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Review: ‘Orphan Black’ Season 3, Episode 3, ‘Formalized, Complex, and Costly’: The Body Count Rises

Review: 'Orphan Black' Season 3, Episode 3, 'Formalized, Complex, and Costly’: The Body Count Rises

PREVIOUSLY: ‘Orphan Black’ Season 3, Episode 2, ‘Transitory Sacrifices of Crisis’: Things Get Personal

Cloning Around

If
the first two episodes were about setting up things to come, this week the
focus was on bringing a Leda and Castor representative together. As Sarah
teamed with Art to try and find Mark (and, subsequently, Helena), the Castor
clones worried that their entire project would be shut down before they were
able to find the source of the genetic defects. It was a quicker pace and plot
than the first two episodes, as there was less focus on the tricky camerawork
and more movement in the actual story.

Science Class

With Seth down, Cosima wasted no time in rounding up
the dead clone’s brains in order to extract and examine as much genetic
information as possible. Naturally she was aided by a weary Scott and a
thoroughly disgusted Felix, whose kitchen utensil props lightened the overall
mood. Although the actual science behind the episode’s revelation is still lost
on us, the takeaway is one and the same: the Leda and Castor clones are
siblings. Somehow we have a feeling that there won’t be a super happy family
reunion anytime soon. Frustrating, when you think about how they’re all
fighting for the exact same thing. 

A Little Dance
Party

No dancing this week (or celebratory clone scenes
involving baby showers or group sex) but the gross-out factor was more than
enough of a party for us. Between the bathtub dissection (how is Felix going to
shower now?), Mark’s hammer-happy torture scene and Mrs. Johanssen’s target
practice in the cornfield, there was more than enough carnage to last through
the rest of the season.

Power Move

For the second week in a row “Orphan Black
offed one of its male clones, leading us to wonder what was the point of
introducing them all? It’s as though they couldn’t bear to kill off any of the
established female characters (remember when Cosima was thisclose to death?), so instead we’re parting with the ones we’ve
just gotten to know. It would have been interesting to see where a Sarah/Mark
pairing would have gotten us, or even to see Mark reunite with Gracie and
change her mind towards the “abominations.” Now we’ll never get the
chance for either. Saying goodbye to Mark is tough, especially since throughout
the entire scene we were waiting for Sarah to run out from behind Mrs. J, pick
up the gun Mark had dropped and off the Prolethain herself. Now how is she
supposed to find Helena?

Avon Lady Calling

Out in the ‘burbs, Alison and Donnie put their new
business into action, with a social commentary on the overall unhappiness of
housewives and soccer moms in general. While we miss having Alison partake in
the general clone shenanigans, this will clearly end poorly for Alison in the
end. Perhaps her eventual arrest will finally put the cops onto the Clone Club
in all of its glory? In the meantime, those bath soaps were cute and convenient
in only the way Alison could ever make them. #VoteHendrix

A Male’s
Perspective

After seeing Ari Millen shine as Mark in this
episode, we’re going to miss him. Between his tender love towards Gracie and
his cold-blooded torture, there were so many complexities to the character that
we wished we could have explored more.

As for Rudy, we saw a lot less of him this week, but
the scenes he was in were quite revealing. Between his thumb-sucking mommy
issues and taunting of Helena, he and the blonde-haired clone are two characters
we’d love to see tango sooner rather than later.  

Tatiana Who?

Kudos to Art for not being every other dimwitted
supporting character cop we’ve seen on shows like this. The simple fact that he
pushed past Sarah and Felix when he knew something was off says loads about his
character. Plus, watching him and Sarah on the road together was a definite
highlight, and it moved the story along. The revelation that he was in love
with Beth seems like a random aside, but at least now we know his true
motivations for helping the “sestras.”

Lab Results

If the male clones continue to drop like flies,
there won’t be much story left to explore on that side of the science lab, and
that kind of makes their introduction last season pointless. As it stands,
Sarah seeking Helena is the only new driving force of the season, while the
long-standing one — solving the genetic defects —continues to be important
namely because there are now more people involved. Things need to start
happening in order to keep the story rolling; we can only follow Sarah’s quest
to find her sister for so long. 

Quote of the Week

“We’re free of your people but we’re not free
of mine.” – Mark

Well that was a pretty deadly assumption.

Runner Up

“The last thing we need is another violent
mess.” – Gracie

Way to make one happen, then.

Runner, Runner Up

“I’m going to need a bath once we clean all of
this up.” – Felix

In the same bathtub you’re keeping a dead body, Felix?

Grade: B-

“Orphan Black” airs Saturday at 9 p.m. ET
on Space and BBC America. Next time: Cosima tries dating, and Sarah has an
unfortunate run-in.

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

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