Monday, September 1, 2014

What I’m Watching: Orange is the New Black (Season Finale)

Orange is the New Black: Season 2, Episode 13 “We Have Manners. We’re Polite” (A-)

This double-decker installment was probably the best episode this show has produced yet, mainly because it kicked things into gear in a transformative way and helped to sew up a few open plotlines. It seemed to me that the tide was finally turning on Vee, and that she might end up being killed in more than one way at the same time. Ultimately, it was a quick, violent, and unmemorable ending that was quite fitting thanks to Rosa spotting her on the side of the road and ramming in to her because she was rude. Rosa’s getaway drive, complete with flashback to her glory days before prison, was absolutely perfect. Larry and Polly’s visit to see Piper was plenty awkward, and I like that Piper used their guilt to motivate them to help send Alex back to jail for season three, which should be a blast. It’s good to see Caputo on top because he’s become a more endearing character recently, much more so than Figueroa, whose exit was far from gracious. John’s situation didn’t exactly get resolved, though Caputo knowing means that John is somewhat more protected and somewhat more vulnerable. O’Neill’s songs played to the nuns were funny, and I liked the bonding among all the varied members of Red’s family. It was a relief to see Poussey rejoin the ranks of those corrupted by Vee, and also sad to see Crazy Eyes made to doubt her sanity because of Vee’s cowardice. I would say that this second year was definitely a blast, and I eagerly look forward to the show’s third season.

Season grade: A-
Season MVP: Hard to say with so many choices - maybe Barbara Rosenblat as Rosa?

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