“Whoever our ‘creators’ are, they have a tremendous investment in us.
Our conception, our whole lives. Don’t you think they’d protect us from Helena?”
When the cards are down who can you really trust? The person closest to you? But what if it’s a case of keeping your friends close and your enemies closer? So where does this leave Sarah with Paul? With Cosima? Even Helena?
The return of Helena ushers in a magnitude of understanding that Sarah is wholly unprepared for. Helena is starved, literally and figuratively. She’s starved by a severely stunted worldview forced onto her by Tomas, by mental illness compounded and exploited by his abuse and mind control. But try as she might to obey her master and follow through on the slaughtering of “the sheep,” Helena’s own sense of curiosity and connection with Sarah is causing her to question everything.
Sarah is also forced with a reckoning of her own when she crosses the threshold of Club Neolution and falls down the rabbit hole. Club Neolution is just a nightclub of DIY body-altering enthusiasts. At least on the dance floor. But in the tunnels below, more sinister events unfold. Neolution, as Dr. Leekie so fervently pontificated in the previous episode, is an unyielding belief that technology will improve the human condition. So is that what the clones are ultimately all about? The next step in creating a better human?
Self-directed evolution, the nature vs. nurture debate, and body-modification philosophy all ask the same question: are we more than just our genes? Stephen Hawking calls having the ability, and the wherewithal, to change and improve our DNA as “self-designed evolution.” And that humanity controlling its evolution — its destiny — is inevitable.
Indeed, the human desire for control virtually defines humanity itself. It’s grotesquely manifest in Tomas nurturing Helena’s sick worldview, in Olivier’s surgically implanted tail, in Cosima slyly courting her monitor, in Paul playing Oliver, and of course in Sarah attempting to keep everything under control.
But Sarah’s lies are compounding on lies because it’s not in her nature (or is it nurture?) to trust — because trust is about relinquishing control. A foreign concept to hardened Sarah. But Sarah knows she’s made a mistake in not trusting Paul. He proves his loyalty to Sarah once and for all when he tells her to run. But Sarah doesn’t ‘do run’. Sarah has to help Paul because she’s the only one who can. This is a new driver for her — responsibility. Sarah is quickly, painfully, growing up through this mess, and with it comes a sense of fair play. And Sarah’s actions in this episode give her a deeper understanding of the two people she didn’t trust with her life, but both of who just saved her life — Paul and Helena.