Orphan Black Review: “Insolvent Phantom of Tomorrow”

Orphan Black holds its plot threads together with coagulated blood, wracking up a body count that would be the envy of a Sopranos ep, and ending with a twist that indicates the writers, apparently, didn’t think the show was already bat-shi# crazy enough. Tetragametic chimerism, anyone?

Title: “Insolvent Phantom of Tomorrow”

Cast and Crew
Director: Vincenzo Natali
Writer: Russ Cochrane

Tatiana Maslany as Sarah Manning/ Cosima Niehaus / Alison Hendrix / Helena
Jordan Gavaris as Felix Dawkins
Maria Doyle Kennedy as Siobhan Sadler
Kristian Bruun as Donnie Hendrix
Evelyne Brochu as Delphine Cormier
Ksenia Solo as Shay Davydov
Josh Vokey as Scott
Zoé De Grand Maison as Grace Johanssen
Ari Milen as Mark
Kyra Harper as Dr. Virginia Coady
James Frain as Ferdinand
Nigel Bennett as Kassov
Tom Barnett as David Benchman
Millie Davis as Gemma Hendrix
Gavin Fox as Lionel
Tony Cianchino as Pouchy
David Vena as Joao
Jessica Salgueiro as Luisa
Earl Pastko as Bulldog
Daniel Fathers as Terrance
Joseph Matheson as Christy
Kieran Kennedy as Keiran
Alison Steadman as Kendall Malone


I’m not even gonna try this week.

High Points

They contrast scenes of disturbing violence this week with a scene of funny disturbing violence, as Helena (and Donnie) take care of business.

Helena: I have had cold
Donnie: Yeah, yeah. It’s one of those really bad ones, that messes with your syntax.

Low Points

The final reveal means the backstory involves Victorian Melodrama-level coincidence, but it could be explained.

They better explain it.

The Scores:

Originality: 4/6 While the opening recalls Blade Runner and the interrogation of Kendall Malone resembles film noir, the final twist recalls nothing I’ve seen lately.

Effects: 6/6

Story: 5/6 The episode is fragmented, but bloody brilliant. While this ep feels less grounded than last week’s, it does advance its separate plots significantly.

Acting: 6/6

Emotional Response: 6/6

Production: 6/6

Overall: 5/6 They not only use Canadian money this season, they don’t obscure clearly Canadian businesses, as occurred in at least one Season Two episode. Can the C-word and T-words* be far behind?

In total, “Insolvent Phantom of Tomorrow” receives 38/42

*Canada and Toronto, of course. London, England didn’t have to pretend it was somewhere generic.