Okay, Let's Do It. Let's Talk About 'Orange Is the New Black' Season 4
While Netflix and the like have given us the freedom to binge or savor shows at our discretion, these new all-at-once release schedules also make it difficult to discuss those shows. It’s a fine line between resisting spoilers and missing the conversation. The only discussion we’ve had about season four of Orange Is the New Black was when Kristy called out that “bullshit” cliffhanger a few weeks back. But those of us who hadn’t finished the series yet ran from that headline as fast as we could, for fear of spoilers getting into our eyeballs
So now, coming up on a month after the season aired, have we missed our window? Has everyone already hashed out all of their feelings on this absolutely devastating season? Nah, I’m going to guess you all have a little more hash left in you.
We’ll open up the comments section below to a general discussion, because I know I’m not alone in having just A LOT OF FEELINGS that need to come out.
So, from here out, spoilers.
To be sure, we need to talk about Poussey. I knew is was coming and it didn’t matter. It didn’t hurt any less. Also, we didn’t know how her previous season’s backstory ended, right? The twist of finding out she was in prison for pot possession (and “intent to sell”) was almost as horrifying as her death.
This was already in Pajiba Love this week, but in case you missed it, this piece over at Revelist takes a beautiful look at Poussey and Soso’s relationship.
Just a few other things I loved about this season:
—The embracing of everyone’s disdain for Piper. I think I’ve always liked Piper more than a lot of viewers, but the way she spent the first half of the season thinking people were scared of her, when really everyone was laughing at or ignoring her, was schadenfreudelly delightful.
—The Martha Stewart stand-in. More than her actual character, though, Judy King enabled some pretty great arcs for Poussey, Cindy, and Yoga Jones.
—Crazy Eyes. I mean, “love” is a hard word to use here, but love can leave you feeling totally gutted, right?
—Caputo’s journey. This show is pretty precise with knowing the exact degree to which they want to humanize a villain. A lot of the guards are fleshed out enough to be humanized, but still live as human-shaped monsters. Or just tragically flawed. But Caputo’s journey, fighting against the disgusting privatization of Litchfield was consistently harrowing.
Things I hated:
—That ending. I agree with Kristy. Daya has become boring as hell, and giving her the gun was bullshit. I’m sure it will lead to something next season, but it didn’t feel earned.
—That shit with Humps. So Maritza goes through the trauma of eating a damn baby mouse, and then just disappears for a few episodes? I’m sure it would have felt too obvious for her to get the gun, but her story felt unresolved, and not in a deliberate way. Oh, which reminds me, let’s add the fucked up, complicated tacit resolution between Pennsatucky and Coates.
How about you all? Let’s hear some feelings.