This scene, a scene in which an assumed-to-be heterosexual protagonist casually courts another woman, is significant because Sarah is one of three queer women – two of whom are bi – on a single television show, each of whom experiences their queerness differently. … Sarah, Cosima, and Delphine are three very different women with different narratives, inhabiting their queerness in three disparate ways.
Despite what the multitude of Bechdel-test-failing media would have us believe, relationships among women can be complex and about much, much more than men. The sibling relationships of sisters, in fact, can be particularly rich, nuanced, and worth contemplation. Sibling rivalry, as it appears in ‘A League of Their Own’ and ‘Sixteen Candles,’ examines competition for recognition, birth order conflict, and self-doubt when faced with perceptions of sibling superiority.
It is important to have women represented in fictional media as scientists from across the spectrum of sciences… By making women more visible in science settings on television – in both fictional and factual programming – the inspiring images of science that can and are being produced can be associated with women who are not only represented as smart individuals but as part of a network of diverse and complex professional women.
‘Orphan Black’ tackles two very different hot-button topics in a way that’s considered entertaining, insightful, and groundbreaking: the possible repercussions of cloning and the dynamics of the female personality. Show creators Graeme Manson and John Fawcett are earning praise for breaking decades of television stereotypes that resulted in most female characters either taking a backseat role or displaying a single, overriding personality trait (i.e., the ditzy blonde, the butch female, the submissive housewife). As the feminism in ‘Orphan Black’ earns praise, however, there’s been some criticism of the show’s underdeveloped male characters–a glaring contradiction that may be intentional.
It is, apparently, very difficult to put a good trans character in your TV show. Recent attempts at portraying trans men have tended to leave something to be desired. And last week on ‘Orphan Black,’ along came Tony.
What’s shaping up to be the forefront theme in ‘Orphan Black’ season two is reproductive rights. Of all the clones, Sarah is an anomaly because she was able to give birth to Kira when all her clone counterparts are infertile. The seemingly impossible birth of Kira has the forces of science and religion both vying for access and control over clone bodies.
Queer inclusion has become downright trendy lately. Even Disney has jumped on the bandwagon. However, as we all know, just because a minority makes an appearance in the media doesn’t mean the mainstream won’t continue to compulsively shape their narratives. One thing show-runners can’t seem to get enough of is sad lesbians (and I say lesbians because according to most representation, bisexuality clearly doesn’t exist!).
‘Orphan Black’ is gritty sci-fi with layered mysteries, mistaken (and impersonated) identity, and lots of complicated female characters. The most intriguing part of the show is that many of those multifaceted female characters are played by the same woman, Tatiana Maslany. She portrays all the clones involved in a seemingly nefarious scientific experiment.
Did you miss these popular posts on Bitch Flicks? If so, here’s your chance to catch up. “How New Girl‘s Jess and Nick Avoided Common Rom-Com Pitfalls” by Lady T “Farah Goes Bang: A Love Letter to Female Friendships” by Amanda Rodriguez “The Women of Man of Steel and the Toxicity of Hyper-Masculinity” by Megan […]
Orphan Black poster This is a guest post by Ms Misantropia. Last Saturday was the season finale of BBC America’s Orphan Black, a fast paced Canadian sci-fi series about human cloning. The show’s main protagonist, Sarah Manning (Tatiana Maslany), is a street-wise orphan just returning to Toronto after having spent a year abroad. She barely […]