7 Revelations We Learned from the Cast of Orphan Black

Felix, Mrs. S, Paul, and Mark (Seth, Rudy, and Miller) answer burning questions about season three

by | April 29, 2015 | Comments

During a sit-down at Chicago’s C2E2 convention this weekend with Orphan Black creator John Fawcett and cast members Ari Millen, Dylan Bruce, Maria Doyle Kennedy, and Jordan Gavaris, Rotten Tomatoes uncovered the answers to some of season three’s most pressing questions. [Warning: Contains spoilers for the first two episodes of Orphan Black season three.]

What’s Up With Helena’s Scorpion?

“I like to think of it as a spirit guide for them,” said John Fawcett, co-creator and director of Orphan Black. The scorpion, which comes from Helena’s point of view, is also performed by Maslany (one more character to add to her roster). “A scorpion makes this sort of purring, clicking sound,” Fawcett explained. “She did all the layers of those sound effects on top of [the voice], so she would do a purring which was sort of halfway between a cat and a velociraptor. Then we do a clicking track which she would just do with her mouth while the thing walked. Then she would do the vocal the voice. Then we would just layer them together; we would cut it all together. She really created the entire performance of the scorpion.” And while the scorpion only exists in Helena’s mind, that is a real scorpion on Maslany’s face. Give her the Emmy already!

What’s the Deal with Kira?

Maybe you’ve sensed that Kira (Skyler Wexler) has something special going on. But the cast isn’t about to cop to magical powers. “I don’t think anything in the Orphan Black universe is ever magical,” said Jordan Gavaris, who plays Sarah’s foster brother, Felix. “I don’t think we’re in elvish territory… I would maybe go as far as to use the word ‘alchemy,’ but what was considered magical 200 years ago is explained very easily by science now.” For Maria Doyle Kennedy (Mrs. S), being a fan of the show as much as she is a part of it, Kira has raised an eyebrow more than once. “I definitely was like, ‘Oh, look at the way she healed after that accident.’ I like that. I wonder how the hell she was made, what was the difference in [Sarah’s] DNA and therefore in Kira’s? I’m really hoping it’s going to go somewhere… Maybe we could cure diseases on our show.”

Why Did Rudy Kill Seth?

Ari Millen, who plays the male clones, including newcomers Rudy and Seth, explained the events of Saturday’s episode, “Transitory Sacrifices of Crisis,” as a “mercy killing.” Seth, having had a series of glitches, seemed to be heartlessly put down by his brother, Rudy. But Millen said it comes from a good place. “I really let it build with Rudy… to help create him because we’re introduced with Rudy and he’s this maniacal, scary guy that we see in this jail cell. For me, it was really important to make him more than just that and flesh him out. His interactions with Seth, his brother, the loving relationship that they had, and then the mercy killing, for me really helped find Rudy in a different way.” Millen also said that, had Seth survived, he might have been his favorite clone.

Why Does Mark Burn Off His Tattoo?

Mark, the Prolethean we met in season two, has a new dimension now that we know of his clone brothers — not just for us but for the actor too. “I didn’t know last season, obviously, that Mark was going to be a clone and I’m glad that I didn’t find out because I probably would have played him way differently,” Millen said. Not only did Mark dedicate his life to Henrik and run away with Gracie, but he also makes a symbolic (and excruciating) decision to blowtorch his Project Castor tattoo at the end of “Transitory Sacrifices of Crisis.” The reason? “The burning of the tattoo is just that one next step of distancing himself from his old life and trying to build the new one, the ideal one, with Gracie,” Millen explained.

Who Are the Bad Guys?

Orphan Black has no shortage of untrustworthy characters, and topping that list right now is Paul (Dylan Bruce). “Ultimately, [Paul] has a task and he has goals but he’s also answering to someone much higher up than we have yet to see,” Bruce said. “I really got who this guy was [this season]. I got why he did what he did the prior two seasons, good and bad.” And as evidenced this past week, he does have feelings for Sarah. As for good and bad, director Fawcett likes Orphan Black to exist in the gray areas. “There’s a bad guy and then you’re like, ‘Wait a second. Are they a bad guy? Why do I care about this person, then, if they’re so bad?'” Fawcett said. “A lot of it is really wanting to understand why people do the things they do.”

