Everything You Need to Know About Samira Wiley, The Extraordinary Poussey on 'Orange is the New Black'
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Everything You Need to Know About Samira Wiley, The Extraordinary Poussey on 'Orange is the New Black'

By Dustin Rowles | Celebrities Are Better than You | July 8, 2014 | Comments ()


Through two seasons of Orange is the New Black, Samira Wiley — who has been elevated to a series regular for season three — has become the biggest fan favorite of the series. In fact, it’s our affection for Samira’s character Poussey that drives much of the tension this year. Her and Taystee’s friendship is tested, and at times, there seems to be an actual threat to Poussey’s life, which is a terrifying prospect.

We also learned more about her backstory this year. She’s from a military family, and a German girlfriend, and German girlfriends and military families don’t exactly work well together.


We still don’t know why she is in prison (a first season hinted at a pot bust), but we do know that she does have a supportive father.

As for Samira Wiley, she, too, seems to have a supportive family. Her and Danielle Brooks (Taystee) both actually come from religious families. Both have fathers who were pastors, and both Brooks and Wiley attended Juilliard, where they were already friends. In fact, Brooks — who was cast as Taystee first — helped Wiley rehearse her lines before her audition to play Poussey (they watched old episodes of Scared Straight as research!). Basically, Taystee and Poussey’s platonic romance began before the show even started.

As for Samira’s actual love life? There are rumors — backed by some photographic evidence — that she’s dating an Orange writer, Lauren Morelli, who recently came out after ending a six-year marriage to her husband.



Here’s eleven more things we know about Samira Wiley from her Twitter account.

1. She prefers iPhones.

2. Thunderstorms are a turn-on.

3. Her first name rhymes with Shakira.

4. This is her favorite Vine video of all time.

5. She’s diabetic.

6. When she was little, she was in love with Lil Bow Wow, who is actually the exact same age as Samira Wiley (27).

7. She would like children someday.

8. She cuts her own hair.

9. She would marry O’Neil, f*ck Bennet, and Kill Caputo.

10. She was a huge fan of that House of Cards twist.

11. She flat-out loves Regina King.

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12. She and the rest of the Orange is the New Black cast can dominate a Pride Parade.

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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not

  • Uriah_Creep

    I'm currently watching Season 2, and want to say that this cast is seriously motherfucking awesome. There is not a single weak link in it, and they deserve all the Emmys.

    (I'm well aware that I may have already granted all the Emmys to a different show a few weeks ago. Don't cloud the issue with facts.)

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    I would like to listen to live commentary of Wiley and Brooks watching Scared Straight. Can we make that happen? Maybe a special feature on the OITNB DVDs?

  • Lucia

    We all need some Poussey in our lives! She's amazing! http://crissle.tumblr.com/post...

  • Another Kate

    She's truly a standout among standouts. She's so expressive! Part of me wants Poussey ("accent a droite, bitch") to escape the Litch via some sort of early release program because Poussey's awesome and I want her to go on and do great and wonderful things (in the context of the show), but part of me wants her sentence extended because I don't want to lose Samira Wiley. Who is, herself, surely on the way to great and wonderful things.

  • laylaness

    "accent a droite, bitch"


  • JenVegas

    I am just now getting through OITNB S2 and just watched this ep about her backstory. So so so so in love with this character. And now I maybe have a bit of a girl crush on her for reals too.

  • Lucky

    I absolutely love her! Great actress and the breakout star of the season!!!!

  • denesteak

    She's flawless on the show. I seriously developed an intense crush on Poussey -- she made me want to cry.

  • UMNomad

    What I need to know is, when will someone cast her as 80's Storm in the next X-men movie?

  • Michelle

    So much of this.

  • logan

    At first glance I did not think the header said "Extraordinary Poussey". I thought Rowles was really desperate for hits.

  • Mrs. Julien

    She was heavily featured on the Pajiba 10. It was a well-considered and apropos pander for hits.

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