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Orphan Black “Variations Under Domestication” Recap & Review

In the last episode, we learned that Beth had a Monitor and Alison thinks that she may have one as well. We open up tonight’s episode with Alison viewing footage from the spy camera that she bought. She sees that her husband, Donny, left their bed at around 3:30am and but she couldn’t determine when he came back because the memory card of the camera was full. When she tries to confront her husband as to his nocturnal whereabouts, he doesn’t answer her but deflects by acting all busy. Alison is undeterred, she wants answers so she knocks Donny out with one of his golf clubs.

We next are at Beth’s apartment where Sarah and Paul start to have a conversation about being a Monitor. It appears that Paul was forced into this role after he got out of the army. The each call each other out for not being who they say they were. Sarah then asks Paul what does he do with the test information that he gathers from her. He tells her they go to Olivier but after that he doesn’t know. Paul says that they need to be honest with each other but Sarah abruptly ends their conversation by saying she needs a shower and starts to strip in front of Paul but she really escapes. When he sees that she has escaped, we later see him monitoring her movements via GPS in her car all the while he places crushed up pills in a whiskey bottle.

In her car, she is talking to Cosima about how Paul doesn’t know anything about them being clones. Cosima believes that all of them have a Monitor is supposed to befriend them and she believes she has a Monitor too. Sarah warns Cosima to stay away from whoever that is and just concentrate on helping them find more about each other. But Cosima ignores her and when Delphine, the fellow biochemist student that we met in the last episode, asks her to go to a lecture with her, Cosima agrees.

This lecture is from some guy talking about the next step in evolution called neolution and the guy, Professor Leekie, looks a lot like Matt Frewer and his presentation was almost a homage to his best known role: Max Headroom.

After the lecture, Delphine and Cosima debate about neolution and spot Leekie. Both ladies go to talk to him and do a whole bunch of science speak and his movement of neolution. Leekie seems to be intrigued over something Cosima said and he wants her to check his organization out. Delphine and Cosima both escape the lecture with a couple of bottles of wine and seem to be connecting but Delphine cuts it short and leaves.

Meanwhile in the burbs, Alison is torturing her husband via glue gun to see what was really in that black box and asks if he performed experiments on her. Sarah comes by because Alison called her but before she can explain to her clone sister what she is doing to her husband, a neighbourhood potluck that she had forgotten that she was hosting, decides to start arriving.

The potluck is in full swing and Alison goes to play hostess and implores Sarah to pretend to be her just like she did for her a couple of episodes ago to continue to interrogate Donny. We get a hilarious scene of Sarah practicing on being Alison. Sarah as Alison gets Donny to confess that he woke up in the middle of the night to watch a cricket match that was being held in South Africa.

At the potluck, Alison is getting increasingly drunk much to the consternation of her guests. Felix arrives, thanks to a call from Sarah, looking hilariously suburban to act as bartender for the party.

Elsewhere, Paul has a conversation with Olivier. He doesn’t disclose the fact that Sarah is pretending to be Beth but just tells him that “Beth” is starting to spiral out of control again and doesn’t want to be blamed for it. Olivier tells him that as long as the subject makes her own choices, he will not be blamed.

After hearing the information that Sarah got from Donny, Alison realizes that Donny isn’t her monitor after all because she known him since high school so it couldn’t be possible. Alison then thinks it is one of her guests. In a pretty cool scene, we have Sarah and Alison sitting closely side by side on the couch and it really does look like they are played by different actors and not Tatiana Maslany. Anyways, Alison is so drunk that she passes out. Sarah then goes back to the party as Alison to tell Felix that Alison is down for the count. Felix then informs Sarah that she believes that Alison’s neighbour, Aysnley, is Alison’t monitor. Oh and to explain how Alison knows Felix, they tell her that Felix is her acting coach.

Side Note: One of the guests of the party, Chad is played by Eric Johnson who is on Rookie Blue and played Whitney Fordman in Season 1 of Smallville.

As more and more party goers arrive at Alison’s, we see Paul watching and we pretty much know Vic will be too considering he found out Alison’s address on Felix’s laptop when he broke into his loft.

