A Look at Orphan Black- Season 3, Episode 8: “Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method”

“Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method” is a strong entry for the season.  It set the stakes high, had a good amount of drama, and gave us a complex dilemma as Felix and Sarah run into another clone but try to keep her away from the dangers of Clone Club.  It’s not that easy, though.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Krystal does Delphine's nails

The episode begins with Delphine receiving a manicure from Krystal Goderitch, who discusses her encounter with Seth and Rudy.  She never expected two to show up and if security hadn’t arrived when they did, Krystal would have been in the back of a van.  Interesting night, but the twins didn’t have to kill Krystal’s boyfriend, Hector.  As hard as it’s been readjusting, nothing can crush Krystal’s spirit.

Over at the cantina, Dr. Coady speaks with Benchman about all of Castor’s work going up in smoke, though Benchman reminds Coady that she’s lucky to be alive.  Without the original genome, though, the few remaining Castor boys will be dead within a year.  Rudy is currently doing some field work as a result of Coady’s source inside Leda.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Krystal meets with Dr. Nealon to discuss Krystal's potential monitors and Rachel's progress

After her manicure, Delphine meets up with Dr. Nealon and confirms that Krystal is still naïve about what’s going on.  There are three candidates vying for her monitor, but that will all come down to who Krystal decides to pick.  There’s a problem closer to home, though: Rachel’s aphasia is improving and she still has value, though she could still be a liability as well.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Skype call between Cosima and Sarah

Cosima and Sarah update each other on their situations, with Cosima assuring Sarah that she’s fine after her bleeding episode.  Delphine has teams that are working on gene therapy, so hopefully they all learn something soon.  The two then talk about how to go forward.  Sarah feels like they’ve been on their back foot against everyone else, plus she intends to finish Beth’s work.  It’s a lot to think about and they can’t afford to lose another clone.  Luckily, Scott and Cosima have been holding something back.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Alison and Donnie learn from Felix that they'll be watching Gracie and Helena

At House Hendrix, Alison and Donnie learn from Felix that they’ll soon be playing babysitter to Gracie and Helena, as they’re apparently a package deal.  Donnie, naturally, doesn’t want to play host, but it’s apparently the Hendrix’s turn.  I’m guessing there’s some sort of wheel that the clones spin to find out who gets to watch Helena or whoever else gets wrapped into this.  Anyway, Felix threatens to expose this drug making business, but Alison sees no need for that.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Cosima asks Shay about near death experiences

Shay works on Cosima, who asks her about near death experiences.  Then comes the theory: before we leave this world, we see what we love- that sort of “can’t live without it” love.  And if it’s strong enough, sometimes we find our way back.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Scott and Sarah discuss the code and Rachel's involvement

Now it’s Scott’s turn to Skype with Sarah, who he brings up to speed about Duncan’s book and Rachel being able to identify the code.  She won’t do that, though, until she talks with Sarah.  Delphine doesn’t know about any of this yet, as Cosima doesn’t trust her.  Scott thinks that maybe she should be trusted, but Sarah thinks that Delphine will hand over whatever she has to Topside.  If this is Duncan’s key to everything, Topside could use it to restart human cloning.

So Sarah finally speaks with Rachel, who is now sporting an eye patch.  She’s willing to cooperate, as her father intended, but in exchange, she wants to be taken out of DYAD so she can live a quiet life in Taiwan.  We never get an explanation as to why Rachel picks Taiwan specifically, but I would have liked one.  Anyway, a dead woman can’t pass through customs, so Rachel needs Sarah to steal Krystal Goderitch’s ID.  Luckily, she’s only 350 kilometers away.

