Orphan Black 1×05 Photo Recap: “Conditions of Existence”
Episode 5 is titled “Conditions of Existence” but it should really be called “Mindblowing” because that is what you will experience when you watch this episode. Not only do we discover that Donnie is talking to a mystery person about Alison, but we also discover that Paul is a monitor. He has been allowing scientists to come in during the night and experiment on Beth. SAY WHAT?! I never trusted Paul which is why I wasn’t totally surprised by his reveal but I didn’t think it was a double blind situation. Paul doesn’t know why he is a monitor. He just follows orders.
In the midst of all the distrust and paranoia in the episode, we get this special gem:
I love, love, love Sarah’s relationship with Kira. Kira brings out a softness in her that no other person can. Their relationship gives Sarah depth as a character. While I love her rough edges, it’s great to see that Sarah is more than that. She is a mom who just wants to hug her little girl after school.
News travels fast in Ontario! It took less than four hours after Sarah (as Beth) resigned as an officer for Paul to show up seeking some comfort sex. He tiptoes into the apartment like a stalker and scares Sarah as she is taking a shower. It’s like he wants to win Sleaziest Creep of the Year. Sarah gets over the scare pretty quickly and invites him in because the water just reached the perfect temperature and they couldn’t let that go to waste. Also, because it’s just so easy to distract Paul that way.
Sara wakes up the next morning with an EEG electrode in her mouth and a needle mark on her arm. Yeah, it was that kind of night. Sarah is clearly freaked out and goes to her resident scientist, Cosima, who thinks the experiments were diagnostic. They consider the possibility that Paul may be in on it and then Fe drops the bombshell – Sarah and Paul have been shagging. Cosima has the best reaction calling it “complex.” I wonder what Freud would say about sleeping with your dead clone’s boyfriend/possible observer. Adorable Raj (I miss him!) appears for a hot second only to tell Sarah that he needs the surveillance equipment he lent Beth. Looks like grief stricken Beth had a lot more secrets than we thought. Beth was probably spying on Paul thinking he had a hidden agenda, so now, it’s up to Sonny and Rico to pick up where Beth left off.
Back in suburbia, Alison has her own issues to deal with after she walks in on Donnie rummaging through her drawers. She starts to suspect that he may be spying on her as well so she starts searching the house for his secrets.
Paranoia clearly runs in the clone family because Sarah installs a bug in Paul’s office shortly before he walks in trying to put the moves on her. If there’s one thing I like about Paul, it’s that he’s efficient. He is sketchy as hell but he doesn’t dance around a conversation. He tells Sarah, “I’d rather talk about last night- the shower.” He caresses her hair and shoulders trying to seduce her then gives her a vampire kiss. Sorry, Paul, but vampire kisses were so 10 minutes ago.
Things are beginning to unravel for Sarah and Alison. Sarah is worried Paul will find out she is not really Beth and Alison discovers Donnie is keeping secrets from her. The recent changes must be especially difficult for Alison who is a control freak. Just look at her garage! It’s a mini grocery store! She has enough food and toilet paper to survive a zombie apocalypse. I know I’ll be crashing at her place when the invasion begins.
Unlike her clone sisters who are having trust issues with their male partners, Cosima is bonding with hers! They go on lunch dates, breed fruit flies and clean test tubes together. Well, that’s what Scott wishes his relationship with Cosima was. The truth is Scott performs Cosima’s experiments. He can’t resist her eyeliner! It has a hypnotizing power.
I’ve said this before but it’s worth repeating. Kira is such a cool kid! She knows everything. When they meet, Sarah kneels down to tell her little girl that it’s really her but she didn’t have to. Like Han Solo, Kira knew. Kira knows when her mom is really her mom and she absorbs everything she hears which is why asks if they are safe. She remembers Aunty Alison saying her mom was protecting them. Such adult questions from a tiny little body. She may be the smallest kid in the class, but she is definitely the most grown up.
In college, my friend had a hallmate from France. She was nice and collected but one time, she became very disappointed with a bakery when it ran out baguettes in the morning. How is this story related to Orphan Black or Delphine? No relationship whatsoever. I just wanted to mention it because I can picture Cosima and Delphine going to tiny cafes and talking science together. And of course, Delphine would flip out if the cafe ran out of baguettes. It’s the French way.
After Sarah takes Kira to Mrs. S, she asks her foster mum about her background. She says she wants to know where she came from but for no particular reason which Mrs. S doesn’t believe. She probably thinks Sarah is going on BBC’s “Who Do You Think You Are?” and wants to participate. Mrs. S asks Sarah if she is in trouble but she coolly shrugs it off letting her know she is getting her life straight and ditched Vic.
Paul amps up his creeper factor when he sends Sarah pictures he took of her walking with Kira. Sarah is left no choice but to confront Paul, but first, she has to shoo away her ex. Vic shows up at Felix’s flat looking “urban” and with nine fingers. He tells her Pouchy cut off his finger for not having the drugs she stole. Some would say you can’t put a price on the human body, but Vic can. He takes Sarah’s $20K for the trouble she has caused and leaves her life. Hopefully for good.
Someone call the cops! Donnie’s pajama shorts have been stolen! Gah, my eyes. I wish I could un-see this!! Alas, this image is now in my brain. If it was up to me, I would’ve let Donnie taken that pillow to sleep on the couch (pajamas are a requirement in my bed) but Alison invited him to bed. The girl is acting smart. She knows Donnie has secrets but if she wants to find out what they arre, she has to let Donnie think they are on good terms. He burned a bunch of papers earlier and he will continue to do so if he thinks Alison is still prying. So, Alison has to hide her distrust.
This is a first! Paul and Sarah meet and they do not have sex. The two have been resorting to sex so often to avoid awkward interactions that when they finally meet to talk, the room becomes tense. It doesn’t help that Paul has a gun. He tells Sarah he was present when Beth found out she couldn’t have kids which is why he wants to know who Kira is. Sarah lies saying Kira is her half sister but Paul doesn’t buy it. He points the gun at her and asks where Beth is. Sarah finally drops her cover and tells him Beth is dead. She tells him Beth killed herself because she found out he was monitoring her. His only response is that he did not have a choice. He confesses to monitoring Beth but doesn’t know why she had to be watched. BOOM! Cosima was right. It’s a double blind. If Paul doesn’t know who is behind the experiments then who does? GAH! Just when you think one door will lead to answers, it just leads you to more questions.
Who hired Paul? And what did he do that made him loose his freedom?GAH! I love the questions. THIS IS SUCH A GOOD SHOW!
Thanks for reading!
Special thank you to kissthemgoodbye.net for the screencaps.
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Orphan Black 1×02 Photo Recap: “Instinct”
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