Orphan Black, Season 4, Episode 5, “Human Raw Material”

OB S4 E5 Cosima BB

Believe it or not we are half-way through Season 4 of Orphan Black, but things are not only becoming darker, but taking on shades of crazy gray-–


All Leda clones played by Tatiana Maslany.


Wrist wrapping leads to working out. It’s Krystal! Yes, she’s back and working with her personal trailer. She’s not the airy blond we saw the prior season: no, now she’s talking about her Internet investigation of Dyad and the time these twins abducted her. She puts her trainer on his ass with a fierce body throw—she’s definitely a force to reckon with now.

RT: Given enough time, I think Krystal may be my new fave clone.

CF:  I’m loving her.  I really want to see her and Helena together.

RT: Oh, hell YEAH! Imagine the trouble they will get up to.

"I am woman, like hear me roar. For reals."

“I am woman, like, hear me roar. For reals.”


Sarah’s spending time with Kira (Skyler Wexler) at the safe house, and they’re painting the wall of her bedroom. There’s a text on Sarah’s phone—it’s Helena—and Kira’s face heads right for the basement. Sarah ain’t about to disappoint her little monkey, and she sets the phone down and gets back to painting.

A bit later Sarah’s with Mrs. S (Maria Doyle Kennedy) looking over the info Alison sent. Sarah spots one of the companies affiliated with Bright Born: Gene Connection. That’s the same company that hooked up Felix (Jordan Gavaris) with his sister. Just another tentacle under the ol’ Dyad octopus?  Sarah’s totally paranoid now.

RT: Sarah isn’t the only paranoid one. I have watched this show long enough to know there is no such thing as coincidences when it comes to clones…

CF:  There are so many layers of shit going on in this show that you never know what’s happening.  You do get to where you have no idea who or what to trust.

Cosima and Alison are talking, discussing the Bright Born meet and great happening that day. Alison is being her normal pissy self right now, saying she’s got way too much to do, so Cosima decides to do the meeting instead, with Donnie (Kristian Bruun) playing the part of the gay daddy.

Kira and Sarah show up at Felix’s, and Kira happy too see him and his paintings—is that one a rocket? Maybe in your pocket, honey . . . It’s a little tense between bro and sis, however: Sarah tells him that the group that hooked him up with Adele is attached to Bright Born. He’s not happy about Sarah poking around in this shirt, but no time for recriminations, for here is Adele (Lauren Hammersley). Yeah, Not Too Awkward Moment #1.

Before going into Bright Born Cosima has Donnie change,’cause her reasoning is if you can afford the sort of tech that BB is supplying, you aren’t gonna need a suit to look like money: you already have the cash. Since Donnie’s supposed to be gay he tells Cosima to not play up the lesbian thing, which goes over kinda . . . hard. Nothing like a little gaysplaining there, Donnie. They register and discover they have to sign non-disclosures, which should be a hell of a red flag right there. Oh, and aren’t they lucky: Evie Cho (Jessalyn Wanlim) is gonna be there in person.

Sarah is speaking with Scott (Josh Vokey) on the phone. She wants a DNA test run on Phee and Adele to see if she really is his sister. Kick that paranoia up another notch.

All the perspective mother’s to be are finally assembled at Bright Born. Donnie’s worried that Evie will be able to spot a Leda clone, which gets Cosima to worrying she’s gonna get made. Evie shows up and starts her spiel: she was born with an immune deficiency and that made her a bubble girl, her parents did everything they could to keep her alive despite her immune issues—then she underwent and experimental gene treatment, and look at her now! This is why she believes in Bright Born, because they are gonna do all they can to make everyone’s baby as perfect as possible. And that’s what makes a Bright Born baby so expensive: all the money is going back into research and development. Of course it is.

Adele is showing Kira ballet moves, while Sarah rips off stuff that has DNA on it from both her and Phee. For the most part Phee doesn’t seem too upset that Sarah is being a bitch, but his nerves are getting frayed.

And then the moment of the night: Krystal Goderitch blows into Bright Born like she’s arriving for a dinner date—

Yes, that sounds about right for you, Krys.

Doctor Boche shows up to get everyone organized, and that’s Cosima’s cue to go snooping.  On her way out of the room Evie runs into Krystal, and it’s true:  she can spot a Leda clone.  She then heads back to the offices where Susan Duncan and Ira wait, and she announces that the runway clone is here.  It has to be Sarah, yeah?

"Ira, be a good boy and go fetch me the clone."

“Ira, be a good boy and go fetch me the clone.”


The woman across from Donnie has a Bright Born Baby, and she lets him hold the child. The baby begins connecting with him and suddenly Donnie looks like he’s got that ol’ Baby Fever. Right then Krystal shows up to coo at the baby as she sits down next to Donnie, who doesn’t have the best record when it comes to meeting new clones. How best to get out of this situation: Donnie announces to everyone he has to take a shit—now! Not Too Awkward Moment #2 averted like a boss.

