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"Orange Is the New Black" Promotes Three, Adds One, and Drops Laura Prepon

By Dustin Rowles | Trade News | August 15, 2013 | Comments ()


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Orange is the New Black has already been renewed by Netflix for a second season, and production has already begun (which hopefully means a new batch of episodes before next summer). Thanks to incredible word of mouth, it’s been the most watched Netflix series so far, and if you’re not watching it yet, here’s 10 reasons why it’s the best new show of the year , here’s what’s so unique about the show, and here’s 20 facts you may not know about the cast.

Speaking of the cast, it will be losing a member next season. A major one, at that, as Laura Prepon isn’t signed on for the second season of the show. According to reports, she will return to wrap up her storyline in season two, and the door is being left open for a possible return later on. It’s a painful blow; 15 years we have known Prepon, dating back to “That 70’s Show,” and we’ve never liked her more. From a storyline standpoint, however, I understand it: it has to be either her or Piper’s husband, and in order to keep the out-of-prison storylines running, it makes narrative sense.

In happier news, however, three characters have been elevated from recurring to series regulars: Uzo Aduba, who plays Crazy Eyes; Taryn Manning, who plays Pennsatucky; and Danielle Brooks, who plays Taystee. The series has also added Lorraine Toussaint, whose character is a a longtime street tough who ran her own drug business, recruiting children to serve as runners.

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Comments Are Welcome, Jerks Will Be Banned


  • Lbeees

    HER NAME IS SUZANNE, Y'ALL!

  • dreamlife613

    I hated Pennsatucky until her original story episode. Loved her in the last 2 episodes, but loved that final scene even more.

    I hope Alex will show up every now and then in the series, because she's kind of important to Piper's story.

    So, so happy Crazy Eyes and Tastee are regulars next season.

  • e jerry powell

    Now that I see that picture of Lorraine Toussaint, what the hell has happened to Khandi Alexander? Somebody needs to hire that woman for something. I mean, I know, Treme and stuff, but still, she really should have more face time in the business.

  • Con

    I hate these casting rumours/announcements because they essentially spoil the show.

  • Three_nineteen

    I never got into Prepon's performance. I don't see what Piper supposedly sees in her. I think she made what could have been one of the more interesting characters on the show one note and boring. She was supposed to be charming and compelling, able to seduce upper-middle class women into becoming drug mules, and I couldn't see that at all. The only time I found her at all sympathetic was when her mom died, and that was only because Piper treated her like shit.

  • Watch

    I enjoyed the show but the Gilligan's Island setup bothers me. If Piper ever leaves prison there's no show, even though they set it up for us to root for her to get out because she has a fiancee waiting and a short prison sentence.

  • Three_nineteen

    As explained by a comment above, the series is based on a memoir from a woman with a fiance who did around 18 months in a federal prison. It's based on real life events. She did get out and did marry her fiance.

  • frozen01

    BASED ON. Unless they decide to make one of the other characters the main focus, Watch is right, and I don't think there's anything stopping them from changing the story.

  • Three_nineteen

    That is true. But I think the first season covered about 3 or 4 months (Septemberish through Christmas maybe?). If the show adheres to that timeline, you could follow Piper's story pretty closely and still get 4 or 5 seasons out of it, which sounds like a good length to me.

  • mb

    I love this show so much. It's hysterical, but also pretty damn heartbreaking. I was sobbing when Taystee returned and said "Everyone I know is either dead, broke, or in jail." As a social worker, I've worked with so many disheartened, disenfranchised women who face immense hurdles at every turn yet are constantly told they simply need to "try harder." And while I agree with some critics that the show does sort of paint most of the inmates as either a martyr or an 'accidental' criminal, I love that it also makes them genuinely personable and relatable. There are certainly some heinous, unforgivable crimes being committed in the world...but most of the people crammed into our overcrowded jails are not there for such things, and don't really deserve to be so dehumanized. I wish our government would stop purposely failing its people. I wish we could live in a society that devoted more resources to preventing people from falling into that poverty-driven crime cycle instead of just yanking them out and locking them up later. I know, I know, enough soapboxing. Sorry.

  • CurlieQt

    I don't mean to creep but I just need to share that my initials are MB and I am also a social worker. Carry on.

  • mb

    Internet hi-5 to you!

