‘Orphan Black’ Ends On An Intimate, Satisfying Note

Features Writer
08.12.17 3 Comments


While the mythology of Orphan Black got a bit sprawling in the middle seasons, it was always ultimately about five women. After Sarah Manning (Tatiana Maslany) watched a woman with her own face step in front of a train, leading to the discovery of the clones Alison, Cosima, Helena, and Rachel (among many, many others), she was given a purpose that had long eluded her. She may have avoided the responsibility of family for most of her life, but the weirdness of their situation couldn’t be ignored, and from that the tightly knit Clone Club was born.

It was appropriate, then, for the series finale to focus in so intimately on the characters who have been with us since the beginning. Aside from dispatching Coady (Kyra Harper) and Westmoreland (Stephen McHattie), the Dyad threat had largely been neutralized in the previous episode, as Clone Club finally got all of the information it needed to bring down the Neolutionists once and for all. With “To Right The Wrongs Of Many,” it was largely one long goodbye with a dose of assurance that everyone was going to be alright.

It felt right that much of the episode was focused on the birth of Helena’s twins, with an assist from Sarah and Art (Kevin Hanchard). Art has long been one of the most underappreciated characters on the show. Without the sass of Felix (Jordan Gavaris) or bumbling charm of Donnie (Kristian Bruun), the stalwart cop is often forgotten in the mix, but he has been a faithful friend and coworker since day one. To be there by Sarah’s side for something as intimate as the birth of her nephews just felt right. Everyone has gone through the ringer since the formation of Clone Club, but Art didn’t have the familial link to keep him tethered. He could have cut and run at any point, but his loyalty to this group of women never wavered. While Orphan Black was always a show that focused on women, it still created many male allies worth emulating.

The birth of Helena’s twins (hilariously called Orange and Purple for most of the episode) may have been the series’ most moving moment, and the episode interspersed it with flashbacks of Sarah arguing with the dearly departed Mrs. S (Maria Doyle Kennedy) over whether or not she should have an abortion. The beauty and terror of motherhood has long been at the heart of the show and seeing the miracle of Helena’s birth is as visceral a representation of what the show is about as could be imagined. This freedom from control is what they’ve been fighting for this entire time, and to see them finally achieve that will leave tears in the eyes of many viewers.

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