A Look at Orphan Black- Season 5, Episode 6: “Manacled Slim Wrists”

It’s time to revisit an old friend.

The episode begins with Krystal and her friend, Brie, played by Cara Ricketts, recording a video on their channel, which now has 50,000 subscribers.  She wants her followers to continue exposing the lies of big business, but enough about that.  Time to talk about getting a party look.  But then things go south when Brie starts losing her hair.  Whoops.

The two show this video to Scott and Art and thank them for their help, because obviously this means Krystal has been poisoned by big cosmetics.  Makes sense.

Mr. Frotnenac arrives at S’s home to pick up Kira.  He monitors her condition and says that she isn’t sick, but then she vomits.  Obviously sick.  And Frontenac will need a new set of shoes.

Back on the island, Cosima receives a visit from Mud, who now wears a bell around her neck as a punishment.  Cosima wants Mud’s help, telling her that everything on the island is a lie, not to mention Mud must know that PT will fertilize Kira’s eggs and put them in surrogates.  Despite Cosima’s pleas, Mud won’t free her.

Turns out Kira being sick was just an act of ipecac, and this was on account of Delphine’s warning to keep Kira away from DYAD.  Speaking of Delphine, she’s to meet up with Felix and Adele, as they’ve found a lead on the Neolution money trail.  S and Sarah go over some paperwork, with S telling Sarah that she’s got more than one source, but leaves it at that.

Then Sarah receives a call from Art, telling her that they may have a lead.  Art and Krystal video call her and share the conspiracy theory of Brie being poisoned.  In addition to apparently Brie, an executive named Leonard Sipp, CEO of Blue Zone Cosmetics, was targeted.  Krystal is into Leonard, but one day, he stopped contacting Krystal.  And apparently, Leonard here sold Blue Zone Cosmetics to a DYAD subsidiary.

Frontenac reports to Rachel that Kira is a bit under the weather, but Westmoreland wants to begin the treatment sooner, rather than later.  For now, Rachel will allow Kira to rest.

Susan and Westmoreland discuss needing Cosima for Kira’s progress, not to mention that Cosima saw PT’s mask slip.  As Mud wheels in a machine, Susan expresses her concern , but PT says that Susan’s work was just part of her crazy ideals. What PT couldn’t get with brains in the past, he bought.  And he bought scientists aside from Susan, such as Virginia Coady, who enters the room.

Of course, Coady is pissed from being held in that institution, but Susan doesn’t want her help, even though Coady feels her help could speed things up.  After all, PT separated Castor from LEDA at Susan’s request.  But now they’re together as PT realizes that progress requires equilibrium and balance of opposing forces.

Sarah and S go over Krystal’s theory and it’s possible connection to LIN28A. Sarah considers going undercover as Krystal to get Leonard to talk, now that they’ve bought some time with Kira.  Krystal just has to set up a meeting. Though Art doesn’t think it’s a good idea.  Kira, meeting, has a code name for the island: Wonderland.  And if she has to, she’ll hustle Rachel, but Sarah tells Kira that she’s done her part.

Krystal would prefer to talk to this CEO herself since it’s her source, but Art tells her to just set up the meeting and stay put.

Dr. Coady officially introduces herself to Cosima.  The lab is an old friend to Coady, who assures Cosima that she’s not dead stock yet- just Susan’s baseline.  Coady tells Cosima to shift her thinking one step to be a part of this revolution, but Cosima writes Coady off as insane.

Ira can’t believe that Dr. Coady is involved now, and Susan figures that her presence could ruin everything.  After all, she created Castor, and Ira would like to learn more about himself.  Susan slaps Ira, causing him to glitch, and then says that she should’ve killed Coady when she had the chance.  Susan is everything but a killer, sure, but that may have to change.  Well, the least Ira can do is try to get close.

Scott needs to take a blood sample from Brie to test toxins in her system.  Brie complies, but provides enough of a distraction for Krystal to leave.

Back at Revival, as the followers hold a memorial for Salvador.  They’re upset, but still believe in the Founder’s promise.  Then Ira spots and joins Coady in the medical trailer.  She brings up Ira’s separation from his brothers.  Ira then spots several blood bags and wonder what’s going on, but Coady asks if Ira has shown any symptoms.  After all, she’s close to a cure.  Turns out that Susan never even tried to fix Ira.