However, Sarah wants proof that Rachel can really translate this text.  She did manage to translate a page that Scott gave her, which translated to a nursery rhyme: “In London town, we all fell down.  And Castor woke from its slumber.”  Mrs. S is hesitant about trusting Rachel, as springing her from DYAD could destroy the alliance with Delphine, as she’s the only person between Sarah and Topside.  Sarah, though, doesn’t give a shit if Delphine is pissed off.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Cosima shows Shay around DYAD when Scott arrives

Cosima shows Shay around DYAD facilities.  Scott arrives and learns that Cosima is ready as long as Sarah is.  Before Shay can go through the Dr. Moreau book, it goes straight into Scott’s backpack.  Soon, Delphine enters with bad news for Cosima.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Alison and Donnie talk about Jason Kellerman

Over at Bubbles, Donnie manages to bond a bit with Helena before confronting Alison over the kiss with Jason Kellerman.  True, Jason actually kissed Cosima, but he didn’t know that.  Though Donnie thinks that Alison would have kissed him back, Alison promises to talk to Jason.  Also, Gracie has arrived for her first day.

The plan to steal Krystal’s identity is set to go in motion, though Sarah warns Felix to keep Krystal naïve.  They don’t need anyone else in Clone Club and Krystal doesn’t need this shit.  Felix heads inside for an appointment with Krystal.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Rudy makes a surprise visit to Scott's place

Scott heads home and finds his cast, Denise, in Rudy’s arms.  Guess this must be the field work.  Rudy had planned to call on Cosima, but he knows that she’s under the weather.  What he wants right now is a good science fiction book, but not just any book.  He’d like “The Island of Dr. Moreau.”

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Krystal gets candid with Felix

Krystal shares her twin encounter with Felix.  It’s been damaging to her psyche, she says, and she feels she has no one to talk to, so she talks to everyone.  Her two biggest fears are twins and clowns.  Clowns, Felix, not clones.  Felix has a fun game: What’s Your Porn Name?  It can be anything like Bitch Mistress of Cumalot.  I, for one, have never heard of this game before.  Or your pet’s first name, plus your mother’s maiden name.  In Krystal’s case, that translates to Muffins Slowikowski.

Then Krystal puts the game on pause for a moment. She asks Felix if he ever feels that something isn’t right.  Krystal may not be super smart, but she’s not stupid, either.  Her boyfriends are on a two year rotation.  Before Hector, there was Craig.  Two years to the day, he leaves for Alaska.  And why do hotel security guards have submachine guns?  Something just doesn’t add up and Krystal feels that she’s missing something big.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Felix finds Krystal's identification

Felix heads off to use the restroom, but heads to the staff room and finds Krystal’s locker.  He finds Krystal’s wallet, but more than that, he also discovers a journal that reveals Krystal has been doing some investigating.  She’s more than suspicious and is starting to piece this together.

Before Felix leaves, he tells Krystal- who now feels paranoid all of the time- that she is one of a kind.  She’s a survivor and not alone.

Outside, Felix feels like absolute shit for deceiving Krystal like this.  Not just that, he stole her identity for Rachel, of all people.  He does let Sarah know that Krystal is smarter than Sarah thinks she is.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Delphine tells Cosima about the European team

At DYAD, Delphine tells Cosima about the European team, cutting-edge gene therapists.  Duncan only gave them one synthetic sequence to work with, so they failed.  Within the next month, Cosima will need another stem cell treatment from Kira, but Cosima refuses to put Kira through that again.  Before the two can figure out how to unlock and identify the rest of the synthetic sequences, Delphine receives a frantic call from Scott.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Jason and Alison kiss

Jason and Alison meet.  They talk about the kiss- and kiss again, mind you- but to be honest, this is a business relationship.  The reality is that they’re all in bed together now.

