Previously: Sarah and Helena are best sestras 4eva, Henrik and Bonnie stitch their daughter’s mouth shut, and Rachel and Paul do the nasty (emphasis on nasty).
So this is a bit ‘how the sausage gets made’, but I had a slight chuckle at this line in my TV’s episode description: “Sarah and an unlikely ally follow clues about the origins of the clone experiment.” Because I totally commiserate; keeping the blurbs for Facebook/Twitter/FYA homepage spoiler-free for this show is challenging enough, but I can’t ever mention Helena AT ALL. Not even when I just wanna be like, “OMG HELENA + JESSE <3 <3 <3.” I know, I know — my pain is so hard! Fortunately, I have a super spoiler-y zone of my own without that kind of restriction, and I’m v. glad to have y’all join me here!
Clone Club Chronicles
Sarah and Helena are on their quest to find Ethan Duncan, camping and singing and farting along the way. I was a bit skeptical of Sarah so quickly embracing Helena as her sister last time around, but this ep was great at showing the love between the sisters. Plus: Smiling Sarah! It’s rare that we see her so happy, and girl def. needs some of that in her life.
But love doesn’t necessarily mean trust, as Helena won’t give up Ethan’s location before they get there out of fear that Sarah would ditch her, and Sarah won’t let Helena join her on the actual fact-finding mission.
… Which is for the best, since Helena heads over to the nearest bar, where she meets sweet and mild-mannered Jesse (played by Mr. Spencer). Helena invents a backstory for herself — an adorbs amalgamation of the other clones’ lives. He offers her some pork rinds, she offers him a White Russian, they do a little arm wrestling (not a euphemism), and soon after, they hit the dance floor. And OK, this is a long string of GIFs, but I somehow don’t think you’ll mind.
This might be Helena’s first kiss(es), right? Either way: DAAAAAMN, that kiss! Could you imagine being at that bar and wondering if those two were gonna have sex right on the dance floor?
But as we should have learned from last week, swoony dancing is the harbinger of doom. Or, in this case, eye gouging, which is what Helena does to a rude asshole whose advances she rejected earlier. A huge brawl ensues, with Helena being hauled off to the police station. No charges are pressed, so she gets picked up by her sister — but it’s actually Gracie with Mark (who had been tailing her), promising to bring Helena to her babies. Thinking that neither Jesse nor Sarah care enough to find her, Helena goes back to the Proletheans of her own volition, NOOOOOOOO…!
I have to say: even though I never forget how Helena killed Amelia and at least four other clones, my love for her has skyrocketed with these recent episodes. And because Helena isn’t beyond redemption, I have to believe that Rachel isn’t, either. Right? (Although I’d also like the dichotomy of one clone being ‘saved’ and one that couldn’t be.)
Meanwhile, Helena’s actual sister Sarah is digging through the old archives of the Cold River Institute, discovering some proto genetics shenanigans (more on those later), as well as the fake identity that Ethan might have assumed (Andrew Peckham). This leads Sarah to an address, at which she finds Mrs. S! She’s been hiding out with Ethan, who came over to her side twenty years ago. Anyway, Ethan spills the beans on Leekie’s not-so-benevolent nature: taking his daughter away, killing his wife, and pursuing him ever since. And UGH, the Ethan actor is doing a great job at playing a broken man.
Cosima’s new treatment is promising, but there’s still a way’s away from finding a cure. Help arrives in the form of Scott, the sequencing tech from Cos’ days at the University of Minnesota, courtesy of Dr. Leekie. Despite Cos not wanting to put her friend in danger, Scott is here to stay once he plays the clone card. ‘Cause DUH — sequencing tech. Even though he doesn’t know whose DNA he dealt with, he could obvi tell they were all clones.
I’m glad that Cos is going to have another ally in the lab — esp. since it’s Scott, whom I’ve always enjoyed — but Delphine’s allegiances are becoming muddled again. She was just standing up to Leekie for complete transparency, but now she’s keeping the true nature of Cos’ treatment from her. Given the Leekie revelation, I’m worried about Delphine being a baddie again. Or maybe she, like Paul, doesn’t have any option but to follow Dyad orders, regardless of her feelings for her clone. (Pretty please?!) Sigh, let’s just look at Cosima and Delphine in much simpler times, i.e. the beginning of the episode.
Also heartwarming: Cosima reassuring Sarah that she’ll be fine, and Sarah vowing to reunite clones once she’s back in town (YES PLEASE). And this, obvs.
(Side note: Tatiana Maslany has such a wonderful smile.)
