The Hive Recap: By Means Which Have Never Yet Been Tried


Just dance.

The Hive Season 2 Finale Writers’ Notes Graeme Manson

“Any problem in the world can be solved by dancing.” – James Brown

“Clone Dance Party” had been written on a card and pinned to the board very early in the season 2 writer’s room.  As often happens, what started as kind of a joke grew into a good idea – a non-talky, active way to capture the emotional climax of the season. To reunite our Trinity of Sarah, Cosima and Alison – with a new moon, Helena. Because of course we’re not satisfied with three clones interacting. No, we just gotta try four.

ob5The dance party tape marks.

The complicated geography of clone choreography. I don’t think anybody had ever seen such tape marks. Heroic on set work by 1st AD Joanna Moore and Katherine Hughes and their team – the culmination of a couple months of pitching the sequence and marshalling the extra time in the shooting schedule to pull it off.  Key crew gave lunches to meetings; Tat, Jordan and 3 acting doubles stole rehearsal time during the shooting of 109. Then it was time to bring on the Technodolly!  The motion control beast that comes with several operators, multiple monitors, and its own separate playback system.

ob6Jordan and Tat rehearse the Technodolly shot as the crew looks on.

By the end of the second day of shooting, the crew gathered around the monitors watching a rough composite image of all four clones plus Felix.  Seeing that dance take shape, and realizing it was going to work, was one of the most rewarding moments of the season.  A truly collective labour of love came together, and we finally got to see The Cosima Dance!  Then of course, Geoff Scott and his team at Intelligent Creatures VFX took over to make the shot seamless – a process rumoured to have taken hundreds of hours in post.

ob4Adham Shaikh’s Refractions album.

The Art department mocked up a vinyl edition of Adham Shaikh’s Refractions album. Adham is an electronic music artist and buddy from the Kootenays, British Columbia.  I sneaked-peaked Season One with him while at the Envision Festival in Costa Rica, and was very glad when John and Tat glommed onto his track “Water Prayer Rasta Mix – Matt the Alien remix” for the dance. It’s Cosima’s dance really, and this is her sound.

Two other cards The Hive had up on the board early were “Cosima tells Sarah about Sacred Geometry” and “Sarah is the Wild Type.” They were so elemental to the season that at one point I was trying to put them both in the opening episode. Luckily cooler Hives prevailed.  Both those concepts, and the Bucky Fuller reference, are very much inspired by our Science Consultant, (the real) Cosima Herter.

ob1Cosima and Graeme doing what they do best. No, not drinking, having a conversation (with drinks).

ob3Shooting in the church.

210 was a big episode, and of course there’s never any money left at the end of the season.  It required some crafty producing by Claire Welland, Karen Troubetskoy, and everybody at Temple Street.  We used a 2nd Unit to shoot Mark and Gracie’s scenes.  Here’s 2nd unit camera operator Jeremy Lyall shooting the wedding. Brett Sullivan directed 2nd Unit, as well as edited the episode.

Now for the awww shucks part. The book Cosima reads Kira is written by my very own Mum, Ainslie Manson.  She’s been writing for kids since I was a kid, and A Dog Came, Too is my personal favorite.

ob2Tat and Skyler with “A Dog Came Too”

Truth be told #CloneClub, this book also offered the opportunity slip in a little puppy reference for all the Cophine fans. And this has been the most surprising and rewarding thing for everyone here at The Hive – the level of engagement from YOU. We’ve never experienced anything like it before, and it’s changed the way we engage with our own show. Now, after all the talk and writing and shooting and editing and launching, for 10 weeks our Saturday nights come down to this – assorted and honourary Hive members, cocktailing, watching the broadcast while following your reactions from all over the globe.

ob7Watching the finale.

So thank you, #CloneClub, from #TheHiveActual. You guys are funny and creative and so supportive of one another and you got your own thing going on. We love this pact we share.

As always, The Hive abides.

Graeme Manson

(And over the break, just try wrapping your heads around this:  “Is Orphan Black a Simulacrum?”)

