Throwback Thursday: Orphan Black

In preparation for Saturday’s final Orphan Black season premiere, I thought I would share the blog I wrote after watching the first season, which was originally posted at Aye, Tortuga!. I updated a few sections, otherwise, these were my first thoughts about the series.

I follow a lot of entertainment-related people on my Twitter account. I also tend to follow people that I agree with so, sometimes my perception of what the majority of people are actually watching and enjoying is a little skewed. From my Facebook feed, it seems like most of my friends have not yet discovered one of my new favorite shows, so I thought I would try to change that, especially considering those same friends compose the majority of my readers. (Sadly, this fact has not changed much since that first season but, there are a few more Clone Club members now.)

Over the past month, my Twitter timeline has been a constant love-fest for new show Orphan Black. I was not initially planning to watch this show, but I could not ignore the loud voices telling me how amazing it was, and I am very glad that I gave into the peer pressure. They were right and you should all be watching it as well.

While it was actually airing, I had only seen a few posts here and there about this new BBC America series but, again, mostly from entertainment writers and bloggers and mostly from the same few people. However, after hearing about Tatiana Maslany for four days straight at Season 2 of the ATX Television Festival, I decided I should probably see what everyone was talking about.

The pilot starts with a woman named Sarah Manning standing on a train platform when she sees another woman, who looks exactly like her, jump in front of a train. Sarah steals this woman’s purse and identity, and plans to clean out her bank account before leaving town with her own daughter and foster brother. However, Sarah soon discovers that there is much more to this woman, Beth Childs, and their identical appearance, than she first thought. Within the first few episodes, Sarah meets Katja, Alison, Cosima and Helena, who are all clones trying to figure out where they came from.

Maslany plays all of the clones and is absolutely fantastic. You forget that the same actress is playing all of these characters, because they look and act and sound so different. It is rather remarkable. I had only ever seen her in one episode of Flashpoint, and she was great in that small role but, after watching this show, it is baffling to me that she has managed to stay under the radar until now. Even now, after four seasons and many more clones, I have to remind myself that it is all the same actress.

The rest of the cast is equally fantastic and includes Jordan Gavaris, Dylan Bruce, Maria Doyle Kennedy, Kevin Hanchard, Michael Mando, Skyler Wexler, Inga Cadranel and Matt Frewer. They also added Ari Millen and Josh Vokey in later seasons, and both have been brilliant.

The first four seasons are streaming on Amazon if you still need to catch up, or just need a refresher before the new season begins. It has become one of my favorite shows of all-time, and I will be sad to see it end, but am so grateful that it exists. Not only is the story intriguing, but each of the relationships is written so beautifully. The sestras, along with the family they have built around them, are inclusive and inspiring.

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