Alison’s still not making a lot of progress in rehab, and Donnie’s still not letting her see the kids. But she’s finally owned up to being a bottle-hider — baby steps! — thanks to a potential friendship with fellow rehabber, a reformed Vic(tor)! I really like how the show’s using Vic now, for comic relief, as opposed to shit-disturbing nuisance like he had been last season. But not all is as it appears with Vic…
Aww, poor Fee! Don’t you just hate it when your hot date is cut short ’cause you’re being framed for murder? In fact, Felix is so upset that he’s painting while wearing PANTS. Although really good pants.
But also boozing, at least until Art gets him to sober up. The two of them team up to make sense of the plethora of evidence in Maggie and Helena’s storage locker. After Felix cops a feel of Art’s butt, I mean.
I really dig the odd couple dynamic between these two. Partly because of the Felix effect, ’cause he makes everything and everyone better. and partly because of Art having more to do than scowl and furrow his brows, now that he’s an honorary Clone Club member.
Mrs. S’s Home for Peculiar
According to Mrs. S, she and her crew hid Ethan in exchange for info on experiments performed on unborn children, and a runaway surrogate (Amelia). Ever since Carlton found Sarah, they’ve all been hiding from the Dyad’s reach.
Back in the present day, Mrs. S busts Paul’s weak surveillance game, proposing an alliance with him by bringing up the ever present Afghanistan thing. Considering how many people have used the same blackmail material against him, does Paul ever want to be like, “FUCK IT, I’ll just turn myself in”? Or at least, “FUCK IT, I’ll just make the FYA contingent happy and go back to Sarah for good.” BECAUSE HE SHOULD.
They Fought the Law
While Vic might actually be trying to keep to the straight and narrow, he’s also getting closer to Alison for DAMMIT ANGIE. Which just about negates all the nice things I thought about the nine-and-a-half-fingered wonder this episode.
As Cosima previously speculated, the Dyad was a contractor brought into Project LEDA only after the military discovered it. The Dyad soon took over, but the real threat has always been the Neolutionists inside Dyad. Leekie wouldn’t let Rachel be raised by the Duncans, who were prepared to expose the entire operation, and so he killed Rachel’s mother.
And if there had ever been any doubt of Rachel’s daddy issues: Ethan was her first monitor, and we all know what she likes to do with her monitors now. AHEM. Ethan insists that his and Susan’s (completely appropriate familial) love for Rachel was and is completely real and a part of the experiment — which bodes well for Delphine’s genuine affections for Cosima (and OK, even Donnie’s for Alison). Mostly because I refuse to believe otherwise.
Gracie might be able to move her lips again, but those stitches have left her with one heckuva five o’clock shadow. (That’ll heal though, as Helena assures from personal experience.) And Mark’s Boy Scout training makes him almost as stealthy as Paul is. Although I’m not sure which merit badge awards stalking a clone who escaped from your cult’s custody after her eggs had been harvested.
Stick to the Science, Geek Monkey
Active from the 1910s to the 1970s, the Cold River institute was into all kinds of human experimentation: missing limbs, extra limbs, eugenic sterlization. Among its records is a photo of the “Most Perfect Baby 1908” — could that be the original genome? Like, preserved DNA from way, way back? (OOOH, a flashback Maslany!?)
Cold River’s spiritual successor, Project LEDA, was basically a bunch of Professor Utoniums obsessed with creating perfect little girls. Ethan and Susan were recruited by the military in 1976, and they weren’t the only implantation team. It’s still unknown exactly how many clones there are — or how many embryos each team is responsible for. Since Amelia had the photo of the Duncans, I’m assuming she was under their care. I’m also guessing that they were involved with Rachel’s surrogate (if she wasn’t Susan herself), so that’s two implantations for one team already. And seeing as Sarah, Helena, and Rachel were all born in England, where the Duncans were, does that mean there were implantation teams everywhere there had been clones? As in, was there one where Alison and Beth were born, aka conveniently in Canada, possibly the GTA? When did the Dyad start intervening? Early enough for Leekie to have been on an implantation team? </end speculation spiral>
Anyway. In his first official act as Dyad Geek Monkey, Scott discovers that the baby teeth stem cells used in Cosima’s treatment comes from a younger relative of the clones — likely a niece or DAUGHTER OMG COULD IT BE KIRA’S TEETH!? What kind of sham tooth fairy did she have?! (Mrs. S? OMG NO NO FELIX?) And more importantly, why do you want to keep this on the DL, Delphine!?
Next episode: Felix drugs Vic, Mrs. S meets with Leekie, and Catie from our Pretty Little Liars recaps will be filling in for me while I’m away at Book Expo!