When series end, it is a slow punch to the stomach. They tend to try to fit so much information into a 45 minute slot that they forget what is important to, not only the story, but those who have dedicated years of their lives to the show.
For Orphan Black, a show that is filled with so many plot twists, you might have expected something different than what we got. You would expect an end-all-be-all of episodes. But that’s not what the writers gave us, and quite frankly, I am so fucking happy that I could burst – again – with happy tears.
We got an earnest examination of the lives of all of our sestras. We get the one kill we have been waiting for, another that we expected would have happened sooner, and then it’s on to the rest of their lives. Importantly, we got Maria Doyle Kennedy back for one last hurrah, and wow.
With the impact of the twins, it overshadowed a story that we never got to see – until now. We got one last flashback into Sarah’s life and her decision to go through with her own pregnancy with Kira. A story that I have been wanting to hear for a long time now. She, like so many of us, were not prepared for pregnancy and the beautiful life that comes into the world. We get to see how much Siobahn coached her along because she is lost without her – she still is. She doesn’t know what it is like to be just a mother, she has always been on the run in some form or another.
“I don’t know how to just be happy,” she confesses, “there’s no one left to fight and I am still a shit mom.”
I see so much of myself in Sarah that her whole story from the beginning has resonated with me in such a way that I couldn’t peel my eyes away from the screen. It’s not that she is a bad mom; it’s that she is a fighter who doesn’t know how to just be still. She has always had S to be there for her, the mother who has a golden light shining around her.
But even though S is gone, the sestrahood remains. There was something so emotionally satisfying about watching our four fighters – Sarah, Cosima, Alison, Helena – sitting around the fire admitting their flaws. It was real, genuine, and filled with such a warmth that you felt the fire on your face as you watched the scene, over and over again. They are a jumble of chaotic individuals who make up a whole, that whole being one of the greatest families on modern television to date.
Tatiana Maslany: I don’t know how many times you shot this one scene, how many times you fudged up, how many times you brilliantly portrayed love. But I do know that the cut that the chose was perfection. Each time you made each of these characters react, and you never let us forget who you were playing in those moments:
Cosima, draped over the chair, relaxed and effervescent.
Alison, posture perfect and articulate as ever.
Helena, slouched over the ottoman, excited to be finished her story.
Sarah, taking it all in.
This show is extraordinary and that word doesn’t even scratch the surface of its impact. It was a show that had a big voice and grew into something even bigger. It made a large point about women, autonomy, people’s rights. It gave us Delphine and Cosima. It gave us crazy science. It gave us a sestrahood.
Even as I say goodbye to my favourite show, I know it won’t ever leave me. I will be able to go back to it as often as I see fit. I will be able to see bits of myself in every character that Tatiana Maslany has brought to life. I will be able to laugh with Felix and wish that I could have him hold me when I am down. I will be able to twerk with Donny and just be still with him. I will be able to have Art protect me and have him guide me down the proper path. I will be able to remember the confession from Paul. I will be able to hold my head up high and never forget my purpose, that I matter.
If I could only meet each and every one of you in person to tell you how much this show means to me, I would (hey… I am in Toronto in October… just a thought).
So, again, thank you for five seasons of greatness. Thank you for leaving me at the edge of my seat and hours of talking about the episodes afterwards. Thank you for guiding me along a journey of powerful women and powerful messages. My only hope is that you all can read this.
I want to make crazy science with you!
I’ll leave you with my favourite scenes.