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Review: ‘Orphan Black’ Season 3, Episode 1, ‘The Weight of This Combination’: Let’s Get It Started

Review: 'Orphan Black' Season 3, Episode 1, 'The Weight of This Combination': Let’s Get It Started

READ MORE: Watch: It’s Clone vs. Clone in ‘Orphan Black’ Season 3 Premiere Teaser

Clone of the Week

Sarah
takes center stage in most episodes of “Orphan Black,” and the Season
3 return was no exception. Just when the delinquent clone was trying to get on
with life as normal — or as normal as possible, knowing she had a supportive
figure at Dyad in the form of Dr. Marian Bowles (Michelle Forbes), the
intensity ramped back up when she realized Helena was missing. Though we
briefly caught up with Alison (and a now jobless Donnie), and felt for Cosima
during her breakup with Delphine, it was Sarah’s journey that drove the action
throughout and set up several of the plot points leading into the rest of the
season.

Science Class

While Cosima and Scott began to examine the
tattered, marked up copy of “The Island of Doctor Moreau” in more detail, the
science itself took something of a backseat in the opener in order to focus on
the immediate threat: Those in Dyad who are still working to eliminate the Leda
clones. Unfortunately, that left questions up in the air about the origins of
the male clones, who they’re really working for and what the point of the whole
project was in the first place. But there’s plenty of season left to examine
those minefields.

A Little Dance
Party

Rather than wait to deliver the requisite clone club
foursome at some upcoming point in the season, audiences were treated to it
straightaway with the Helena opening dream sequence. Surrounded by her
“sestras,” happily pregnant and indulging in organ meat, Helena’s vision is one
all of the clones probably have had at one point or another, no matter how
unrealistic. It was a nice moment of calm and clarity (set appropriately to a
cover of the Beach Boys’ “Wouldn’t It Be Nice”) — one that helped to drive
home just how dire these women’s lives have become.

Power Move

Mrs. S knew last season that when she betrayed Sarah
and turned Helena in, there would be dire consequences to face from her foster
daughter. But rather than let that little mystery linger, the writers attacked
it right away, driving a wedge between Sarah and Mrs. S through the confession,
and alienating the clone so she would be forced to attack the problem on her
own and without the risk of more unwanted interference.

Cloning the Clones

Just when you thought it couldn’t get any better
than Sarah impersonating Alison in the rehabilitation center comes this week’s
big switcheroo: Sarah playing Rachel in order to convince Top Side the woman
was still in charge. Sadly, this transformation was the only moment Felix was
really used throughout the whole episode, but the process of watching Sarah
become her nemesis and once again using the word “oophorectomy” was a treat for
fans.

Meanwhile, Alison once again picked up the slack by
pretending to be an imprisoned Sarah at Dyad. Unlike the last time we saw this
transformation, there was no comedy to be derived from it whatsoever, thanks to
Ferdinand (guest star James Frain) manhandling her in a terrifying way.

READ MORE: 5 Things You Might Not Know About ‘Orphan Black’ and Tatiana Maslany

A Male’s
Perspective

We may have just met Rudy, but he’s quickly
established himself as the male version of Helena – at least in terms of
deadliness. His threats to Sarah (naming each of her loved ones and speaking in
French, directly through the cameras to Delphine) proved that he’s just as
dangerous, and that the Castor guys have a lot more intel on the Leda gals than
the Leda twins do on them.

Tatiana Who?

Delphine took centre stage as the new “Rachel,” most
notably through the torture scene with Rachel. Slowly but surely it looks as
though she’s hardening, and that won’t necessarily make for a good ally for the
Leda clones to have, going forward. Rachel 1.0 was scary enough.

Running on Empty

Helena talking to a scorpion was a risky move, but
one that gave audiences fair insight into how a person like her could survive
in cages and boxes for most of her life. That character is always more fun to
watch in the wild when left up to her own devices, so here’s hoping that her
capture (and subsequent torture, as the previews indicated) don’t last long.
We’ve already seen enough of that from her last season.

Quote of the Week

“Any boy clone who crosses the Hendrixes is going to
get their butts kicked.” – Alison, proving that her mental prowess and physical
toughness can never exactly be measured in words. 

“Oh yeah, I’m like way better thanks to science.” –
Dream sequence Cosima, predicting how the show will eventually end.

Lab Results

A quick pace + catch up on all clones involved = a
great start to the season.

Grade: B+

Next time: Helena meets her captures and Alison
races to rescue her.

READ MORE: ‘Orphan Black’ Origin Story: Co-Creator John Fawcett On How the Show Nearly Never Happened

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