Thursday, June 12, 2014

Orange is the New Black Season Two: A Quick Review

So as many of you are aware, Netflix released Season Two of Orange is the New Black last week. So of course I watched it in the first two or three days.

I, like many others, fell desperately in love with the women of Litchfield prison during Season One and waited (im)patiently for my next fix. Well, it's finally here. And it's over. Again.

So while we're waiting for Season Three (fingers crossed), I thought I'd share some of my thoughts.

1) I'm glad they're getting away from Piper's story.

Yes, I like Piper. Yes, there's plenty of drama and conflict to keep me interested, but honestly I love finding out more about the other women. Let's face it. Piper's your pretty standard middle-class white girl who's never satisfied with what she's got. No judgement for those of you who love her. Heck, I basically AM her. Maybe that's why I tire so easily of her story.

So who wins for most interesting character of Season Two?

2) Poussey Washington

Seriously. She's basically my favorite now. Both her back story and in-prison story were spectacular. Wrought with emotion, sacrifice, courage, and damn good writing, Samira Wiley's incredible performance left me gobsmacked. 

Throughout the season, Poussey finds herself in intense situations. Between her unrequited love, her issues as a military brat, and the increasing violence of newcomer Vee, Poussey elevates the tone of Season Two. Her story goes beyond conventional genres, like OITNB as a whole, encompassing the best parts of comedy, drama, and tragedy. 

Basically I love this character. Period.

3) Speaking of Vee....

Finally we have someone who can actually challenge Red. Vee, a recidivist and drug dealer, has strings already tied to several of the main characters. She's a mother figure to Taystee, a some-times friend and rival to Red, and a hurricane of conflict all on her own. She's arguably one of the strongest characters in the cast. She's smart, manipulative, and as solid as concrete. That said, I still can't decide if I like her. And "like" may not be the right word in any case, as the writers very solidly cast her as the villain. Honestly, I wish we'd gotten more of her backstory. It might have made her motivations more understandable if not all together sympathetic.

4) Was it as good as Season One?

Honestly, that's hard to say. Part of what made Season One so freaking amazing is that I'd never seen anything like it. It came out of left-field and shone like a beacon in a sea of television mediocrity. I think Season Two holds its own when it comes to writing, performance, and humor, but it lacks the intrinsic shock value of Season One. This time I was expecting greatness. And it delivered. Maybe not as intensely as the first season, but yes. Season Two is great. 

So there you have it. How far have you watched? Who's your favorite character? Let me know what you think in the comments! 

1 comment:

  1. Did you draw the first picture? I *really* like it!

    I haven't watched this yet but it's on my short list.