  • frozen01

    I don't agree that the show paints them that way. You're hearing the stories from the character themselves, so of COURSE it will be sympathetic towards the character! The show itself doesn't shirk from their crimes. I'm really bad with names so you'll have to bear with me, but when we found out ***SPOILER!!!!!*** that the transgendered woman's son was the one who ratted her out, I swear my heart dropped to my feet. The way they told that story, it was like hitting a brick wall. But it didn't excuse her crime, make her a martyr, or imply that the crime was "accidental".
    Other than that, I agree 100%!

  • Arran

    More Lauren Lapkus, please. Though since pretty much every seemingly nice character turned out to be terrible in the first season, they'll probably end up doing that to her as well.

  • SilverDeb

    I just got the book for my Kindle from the library. Was on a super long waiting list. This will help with the wait for season 2!

  • Joe Grunenwald

    OH MAN, I have missed Lorraine Toussaint. Shambala Green for the defense, your honor.

  • F'mal DeHyde

    I couldn't place her face, she was Holly Hunter's Lieutenant/best friend on Saving Grace. That's a great show to gorge on, by the way.

  • Three_nineteen

    That's where I know her from!

  • etguild2

    Lies! Netflix denied the Prepon move to HuffPost last night.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

  • whatever

    They (Netflix) said that "nothing is confirmed". Meaning - oh, shit, this story leaked too soon!

  • etguild2

    They also said it's "not accurate," but yes, you could be right.

  • Nicole

    I'm still hoping that the stories of Alex's departure have been greatly exaggerated. I was never a big Prepon fan before OITNB, but I love the Alex character. I like her subtlety and her calmness - it helps to ground a show with so many over-the-top (in the best way) characters. Plus, I freely admit that I just think she's sexy as all get out and I really don't want her gone.

  • Tracer Bullet

    Oh, HOORAY. Less from one of the best characters and more from two of the worst.

  • Krystle Noonan

    Read the book or google her...You will understand why Alex is out of the show..

  • competitivenonfiction

    This is a book? Well, everything else just got bumped down my reading list!

  • Krystle Noonan

    Yep...Even if you google her name you figure out why Alex has to be written out.

  • lowercase_ryan

    It's a true story, or based on one. The real Piper has been all over the place news wise. Terry Gross interviewed her last week.

  • competitivenonfiction

    This is why I need cable. I had no idea. Wow.

  • Maguita NYC

    I am watching this show right now (up to ep. 4) and LOVING IT!!! Knowing that I have almost a full year before next season, the show watching process will slow down to a delicious lazy, so I can fully relish each and every awesome moment!

  • lowercase_ryan

    I'm jealous of your self-control. I plowed through them.

  • Maguita NYC

    I've been trying to balance OITNB, Archer, studies, and am hooked on chatting of all things!

    I envy your lack of self-control and plowing through. Heck, even admire it.

  • lowercase_ryan

    we'll balance each other out. See, good things.

  • Maguita NYC

    But I need to get through at least OITNB and 3 seasons of Archer, because spoilers are everywhere and each one sounds more delicious than the other!

    Can you believe I'm stuck at Crazy Eyes peeing on the floor and still no Pussey?

  • lowercase_ryan

    wow, I really need to come visit.

    for reasons.

  • Maguita NYC

    Reasons are always good.

  • lowercase_ryan

    baked goods. bundts and cupcakes

  • i'll never tell

    I read that as "blunts and cupcakes" and was suddenly, intensely jealous.

  • AudioSuede

    I'm trying to understand how that will work narratively, in the sense that there's a definite emotional arc built around her relationship to the main character (after all, she DID land her in prison), and now an arc around her relationship with Nicky. So if she just abruptly isn't around anymore, how will that all be resolved?

  • mairimba

    The only explanation they can give us in my opinion is that she gets transferred to another prison. Probably part of her case or she asks her lawyer to transfer her cause she doesn't want to be there close to Piper?

  • lowercase_ryan

    How can you have Taystee as a regular and not Poussey?!?! Chocolate and chocolate swirl baby!!

  • Hiff Cluxtable

    What I was thinking. I want to know more about Poussey.

  • Berry

    It is kind of sad to lose Prepon. I always thought she was a complete charisma vacuum, but she was great as Alex.

  • Patty O'Green

    I'm very sad to hear Prepon is "leaving", although you make excellent points as to why she must. And I'm very curious at Manning's promotion and what it means for the events in the last finale...

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