A Look at Orphan Black- Season 4, Episode 7: “The Antisocialism of Sex”

With the death of Kendall Malone and a cure now gone, Clone Club is divided, without hope, and now at a low point in their battle against Neolution.  And that means wild and crazy Sarah is finally free to let loose and spiral out of control.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Susan tells Rachel that she's on the island of Dr. Moreau

The episode begins with Rachel checking her prison after she hears a noise.  She calls out at a set of stairs, but gets no response, so she ends up climbing the stairs.  Gold star for her.  She finally sees outside for what I’m guessing is the first time in awhile.  Also upstairs, she stops upon a book.

Susan arrives, telling Rachel that it’s all over due to the original and chance of a cure now destroyed.  And Rachel finally learns where she is: the island of Dr. Moreau.

The Antisocialism of Sex- S is still upset at Sarah

At the safe house, all is silent.  Sarah checks on Mrs. S, who is still upset that Sarah put Kendall in the line of fire and S in the middle.  Now there’s not even a body to bury.  Though Sarah feels Kendall is her blood, Mrs. S. reminds Sarah that she came to her as an orphan.  Well, Sarah plans to go out, and that’s fine with S, but Kira stays with her.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Cosima talks to Scott about Kendall and Delphine

Cosima, meanwhile, sits in her marijuana tent, unable to shake her final moment with Kendall or Delphine’s death.  Again, we’re still talking about Delphine, so you know this is going somewhere.  Scott checks on Cosima, who feels that she pushed Sarah into making a deal and led everyone into Evie’s trap.  Scott, meanwhile, is going to power up, even though there’s nothing left.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Donnie comforts Alison

Alison tries to write a letter to S, but instead, she falls to her knees and prays to God for hope.  Donnie joins and hugs his wife, telling her to take whatever time she needs for her sisters.  In fact, he wants to cancel Gemma’s slumber party since it’s too soon after a tragedy, but Alison insists that it happen so they appear normal for the kids.  And there are hot dogs in the freezer, so she’s putting her goddamn foot down.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Susan gives Rachel a history lesson on Neolution

Susan talks to Rachel about the true history of Neolution, which dates back to the Victorian age.  Even Darwin helped create a secret scientific society that worked to create a better human.  The facility downstairs was built a century ago.  Susan built on top of that to continue the legacy, but now, Evie Cho builds on top of her.  Rachel wants to take her place, though.  After all, they still need a cure.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Kira tells Felix that Sarah went away

Felix consoles S, though he’s also curious where Sarah’s disappeared to this time.  Kira tells him that Sarah left again.  But no, Felix doesn’t think she does that anymore.  That’s not an option.  Felix promises to find Sarah and tells S that, as much as she may not like it, Sarah is the glue holding them all together.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Sarah has visions of Beth

So Sarah drowns her sorrows in alcohol and has visions of Beth.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Cosima doesn't think of Scott as her lab partner

Scott asks Hell-Wizard if anything can be recovered.  Cosima, though, is pessimistic.  Every test failed, so why would they repeat an experiment.  Scott suggests thinking outside the box, and Hell-Wizard thinks that Cosima should listen to his lab partner.  But then Cosima says that her lab partner died.

Wow, Cosima.  Way to be an asshole.  Anyway, since Cosima doesn’t have a way to make that up, she moves things along by revealing the bot from Sarah’s mouth.  See, told you it would pay off.

The Antisocialism of Sex- S tells Art about Cosima's encounter with Detective Duko

S tells Art about what Cosima said concerning the man who shot Kendall, who Art confirms as is Detective Duko, who also drove Beth to try and kill Susan.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Evie's nasty scar

Meanwhile, at Brightborn, it’s a big day for Evie, who has a nasty scar on her right side.  Shingles.  Therapy has brought her a long way, yes.  The doctor is still proud of how far she’s come.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Rachel and Susan speak with Evie

Following this, Evie speaks with Rachel and Susan to lay out her terms, as Rachel is representing Leda in transition.  Evie’s terms: Neolution is under her control.  Leda will be dismantled for its assets.  No need for a Helsinki event.  Sarah and her sisters are still a threat, so Evie has plans.  Rachel offers her help, as she’s not her sisters, but Evie won’t let a clone take a position of importance.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Dizzy finds and joins Sarah at the bar

