Tatiana Maslany is once again pulling double duty. In this exclusive first image from season 2 of Orphan Black, we see the actress playing two clones doing battle. (You can see the photo in all of its huge, high-resolution glory by clicking on the magnifying glass button above.) On top is Sarah Manning, the fearless protagonist who acted as our entry point into the mysterious world of human clones. On the bottom with the gun on her face is Rachel Duncan, the Neolutionist “Proclone” who appeared primed to strike back in the season 1 finale after Sarah refused to cooperate. Judging by what we see here, they will be none too chummy when season 2 kicks off on April 19, 2014 (on BBC America here in the States and Space in Canada). Entertainment Weekly spoke with Orphan Black creators John Fawcett and Graeme Manson to get the full scoop on what this image means and what else to expect in season 2.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Okay, so clearly Sarah and Rachel are still at odds a bit here.
JOHN FAWCETT: Yeah, I’d say so.
GRAEME MANSON: And It’s not easy to get a gun on Rachel.
EW: What else, if anything, can you tell us about this image here and what it means for season 2?
MANSON: Probably that if Rachel launched the first volley in this war, this is one of Sarah’s steps in this war.
FAWCETT: Our launching framework for season 2 is really the war between Sarah and Rachel.
EW: You guys just scratched the surface with what we saw with Rachel last season. She’s clearly not a clone we’re not rooting for at this point, nor are we really sympathetic toward her, as we became somewhat sympathetic to Helena over the course of season 1. Where are you planning to go with her in season 2?
FAWCETT: For us, using Helena as an example, it was very interesting to draw a character that began really as one thing — for example, a serial killer — and then through the course of a few episodes become able to add layers and add flesh to the point where you could understand her and be sympathetic to her. So, to me, that was about creating a really dynamic deep interesting character that wasn’t just a cartoon. And I think we feel the same about Rachel. I think you could probably tell from the end of season 1 that Rachel’s got a little bit of heavy to her. And I think what’s interesting to us is that we’re having fun creating a new character this season who isn’t just a heavy. There’s other aspects to her. And that’s been a really fun developing a new girl.
MANSON: No one is just who they seem on Orphan Black. That’s the most important thing. Maybe things get set up as kind of a cliché or as one thing, but we’re always trying to bend it and find the layers to keep it fresh and original.
FAWCETT: Even as a villain, Rachel is going to hold a lot of surprises for us. She’s been a really fun nemesis for Sarah.
EW: Season 1 on any show is all about introducing the story and the characters, and it’s essentially setting the table. And if you do it right, a lot people want to come sit down at that table. But now, in season 2 what do you do to keep them sitting there?
MANSON: Right off the bat we’ve really hit the ground running. We left a lot up in the air, so it’s been a lot of fun figuring out how and when and where those balls land and how they land in unexpected ways. As for Rachel, we did leave last season knowing that Rachel was a child of Neolution, therefore much connected to the origins of the experiment. So I think Rachel is going to help to open a window for us and we ’re going to begin to understand a lot more about the conspiracy.
FAWCETT: Plus, I also think one of the big things we’re going to have to deal with in season 2, which is finding its own twists and turns, is Cosima’s illness. And that is a very pressing bit of drama that is not just straight ahead. It’s got a lot of mystery to it. It’s got a lot of twists and turns to it and it is thematically a big part of season 2 also.
MANSON: It’s a genetic mystery. It’s a genetic biological mystery and it feeds into some of our body horror and it feeds into our science mystery.
EW: Body horror! Nice! Okay, so would it be safe to assume we will be seeing some new clones this season?
FAWCETT: I think of course it’s safe to assume that. We are really excited about doing that. We want to do it in a way that is unexpected. We want to do it at a time that’s unexpected. But it is obviously something that we talk about a lot. And it’s part of the fun of making Orphan Black and making a show about clones is that we can be having those discussions. We have some surprises in store.
MANSON: Yes, we do.
EW: What’s it like being in production on season 2 now that you have all these fans. I have to imagine it’s a bit different than season 1 when nobody knew who the hell you were or what you were doing. Have you had to take any more precautions in terms of worrying about people getting on set and stealing script pages or anything?
MANSON: We have much tighter protocols on our scripts and things like that.
FAWCETT: Yeah, we definitely had to get a little medieval with security in terms of scripts and sides and scenes for auditions.
MANSON: Our first audition scenes were up on Spoiler.com the same day we put out the casting call. We were like “Oh, I guess we better start cloaking these things or else we’re going to end giving away our secrets without telling anyone anything.”
FAWCETT: So we definitely had to get a little bit more cagey about the material and who had access to the material
EW: What’s it been like seeing people get so into your show not just during the run of season 1, but well after it when everyone starting binge watching over the summer and now into fall?
FAWCETT: Well, I think a good part of it is because it’s being aired internationally right now. It’s on England on BBC3. It’s beginning to air in France. There’s a lot of international territories that are starting to air it now, so I think the fan base is kind of been building from that point of view also which is really cool. It’s exciting right now because Graeme and I are in the position where we’ve actually seen the first three episodes [of season 2]. And until you are kind of sitting there looking at the final product, I mean we’re both still a little ‘Is this gonna work? Is this gonna be as great as we really want it to be?” And I think Graeme and I can both attest after seeing the first three episodes that…it’s f—ing great.
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