Krystal informs Art and Sarah that she’s going to go after this source herself.  And they’ll be in her ear the entire time, so they’re at least backup.  At last, Leonard Sipp, played by Tom Cullen, arrives.  She wants to know why she’s been ghosted, but then the two start kissing and the fun starts.

Leonard’s explanation is that he had to prioritize his career and just closed a huge deal.  He asks if she wants to join the party, but then he gets a call.  Krystal then gets right to it and says that Leonard sold his company to DYAD.  Great subtlety, this Krystal.

Scott, meanwhile, tells Brie that she hasn’t been poisoned and isn’t going bald, just a bit of hair loss.  He asks if she’s tried any new products or eaten any new food, so she dumps out her bag and admits that she has a problem with stealing things.

Art and Sarah tell Krystal to ask Len about LIN28A and to keep it in her pants.  Good luck with that second one.  Krystal maintains that DYAD is bad for business and asks why DYAD would want a cosmetics company.  She knows that Leonard is an innovator and says that the two of them can stand up to big cosmetics.  After all, that’s why Leonard approached Krystal at the trade show because he liked her vlog.  Right.

Krystal retreats to the bathroom and knows that Leonard is lying about liking her vlog.  Sarah then gets a call from Scott.

Ira and Susan conclude that the blood collection is PT doing parabiosis to extend his life. Ira wants to leave, but Susan believes she can use this suspect science to her advantage.  Plus, in her mind PT and Coady together are dangerous.  Susan figures that the best mind for Ira’s cure is Cosima, not Coady.  While Susan has sacrificed everything for Neolution, it’s time to bring it all down.

As Krystal takes a leak and considers kicking Leonard in the balls, Sarah and Art tell her about the items that Brie stole.  By the way, Sarah has yet to take off the wig she was going to wear if she masqueraded as Krystal.  Leonard, meanwhile, goes through Krystal’s bag and finds the aforementioned cream.  He asks Krystal about the cream, but she wants to hear it from him, first.

So Leonard tells her that it’s an experimental prototype, and when he calls her stupid, Krystal lives up to her promise and kicks him in the balls, so Len admits that the cream is part of a dermal delivery system that DYAD needs- the next big thing in regenerative therapy.  It makes a rabbit’s hair fall out.  So Krystasl rubs it all over Len’s beard, and he soon flees.

We return to Revival, where Mud sees that another child- Aisha- has died.  A members wonders why the Founder is silent on this.  Good question.

So Mud tells Cosima that Aisha died.  Ira joins them with news of Susan’s plan, which will involve them banding together against PT, now that they know he’s using children’s blood to extend his life.  Mud won’t turn against PT, given that he saved her from her former junkie life, but Cosima asks Mud if she’s here by choice.

Rachel then receives a call from PT, who asks why Kira isn’t at DYAD.  Rachel promises to take care of this problem.

As Mud works on PT, he tells Susan that he didn’t loop her in on the parabiosis because he knew she would object, but Susan admits that it’s worth a try.  When Mud drops a bag, Susan takes an opportunity to inject another fluid.  PT tells Mud that he’s been watching her for a long time and says that she’s been a great comfort.  So he tells Mud to remove the bell and forgive herself.

Downstairs, a still glitching Ira frees Cosima from her cell.  Cosima plans to get Charlotte and the cure before they escape, but Ira gives her an envelope, just in case.

Mr. Frontenac and Rachel make a surprise, late-night visit to S’s home to pick up Kira for a sleep study.  S warns Rachel that the day will come when she needs them, but Kira assures S that she will be okay.

Two villagers raid through Cosima’s supplies and find the cure.  Cosima tells the citizens that they’re right to protect the children, but then tells then that PT Westmoreland is not who they think he is.  She shows them the photo of PT and Susan Duncan in 1967 and tells them that the fountain isn’t real.

Everyone is upset about the deception, but Cosima tells them that Aisha is dead because of Westmoreland.  All she wants is to leave.  And she does with Charlotte in tow.  The villagers, meanwhile, begin setting fire to the labs.

As Susan waits for her plan to play out, she and PT discuss William Wordsworth’s Lines Written in Early Spring.  Then Mud and Dr. Coady, armed with a gun, enter and tell PT that Susan was trying to kill him.