Sarah continues to drink her problems away when Dizzy joins her at the bar.  He asks if she found out anything concerning the implant, but Sarah is too focused on her drink.  So much that she doesn’t notice when a woman nearby offers her a drink when she wasn’t looking at her glass.  Sarah goes off to speak with the woman and her friend.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Reverend Mike, played by Ryan Blakely, has a gift

Back with the Hendrix, Alison and Donnie continue party planning.  Donnie wants Alison to be able to talk to someone, even if it isn’t him.  As such, he invited Reverend Mike, played by Ryan Blakely, who comes bearing a gift.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Sarah hits the dance floor

We then return to the bar- why this wasn’t one whole sequence, I don’t know- as Sarah gets more and more sloshed and closer to the two friends.  She heads to the dance floor.  Dizzy though?  He don’t dance.  He just watches Sarah from a distance.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Reverend Mike tells Alison that the stage is free for musical review

Back to the party.  Again, play these scenes together.  For some reason, Gemma is in a foul mood, so Alison sends her upstairs.  Reverend Mike has good news: the pageant is done, so the stage is free for the musical review.  He knows that Alison has been having a difficult time, but Alison doesn’t feel it’s insurmountable.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Felix asks Dizzy if he's seen Sarah

So Sarah heads off with her two new friends.  Felix enters the bar and asks random patrons if they’ve seen Sarah.  Never mind that he has no idea if she’s even been there tonight, but whatever.  He spots Dizzy, who confirms that Sarah was indeed at the bar.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Sarah in a three way

In fact, she’s busy doing lines and getting in a three way.  You know, like Beth.  The doing lines part, I mean.  I have no idea if Beth ever participated in a threesome.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Art beats up Duko

At the police station, Art ambushes Duko with a punch and proceeds to beat the crap out of him for killing Kendall.  Duko takes it well.  He tells Art that he can’t stop Evie Cho.  Plus, Art is being watched.  After all, he’s collaborating with Sarah and planted the cell phone in Maggie Chen’s hand to exonerate Beth from wrongdoing?

The Antisocialism of Sex- Rachel tells Charlotte that they're both going to die

As S arranges a sniper rifle, Rachel and Charlotte paint.  Charlotte is still coughing up blood.  They talk of the island prison they’re on.  Rachel says that they share a problem with Ira: Charlotte is sick.  That’s why Susan is testing her.  And there’s no cure- Charlotte is dying and soon, Rachel will join her in death.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Donnie tells a scary story

Donnie tells a scary story to the girls.  They’re frightened, so he’s accomplished his job.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Dizzy pulls a drunk Sarah out of the bar

Back at the bar, Sarah returns to Dizzy, but Sarah’s new friends start a fight.  Luckily, Dizzy pulls Sarah out of the bar.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Sarah gets on top of Dizzy

So the two head to his place and have even more drinks.  Dizzy brings up M.K. and mentions his friend, Ed, who also had an implant, but was killed.  Sarah’s done with talking.  Instead, she puts Dizzy on the bed and straddles him.

When Sarah puts Dizzy’s thumb in her mouth, he notices that her implant is gone.  He wants to know how, but Sarah is off the clock.  She claims to know nothing about removing the implant and immediately leaves, all while still seeing Beth following her.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Police break up birthday party to arrest Donnie

Just as Donnie’s scary story ends, there’s a knock at the door.  It’s the police, Detective Lindstein among them, who pick the absolute worst time to arrest just Donnie for drug trafficking.  A quickly healed Duko enters and tells Alison that they’ll need to keep in touch while Donnie is taken downtown.  Wait, how come Donnie is the only one arrested?

The Antisocialism of Sex- S checks on Kira

S checks on Kira and asks if S meant it when she said it’s Sarah’s fault that Kendall died.  After all, Sarah thinks that it’s her fault.  S is confident that Sarah will be back, but Kira doesn’t think so.  In fact, Sarah is at a bridge with Beth at her side.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Cosima suggests putting the bot in her mouth

Cosima and Scott examine the bot, comparing Sarah’s DNA pre and post-bot.  In what I think is a very daring, yet stupid move, Cosima is willing to take the risk of implanting the bot into her own mouth.  Food arrives, but Cosima locks the door and heads back downstairs.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Sarah talks to Beth

Sarah tells Beth that she’s trying to buy a train ticket.  Beth offers her credit card.  Ghosts can do that.  She then tells Sarah that tonight is their last night.  Hopefully.

