The OA is an incredibly detailed show, which is forcing its audience to really delve into the background for clues. Quieter characters, like Prairie's FBI therapist and one of her fellow subjects in Hap's NDE experiment, are the focus of some fan theories. In fact, the two could be connected. Is Rachel on The OA an FBI Agent, or at the very least some kind of spy? Reddit user mposo posited this theory online, and the show does seem to connect her to Riz Ahmed's character in surprising ways.
Rachel is one of the captives that Prairie first meets in Hap's "laboratory." Her NDE was a car crash that killed her little brother. As a result, she was given the gift of song. However, she doesn't always gel with the group. What's her deal?
Is she spying on Hap, or his captives? She could be working for the authorities, infiltrating the group and sacrificing her freedom in order to gain information. It's also possible that she is working for Hap's organization, possibly the same way that Elias is, if he is trying to discredit Prairie. Maybe she is the control group in the experiment. That's how the scientific method works, right?
Here's some of the evidence that could prove Rachel is not who she seems.
Braille In Elias Rahim's Office
Or, in the Grade 2 system of Braille contractions, it spells "rather a can have every like" — but I think that is meant too be one word, in this case Rachel. Unfortunately, I can't make out what the words underneath "Rachel" say. It kind of looks like several phrases have been stuck on and removed from the wall at various times.
Rachel is also a similar name to Rahim. Many OA theories posit that Prairie is in an alternate dimension. That's why she sought out five companions whose stories mirror that of her fellow captives. That's why French saw Homer reflected as himself. Maybe Rahim, as a fellow FBI informant, is the alternate universe version of Rachel.
She Never Received A Movement
Does that mean that her NDE was made up? While this could point to her being a spy, it is weird that she never even tried to lie about it and invent a movement of her own. Even if her motives are shady, Rachel seems to respect the movements.
We Never See Her Drown
Even if she is a spy, isn't Hap still drowning her and bringing her back to life? I'm not sure how an FBI informant with no NDE would be able to survive that. She has tapes in Hap's records, but the show is careful never to show her in the machine.
However, one thing that suggests Rachel actually was part of the experiment, the way she parallels Buck with the car crash, red bag, and the fact that they both sing — unless Prairie sought Buck out for his similarities to Rachel and was simply misinformed. If Prairie is in an alternate universe and Buck is a mirror of Rachel the way French is a mirror of Homer, then Rachel was probably a true NDE. This is all so complicated! No matter what the truth is, or if the truth even matters, Rachel is definitely one to watch if The OA returns for Season 2.