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Shrewsbury, Masachusetts- Last year Orphan Black premiered after Doctor Who on BBC America and became an instant cult hit. With a great premise and incredible acting work from star Tatiana Maslany, the show is steadily growing a strong following. The denizens of “Clone Club” (myself included) found themselves drawn into the world of Sarah Manning and her fascinating and unique cohorts. The show has returned for its second season.
After the events of season one, Sarah Manning finds herself on the run from the nefarious Dyad Institute. She rushes across the country with her daughter Kira in order to protect her from risky experiments. Meanwhile Sarah’s clones Alison Hendrix and Cosmina have worries of their own. Cosmina is working within Dyad to uncover a cure for her sudden illness and Alison is reeling from the death of her friend. Also there is a secret religious group called The Proletheans that are trying to use the clones for their own means.
Like two shows that returned for their second seasons this year (The Americans and Hannibal) Orphan Black returns with a triumph. The second season sinks even further into the mythology of the characters and keeps you at the edge of your seat. The first three or so episodes spend most of their time setting things up before things get heated, but it is totally worth it because things start to ramp up by episode four.
The acting in the show is taking leaps and bounds this season. Jordan Gavaris is remarkable as Felix, Sarah’s childhood friend and his character is unraveling more and more layers. Maria Doyle Kennedy is great too as Mrs. S, Felix and Sarah’s foster mother. Peter Outerbridge is terrifying as the leader of the Proletheans, Henrik Johanssen. Michiel Huisman is the newcomer to the show as Cal Morrison, one of Sarah’s old acquaintances and he fits right in.
However it’s impossible to speak about the acting on this show without mentioning Tatiana Maslany. She has been given a task unlike any other actress on television: to play multiple lead characters and she pulls it off with flying colors. She is able to give each clone a unique personality and quirks that make it absolutely incredible to watch. Please for the love of God, give her an Emmy nomination or something because the lack of award recognition is criminal.
Orphan Black is a hard show to delve into because it is packed to the brim with detail. However once you’ve settled in you never want to stop watching. The show takes its time to set everything up, but that’s fine because it’s setting you up for a barrage of punches. Orphan Black is getting better than it was and the show was already pretty good. It’s well worth the lookout.
Orphan Black is on Saturdays @ 9 pm on BBC America. Season One is available to stream on Amazon Prime.