Cosima extracts the bot, even though Scott tells her she has no idea what it will do to her.  Cosima feels that her death, if that happens, could help the other sisters understand the disease.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Beth with Sarah at the bridge

As Sarah rants to herself and a guy who walks past, she tells Beth that life would have been better if they hadn’t crossed paths.  She then asks Beth how smashed you have to be in order to kill yourself.  It’s not that high of a drop, though.  And if Sarah screws this up, she could end up like Rachel.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Felix remembers the news about Delphine

S calls Felix to tell her about what Kira said concerning Sarah following Beth.  Felix then gets a call from Scott, who tells her that she’s about to do something dangerous.  When Scott mentions Delphine, something hits Felix, who then calls Cosima.

But Cosima is too deep into the procedure and starts carving into her mouth.  Just as she’s almost got the bot, she puts Felix on speakerphone.  Felix tells her that Krystal saw someone pick up Delphine after she got shot.  That’s enough to make Cosima stop.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Felix finds Sarah at the bridge

And just to help tie things up even neater, Felix arrives at the bridge just as Sarah is leaning over the edge.  He tells her that this isn’t the way and she has to be stronger than Beth.  At the same time, Beth advises Sarah to bring everyone together.  They need her.  Sarah decides that tonight is not her night to die.

The Antisocialism of Sex- S and Sarah have a quiet moment

The next day, she makes her way into at the safe house just as S is making a hangover breakfast.  Appropriate.  The two say no words.  Just hold hands.  Now see, that’s effective storytelling.

The Antisocialism of Sex- M.K. speaks with Kira

Kira, meanwhile, plays Minecraft when she gets a surprise call from M.K.  Kira calls her the girl in the shadows.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Ira finds Rachel on the floor

Back at the island, Rachel makes her way down the stairs.  She calls out for anyone, but gets no response.  She trips and falls down the stairs when, all of a sudden, she spots a swan.  She asks Ira if she saw it, but whatever it is that Rachel saw, it’s glitching in and out.

Okay, so after the emotional turmoil coming with Kendall’s death, it makes sense that Orphan Black gives the characters a chance to deal with the fallout and let us see how they’ve been impacted.  It would be too much to continue the chase after Evie Cho if we don’t get to process her actions alongside the main characters.  Plus, there was bound to be fallout between Sarah and the others.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Sarah offers a drink to Beth

Sometimes, this proved to be effective storytelling, and far more worked than didn’t, but I’ll get to that later.  First, Sarah’s self-destruction was a change of pace as we watched her go through a whirlwind of emotions.  She’d already detonated her relationship with Felix, and now S blames her for getting Kendall killed.  Rather than accept this and move forward with a plan, Sarah finds herself literally on the edge, as Beth did.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Felix joins Sarah at the bridge

Despite Felix saying that Sarah is what holds everyone together, Sarah herself isn’t someone you’d think of as a good leader.  I wouldn’t, at least.  She’s a strong person, no doubt, but a lot of her strength comes from the bond she has with her family.  Without that, she becomes the evasive person we’d heard of as far back as the first season.  Unwilling to deal with consequences and instead choosing to run.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Sarah and Dizzy

More often than not, Sarah has been willing to take risks in dangerous situations, even when the odds are against her.  But here, she finds solace in alcohol and drugs, mocks a ghost, and tries to solicit sex from Dizzy, who expressed concern when he learned that Sarah no longer had an implant.  Rather than help, Sarah continued to spiral downward.  To be honest, I wish we could have had this version of Sarah for one more episode.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Sarah sees Beth

Since she’s apparently what holds everyone together, it would have been interesting to see how the others operate without her in the mix.  More than that, maybe see where Sarah would have ended up, because I did want to see more of her interacting with Beth.  Maybe give her more time to vent about how she never wanted this life.  But it looks like this might be the last we see of Beth.

leftovers

And that’s unfortunate, because there was plenty of ground to cover between them both.  In the second season of The Leftovers, for example, Patti appeared to Kevin and followed him for a few episodes.  Only he could see and interact this figment of his imagination and he wouldn’t be rid of her until they did battle.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Beth stands before Sarah

Now obviously, I’m not asking for Beth and Sarah to duel, but in light of this episode, having Beth appear to Sarah would have been an opportunity to deal with her psychology and get into her head.  Does she hold Beth responsible for forcing her into this situation?  We don’t know, and we may not get any more interactions between the two of them.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Felix with Sarah on the bridge