Vic does indeed arrive and demands to see Sarah while Paul arrives to the basement of Alison’s house where he sees Alison asleep on the couch but he thinks it is Beth however, he doesn’t see a scar so thinks it is Sarah. But Alison says her name and tries to come on to Paul in her sleep. Meanwhile, Donny is trying to escape and Paul hears this and comes upon him.

Instead of untying him, Paul is more interested in what is happening on the spy camera. He sees Vic and Sarah talking in Alison’ bedroom. Vic thinks that Sarah is doing a con and wants in on the cut. Sarah tries to explain that it is no scam and that the $5000 she gave him should have cut him out of her life but not to him.

Paul soon arrives on the scene and pretends that Sarah works for him and Vic should leave. Sarah at first doesn’t understand what Paul is doing but soon plays along. Paul manages to get Vic to the garage to talk about this and Sarah was going to go too but Aysnley interrupts for some girl talk about how her husband Chad is cheating on her again.

Paul and Vic are at the garage where Paul quickly gets the upper hand and starts to torture Vic with a nail gun to learn more about Sarah like her last name or whether or not she has a twin sister. Vic tells him her last name and that Sarah has no sisters. Sarah then arrives and Paul addresses her by her full name. At first, I thought Paul busting in on Vic and Sarah’s conversation was his way of protecting her from Vic because he has feelings for her but I was wrong.

Paul wants to know what is going on and is willing to kill Vic to get answers. Sarah promises Paul that Vic knows nothing and she will tell him everything. Just at that moment, Alison’s daughter comes into the garage but Sarah shoos here away and this gives Vic an opportunity to escape but Paul nail guns his hand.

Finally, after convincing Paul that Vic knows nothing, Vic leaves and Sarah warns him to stay out of her life for good. When it looks like Sarah and Paul are going to have that honest talk, Alison’s neighbour annoyingly arrives and wonders how she could be in the garage considering she just put her in bed. Sarah covers up saying she is having an affair with Paul.

That night, Alison is in bed with Donny and asks her forgiveness for what she did to him but Donny says that he is the one to apologize. He confesses that he was keeping something in that black box of his and it was love letters from a woman he had an affair with whle they were broken up.

Back at Beth’s place, Paul asks Sarah if she wants a drink, she says yes and he pulls the bottle of whiskey that he has drugged. When Sarah bursts out clones, this stops Paul in his tracks. Sarah explains fully how they are 9 genetically equivalent of them and he is working for someone that has him monitoring human clones. Paul then switches the bottle to a non-drugged one and they share a drink.

The episode ends as we see Delphine entering a hotel room and lo and behold there is Professor Leekie and asks her in French if all went well and she responds in the affirmative and he proceeds to starts kissing her.

It seems that Sarah might have an ally in Paul. Also, have we really seen the last of Vic? I highly doubt it. And do we think Aynsley is really Alison’s Monitor or do we think it is still Donny? Let us know your thoughts.

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About Vanessa Ho (914 Articles)
Pop culture addicts' view of the world of TV

4 Comments on Orphan Black “Variations Under Domestication” Recap & Review

  1. I’m still not sure Donnie’s off the hook. At the end of Episode 5, to whom is he speaking on the cell phone as he burns the mysterious letters? The woman he later confesses to Allison he had an affair with was already dead. Allison has only his word that he was speaking on the phone to a coworker with a bitchy lady boss. Allison did not dispute the notion, so apparently she has met Donnie’s boss at some point or other. Sarah creates a strawman when she refers both her clone sisters to Paul’s background as being ‘ex-military’, the strawman that assumes all monitors must be ex-military special forces types, which isn’t necessarily the case. Perhaps Beth, being a trained police detective, would require a monitor with military training as a pinch assassin when Olivier and his ilk got finished with her.

    • South Africa is almost in the same time zone as the UK, which makes it highly unlikely that Donnie got up in the middle of the night to watch a cricket match held in South Africa.

      • Clone10 // July 15, 2013 at 7:51 pm //

        Perhaps. But the show is set in Toronto. North America. Member of the Commonwealth of Nations. Right-hand drive. Eastern time zone. (GMT – 4:00)

  2. Both very interesting theories on Donnie. Time will tell if he truly is a Monitor or not and I think the neighbour might a red-herring to think it is her and not Donnie.

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