RT: This is exactly why I love Donnie so much! He is the male equivelent of just how socially awkward I can be.

CF:  I love that he gets to deal with all these clones and you would think he would be easy with it now, but no:  he’s a fucking mess.  And announcing that he has to take a shit is so good.

RT: Donnie is the real world. This is how we would all deal with clones in our lives 😉

During the tour of the building Cosima holds back so she can snap images of building layouts, and when the opportunity arises she tries ducking onto an open elevator. She gets busted and is told to rejoin the tour, but at least she gets an A for effort.

Let’s quickly cut to the police station where Art (Kevin Hanchard) is suddenly being braced by the Neo dude, Duko. He asks about Alison as he holds up one of her election fliers, and is like, damn, she looks a lot like Beth. Uncanny, right? Art is chill and says he doesn’t see it. Duko lets Art know the Hendrix’s are being looked at for this triple killing, and for sure they suspect they were selling pills out of their store. He tells Art to stay away and let Beth go.

Kira and Sarah are playing and trying to talk. Scott lets her now the test is running, but it’s gonna be a while. She gets a call from Art: the cops are on to Alison and know about the pill sales out of Bubbles. He tells Sarah she’s on her own with this one. Sarah immediately calls Alison and wants to know if they’re dealing drugs, ‘cause what the fuck? Alison says they’re done and that it was done because they needed the money—and Sarah should just shut the fuck up, as she was once dealing coke. Then Helena comes up and Alison rolls into Queen Bitch mode, pissing on about how she just up and left with their camping gear, and besides the prego was eating them out of house and home. Alison hangs up on Sarah, and they both call each other a bitch.

Susan’s taking a stroll out by the Bright Birth pool. She finds an open seat and asks Cosima if it’s taken. She sits and speaks with Cosima, who gives her fake name. Cosima figures out that Bright Birth is keeping extra embryos and wonders why. Susan gives her some bullshit which come right down to “Cause”. Cosima drops her papers and as Susan picks them up she rips off her badge. Cosima comments about how all the baby has dimples, and suggests that BB is doing genetic manipulations on the embryos. Which Susan notes is illegal—

"Just like cloning is illegal. You don't see us doing that, do you?"

“Just like cloning is illegal. You don’t see us doing that, do you?”


Sarah and Kira show up at the safe house, and Adele’s there. Sarah’s totally losing here shit now, and there’s a quick meeting in the back. The argument is on, and Sarah doesn’t like that Adele is here: it’s dangerous and she could be anyone. That’s when she drops the DNA test bomb, and Felix is not at all pleased.

"Auntie Adele, why is Uncle Phee following Mommy around with a nail gun?"

“Auntie Adele, why is Mommy waving a gun and yelling, ‘I’ll kill the bitch’?”


Cosima is wandering the halls and Donnie finds her. Cosima’s like, I have badge; Donnie’s like, I have another clone. After a quick rundown of personality Cosima figures out it’s Krystal and tells Donnie to stall her. Donnie discovers Krystal ripping off shit and dumping it in her tote bag, so he disguises himself by taking off his outer shirt and walks in on her in his undershirt. Great disguise, Donnie! But then this is Krystal, and she doesn’t figure out he’s Gotta Take a Shit Dude, and believe she’s busted says she’s looking for a massage. Donnie the Massage Boy finds out there’s an opening—with him. So let’s do this, yeah?

"Can I get a discount on the rubdown since I'm about to impregnated with one of your designer babies?"

“Can I get a discount on the rubdown since I’m about to impregnated with one of your designer babies?”


Susan returns to Evie and says that’s not Sarah, it’s Cosima, and she’s not happy. Evie doesn’t want her around—they know Cosima’s background in biotech and genetics— and feels they need to do something. Ira agrees. Susan goes with their play.

Krystal is down to her panties and laying on the table ready when Donnie the Masseuse walks in. He can tell she’s tense, and she complements him on how good he is—it’s like he knows where to find those spots on her back. He says it’s because he’s in the healing arts and not because he’s done this with her clone sister. Krystal says she’s a healer as well, as she’s a beautician and getting your nails done is pretty much the same thing. Donnie brings up Bright Born and says he feels it’s a little creepy: Krystal agrees and says she knows more. She reveals that she’s really there doing an investigation because she knows Bright Born is hooked up with Dyad, and she thinks they’re doing stem cell treatments with cosmetics. This is because she read an article about a woman who was using something that came from Dyad and they started growing her teeth out of her eyelids. She she goes on about her abduction and mentions that she would be dead if it wasn’t for that French doctor— Donnie’s like, you mean Dr. Cormier? As she once mentioned she may not be smart but she knows things, and Krystal wants to know how he knows that name. Mr. Cool Under Pressure tells her to settle down and makes the mistake of using her name. That’s all she needs: Krystal freaks and kicks Donnie in the balls before taking off.  Guess you won’t be flying Air Italia anytime soon, huh?