Is There a Plan for the Ending?

Fawcett, who co-created the series with Greame Manson, caused a stir when he said that Orphan Black is a five-season story. “I got a little spanked over that one,” Fawcett admitted. “Let’s say when we were initially designing this, yes, we were talking about five seasons. We were trying to design a story that would have a beginning, middle, and end.” So, for those doubting that Orphan Black has an endgame, Fawcett is adamant that it does. “I want to know how the thing ends so that we can be focused on telling a cohesive story. I think that’s what’s really important,” Fawcett said. “I don’t want this to feel like we’re just floating around and trying to invent stuff from season to season. It really needs to feel like we have a clear way that we’re going forward.”

What Is Orphan Black Saying About LIfe?

For Gavaris, Orphan Black upends so much about the normative narrative about being human. “I think, and I love this term, it’s about the mythology that we tell each other about what it means to be humans and how it’s just not true… The mythology of the man, the mythology of the woman, the mythology of the lesbian, the science geek, the gay man, the housewife, they’re all myths.” And the term “orphan” is not lost on Kennedy, who plays Sarah and Felix’s foster mother. “I think it’s about defining your family,” Kennedy said. “I think that’s what it’s really about, and about the fact that your family doesn’t need to be so crazy, lifestyle-brochure, nuclear type-one. It can be of many shapes and sizes or colors or formations or lots of different people in it.”

Orphan Black airs Saturday at 9 p.m. on BBC America. See reviews for season three here.

