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‘Orphan Black’ Co-Creator on That Horrifying Scene and the Possibility of a Spinoff

“We're really going to hear it from the fans,” says Graeme Manson about Saturday’s shocking episode.

Tatiana Maslany, "Orphan Black"

Tatiana Maslany, “Orphan Black”

BBC America

<<Page 1: MK’s Final Scene

Sadly, in the moment that MK dies, Sarah’s daughter Kira feels the loss immediately. Last season she revealed that she was able to sense each of the Leda clones and how they felt. This shock to her system prompts her first real rebellion against her own mother. While Sarah wants to keep Kira safe and out of the hands of Rachel and the Neolutionists, Kira wants answers about why she’s so different.

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“We’ve always played lightly with this extrasensory element that Kira has, this thing that’s a little beyond scientific definition,” said Manson. “That is part of that core of her daughter that Sarah wants to protect the most. It’s her intuition, it’s her most human thing about her, it’s the thing that scientific method can’t touch. We want to know a little more about that this year. Kira’s growing up. We really saw it as a generational thing that was happening through this season where Kira would begin to challenge her own mother as well. It’s about the beginning of Sarah realizing that her daughter is becoming a woman and Kira’s stepping up to take the reins of her own life; make her own demands of her mother. Can you imagine Sarah, how headstrong she was as a kid? Kira’s going to be a rough teenager. Let’s face it.”

The Final Season… and Beyond

Since Season 5 is the final ride with Sarah & Co., the show had to be selective about what these last episodes would encompass.

“As far as keeping the audience on their toes and putting that delicious, scary sense of nobody is safe underneath the season, we wanted a big death early,” said Manson. “They’re not easy decisions We do go through the checklist of how this all going to play out and who’s going to make it. The real joy of a final season is you got bank of show mythology that you’ve built up on. We began the year by going, ‘Wow. Where did all of these characters start? Where can they go? What else can we learn about these characters?

“Now that we’ve got our heart-wrenching, edge of the seat, first two episodes of sort of traditional ‘Orphan Black’ storytelling out of the way, now that we sort of set the table on the season, we’re going to take a step back every now and again,” he continued. “We’re going to sink into some episodes that are more character-heavy. Next, we’re going to dig deeper into Alison’s (Maslany) world. Then we’ll be back to breakneck pacing and then we’ll slow down. We’ll dig in deeper, a little deeper into another one of the clone’s worlds. It’s all part of the same thing. It’s all very continuous but it was our story approach to open up things that we don’t know about these characters, to fill them in and perhaps still surprise the audience a little bit with these characters that we know so well.”

Tatiana Maslany, "Orphan Black"

Tatiana Maslany, “Orphan Black”

BBC America

The show has eight more episodes to air before it finishes its run for good, but some element of “Orphan Black” could live on.

“We have discussed and are considering a television spinoff,” Manson said, “but those are in the deep, dark, secret laboratory vaults of BBC America. There’s a coven of witches standing around cauldrons. We’ll see what comes bubbling up out of that. Right now, after five seasons, I think everybody needs a break. Spinoffs, a possible feature film, we’re really interested in those things. We’ve spent a long time in the story world, I think. If we take a little break from it before coming back to those ideas, I think we’ll come back stronger and fresher.”

“Orphan Black” airs Saturdays at 10 p.m. on BBC America.

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