I’ll get to the other clones in a moment, but I want to address Felix right now.  First off, despite Sarah meddling in his relationship with Adele, he remains loyal to Sarah and the rest of his extended family.  It would have been easy for him to be petty and leave Sarah to her own devices, but at the end of the day, he still cares for her.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Felix tells Cosima that Delphine is alive

That said, it’s a little convenient for him to show up right at the moment where Sarah is about to throw her life away, but that’s not my problem.  No, my issue is his sudden remembrance of Delphine.  You can say that he didn’t have a time to speak with Cosima or anyone else as they processed Kendall’s death.  But Delphine is still an ally to the clones.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Art with S

I don’t buy for a minute that Felix wouldn’t have at least told S about what Krystal said.  Hell, Art was with S earlier in the episode to talk about Detective Duko.  Sure, there wouldn’t have been a reason to bring up Krystal, but if there’s some news about Delphine, why wouldn’t he tell her?  You don’t even have to tell Cosima directly, but I’m baffled that neither Art nor Felix brought this up to anyone.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Scott reacts to Cosima only referring to Delphine as her lab partner

Had Scott not said anything, Cosima would have gone through with this risky surgery.  And by the way, good on Scott for stepping up and not letting Cosima walk over him.  He may not be to Cosima what Delphine is, but damn it, he’s proven his worth and loyalty to Cosima and the clone family.  He deserves better treatment from Cosima at this point.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Cosima operates on herself

As for Cosima, I’m glad that she also gets time to grieve, as she pushed for Sarah to make this deal, which soon led to Kendall’s kidnapping and execution.  But she shows major initiative by putting her life at risk when she attempts to put the bot into her mouth.

It’s a bold move that could have killed her, so while not the smartest idea, I appreciate that we see she’s just as willing to put everything on the line for the sake of the clones.  She’s not just the geek of the group.  And while it was plot convenience that Scott jogged Felix’s memory about Delphine, at least Cosima has some semblance of happiness.

History Yet to be Written- Delphine gets shot

But it makes you wonder: if Delphine is alive, who has her?  And has anything happened to her?  Questions for later.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Reverend Mike with Alison

The introduction of Reverend Mike could be interesting for Alison, who, despite not having much of a connection to Kendall- I don’t remember if they ever even met- also grieves for the loss of someone in her extended family.  It’s nice to see her defenses drop for a moment.  She’s less a busybody and more someone in mourning.  Too bad the police had to bust the birthday party.

My issue with the Alison and Donnie is less that we saw them and more in which there scenes were presented.  We kept cutting back and forth between this and Sarah at the bar and I found it very jarring.  Just have the entire scene play out.  By cutting back and forth, there’s some humorous juxtaposition, yes, but the episode felt less focused to me during those moments.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Detective Duko speaks with Alison

It also feels like the only reason we got Alison and Donnie this week was to have them meet Detective Duko, who must have Wolverine’s quick healing factor, given how fine he looked after Art assaulted him.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Rachel paints with Charlotte

Even Rachel faces a setback not just with the death of the original, but because Evie won’t have her meddling in her plans.  And like Seth before her, she’s glitching.  Her chance at a cure is gone and she knows that Charlotte’s not long for this world, based on her illness.  Despite how cold Rachel has been in the past, she’s still not an absolute monster.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Beth watches Sarah spiral downward

All of these emotions from the clones stem back to an impressive performance by Maslany, as she goes through various cycles as different characters and makes it all look effortless.  It’s a good way to tell the story by letting the characters show their emotions, even if sometimes those feelings are spelled out for us.

The Antisocialism of Sex- Sarah and S reconcile

My favorite moment of the episode has to be one of the final scenes.  Sarah and S sit down and reconcile.  We know that they said things they regretted, they’re both reeling from a heavy loss, and everyone they know and love is at a low moment right now.  They know exactly what the other is feeling, but it’s all conveyed without a single word of dialogue.  Just silent acknowledgement.  I love it.

Despite my reservations about some of the editing in the episode, as well as Felix and Art’s sudden forgetfulness concerning Delphine, “The Antisocialism of Sex” was a very good episode that showed Clone Club processing a major defeat and loss of a cure.

Seeing Sarah spiral to the point of near suicide, Cosima attempt to sacrifice herself for a greater good, and Alison grieve were all great moments made strong due to Maslany’s versatility as an actress.

But with news of Delphine possibly being alive, Evie continuing her power play, Donnie’s arrest, and M.K.’s surprise communication with Kira- does she have her own computer?- make for hopefully good payoffs in the episodes to come.

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