Orphan Black: Season Three – DVD Review

Orphan Black Season 3 Blu-Ray

It seems like that every season of Orphan Black just gets bigger and bigger in terms of boldness and innovative storytelling. At a time when many shows begin to peter out, Orphan Black instead picks up the tempo, creating a pitch perfect blend of suspense, comedy and modern science that all seamlessly morph into a compelling and well-acted production.

Recently renewed for a Fourth Season, BBC America has just released Season Three as a three-disc DVD and two-disc Blu Ray set. In addition to the episodes, the collection offers a nice chunk of extras.

BBC America Synopsis:

After neutralizing the threat by the DYAD Institute and the ruthless clone Rachel (Maslany), Project Leda clones Sarah, Alison, Cosima and Helena, (Maslany) are finally all united in their journey towards the truth of who and what they are. But new discoveries that include Helena’s kidnapping, a book that could contain the answers to their existence, and the most shocking discovery of them all –- a set of treacherous militaristic male clones (Ari Millen) with an unknown agenda — will test how tight their new bonds are.

From the start of “The Weight of This Combination” through the finale, “History Yet To Be Written,” viewers are taken on an emotional whirlwind, which sees the Clone Club fighting Cantor on all fronts. There’s even an interesting jaunt to London and a great three-episode guest turn from James Frain as Ferdinand, a very dangerous cleaner.

With the success of Season Three, I think we can finally stop calling Orphan Black a cult TV show. The popularity stems from a few factors. First, there is real character development at work here. Second, the stories defy any single genre classification. There’s a lot of stuff in the stew, including some wonderful dark humor. This oftentimes features a quirky twist or cruel act of fate that only enhances the drama.

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The Sounds of DragonCon 2013: Orphan Black at X-Track

The Ladies of Orphan Black

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This year at DragonCon, the inimitable Leigh–X-Track Director extraordinaire–put together a fan panel to discuss the conspiracies, weird science, and general shady dealings going on in the universe of Orphan Black. Because of our previous discussion on this topic, in the form of my conversation with Graeme Manson, I was invited to participate on this panel, along with Rob Levy, JM Tuffley, and the wonderful Cheryl of X-Track Staff. We had a great time together and we got a lot of excellent questions from the audience.

So if Orphan Black is a thing in which you are or might be interested, then I recommend you enjoy the above podcast. This was the X-Track Orphan Black Fan Panel, Sunday, September 1st, 7pm, Dragon*Con 2013. (Direct download available here–right click and select “Save As” or the equivalent.)

Oh, and the only Orphan Black cosplay I saw, all Dragon*Con, was seen at this panel: a fantastic recreation of the shot of Helena, found at right…

(Season 1 of Orphan Black is available from Amazon on DVD, Blu-Ray and on Amazon Instant Video.)[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

A Conversation with Orphan Black Showrunner Graeme Manson

Orphan Black logo

Orphan Black is the story of a woman who watches herself die.

Wait, that’s not quite it.

Orphan Black is the story of a mother struggling to connect with her child. Or is that two mothers? Or three? Four mothers? Two Children? Hm.

Orphan Black is the story of eight clones, living together, under one roof… No, wait, that’s also wrong.

Developed for television by Graeme Manson and John Fawcett and airing on BBC America in the US, and Space in Canada, Orphan Black explores questions of choice, identity, free will, technological progress and freedom and belief, in a setting and with a cast which make every beat intense and every conversation as terse, or endearing, or incredulously aware of itself as it needs to be. Orphan Black is a story that asks the question, “What would you do if you knew, in your heart, in your mind, in your very being, that you were unique, original, you… and then found out that you weren’t quite as you as you thought you were?”

I recently got the opportunity to have a talk with head writer and co-showrunner Graeme Manson about the philosophical concepts, world events, and other wells from which he draws in order to craft the arc or Orphan Black‘s story. Why don’t we let him tell you what it’s all about:

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