NEXT: The Hive: Observations, Unexpected Results, and Mind-Benders

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  • Tom Horsley

    So now we have months to wonder if maybe a little girl who was perfectly OK a few hours after being run over by a car will also be fully recovered and ready to donate some more bone marrow a lot sooner than six weeks…

    • WrittenByArose

      dude, weren’t you watching? the cure is scribbled in the book ethan gave kira (which cosima was reading to her in the finale) AND helena left her frozen embryos in Felix’s loft so stem cells ahoy

      • Elliot Burford

        “Stem cells ahoy” is the greatest thing I’ve heard all day.
        Should be the tagline for season 3

        • Mothman’s Dog

          You had to say that now that Rachel’s a pirate :p

      • Effie

        yeah but it takes forever for that to work… cosima don’t have the time, but i do hope they will use helena’s babys like you said…. i think it’s her only chance!!!

  • Phoen1x1

    I love this show so much, Tatiana rules. What a fantastic actress she is, it doesn’t hurt that she is easy on the eyes either. Bravo to the whole cast and crew. I can’t wait for season 3, please hurry back.

  • Carlee McIsaac

    Thanks for the wonderful season OB Crew!!!

  • Jamey Sommers

    Love the show. Tatiana & Jordan – incredible. Thanks to crew & can’t wait for Season 3!!!!!

  • Mothman’s Dog

    You know what’ll happen to Rachel now, don’t you? The fans will spend the hiatus fretting over what her eyepatch is going to look like, whether it will clash with her designer wardrobe, if the pencil penetrated far enough to give her the kind of brain injury that makes her think want to run away to Once Upon A Time and steal the Jolly Roger from Captain Hook… and episode 3.01 will open with a long slow zoom in over her standing in front of a window, back turned, dismissing her recent “minor setback”, then glancing over her shoulder at the camera to reveal HOLY TILDA SWINTON A Robotic Eye!!! ,)

    • Tom J. Cassidy

      Or, a perfectly cloned eye. Let’s not forget what business she’s in.

      • Mothman’s Dog

        True, Dyad probably still have Jennifer’s body in their private morgue… on the other hand, there was the Neolutionist in season 1 with a silver left eye. Guess we’ll wait and see ,)

  • Angelo Barovier

    “J. G. Fawson.” Very clever portmanteau. “Le Petite Chat” is name of the video box room, I take it? Odd. And fitting that it’s odd. So, oddly fitting I suppose.

    The 7:30 travel note is a bit sniffle-sniffley. Oh, Professor Duncan…

    • Mothman’s Dog

      (from Rachel’s diary) “Note to self: in future, schedule the Personal Security Review BEFORE visiting family members.” .)

  • Bu

    this is by far the best TV show on TV rn!! thank you for the amazing finale and the awesome inspiration!! for fans of fan fiction:

  • rozzi8

    Wow! Very gracious of you. Your show is just so good and I keep telling more and more people to catch it ON Demand. I want all my friends hooked on it.

  • Anna Clara Dornelas

    We should be thanking you for the wonderful show!! And for reading everything we’ve been writing on tumblr, twitter and everywhere else! :) Everytime you guys put a reference in the episodes about something we’d been saying, #CloneClub members all over the internet (specially Tumblr) would be like “They see us, guys!” and it’is the best feeling! hehe :)

    Orphan Black is definitely my favorite show right now, and Tatiana’s become my favorite actress of all time, and I don’t even need to explain why. And all the others actors and actresses, everybody’s just so good!

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!! :)
    Much love from Brasil!!

    • Mothman’s Dog

      I half expected someone at the World Cup to spray Save Cosima on the pitch during a game… know something really funny? The network Orphan Black airs on down here also broadcasts the World Cup, and they keep playing that Nike ad with clones playing football :)

  • ceithor

    This show is TV perfection! Characters you truly come to care about (or despise), an engaging story that makes each hour feel like 2 minutes and acting that is so stellar that it boggles the mind!!! Tatiana is beyond amazing, she is Meryl Streep good and I’m dead serious. You truly think there are different actresses playing the parts. And everyone else enhances the show, especially Jordan Garvais (Felix). He has some of the best lines in the show. There are few TV shows that I’ve actually purchased, but this is one of them.

  • Pennylane22

    Just have no words to tell you how much I love this show. I am so fully invested in each character, which is a testament to great writing and the absolutely incomparable Tatiana. I think of all 4 characters as completely separate individuals. So, THANK YOU for bringing them to life. Write On!

  • Ernest

    Re: things said in video posted by GM about Simulacrum.

