Friends, lovers, #CloneClub — gather round. Orphan Black is back for its fifth and final season, and we’re going to try to make sense of it together. Here’s where we are: Cosima’s on a “mad scientist private island,” Sarah has followed her there, Rachel has turned on them and is partnering with Neolutionist creator P.T. Westmoreland, Mrs. S and Kira have been kidnapped, and Alison, Donnie, and Helena are hiding in the woods. Make sense? Of course not. Let’s go.
Sarah, injured and crawling through the woods, uses the last of her phone’s battery to call Felix and tell him that Ferdinand took Kira and Mrs. S and that he needs to check the safe house. She also tells him that Rachel took the cure for Cosima’s disease before Cosima could get to it. Felix tells Sarah to get off the island, but she says she won’t leave without Cosima.
At the end of last season, Susan had said Cosima could escape by boat off the island, so Felix puts Ira on the phone to explain to Sarah just where that boat is. Apparently, it’s in the boat house at a river mouth downstream from the village. What village? But Sarah’s phone dies before Ira can explain.
As it gets darker, the cold gets harsher, and Sarah has to use a picture of Kira as kindling for a fire. Then, she uses a tampon as a bandage for the wound on her leg, but the pain of applying the bandage knocks her out, and she wakes to mysterious movement in the woods. A weird creature, part human, part something else, attacks her, and she only manages to escape by hitting him (it?) with a rock.
It turns out, the village Ira spoke of is the one Cosima has just woken up in. Locked inside her new yurt, she goes to check on the cure for her disease but discovers that Delphine has taken it — and replaced it with a note that says, “Whatever happens — follow my lead!” She spots Delphine outside arguing with a man, but before she can make sense of what’s happening, a stranger enters her yurt.
“Welcome to Revival,” says a woman who introduces herself as Mud. “Sustaining life off the grid since 1908.”
Mud explains that Delphine has gone to work in the clinic, and takes Cosima around to tell her about Revival.
“We’re almost completely self-sufficient,” she says of the colony. So self-sufficient, in fact, that Cosima isn’t allowed to talk to anyone off the island — including her sisters. The people who are on the island were specifically chosen to genetically improve the human race. “We all contribute, and we all benefit,” Mud says.
When Cosima asks about “some pretty beneficial science” that was stolen from her, and whether or not Mud knows Rachel, she goes quiet.
“We do now,” she responds. Rachel is on the island with the founder, who is apparently 170 years old and still alive.
Before Cosima can ask more, she spots Charlotte, who was in, what she calls, “sort of a school.” She asks about their treatment, but Cosima assures her that Delphine has them covered. When Charlotte asks about Susan, Mud butts in, saying she heard that she’ll pull through.
Felix, at the safe house — which doesn’t look so safe anymore — sees blood on the floor and a bloody corkscrew. When he hears and intruder, he hides behind a counter, but it just ends up being Art. The two try to figure out where Ferdinand would have taken Mrs. S and Kira. Arthur says he’s going to help, but they have to be careful. “I don’t even know who’s legit police and who’s Neo right now.”
Felix relays to Alison and Donnie, who, remember, are in a tent in a national park with Helena, that he and Arthur are coming up with a plan. “I just need you to stay put and stay safe,” Felix insists. However, Alison refuses to stay still while her sisters are at risk. She tells Donnie to get packing.
Back at the station, Arthur gets a new partner: Detective Engers. Their mission? To find Alison and Donnie, so Arthur’s loyalties just got a little complicated.
“You don’t know how far we’re willing to go to get all these clones in,” Engers threatens, showing Arthur a picture of his daughter. “You better embrace this new future, Art, because it’s going to be here real soon.
Sarah, meanwhile, gets a glimpse of the boat, but ducks when she hears guards. Over their walkie-talkies, one relays that “We don’t go home until she’s back at Revival with the other one.”
When they’re gone, Sarah begins making her way upstream.
Delphine, hard at work in the clinic, receives a new patient named Aisha.
“Do you know why you’re here?” Delphine asks.
“To get better, ” Aisha replies. “We came for the fountain.”
Once they leave, we see Delphine scrambling to hide Cosima’s cure — and to save Aisha’s file. Suddenly, she’s interrupted and told that “he” wants to see her.
Felix and Scott survey the island via satellite and press Ira for more information, but Ira insists that Susan avoided the subject of Revival entirely. The gang decides to reach out to MK, but first they need the laptop from the safe house. When Felix goes to retrieve it, however, he’s interrupted by a stranger named Mr. Frontenac, who says the “factions” have consolidated.
“Shall you and I do this amicably?” Mr. Frontenac asks, and Felix leaves with him
Back at the park, Donnie and Helena are busy loon-calling one another, which is charming and fun until Helena gives the call for “emergency.” The police have found them, and as Alison is wrestled to the ground, Donnie escapes with a suitcase.
Alison is taken to Art and Engers, who ask her where Helena and Donnie have gone. Art, knowing his daughter’s life is at risk if he doesn’t comply, tells Alison that the Neolutionists want a truce.
“I’m sworn not to harm a single hair on a single clone head,” Engers says, before pointing her gun at Art. “Now where’s Helena?”
Alison reveals that Helena is in the woods, but that she doesn’t know where she went.
Back at Revival, Charlotte and Cosima read a children’s book that reveals that the purpose of Revival is to put a stop to death and aging. They’re interrupted by Delphine, who must say goodbye before her surprise research trip to Sardinia. She tells Cosima that the science at Revival is real and that the island is a decades-long prolongevity study, with everyone on it as subjects. “This is the heart of Neolution,” she claims. “Rachel is ramping up their agenda.”
Before Delphine is taken away, she gives Cosima the key to the clinic where she’s hidden her treatment.
Mud takes Cosima to the center of the camp where everyone is gathering to hear a message from P.T. There, Rachel stands to address the campers on his behalf, saying that 200 years of Neolution science are within their grasp and that they will “drink from the fountain” first.
Making her way through the woods, Sarah sees some mysterious things — like game hanging in desolate areas, and chewed-up dead animals — before finally winding up at the camp in the middle of Rachel’s speech.
Donnie, on the run with his suitcase, gets to their car but is stopped by an officer. But don’t worry! Helena wrestles him to the ground so Donnie can knock him out, but gets a stick stuck in her heavily pregnant belly in the process.
In the middle of the night, while Mud is sleeping, Cosima leaves her yurt in search of the clinic where Delphine has hidden the cure. She finally gets ahold of it but is interrupted by Sarah. Cosima takes a look at Sarah’s wounds and tries to convince Sarah to administer the treatment, while Mud and others notice Cosima’s absence from the yurt. Cosima says she can’t leave with Sarah because Revival has the answers to the mystery of the clones, so Sarah heads out solo.
Cosima attempts to administer the drug herself, which involves sticking a needle through her stomach into her uterus but is interrupted by Rachel. Rachel, in a surprising turn of events, says she’ll administer the drug.
“I’m as invested in this as you are,” she promises.
Sarah makes her way to the boathouse but is shot with a tranquilizer as she attempts to escape. The last thing she sees is Rachel.
“It’s a new day, Sarah,” she says.
Let the final trip begin.
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