Also, Krystal gets an unexpected run-in with Dr. Nealon…

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Delphine learns that Scott and Cosima have been keeping secrets from her

Back at DYAD, Delphine learns about the book and how Cosima and Scott kept it because the two can’t trust each other right now.  Scott reveals that, though the book is gone, Rachel is able to read it.  However, who is the rat that told Castor about the book.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- One of Scott's friends delivers a copy of the text

Over at Mrs. S’s, one of Scott’s board game buddies delivers a package to Felix.  Inside are copies of the text from the book.  Delphine may never forgive Rachel, but it’s too late for that.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Delphine confronts Scott and Rachel

Delphine confronts Rachel and Scott, thinking that Rachel is the one who tipped off Castor.  She receives a text from Cosima, who needs to talk.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Scott and Rachel leave DYAD

This leaves Scott and Rachel to leave DYAD, with the help of a guard who shut off some security cameras.  There’s a handi-van on P6 that they can use.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Donnie punches Jason

Earlier, Donnie went through Alison’s phone to set up this scene.  Jason shows up at Bubbles, thinking that he’ll be meeting Alison, but he runs into Donnie instead.  What follows is a cock measuring contest between the two, and it ends with Jason beating the hell out of Donnie.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Cosima tells Delphine that she's quitting

What does Cosima need to talk about?  She’s quitting, effective immediately.  Delphine isn’t a fan of this since Cosima is a self-aware clone and anyone out there could be a spy, implying that Shay isn’t as upfront as Cosima believes.  But Cosima tells Delphine to let her go if she’s not going to be with her or switch sides.

Cosima reveals her near-death experience to Delphine.  She could have slipped away, but she had a vision of Delphine.  Why didn’t Cosima share this?  Because Delphine doesn’t believe in stuff like that.  The two kiss and, I suppose, make up.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Rachel is ready to translate the text

Scott brings Rachel to Mrs. S’s place and Rachel begins translating the text.  Revealed is the rhyme: “In London town, we all fell down and Castor woke from slumber.  Find the first, the beast, the cursed.  The original has a number.”  Rachel then writes out a number: H-2-6-2-3-9.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Dr. Nealon arrives to take the copied text

Then in enters Dr. Nealon and another man.  He swipes the text from Rachel.  She tries to get out of her seat, but collapses.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Dr. Nealon informs Delphine about Rachel's condition

At DYAD, Scott laments not making two copies.  That’s always important to remember.  Dr. Nealon enters and informs Delphine about Rachel’s state: she suffered an acute intra-cranial bleed and though Nealon induced a coma to control the swelling, Rachel may never recover.  Delphine is livid with Cosima and Scott for not trusting her.  Not to mention they cost Delphine the one person who could translate it.  As a result, Cosima’s resignation is accepted.  As is Scott’s, even though he never submitted one.  Well hell, that actually sucks.  Oh, and she gives Cosima a folder on Shay.

Sarah, Mrs. S and Felix are still trying to decipher the code when S realizes that the bit Rachel translated points to London.  It’s not only their best lead, but their only lead to the Castor Original.  Looks like they’re going home!

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Rachel calls Dr. Nealon

The episode comes to a close as Dr. Nealon receives a call from Rachel, who is far from DYAD.  Neither Cosima nor Sarah know that she’s gone, so Nealon just has to take good care of Ms. Goderitch.  When Rachel wakes up a perfectly matched prosthetic eye, she’ll be her old self in the mirror again.

Shit, and I really loved the eye patch, too.

“Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method” is a very good episode.  Much more than the previous episode, it managed to weave in all of the clones and give them all something to do that adds to the overall storyline.  I mean, still less so with Alison, but she’s got Helena and Gracie with her now, and that’s sure to pay off before the season ends.

A constant theme of this season has been trust, and this episode is no exception: who can be trusted, who shouldn’t be trusted, and how much trust should we place in people, even when they’re close to us?  With Clone Club, there’s no straight answer to this question.  Earlier in the season, Sarah said that she only trusts her sisters.  Cosima said that the clones can’t rely on anyone but themselves.  True, there are others like Felix, Mrs. S and Scott who can be trusted, but the clones are wary of letting others into their circle.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Delphine accepts Cosima and Scott's resignations

