Orphan Black is a Canadian science fiction series created by Graeme Manson (Flashpoint) and John Fawcett (Queer as Folk) and starring Tatiana Maslany as multiple characters who are clones from the same genetic stock.
The series begins with Sarah Manning, a con artist with a troubled past, who witnesses the suicide of a woman who looks exactly like her. Sarah adopts the dead woman’s identity as a police detective and, over the course of the series, comes to learn that the two women are clones. Not only that, but there are many more of them across North America and Europe. Even worse, someone is plotting to kill them all.
Two factions eventually emerge throughout this drama. One has a basis in science and believes that cloning is the key to humanity taking charge of its own evolution. The other is a religious cult who believes that the clones are abominations that must die. Sarah must, with the help of her foster brother and fellow clones, save the lives of the clones and navigate the space between these two factions.
Critics and viewers enjoyed the series right from its premier. The show was praised for its ability to manage taut suspense one moment and light, humorous scenes the next. Maslany received particular praise for her ability to play so many different characters, typically opposite only herself. Critics went so far as to claim it a snub when Maslany’s failed to receive a nomination for en Emmy as Best Lead Actress in a Drama Series at both the 65th and 66th awards. Nevertheless, the show and Maslany have received many other nominations and won several awards. The viewers spoke of their appreciation for the show via The People’s Choice Awards.
If you like near-future science fiction with suspenseful plotting and a lead actress demonstrating consummate skill in her roles, Orphan Black is a perfect match for you.