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.
Then there’s Tatiana Maslany, who continues to amaze. Her adept portrayal of multiple characters becomes more difficult as the series continues. Her accents are not sloppy and her intensity is never overstated. Seeing her move from clone to clone is a delight and a wonder. Her hard work has not gone unnoticed, netting her an Emmy nomination and several critics awards in the process.
Although the DVDs contain no episode commentaries there is a hilarious blooper reel from the season. The extras are also not too shabby.
Creating The Castor Clones: Go behind the scenes on the origins of the clones with Ari Miller for a male perspective of all this clone business.
The Rendition Camp: Behind the Walls: A production-focused tour of the Orphan Black soundstage with director and co-creator John Fawcett, cinematographer Aaron Morton and VFX supervisor Geoff Scott.
Dissecting The Scenes: The cast and crew give us a behind the scenes look at how Season Three’s four-clone scenes are created.
The Look of Orphan Black: Producing a television series that has its own texture is not a simple feat. John Fawcett and Aaron Morton return to guide us on a stylistic journey on how the look of series has matured since its inception.
Team Hendrix: Rockin’ the Suburbs: Fans of the show are drawn to the episodes that center on Alison and Donnie. It’s a weird relationship that still gains increased popularity every season. This featurette offers an examination of that phenomenon.
It will be interesting to see where they take the show next. The first three installments have been a roller coaster ride of fun, frazzled nerves and complex conspiracies that work aesthetically and psychologically.