Delphine, for example, is as much an ally to Clone Club as much as she is an enemy because Cosima has reasons to avoid trusting her.  Part of that is their conflicting feelings for one another that cloud their judgment, but Cosima has every reason to be suspicious that Delphine would take the translated code to Topside.  She doesn’t have proof of that, but given Delphine’s actions, it’s not unlikely that Cosima would be suspicious.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Delphine and Cosima about to kiss

And yet the two are unable to move past one another.  From the hand touches, the way they talk to one another and how they look at each other’s eyes, Cosima and Delphine have not moved on and aren’t ready to let go.  This break-up was a result of Delphine needing to devote more time and resources to DYAD, but it seemed like the two could pick up again if they wanted to, and it’s clear that they do.  I’m glad that the two managed to, for the most part, keep it a bit professional.

Aside from Delphine showing up last week, things never got confrontational for the sake of cheap drama.  It would have been easy to write her off as being jealous of Shay, but it appears that there may be more to Shay than we originally knew.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Scott unintentionally resigns from DYAD

While the clones have their fair share of guilt that comes with keeping secrets, we see this week how it impacts their allies.  Scott, for example, is a true friend of Cosima and probably never intended to get wrapped up in this.  His involvement has put his and his cat’s life at risk as a result and though Scott got off…well, scot free, it’s an example of the dangers that come with being associated with the clones, no matter how much he wants to help.  And despite the risks, he continues to lend his services, damn the consequences.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Felix tells Krystal that she's one of a kind

A stronger example of guilt would have to be Felix, as seen in his conversation with Krystal.  First off, Jordan Gavaris was excellent in his conversation with Krystal.  Though this is Maslany stepping into another character’s shoes, the dynamic between her and Gavaris felt fresh.  Through the looks on Felix’s face and Krystal’s talk of trust and suspicion, there was no way that Felix could leave Krystal in the dark with the burdens she’s carrying.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Krystal speaks with Felix

Things about Krystal’s life feel off, but she doesn’t have the full picture yet.  Though Sarah doesn’t want Krystal involved, I don’t buy her reasoning.  Frankly, I don’t think either Felix or Sarah believe it, either.  They’re stealing the identity of a person that they barely know and they’re withholding information that she would want to hear.  It’s unfair to Krystal and unfortunate that Felix and Sarah resort to this, but I’m glad that Felix screwed the rules and removed his earpiece so he could be candid with Krystal.  Sure, he didn’t tell her anything vital, but he did manage to lift her spirits.  It was a sweet scene.

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Donnie bonds with Helena

Also very warm to see was Helena slowly adjusting to life with the Hendrix family.  Whether it’s bonding with Gemma or making jokes with Donnie, Helena seems to have fit in nicely with your less than average suburban family.

It’s good that she and Donnie have a rapport going on, since that’s about the one good thing Donnie has going for him this week.  I’m glad that he stood up to Jason and it’s nice to see him show unwavering devotion to Alison, but he got more than he bargained for when he got his ass handed to him.  But then again, what do you expect to happen when you go up against a Saiyan?

Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method- Rachel is a threat to Delphine

So Rachel’s had a hand in this the entire time?  You know, if she ends up getting a prosthetic eye, good for her, but damn it if she just couldn’t keep that eye patch a bit longer. I know I’m not alone in calling that Rachel would get an eye patch at some point, and she rocks it well like a true villain- I just wish she got to wear it longer.  As is, it looks like she’ll have a prosthetic in no time.

But despite her limited mobility and speech, she still has a great deal of influence and knowledge since she’s the only one who can translate the code.  This makes her integral to the plot again and gives her an advantage because she can decipher the text, while the other clones, as far as we know, cannot.

Now, though, it looks like we’re racing to London.  S, Felix, and Sarah have a hunch of where to go, but Dr. Coady may still be able to get what she wants as well.  “Ruthless in Purpose, and Insidious in Method” was a great episode that placed the characters in morally conflicted situations.  It set the stakes higher through Rachel’s involvement and soon recovery, gave us light hearted moments like the Hendrix family situation, and maintained enough interest for the following episode as we head to London.

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