So if you haven’t already binge watched Orange is The New Black season four then I would suggest moving on from your responsibilities and decision making into complete potato form and doing as so; and if you haven’t finished it then I would suggest to come back to this article not to ruin the best season OITNB has put out on Netflix.
Last season we are left with some unfinished business that had us all both curious and extremely annoyed (come on if you were the only person who didn’t want Piper to get knocked out then I smell pants on fire.) An all-time favorite character was sent off to MAX (maximum security prison), another one sent off to the SHU (secure housing unit aka solitary confinement), and one facing death in the eye. All while hundreds of inmates are swimming in the nearby lake from a breach in the surrounding fence. Not one of the most climactic season endings in OITNB history but enough to keep us waiting for season four, and holy hell did season four not disappoint at all.
As we learn about in last season the prison becomes owned by MCC, a corporation that is obviously in the game for the money and doesn’t treat the inmates as human beings but just a body count. So, naturally overcrowding becomes the first issue we run into at Litchfield and it brings in a plethora of new characters (guards and inmates.) Piscatella has to be one of the most memorable changes onto the show, bringing in a strong hand filled with racist remarks and a need for complete control. Controlling numerous new CO’s he is able to manipulate the way the prison is run from the inside while disregarding anything Warden Captuto has to say, it’s infuriating to watch behind the screen. But something even more infuriating is Sankey and her pursuit towards “white supremacy” in 2016. Reminds me of someone we all know very well who is our republican nominee.
As Morello said, “I don’t think racism should be a group activity.”
Going from racism to mental health awareness, we learn more about Lolly after she saves Alex from Kubra's hit man. Lolly for sure was a very interesting character to dive more into, seeing her first at the beginning of season two had us all questioning what the actual heck is wrong with her, but eventually we learn that she actually suffers from Schizophrenia or some type of paranoia. This had us all scratching the back of our necks and whispering, “sorry for judging Lolly.” The toughest scene to swallow (besides Poussey dying) was Lolly screaming out for Mr. Healy after being brought to psych; if you didn’t want to hold Healy and cry along then you have no heart.
Speaking of Poussey dying, it was bound to happen in my eyes, but the most unpredictable thing from that scene was the realization that everything was tied to the Black Lives Movement. I was so impressed how flawlessly it went together and how impactful it was to thousands around the globe. It kept Eric Garner and Sandra Bland's story alive along with a couple of other examples from the injustice happening right now. I always respect the writers of OITNB for the topics that must be said to be written directly into the scenes, including the drug abuse, rape, race/race wars, overuse of solitary punishment, and the special treatment that Judy King (knock-off Martha Stewart) got because of her many points of privilege.
Overall I was so impressed with how jaw dropping the final scene left me (and I’m sure all of you.) I am counting down the days until Season Five and to see what comes next at Litchfield.