What Is 'Orphan Black's Project LEDA? We Thoroughly Examine The Secret Organization

Finally my dreams have come true: Orphan Black has (almost) returned. We have all been reunited with Sarah, Alison, Cosima and the rest of the dysfunctional and scientifically incredible gang. Last season ended with so many cliffhangers, it was hard to see how the show would have answers to all the burning question fans were demanding to know.

But more than anything else, the reveal of Project LEDA was the most exciting for the future of the series. We know that the DYAD Institute and Dr. Leekie were responsible for monitoring the clones and conducting experiments, but we had no information about the origin of the cloning process until Helena and Sarah's birth mother gave Sarah a photo with no other information except the name of the project and the date: July 22, 1977. After doing an exhaustive search (so that none of you have to) the only important event that occurred on that date is that Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping was restored to power. So that was a dead end.

We then decided to delve into the name of the project itself: LEDA. What could this word (or acronym) tell us about the project or the new season? Time to explore some plausible and completely out there theories:

The Linguistic Origin Of LEDA

The name "leda" is feminine and translates to "woman" or more the detailed "Queen of Sparta." Now this may mean absolutely nothing by itself but when you consider the name in terms of myth, now we're getting somewhere...

LEDA In Greek Mythology

So, let's do exactly that. In Greek mytholgy, Leda was the daughter of the king of Sparta. According to the story of "Leda and the Swan," Zeus fell for Leda and seduced her as a swan. She also slept with her human husband the same night as Zeus and proceeded to later give birth to two eggs with four children, two of whom were twins. The twins angle is especially interesting as Sarah and Helena are twins.

There is also another myth involving Leda that states a woman named Nemesis was the one who was impregnated by Zeus as a swan and produced an egg. A shepherd found that egg and gave it to Leda who kept it safe until it hatched and adopted the girl inside. That girl from the egg was Helen, who later became Helen of Troy. Yet another theory that bears resemblance to Orphan Black as Mrs. S adopted Sarah after she was smuggled away from experimentation and now Sarah has helped start a war between two very different groups.

LEDA's History in Astronomy

One of the many moons of Jupiter is named Leda. This could represent the idea of the clones as part of the orbit of the DYAD Institute which is at the center.

Seeking Leda Leads in Programming

Leda is also a programming language. It's exact definition is "a multiparadigm programming language whose goal is to successfully mix imperative, object-oriented, functional, and logic-based programming features into one language." This is a bit more far-fetched connection than the others, but this definition could represent the idea that the clones are all produced from one entity.

LEDA In History: Leda Cosmides

Leda Cosmides is an American psychologist who helped develop the field of evolutionary psychology. Evolutionary psychology seeks to identify which human psychological traits come from adaptations due to natural or sexual selection. If Project LEDA is connected to this psychologist, it could mean that the scientists' experiments could be focused on how the minds of clones could evolve independently from each other due to environment and more.

There a several more theories out in the universe, but at this point I can't wait to just sit back and let Orphan Black give me a couple of answers and a million more questions.

Images: BBC America; Tumblr/cophines