While scanning US websites for new shows worth having a look at I saw a few references to something called Orphan Black that sounds cool.|
Basically, a woman sees another woman commit suicide in a public place - and the woman looks exactly like her. So, she steals her handbag and starts trying to pass herself off as this other woman, and discovers there are many other women who look like her - clones.
It's a nice idea, but it's rather compromised for me by a really weird style. First of all, it's hard to tell what the show wants to be - quirky black comedy/drama, or actual thriller. It tries both and fails to gel. In between moments of interesting plot development stuff she hangs out with this British guy, her friend who's all quirky and camp and clearly meant to be the comedy relief, but he's just rubbish. And also, British - think a slightly less angry, snarky and bitter Nick Grimshaw, with slightly less stupid hair.
Then there's the lead. I think her character is meant to be British, but her accent is lousy, so it's just as well the woman she impersonates is American. But she also plays all the clones and on the basis of the third version of her we meet, she's not particularly convincing at playing other people.
And then there's the look of it. I think it's an American show, but it's airing on BBC America and a lot of the time it looks exactly like most British dramas that try to be American - far too overly dramatically lit on the one hand, and hampered by the "is it a comedy/drama, or is it a thriller?" indecision.
At least, that's what I thought. The wife was going to watch another episode but I couldn't face it. Great idea, lousy execution.
Anyone else caught any of it?
(I haven't done any Googling about the show to see who actually made it, or what nationality the main actress actually is. Just my knee-jerk reactions here...)
I also randomly noticed some talk about this on sites I was visiting so I started watching this on Friday this week. Just finished episode 5 which I think is the latest. I think it is great. Yes, the first episode was a bit ropey but every episode has improved dramatically since then and it is now, I think, very good. I am definitely intrigued to see what happens in the rest of the series.
For the record (I did do some Googling!) it is a collaboration between BBC America and some Canadian production companies. The lead character is Canadian as well (Tatiana Maslany) and I personally think she does a pretty great job of making all the different characters she plays all appear unique. Apparently there will be up 10 unique clones she will be playing in the first series.
MightyMouse 1,090 posts
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I've seen the episodes so far. It's intriguing and well-written, but might be one of those ideas that doesn't go anywhere. The lead actress' British accent certainly isn't perfect, but other than that her acting is really very impressive. If you compare her portrayal of lots of different characters to Dollhouse, for instance, you realise just how good she is.
You might end up being be right there MightyMouse, but the fast pace of reveals in the show so far makes me feel like they know where they going and, for this series at least, I think it is going to be an exciting ride.
Tatiana Maslany is really superb and worth watching for her performances alone. Yes, tiny details like her British accent isn't perfect, but that is minor detail, because on the whole the individuality she brings to each personality is amazing.
Hmm. Not convinced, myself. That first episode was some of the most cringesome telly I'd seen in ages, very disappointing. I've watched some behind the scenes of later episodes where she plays multiple people, I strongly disagree that she convinces in multiple roles. Each to their own though!