Tag Cloud

classics war The Walking Dead free movies spider-verse dceu discovery Writers Guild of America 2017 Set visit Interview Reality Competition ID Quiz GLAAD VOD The Academy natural history Fox News japan telelvision YA rotten binge Thanksgiving hist Western stoner OneApp spain die hard zombie Showtime TLC marvel cinematic universe President a nightmare on elm street indiana jones animated Valentine's Day TCA Winter 2020 Avengers Opinion Red Carpet 21st Century Fox Biopics comic book movies CW Seed LGBTQ Spike OWN revenge Photos italian Rocketman science fiction police drama toy story singing competition game of thrones First Reviews political drama GIFs Discovery Channel jamie lee curtis 2020 45 feel good festival SDCC Super Bowl Black Mirror supernatural comic book movie Dark Horse Comics comic books Mystery Tomatazos 99% Crunchyroll fresh Hear Us Out Pop TV thriller ABC Signature lord of the rings talk show reboot Masterpiece genre 71st Emmy Awards Election screen actors guild rt archives Disney+ Disney Plus olympics PBS Bravo spanish National Geographic The Purge zero dark thirty Tokyo Olympics adaptation Shudder witnail rotten movies we love dc biopic Song of Ice and Fire Turner social media chucky live event Cannes criterion vs. Mary Tyler Moore romance Mudbound rom-coms Disney Pixar Toys BBC One facebook space nature 2016 films Film popular Paramount Image Comics versus stop motion reviews 4/20 sequel Brie Larson Broadway Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt ghosts richard e. Grant comiccon 2015 Fall TV hollywood IFC Cartoon Network blockbusters golden globe awards asian-american Amazon Studios sag awards The CW Box Office indie game show Rock dexter TCM psychological thriller Lionsgate robots transformers Arrowverse Elton John halloween tv The Arrangement Nominations deadpool historical drama award winner teaser live action 007 hispanic heritage month Crackle Turner Classic Movies TV One Mary Poppins Returns Animation DirecTV king arthur RT History black comedy Video Games Horror Tarantino Disney Plus golden globes See It Skip It Trophy Talk ABC Family biography parents Spectrum Originals sitcom LGBT Tubi Apple TV Plus cars new zealand black Watching Series YouTube Netflix Christmas movies cancelled TV series twilight boxoffice Cosplay E3 FXX Binge Guide NBA kids high school HBO Go zombies Premiere Dates Action critics streaming Pride Month renewed TV shows FX 1990s Freeform YouTube Red nfl superhero wonder woman Academy Awards joker Reality cops Polls and Games aapi Classic Film Comic-Con@Home 2021 Sundance TV Year in Review Awards Tour PlayStation scene in color DC Universe Epix Travel Channel adenture Alien Nickelodeon theme song Mindy Kaling Kids & Family Musicals stand-up comedy vampires nbcuniversal TV Land DGA The Witch Hallmark Universal Pictures international Rom-Com crime drama crime Trivia BBC America documentaries Ovation casting politics archives south america First Look anthology Britbox cinemax Fox Searchlight Wes Anderson french Stephen King football Amazon Prime kong IFC Films TIFF 2019 Paramount Plus sports foreign YouTube Premium Holiday docudrama mob Comic Book true crime Amazon christmas movies aliens saw Comedy Central heist movie 2018 Martial Arts spy thriller ratings video on demand SundanceTV VICE gangster Rocky NBC TV renewals Paramount Network independent Peacock Certified Fresh prank Infographic blaxploitation mockumentary IMDb TV rt labs Sneak Peek Music hidden camera cancelled TCA 2017 worst movies Star Wars HBO Max Character Guide canceled Country venice Heroines FOX A24 doctor who Marathons book adaptation trailers cooking TruTV emmy awards finale CBS mcc Sony Pictures unscripted Sundance Now Grammys Hallmark Christmas movies debate sopranos pirates of the caribbean Superheroes Extras 2021 laika miniseries crossover Winners Star Trek boxing cats MCU crime thriller ITV CMT movie AMC GoT TCA Awards 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards Vudu halloween Oscars Winter TV movies Fantasy Chernobyl toronto monster movies women Pet Sematary Funimation Emmy Nominations Shondaland Pacific Islander VH1 Schedule WarnerMedia Starz Disney streaming service New York Comic Con Food Network Adult Swim Superheroe name the review Tumblr Neflix Spring TV new star wars movies superman Black History Month El Rey Countdown mission: impossible Disney Channel Sci-Fi mutant cults Nat Geo dragons series psycho godzilla Comics on TV ViacomCBS suspense FX on Hulu latino Syfy remakes DC Comics dreamworks screenings action-comedy spanish language posters BAFTA travel serial killer harry potter CNN BET concert Family anime MSNBC best Teen Pop sequels The Walt Disney Company A&E TV target canceled TV shows justice league Chilling Adventures of Sabrina USA Network new york franchise cancelled television Endgame streaming movies know your critic Podcast basketball APB TCA CBS All Access WGN worst San Diego Comic-Con Awards USA satire Walt Disney Pictures Pirates slasher Creative Arts Emmys Comedy dark television Calendar Marvel Television Legendary universal monsters Lucasfilm docuseries Exclusive Video dogs HBO Musical comic Instagram Live 90s art house razzies Baby Yoda 93rd Oscars breaking bad MTV directors 20th Century Fox japanese Lifetime Christmas movies diversity rt labs critics edition comedies legend green book ESPN BET Awards australia Ghostbusters book festivals period drama royal family Summer adventure medical drama History Film Festival Amazon Prime Video TV movies king kong hispanic jurassic park comics Trailer TNT scary movies AMC Plus Universal dramedy Sundance SXSW quibi scorecard Hulu critic resources Ellie Kemper cancelled TV shows Warner Bros. werewolf Esquire Marvel ABC slashers Apple TV+ disaster 73rd Emmy Awards child's play Mary poppins obituary TBS blockbuster BBC Anna Paquin Columbia Pictures batman scary Logo Acorn TV RT21 E! james bond PaleyFest Drama young adult based on movie Best and Worst elevated horror all-time romantic comedy Apple NYCC kaiju 24 frames Captain marvel Holidays Marvel Studios technology Television Critics Association spinoff documentary Women's History Month DC streaming service Emmys tv talk news children's TV Netflix marvel comics X-Men Lifetime Christmas video what to watch strong female leads Television Academy cartoon American Society of Cinematographers composers spider-man fast and furious 72 Emmy Awards