Orphan Black is a Canadian science fiction television series starring the amazing Tatiana Maslany as several identical people who are clones. Cosima Niehaus is a lesbian geek clone who just wants to make crazy science.
“My sexuality is not the most interesting thing about me,” is an actual thing Cosima said in the second season of this show, but the show had been saying it without words since the introduction of Cosima’s character.
When it became clear that all the clones were being given monitors disguised as love interests, and Cosima suspected hers was a woman she met in the lab, no one blinks twice. Sarah doesn’t drop the phone and demand an explanation, she just tells Cosima to be careful.
When Delphine starts falling for Cosima, she only fights it for a minute, before admitting sexuality a spectrum and that Cosima could swing just about anyone to her side of it. Their relationship becomes so central to the storyline, that Delphine’s love for Cosima is actually used against her at the end of Season 2.
Season 2 also introduced Tony, a clone who is also a transman. He was met with mixed response by the fans (I blame the mullet more than anything) but it was another way of showing that just because they shared the same genetic material at conception doesn’t mean they did by the time they were born; they might all look the same, but the clones are as different from each other as anyone else.
Throughout the rest of the series, Cosima hangs out with brother-sestra, Felix (Sarah Manning’s gay foster brother) and her scientist pal, Scott. She also has a relationship with a woman she meets via a queer dating app.
Queer Plotline Timeline
Cosima is a main character throughout the series. But dyke drama takes center stage for season three when Shay Davydov is introduced as a new love interest for Cosima.
At the end of season three, Delphine appears to die, murdered by the evil behind the clones, however the show undoes the ‘bury your gays’ trope by having her magically appear as alive at the end of season four.
Notable Queer-Centric Episodes
- Season 1 Episode 6 “Variations Under Domestication” – Cosima Meets Delphine for the first time. She suspects right away that Delphine may be her monitor.
- Season 2 Episode 8 “Variable and Full of Perturbation” – We meet Tony, a transgender clone, while he’s trying to deliver a message to Beth. He flirts with Felix while staying at his apartment.
- Season 3 Episode 4 “Newer Elements of Our Defence” – Felix creates a profile for Cosima on a queer dating app to help her get over her breakup with Delphine
- Season 3 Episode 7 “Community of Dreadful Fear and Hate” – This episode isn’t exceptionally queer, but we get this great line when Cosima gives a speech while pretending to be Alison
- Season 4 Episode 10 “From Dancing Mice to Psychopaths” – Cosima is reunited with not dead Delphine.