Cosima and Charlotte head to the boat house, though Charlotte points out that they’re far from the mainland.  Even still, with charts and extra gasoline, Cosima is confident that they will be fine.  Though Cosima checks for anyone approaching, Charlotte is confident that they’re fine. The two soon make their exit.

Ira searches the compound and finally finds Susan dead in her wheelchair with the same injection that she tried to use on Westmoreland.

PT, meanwhile, watches Revival go up in flames while Mud, standing in the middle of the chaos, picks up the photo of PT and Susan and eyes it with the same anger that PT has as he watches the village burn.

I’d like to try and break down the role of each clone as best as I can.  They all have their roles when it comes to helping out for the greater good of Clone Club: Sarah is the hustler, Helena is the assassin, Cosima is the scientist, and Alison is…the support, I guess.  Though she wasn’t around that long, MK was the hacker.

Krystal is the bonafide wildcard.  Though she doesn’t bring anything to the table and seems to just happen upon luck, you could take one look at Krystal and write her off as irrelevant to Clone Club.  But the fact that her wild theories and ‘investigative’ work both garnered results have shown that she has real value to the other clones.

Granted, every other word she says is still nonsense and she’s not at all subtle, but at long as her methods get answers, I doubt anyone will interfere with her work.  I like how Krystal simultaneously manages to get the job done, but still get on everyone’s nerves, and not even intentionally.  Maslany in this role brings some needed levity and comic timing to what could’ve been more run of the mill detective work had this been Sarah.

And I can’t help but love the fact that Maslany got to kick around Leonard and potentially take away his precious beard.  Tom Cullen is nothing if not a team player.

With the information gained from Krystal’s ‘interrogation’ tactics, coupled with the money trail Adele and Felix are on, things seem to be looking up for Team Clone Club.  Plus, the residents of Revival have learned the truth about PT Westmoreland and realize that they’ve been fooled all this time.  It is strange that apparently no one ever questioned Westmoreland and everyone just accepted his longevity.

We haven’t gotten much of a chance to know these people outside of Aisha and Mud. And with Aisha dead, we’re left looking at things through Mud’s perspective.  Getting her backstory at this point in the season is a bit jarring and feels like it’s there to make her reaction to Westmoreland being a fraud all the more impacting to her.  After all, PT saved her life and apparently gave her more purpose than she had as a junkie.

Not to mention he just forgave her for what she’d done and said she should forgive herself, but now her world is shattered.  As is, Mud seems to have been a devout follower of PT and naive of all the work he’s done, but she’s also been working on him, so I’d assume she would be at least a bit suspicious and not just go by blind faith.  Or maybe after what he did for her, she chooses to trust him no matter what.

At the same time, we know she’s got it in her to disobey.  She freed the creature and didn’t want it killed, so she’s not a complete sheep.  Mud is a weird one and my point is if the show wants me to sympathize with her, establish her backstory and connection to PT early on and not at this point.  Having it all come here and then she learns the truth about PT right after her big reveal feels awkward.

Though with Mud learning the truth, Susan attempting to kill him, and the villagers now burning the area, Westmoreland has to realize that the walls are closing in on him now that people know he’s a fraud.  And if that’s the case, what does he do now?  He had to badger Rachel just so she’d make a late night visit to Kira, so even the plan for her is behind schedule.

But this doesn’t mean he’s completely without a plan or allies.  Dr. Coady seems more loyal and trustworthy to him and looks to share his vision compared to Susan.  He said that balance requires equilibrium and balance of opposing forces, but things aren’t working in his favor, so I’ll be interested to see if he can still bring his plans to fruition.

Speaking of Susan, now that she’s dead, I wonder what Rachel’s reaction will be.  Sure, the two didn’t see eye to eye on much, if anything, but these two have a complicated relationship and I can’t imagine she’ll just overlook her mother’s death, even if she’s working with Westmoreland.  Plus, now Ira is on his own and his glitching isn’t getting any better.

“Manacled Slim Wrists” put the advantage in Clone Club’s favor.  Krystal’s return and her detective work, bad as it was at times, did still give Sarah information she needed. With Westmoreland’s secret exposed and the villagers now turned against him, Cosima’s job is done and there’s no need for her to be on the island anymore.  But with Kira back at Rachel’s side, Neolution is sure to accelerate its plans.

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