orphan black tca panel bbc america 'Orphan Black': Stepping into the life (or lives) of clones

Who are you if you’re a clone? What about if you assume the clone’s identity? Those are the questions at the heart of “Orphan Black,” the upcoming BBC America show about a young woman named Sarah who finds out that there are more of her than meets the eye.

She’s a clone. It’s problematic.

The stars — Tatiana Maslany (Sarah), Jordan Gavaris (Felix) and Dylan Bruce (Paul) — and co-creator Graeme Manson did their best to explain the twisted and creepy new show. What did they share?

The story begins…

…With Sarah, a street-smart and independent orphan who sees a woman commit suicide by stepping in front of a train. The thing is, the dead woman looked exactly like Sarah. A purse-snatching and some identity theft later, Sarah has assumed the life of her doppelganger, Beth. But Beth’s life turns out to have more than its share of problems.

And then there are more women who look like Sarah.


The cast and producer wouldn’t share exactly how many clones there would be — or which of the women is the original — but there may be a lot. “It’s like ‘The Parent Trap’ on steroids,” Bruce explained on the clone aspects of the show.

The results of all this

Although “Orphan Black” was originally conceived of as a feature, the writers decided there was too much story for just a couple of hours. The result is supposed to be a creepy (and at least occasionally sexy) descent into sci-fi territory.

The central theme of it all, according to Tatiana Maslany, is as follows: “It’s all about the clone identity. What makes me me?”

You can find out the answer to that question when “Orphan Black” premieres on BBC America on Saturday, March 30 at 9pm.

Posted by:Laurel Brown