With a little over a month until BBC America’s Orphan Black comes back for season number two, it’s time for those of us who fell in love with the first season to start getting excited. Part of the pleasure of the series is watching star Tatiana Maslany seamlessly play multiple clones, often within the same scene. Not only does she give a fantastic performance, she gives multiple fantastic performances, creating entirely different people and characters in the process. Moving forward and looking for answers, Sarah (Maslany) and her identical clone counterparts will uncover even more copies of themselves, and now we have a picture and video that introduces one.
Entertainment Weekly unveiled the latest addition to the cast, a 28-year-old teacher and swim coach named Jennifer Fitzsimmons, played, of course, by Maslany. She was apparently quite the swimmer in her youth, at one point on track to become and Olympian. As it turns out, she’s also sick, like, very, very sick. You probably got that from the picture, because she does not look like a well woman. Check out this video below to see exactly what Jennifer’s illness has taken away from her, as she transforms from a relatively healthy patient at the outset of her treatment, to someone who looks like she’s on the verge of death.
This video diary is how clone Cosima first becomes aware of the new addition, as the dread-locked grad student comes across Jennifer’s journal while researching her own mysterious illness.
Co-creator Graeme Manson describes Jennifer as “a bright-eyed Midwestern pure of heart girl.” So she’ll fit in famously with her fellow clones. His partner in crime, John Fawcett, says, “Jennifer is a clone who was naïve, she didn’t know she was a clone, and was being monitored by her boyfriend. She gets sick, and with a kind of the version of the illness that Katja had. And of course, a version of the illness that Cosima has. Just that discovery alone is the kind of discovery that shakes Cosima. It really rattles her.”
It also appears that Jennifer is being treated by the Neolutionists. She mentions that “Every week the Dyad tries a new treatment,” and calls out Dr. Leekie (Matt Frewer) by name. You have to wonder Jennifer’s current state offers a glimpse at Cosima’s future, unless she can find a way to treat her own respiratory illness.
This leaves us with a number of questions, but questions that we will hopefully have answered, at least in part, when Orphan Black returns on April 19.