RT: Poor Donnie, just not the sharpest tack in the box. And how he can’t even talk porn with his wife.

CF:  He has such bad luck when it come to the genital area.

Cosima is pretending to be a doctor, and she just happens to see Krystal get nabbed and hauled off to be locked away. On the video Evie, Susan, and Ira are watching the blond rant out, and Susan’s like, that’s Krystal, how many fucking clones are there in this building? Meanwhile Cosima is wandering the halls and encounters a pregnant woman in obvious pain . . .

RT: That awkward moment when you can keep all your clones in a box… Poor Krystal thinks she has a handle on all this and really she is at clone level: Sarah when Beth jumped.

CF:  I have a feeling next week Krystal gets a crash course in Clone Club membership.

RT: I hope so!

Phee, Adele, Sarah—the whole family is seated around the dinner table, and the only ones laughing are Adele and Kira.  Adele knows that everyone is a little uptight about her being together, but Sarah wants to know about Gene Connection, and how Adele was able to use the service.  Adele says everyone uses them:  it’s ‘cause of those the TV ads.  Phee is giving Sarah shit burning hole in her with his eyes.  Adele is all about not wanting to be a pain and considers leaving.  After Phee throws food at Sarah, the later gets a call from Scott.  The test is over:  Adele is Phee’s sister.  Sarah looks like a bag of hammered assholes and leaves the room.  Phee wants to leave:  S tells him to sit his ass down and she welcomes Adele to the family.

RT: And poor Sarah is not the “official” sis anymore. That must suck, no longer having bossing privileges.

CF:  I think that’s part of what’s playing out here; Sarah’s watching her brother pull away to another sibling.  Of course Sarah’s not exactly been the easiest person to be close to these days.

Cosima is in one of the back labs, where they’re working with pregnant women in a “study”. She’s getting pictures of lab work when she gets called in on someone delivering. The woman in question looks worried—

Krystal is being escorted out of Bright Born and she sees Ira, which is enough to launch her into another freak out, as he’s just like the twins that kidnapped her. Are we talking triplets?

The doctor comes in for the delivery and they prepare to remove the baby. Cosima tries to calm the woman, but she’s upset, damning herself for what she’s done. The baby comes out, and since we haven’t had an Orphan Black Body Horror Moment yet, her it comes: the face is like something out of a horror show, all concave with no nose, almost as if they just delivered Baby Voldemort. It’s wrapped up and taken away without another word—oh, there’s someone in the doorway facing Cosima. It’s Susan Duncan. She gives the sneaky clone that little, “Let’s talk about why you’re really here,” look. You know that look.

Cosima is finally meeting her maker and she tells Susan doesn’t like the experimentation. Evie’s like we pay the carriers well, but Cosima is like what about the baby I saw? What’s up with that shit? Susan clears the room and Cosima and she speak. Cosima doesn’t feel there’s anything ethical going on around this place, but Susan gets right into the meat of things: we’re doing work on genetic manipulation that can help everyone, and sometimes it doesn’t work right. For example, you’re sick and you don’t have the resources to find a cure, but if we had the primary genome . . . Cosima says Susan is just trying to get to Kendal through her, but Susan knows they’re doing the right thing, and says with all sincerity that with Kendal’s genome, she can cure her—cure all the clones. Cosima looks for the first time like she’s conflicted about what she’s going to do next.

Kira and Sarah are speaking. The little one lets Mommy know how the other “sisters” feel, and not just the ones she knows, but all of them. Sarah tells her that’s just dreams, but we know that’s all bullshit.

It’s night at the Bright Born poll and Ira swims. Someone enters the water with him: it’s Susan. She says at this point it’s up to them, to the clones. They meet face to face. They embrace. They kiss. Susan calls Ira “my love”—

OB S4 E5 Susan Ira Pool

CF:  Just a quick aside here at the end.  This last scene seems to have set a few people’s teeth a-gnashing, as they feel Susan Duncan has, at the end, reveled herself to be some kind of child molester monster due to it being made obvious that she’s having an affair with a man that is obviously her creation.  Let’s face it:  she’s up to tons of shady shit that is totally unethical, she’s openly discussed letting a clone die so they can gather data on her demise and had said conversation with the clone from which the child’s genome was taken, and it’s likely she’s had people offed because they were simply becoming an obstacle and she needed them out of the way.

