REVIEW: Orphan Black S5 Ep10 – To Right the Wrongs of Many

Helena

Well Clone Club, with 50 episodes we’ve now reached the end of Orphan Black. It’s been a crazy ride to get here, but thankfully this episode was about as close to perfect as they could get for the series finale.

We picked up right where last week left off: Sarah and Helena trapped inside Dyad, Helena going into labor, and Art sneaking around inside to help them. Surprisingly, all of that intense drama was wrapped up before we even hit the halfway point of the episode. Art took down Engers, Sarah shot PT, and Helena stabbed Coady. And Helena’s three-plus season pregnancy finally came to an end, as she gave birth to twin boys in the Dyad basements.

Helena and SarahThe birth scene included cuts to a flashback of Sarah giving birth to Kira, and earlier in the episode we saw Sarah and S sitting outside a Planned Parenthood as Sarah considered abortion. While not as flashback heavy as last week, these glimpses set up Sarah’s struggle in the back half of the episode, strengthened her connection to Helena, and were a way to make sure S still had a presence in the finale. Additionally, Sarah coaching Helena through labor just as S coached Sarah felt very symbolic, especially given that after S’s death, co-creator Graeme Manson talked about how Sarah would have to now step into her shoes.

But it’s the second half of the finale that really shines. With the threats of Dyad and Neolution finally gone, we got to see how the sestras are settling into their reclaimed freedom. Helena and her babies are living with the Hendrixes, and Cosima, Delphine, and Scott are working together to track down the remaining Ledas to cure them. Sarah is studying to take the GED, but falls back into her old self-destructive tendencies and bails on the test.

It was frustrating to watch Sarah walk out of the school, but not quite as surprising once you consider the full timeframe of the series. Although for us it’s been over four years since Sarah saw Beth on that train platform, within the show it’s closer to just one year. (The exact timeframe is murky, but remember that Helena’s pregnancy started in season two – and her twins were born early, so that’s still not a full nine months). Despite all that we’ve seen her accomplish, it hasn’t been that long since Sarah was estranged from her family, and she’d left Kira with S. Honestly, it would be surprising if Sarah didn’t have trouble trying to adjust back to normal life and being a full-time mom, especially since she no longer has S to help her.

SarahSarah shuts down and lashes out when others try to talk to her about the test and how she’s doing, but once the baby shower is over and nearly everyone else has gone home, she opens up to her sestras in what was my favorite scene of the finale. Sarah admits she didn’t take the test, and says she doesn’t know how to be happy. “There’s no one left to fight,” she says, “and I’m still a shit mum.”

After a moment of silence, the others open up too: Alison screams at and threatens her kids. Helena can’t stop her babies from eating sand. Cosima doesn’t feel maternal at all. They’re all scared, and they all make mistakes. It may not be a big dance party or dinner scene, but this intimate four-clone scene that really shows the family and support system they’ve become was a perfect way to close out the series.

In the end, they (almost) all get their happy endings. Rachel supplies a full list of all 274 Ledas, and Cosima and Delphine – happily together – use it to help them track down and cure the remaining clones. As for Rachel herself, she’s essentially left all on her own, but at least she finally has the freedom she’s always wanted. Alison is making music, her marriage with Donnie as solid as ever. Helena has her babies, who she decides to name after Art and Donnie. And Sarah has decided to stay in S’s old house – the last we see of her, she’s heading out for a fun day at Shite Beach with Felix and Kira. After everything that we’ve seen these characters go through, all the deaths and dangers they’ve faced, I’m so grateful that they’ve ended in a good place.

I do still have some unanswered questions, and criticisms. But these days I go into series finales preparing myself against disappointment, and after finishing Orphan Black, I just felt happy and satisfied. So thank you for the trip, Clone Club. It’s been a blast.

How are you feeling now that it’s all over? Let us know in the comments!