heal, which is a hilarious character motif. Alison is having none of the feel-good stuff, and kicks him out. He sneaks around and peeks in the garage window, which is when Donnie pulls a gun on him and threatens him hardcore over the pit they’ve dug for Leekie. Turns out his threats were a great bluff, which impresses Alison, empowers Donnie, and gets Vic to tell them that the cop, DeAngeles, is outside.

Donnie confronts DeAngeles, and looks very pleased with himself as he walks back to his home.

Alison and Donnie put Leekie’s body in the hole, then re-pave the part. Alison stares at Donnie and says “I have never been more attracted to you than I am right now,” and they run to each other in passion.

Sarah-Dyad Storyline

Now we can get to the central Dyad-Sarah storyline. The main problem is that Cosima’s sickness has become worse, and the only foreseeable way to save her is to take little Kira’s bone-marrow. Rachel makes Delphine director of Dyad, and promises that she is not the bad-guy anymore. Delphine goes to the Siobhan and Sarah’s home and explains that Kira’s bone marrow is the only immediate treatment that can save Cosima.

After an initial rejection, Sarah puts the question to Kira. Of course, sweet girl that she is, she offers to donate the bone marrow. They go to a private pediatrician (Siobhan’s contact) to do the operation.

Meanwhile, Duncan, Cosima and Scott are in the lab, hooking up Duncan’s floppy disk to an old computer. The green-brown monitor brings up the infertility sequence. The scientists look at each other, optimistic. Duncan declares that he will not give all the information to Dyad, which Cosima looks happy about.

In the Director’s office, Marion appears, and Rachel is less than pleased. The two women are ice queen and puppet master. Marion compares Rachel to Sarah, which irks Rachel to a frightening degree.

We follow Rachel as she goes to a bare room with a huge television screen. It looks like she is about to crack. While watching her home videos, she smiles and laughs, then cries and mildly berates herself for her emotion.

The episode ends when Rachel pretends to be Sarah, gets past Siobhan, knocks out Felix and kidnaps Kira.

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