Orange is the New Black is one of the shows that I deeply adore. It introduced me to Netflix Originals and the studio’s ability to create groundbreaking storylines. The first season had me hooked. I created some sort of connection with the characters. It was weird knowing that they are criminals of some sort. Four seasons later and this Jenji Kohan-created TV show may have finally hit its lowest point with the 5th season. While it may not be all bad, Season 5 felt totally disconnected with the previous ones. And let’s not forget where we left off in season 4. Poussey’s death brought so much possibility for a great storytelling, yet the show decided to make a mess out of it, literally.
It’s a mess.
Daya took hold of Humps’ gun at S4’s cliffhanger finale and decided to shoot him with it in the S5 première. The first part of season 5 felt like it’s going somewhere solid, but the plot fell apart the moment the prisoners took over and held the COs as hostages. The tables have finally turned with the power temporarily going to the inmates. And with that, here’s my non-spoiler recap of the series’ fifth season:
- Red’s character was butchered 3/4 of the season for acting like a crazy-old-woman. Blanca’s help fuelled her motivation to take revenge on Piscatella and his abusive ways. It would have been a great watch knowing her Russian prowess but a drug she’s taking just made it ridiculous and cringe-worthy to watch.
- Too much spotlight on unnecessary characters like Leanne, Ang, the new Hispanics, and the white trash rednecks. But I guess, that’s a reflection of the current state of the world people like them get to make horrible choices and put trash people in power. 😘
- Yay for the #Justice4Poussey plot at the first half of the season but Taystee has gone overboard with it. Brooke’s grief was a more reasonable one and I am no expert in grief.
- On that note, I get that prisoners still have rights but their demands are too much. They are in prison to serve time, not the Ritz. Of course, some are justified to provide for human decency but some are borderline privilege.
- Mother’s love. Gloria, Aleida, and Ruiz stood out this season for their unconventional motherhood.
- FlaRitza #4ever. When the world around you is crumbling, take a phone, start a vlog, and embrace your fifteen minutes of fame. Totally me.
Orange is the New Black is still one of the edgier and original shows out there. By tackling feminism, race, and privilege, this Netflix original remains to be a necessary watch despite failing to live up to its earlier seasons.