The evolution of Cophine – true love withstands all trials

Delphine Cormier and Cosima Niehaus are scientists and lovers. Together, they are Cophine and they make crazy science…crazy lesbian science!


But their lives were never easy. From the beginning, their relationship is complicated. But it didn’t stop them from falling in love.

As the seasons go on, their roles change and thus their relationship changes correspondingly. They lied to each other, hurt each other, and broke up. Each of them can think of a couple reasons on why they shouldn’t be with the other. But ultimately, there is one reason why they should be together- LOVE. Let’s look at their love journey and the sacrifices they made. Or what I call the evo (evolution) devo (development) of Cophine. (Evo devo actually means evolutionary developmental biology…Can you tell I science?).

The evolution of Cophine:

——————————SPOILERS BELOW—————————————————–

Season 1:Monitor/ clone

Delphine was Cosima’s monitor. She was supposed to befriend Cosima, but she never was supposed to fall for her. But she did. After struggling with herself about where her loyalties lie, she worked with Cosima to solve the genetic code of the clones.

On Cosima’s side, she knew she shouldn’t trust Delphine so quickly. In fact, she found out about Delphine being her monitor. But with Delphine working by her side, asking Cosima to trust her, being hot, Cosima gave in, revealing the secret that she had been keeping – she is sick.

We got the sweet start of a romance and these passionate kisses:



Season 2:Girlfriend/ co-worker

Cosima knew Delphine is working for Dyad and eventually got onboard with working for the evil corporation. They were happy for a while- fooling around in lab, making progress on a cure. But their trust issue wasn’t completely resolved. It came to a boiling point when Cosima found out Delphine lied to her about Kira’s stem cell. Despite the fighting and the hurt feelings, it led them to their love confession and Cosima asking Delphine to love all of them (the clones):

Season 3:Boss/ subordinate

Delphine broke up with Cosima because she is the boss now. She was so in love with Cosima that she knew she simply couldn’t think in the best interest of the clones if she continued to date Cosima.

I think it is all bullshit, but that was Delphine’s reason.

But they weren’t exactly over each other:




When Delphine learned she is going to die, the first thing she did is to visit Shay, whom she had threaten before, to apologize. Then Delphine asked Shay to take care of Cosima. Seriously, Delphine had one day to live and she chose to go talk to someone she hates to tell them to get back together with the person she loves, SO THEY CAN BE HAPPY! I’m not crying, you’re crying!

Left: Delphine threatening Shay Right: Delphine apologizing and asking Shay to take care of Cosima for her.

And then she visited Cosima. Cosima apologized, they kissed, and Delphine walked away, right into her death.



Season 4:

Delphine was presumed dead for most of the season but we got hints that she was not actually dead. And finally, at the finale, they reunited.


Upcoming Season 5:

There is this-

Is Cophine wedding happening or is it all a dream? I am arguing below that Orphan Black needs to make the wedding a reality and give Delphine and Cosima the happy ending they deserve.

Why Cophine is true love:

So I recap Cophine’s relationships through the seasons. And I am saying Cophine is what true love is entailed of. Let’s look at the wedding vow, shall we?

For better – 

Delphine and Cosima working together on a cure.

or for worse –

Even when Delphine and Cosima weren’t together, Delphine went to the extreme of threatening Shay to ensure the clones’ safety.

For richer, for poorer – 

Well, Delphine broke up with Cosima after she became the boss, but it was for the benefit of the clones.

In sickness and in health – 

Delphine staying with Cosima through her sickness.

To love and to cherish – 

Delphine always being there to take care of Cosima.

Until death do us part – 

Cosima nearly died but she woke up for Delphine

They have a lot going against them, but their love prevails.

Why Orhpan Black needs to give Cophine a happy ending:

Because of the ‘Bury Your Gays’ trope.

What is ‘Bury Your Gays’ trope:

Bury Your Gays trope is referring to a trope that LGBTQ characters are not allowed to have happy endings. If they are in a relationship, one of the characters would die violently, sometimes right after their relationship is consummated. Their death is often used as a plot twist, and the show creator often state some reason to justify it.

Why it is harmful:

TV and movies have the ability of introducing positive LGBTQ representation to all kinds of audience, including those who have never interacted with a LGBTQ person before, and those who are afraid of coming out. They have the chance to show LGBTQ characters as authentic characters that are lovable and normal. Media has the power of doing good, but on the other hand, it has the power of reinforcing the negative connotation associated with the LGBTQ community.

When TV and movies killed off LGBTQ characters violently without care, it makes it difficult for members of LGBTQ to visualize a positive outcome for themselves, it makes it difficult for the audience to see LGBTQ characters as someone who deserve happiness.

Cophine needs to rise above all these:

With that said, we have made a lot of improvement from those days where lesbian relationship is just used as a comic relief, or for man’s pleasure. And there are examples of happy ending for lesbian relationships on TV, for example, Bo and Lauren from Lost Girl, Brittany and Santana from Glee, Spencer and Ashely from South of Nowhere, etc. Now I am asking that Orphan Black adds Delphine and Cosima to the list of LGBTQ relationship with happy ending.

Orphan Black has done a good job on portraying Delphine and Cosima as authentic characters and their relationship as an authentic relationship for the past seasons. (okay, minus the part where for half a season, we thought Delphine is dead— that is totally NOT okay, and totally would have counted as Bury Your Gays trope).

The struggle Delphine and Cosima had with being with each other was not because of sexuality. In fact, Delphine acknowledged that ‘sexuality is a spectrum’, and she had no problem with Cosima being a woman. The struggle between them had to do with their roles – as monitor/ clone, as boss/ subordinate. We got to see Cosima’s struggle with trusting Delphine, and Delphine’s struggle with putting the clones’ interest above Cosima’s interest. The struggles might not make sense all the time, but they were believable. And we are happy to see Delphine and Cosima working it out.

Because of the care Orphan Black put into developing Cosima and Delphine, and the relationship between them, Cophine is being well-received. But me being greedy I want more! With the final season of Orphan Black, we need to see that Cophine are going to get marry and live the ‘happily ever after’ every straight couple gets.

No matter what happens in Season 5, I will always remember Orphan Black, and Cophine.

To read more about the portrayal of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender characters in Orphan Black, read our review on LGBTQ representation in Orphan Black.

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