    Is anyone really so deluded as to think that the antiquated Nielson rating system is actually needed for them to tell who is viewing what? I’d guess that they know what at least 90% of people are watching. Anyone who is watching through a cable box or internet (and perhaps various other digital means), they probably know full well what you’re watching and when, live or later. Have you learned anything from the whole Snowden / NSA thing?

    And the networks will use the supposed excuse of ratings (or lack there of) to cancel shows, but the intelligence of a show seems to be inversely related to its longevity. Being too intelligent and too close to the truth of the “real” world – what some might call “faction” or factual content portrayed through fictitious characters and settings – especially too early in its life, seems to herald a show’s death knell. Some creators are sharp enough to not get too close to the truth of the real world until they get a good following, maybe get a couple seasons under their belt and get so much press that the networks would be hard-pressed to cry “low ratings” as their excuse to cancel, not that they won’t try, mind ya.

    With all this in mind, I wish OB well. You’re kinda pushing the envelope and yet I hope you keep pushing it, even more blatantly so. Don’t let your show just become another mind-numbing distraction. Keep it and make it even more intelligent and more truthful than the news media. Instead of being something that leads people from the truth, use it to lead people TO the truth.

  • Kurt W. Wanfried

    The dance scene seemed so spontaneous. Great job.

  • Tom Horsley

    Ha! You want something to wrap you head around: What if a new clone is introduced: A Canadian actor named Tatiana :-).

    • Tom J. Cassidy


  • Alexis Tamony

    Love this show! I have to now go back and watch every episode again. Clonetastic.

  • bwellerr

    Thanks so much for posting this. One thing that’s kind of hard to understand: “Sandy Sokolowski, the hair stylist on Orphan Black, shaved Ari Millen’s head” why didn’t they have a similar hairstyle for the Tony character? Tatiana performed great as Tony, but the wardrobe and hair were a mistake, which wouldn’t be a big deal but a lot of casual fans think Tatiana was the one who messed up. lol I guess there’s a reason why experimenting is scary. Which just goes to show how talented the OB crew is, because 95% of the innovative / experimental stuff turns out to be hugely successful.

    • Mothman’s Dog

      Oh I don’t know, Tony wouldn’t look out of place among the long-haired beer-drinking blokes hereabouts. Maybe better company though…

  • Sean

    Fantastic job on really developing this season! So many great scenes!

  • Mothman’s Dog

    Watching 2.10 again On Demand, have to say, very much liking the addition of mini-clone Charlotte. Particularly the fact that, while an important plot point, her health issue (leg brace) is only one part of who she is. Not hidden, not made a big fuss over, simply there, doesn’t get in the way of the story or the character’s obvious joy for life or how Sarah reacted to her. Thank you.
    Season 2 DVD is released here on Monday. The DVD store 10 minutes walk away has a 20% discount sale ending Monday. Plan for the weekend was to stay up late watching the World Cup. Thanks to my like-this-since-I-was-born health issues, I have the energy/stamina for one or the other. Plans change…

  • Dick Stewart

    My 44-year-old son turned me onto this series and said I would dig it. And boy howdy, do I! Aside from the story line, what really makes this show exceptional is the casting, the acting, and the suspenseful scenes. Of course, the theme instrumental is very appealing as I’ve been an instrumental rock-and-roll guitarist since 1961 with a group called the Knights performing early-60s style guitar instrumentals similar to that of The Ventures, with drenching reverb, whammy bar, and major/minor chords. The theme tune’s back-and-forth, major/minor performance is a very common concept in ’60s surf guitar instrumentals; however, the added sound effects in your opening tune brings it to a new level of creativity. Good job, people. You got this 74-year-old man’s attention, bar none! . . .

  • Soapstef

    I love this show! Tatiana & Jordan are brilliant! I don’t know what I’ll do while waiting for season 3. Guess I’ll start over and watch it all again. :)
    Oh the questions and musings!
    1. Sarah had sex with Paul & Cal…then was seen getting sick. What if……
    2. That interrogation in the finale revealed that Sarah had once had an abortion. Wonder if that could be anything.
    3. I have mind-melt thinking about Daisy out there pregnant with Helena and her father’s child! Nobody knows to even look for her..unless her mother survived the fire that Helena set.
    4. Holy Cow…WTF is about to happen to Helena?!
    5. Woooo the cypher was found!!
    I’m so excited I’m going to bust a gut!