Orphan Black Recap: “One Fettered Slave”


Orphan Black returns this week choosing to focus on Helena in the last episode before the finale.

“One Fettered Slave,” has so much potential in it that it’s more than a little disappointing that the writers crammed so many great ideas into one episode which makes every storyline move along too quickly. On the heels of last week’s huge death, it feels like the show wasn’t able to give the characters justice by not focusing on the fallout of the loss and diving right back into the action.

Mrs. S’s funeral kicks off “One Fettered Slave,” but it isn’t long enough to have a large emotional effect that it should have. Cosima and Allison don’t even get to go, instead, have a brief Skye session with each other rather than just meet up and talk where they talk about how Sarah hasn’t even cried yet.

Considering Sarah’s grieving is barely shown, there’s no big way to register any difference between her mourning the loss of her mother while fighting to save Helena versus her just fighting to save her sister. Not to mention, her sisters mention that she was the one to find the body, and it’s a little disheartening Orphan Black chose to tell us that rather than showing us what would have been a very poignant scene.

Nevertheless, Sarah decides to sit on the sidelines in “One Fettered Slave,” in order to stay with Kira while Felix takes charge alongside Art to track down Rachel. With her eye stitched completely, Rachel has officially made the leap to Clone Club and is more than willing to help out the two guys in tracking down Helena. She leads them to the Dyad cleaner who has taken the last remaining board member with plans to terminate him but luckily, Art gets there first Not so lucky, the detective shoots the cleaner before they have a chance to learn any information.

However, as per usual, Sarah devises one last plan to impersonate Rachel and allows herself to be taken to Westmoreland in hopes of getting Helena’s location. Maybe it’s because “One Fettered Slave” moves so quickly, but I didn’t even realize it was Sarah at first despite wearing her signature leather jacket.

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Despite getting a nice swipe in at Westmoreland, (is that throat swipe lethal?), her work at Dyad is far from done because Helena is still being held captive while creeping closer to giving birth. In the nick of time, Sarah donates some blood and manages to revive a Helena after a failed suicide attempt.

While all of this is going on, “One Fettered Slave,” also introduces flashbacks to Helena’s time growing up in the Church. It’s a bit unnecessary, considering most viewers could imagine the torment she endured but does paint a clearer picture of how she became this way. Her bleached hair and red rimmed eyes originate from being dunked/showered in bleach by a particularly vindictive sister who would then lock her in the closet. She grew to love Tomas (Season 1 flashback!) because he allowed her to play with dolls and gave her a sense of purpose which would eventually drive her to become a killer.

Unfortunately, before Sarah and Helena can escape, the latter’s water breaks forcing them to find a safe place to deliver the babies. Next week’s finale seems like it will be the two sisters with Art and Scott facing off against Westmoreland. Considering his failing health, it seems like a fight the former should easily win and hopefully Orphan Black takes the time to give all the characters a proper send off. The trailer for next week hints that another major death is coming and my bet is on either Art, Scott, or both of them since they’ve both fulfilled their purpose at this point.

Next: What We Want To See Before Orphan Black Ends

As far as clones go, Rachel is the most expendable now that she’s started her redemption arc and finally got the family she always craved. Tune in next week for what is sure to be one of the most thrilling episodes of television this summer!