Wednesday, July 26, 2017

What I’m Watching: Orange is the New Black

Orange is the New Black: Season 5, Episode 6 “Flaming Hot Cheetos, Literally” (B+)

There are some moments in this season that seem a bit too playful and insincere, done for comedy’s sake rather than anything else, but I think overall it all works well. Big Boo playing the “Law and Order” opening before defending Pennsatucky by proving that Angie hadn’t actually watched a specific TV show episode was fully comical, but it led into Pennsatucky owning up to what she did and explaining why humanity was important. Her reference to how no one in the room took the stand at their own hearings was especially powerful, and her comment to Big Boo pre-judgment about how this was all going to be over and go back to how it was soon was indicative of just how little the inmates know what to make of their situation, since things definitely can’t go back to normal ever, at least not the way they used to be. Piper joining Taystee and her crew in collecting all the Cheetos and burning them with Piscatella and the governor’s emissary watching was a cool twist, and it’s good to see some purposeful resistance brewing that has actual intelligence behind it. Aleida’s TV appearance was mostly done for laughs, so we’ll see if anything comes of it. Janae and Soso bonding was a nice subplot, as was Frieda inviting her friends to her hideout. It was reassuring to see Poussey again, as the first positive influence in Taystee’s life in a long time during an effective flashback to support her assertion that prison is her home and she needs to make it as good as it can be.

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