But this thing with Ira is what proves she’s gone way too far?  I wonder if it were Ethan Duncan having an affair with one of the Leda clones if people would feel the same way, because there have been numerous examples of guys who’ve done stuff like build an android with the intentions of having an affair with it, and people tend to blow it off ’cause, you know, guys be guys, yeah?  I find it easier to believe that Susan is following the Neolutionist cred, where they’re throwing off the shackles of society to create a brighter future for all humanity, and that means the possibility of strange shit is probably 150% if not more.  I’d also say that this means if you got a clone to share a bed with, you’re gonna.  I mean, didn’t Paul pretty much do the same thing?  Sure, he was just a monitor, but once he discovered that Beth was really Sarah, did he think, “Hum, I better not fuck this clone, that would be unethical”?  And did that thought come up while he was getting that heavy naughty boy action with Rachel?  I’m gonna say . . . no.  But I don’t recall people getting on Paul’s shit about it

RT: I completely agree with everythng you have just said about Susan and Ira. To be honest, I think there might be a bit of age-ism going on as well. Because, you know, men can date younger women all the time and it’s okay, but an older woman taking on a younger man, that’s just “wrong” apparently. You have got ot love the double standards smacking this whole storm in a tea cup.

CF:  I do think the ageism is an issue as well.  Put a 60 year old guy in a role with a 30 year old girl friend, and it’s no big deal; reverse the genders and it’s suddenly Cougar City.  Susan and Ira are creepy, but not because of this.  They’re creepy on their own.

And there we are:  the fifth episode of Orphan Black, and things are starting to get really interesting.  It’s also started that this is the beginning of a three-story arc, and it looks as if M.K./Veera is back next week.  Let us know what you think in the comments below!


6 thoughts on “Orphan Black, Season 4, Episode 5, “Human Raw Material”

  1. I’m so sad that the season is half over already. I was thinking of that myself last night, and how this season JUST started… how am I supposed to live without more new episodes (again)?!
    I’m not sure that I buy that Adele is Phee’s sister. I have a couple of theories. We don’t actually HEAR Scott tell Sarah the results. We hear Sarah acknowledge what Scott says, hang up, and then TELL everyone that is what the result was. Rule 1: Clones lie. But why lie about this when you’ve been so hell bent on sticking your tongue in Felix’s face and saying “I told you so!” in true sestra fashion? Perhaps in that moment she decided she didn’t want to break his heart. Maybe she wants Adele to THINK she believes that so she can get close to her and find out what is REALLY going on with her (which is probably more likely)? Or 1800 other reasons that she may have thought of. I think Adele looked a little surprised that the test showed she was his sister, too. My other reason is that in the first episode she shows up in. About the first time she shuts up long enough to take a breath is when Felix starts talking about his bio mom, and she seems actually INTERESTED in actually listening to what he has to say, and even tries to get a little deeper by asking what he remembers about her. Phee says he can feel his bio mom’s presence in the way the sun shines just right sometimes, and Adele intently listens to him, the sun aglow behind her. I wonder if perhaps they are related, but that SHE is his actual bio mom. That could explain why their DNA would have similar markers. Sarah never told Scott that they should only have matching paternal DNA (that I recall off the top of my head). Could it be possible that bio mom’s death was faked for some reason yet unknown to us all? Of course it is! Time shall tell!
    As far as the whole thing with Susan and Ira go, I didn’t feel like she was a “child molester” per se, but I got the feeling that the writers want you do feel… disturbed (? can’t find quite the word I’m looking for) by it, because of the warped tone and key of the music they chose for the scene. I’m of the same school of thinking you are here though. Of all the things this woman has done, I doubt we know the worst of it yet, but this is certainly not even in the top 10 of the worst things she’s done that we DO know about. About the only “main” characters NOT making out with clones these days are S, Scott and Felix (well sort of Felix, he got some lip action with Tony).
    So after Sarah finds out that Helena ran off a day or two ago, why was Sarah not immediately calling Helena? Helena MUST have her clone phone, because she texted Sarah earlier that day to not worry about her. It was important enough to find out right away if Allison was a drug lord, so what about our prego sestra?! Also, “Ronnie” cracks me up, and I pity his poor sac. I wonder if anyone ever found him passed out on the floor with a painful case of blue balls?


    • I think it’s possible that Scott is a mole working for Topside, and he lied about the results. It’s entirely possible. As for Susan, they really want you to see she’s totally on the Neolution side, and that means no rules but what you make for yourself.

      Helena was the one who called when Sarah was painting with Kira, and I think as soon as Sarah can she’ll start in on Helena. She really does love her sister, but it’s hard to stay connected to her.

      Ronnie/Donnie is a laugh. He’s really getting played a lot this season.


  2. Ah, another reason I suspect Adele is really Felix’s bio mom…. I remember now that when she is telling Felix how her dad got hooked up with his mom, she told him that his dad had an affair with an American dancer, which was his bio mom… and the this week we see Adele teaching ballet positions to Kira. Coincidence?


  3. Pingback: Orphan Black, Season 4, Episode 5, “Human Raw Material” | Rachel Tsoumbakos

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