The fifth episode of Orphan Black’s second season is titled “Ipsa Scientia Potestas Est,” which translates from the original Pig Latin into “Knowledge Itself Is Power.” The pursuit of knowledge was a key motivator when we first met the Clone Club. From far and wide, the multifarious Maslanys came, searching for the truth about themselves. This season, we’ve learned that the same pursuit of knowledge motivates the higher powers swirling around them: Neolutionists, Proletheans, Dyad, LEDA, some of them linked together and some of them in opposition, all hunting for the same thing.
God pops up frequently on Orphan Black. God is the deity worshipped by the Proletheans. For Tomas, God was the reason to purge the earth of all synthetic life; for Henrik, God is more like William Paley’s Watchmaker, tinkering with His creation and using the clones to guide mankind to a new stage of evolution. But God is also the concept that drives the less spiritually inclined forces that populate Orphan Black’s universe. Although Dr.
The title of this week’s episode of Orphan Black is “Mingling Its Own Nature With It,” which as we all learned in our second grade English class comes from Francis Bacon’s Novum Organum. “Novum Organum” translates roughly to “New Instrument” in the original pig latin, and it captures Bacon’s fundamental pursuit of a newer, higher form of scientific exploration. Like all truly important texts, Novum Organum is intelligent to the point of inscrutability, but it’s worth focusing on the line referenced by this week’s title. The paragraph reads:
The title of this week’s episode of Orphan Black is “Governed by Sound Reason and True Religion,” a line taken from Francis Bacon’s The New Organon: Or, True Directions Concerning the Interpretation of Nature. We live in an era when science and religion are generally considered at odds – uneasy allies at best, enemies at worst.
The first season of Orphan Black had episode titles that were quotes taken directly from Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of the Species, which also occasionally sounded like the title tracks from prog-rock albums where every song is ten-minutes long. (“Endless Forms Most Beautiful” and “Conditions of Existence” would make great Coheed and Cambria songs, precise definition of the word “great” variable to your taste.) But this year, Orphan Black is going old-school.
For the women of Orphan Black, the world is an open prison, and self-determination is a tenuous contract with the Powers That Be, who view them only as property. Some take this raw deal to survive. Prim, panicky Alison sells out for security in the suburbs with a schlubby hubby who is secretly her jailer. Brainy Cosima bargains with a Faustian devil for a gilded cage — her own superlab — where she and her ladylove can pursue a cure for the disease that’s killing her.
A new top secret experiment is under way. And considering it is taking place on the Toronto set of Orphan Black — a show known for cloning, genetic patenting, and human augmentation in the form of enhancements such as a fully functioning (and fully freaky) tail — the importance of said experiment cannot be underestimated. Everything depends on it. The man conducting the test holds his instrument steady in his right hand while monitoring the subject on the table below. The instrument: a blow dryer. The subject: blue cheese.
The newest Cool Sci-fi/Conspiracy Drama You Should Be Watching — which stars Tatiana Maslany as Sarah Manning, a single mom who discovers that she is one of several clones — doesn’t return until next spring, but it’s never too early to start talking about season 2. The show will explore themes of motherhood, which involve Sarah’s murdered birth mother (Melanie Nicholls-King) and her sketchy foster mother, Mrs. S.
A couple of weeks ago, geeks in America filled theaters and gave Iron Man 3 the second-biggest opening weekend in movie history. But not me. I don’t need to leave the house to find a smart-ass adventurer in a flying machine who saves his plucky female companion (and the world) from evildoers. I have Doctor Who for that. In fact, Geek TV — currently as crowded with swords, spaceships, and superheroes as the multiplexes — has been scratching my genre itch of late, with entertainment that nearly equals the transporting power of cinema.
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