Clone Catch-Up: Orphan Black Season 4 Episode 1 Recap

Warning: This review contains spoilers… Obviously. You have been warned!

Because this is my first recap of the show I want to state how much I’m desperately in love with this show. Like a favorite restaurant I only attend for special occasions, I forget how much I love it. I love Orphan Black. Tatiana Manslaney continues to amaze me through every minute of every episode. Seriously, I could spend this post talking about how much I love her acting. Which I won’t subject you to. Today at least.

The episode starts off creepy and mysterious. We’re in the middle of the forest with a person wearing a sheep mask watching two people dispose of a body. I thought it was two guys, so I was real pleased to see them kissing. But, alas and alack, one of them was a woman. No evil gays for me. I want more super cute gay villains. And heroes. Generally I just want more cute gays all over my TV.

So who are these straight body dumpers? How long did it take them to dig that hole? Was the hole pre-made? None of my questions get answered because the sheep-mask person makes too much noise and has to run away.

A new clone! I love new clones. Mika, the new clone calls Beth in the middle of the night with body coordinates. This episode is in the past, which means we get to see a bunch of not-dead-yet people. Like Paul! I missed Paul! I know that Paul ultimately an all around terrible person, but I have a soft spot for him because I know how he dies.

Beth is doing drugs! Did we know before that she had a drug problem? That’s the issue when there is a huge gap between seasons there are certain details that I don’t remember. Yes, I could look those details up, but I’m way too afraid of spoilers to go searching for information.

Beth, Art, and other detectives find the body. The body reveal gives me most likely my favorite line of too: “Well that’s cheeky”. For some reason, gross Neolution people have cut out this guy’s cheek. He also has a weird dick, but I don’t find that interesting.

I’m really concerned about Beth’s drug habit. Yes, I know what happens to Beth since I remember the first episode of the series. But I’m still concerned.

Cosima is in this episode—yay! Oh never mind, she’s onscreen for less than a minute. Hopefully, we’ll see more of her next week. Again, I know that Beth kept a lot of secrets from Cosima and Alison, but it’s extremely frustrating to me. I hate knowing so much more than the characters I’m watching. I just want to shake them and say “Know all of the things I know!”

Instead I just chuckle when the culprits are referred to as “cheek choppers.” Very creative detectives.

The Neolution people creep me out. I know they’re supposed to, but it doesn’t make me like it any better. I understand the whole thought process behind self-guided evolution, but putting magnets in your fingers—that’s just weird. Call me old fashioned, but I don’t want my fingers getting stuck to car doors or refrigerators.

Again, did we know that Alison was supplying Beth drugs? And pee. A drug and pee bouquet. Is that how you say “I love you” in Canada?

Dr. Leekie is not-yet-dead! He did not get the same sympathy as Paul did, mainly because I always saw him as the creepy old dude bad guy. I know Paul was barely redeemable at the end, and I could be easily swayed into thinking he wasn’t redeemable at all. In fact this episode was really good at reminded me how trash Paul was. But in a contest of creepiness Leekie wins by a landslide.


(Property of BBC America)

Beth gets surveillance equipment from the police station to spy on Paul. Cue the surveillance montage. Tatiana with power drills… mmmm. I mean, yes, uh, surveillance cameras.

Snorting drugs at the dinner table before a dinner date is not classy kids. It’s just not. This scene was heartbreaking to me. Paul is a hollow terrible robot and Beth deserved so much better than what she got. I just wanted to give her a giant hug. Until she pulled the gun on Paul. Then I gasped. I knew she wasn’t going to kill him, but what if she did? Assuming everything else in the past three seasons happened similarly, would Sarah have made it out of the Caster compound alive? Probably not. So good job Paul for not dying too early.

I know I’m supposed to have feels when Beth gets to Art’s apartment but I’m too distracted by the unicorn cartoon that his daughter was watching. It looked like My Little Pony on acid. Is that a real cartoon? What are Canadians letting their children watch?

I also should have know that Art and Beth had gotten together at some point, but I still was not happy about it when it happened. Now when I think back to all the interactions that Sarah had with Art, my heart breaks for him.

Do all cops get calls from random people in the middle of the night? I guess if you’re a cop who is also a clone you probably get a lot of weird calls. I was convinced this was a giant trap. That Beth was going to go and the Neolution people were going to try and capture her. Instead we got super evil and gross scientists. They’re growing a bug like thing in people’s cheek, but why. And why do you need to cut out at giant piece of cheek. And couldn’t they implant the bug/worm/whatever into a place where they could harvest it without killing people? Don’t the people with monkey tails care about not killing people who agree with them, and could continue to use for harvesting? Why are Neolutionists asshats? Answer my questions Orphan Black!

Beth makes a noise because cutting off a person’s cheek is hella gross. While running away Beth accidentally shoots Maggie Chen! My girlfriend and I were extremely surprised. There is no such thing as coincidence in Orphan Black! And Art helped cover up the shooting! So many Art feels!

Then we find out the Neolution people are everywhere—one of evil scientist/Neolutionists is Beth’s union rep. It’s no wonder why this poor woman felt so trapped. It was a lot easier not knowing Beth before the night she killed herself. It was much easier to detach myself from feels. Now I’m just full of sad Beth feels and it’s out of control.

The end of the episode doesn’t end in Beth’s death, but back in present day. Sarah gets a call in the middle of the night (like all clones do) from Art. He’s with Mika and shit is about to go down hard. The Neolutionists are back in the spotlight and they are in Iceland going after Sarah and the gang.

Most importantly, Cosima is back next week! Will there be lesbian drama? Tune in next week to find out!

Amanda M.'s picture
on April 18, 2016

Amanda is a nonbinary Philadelphia-based writer. She likes Doctor Who, Legos, 90s pop, any TV show that doesn't kill off the lesbian characters, and folk music. Sometimes people describe her as a hippie. They would be correct.

Pronouns: She/They