Prison Pals

Summer: beautiful weather, barbecues, FanExpo and the end of TV season. Luckily for us, Netflix releases new seasons of Orange is the New Black every summer to fill the void. But in all honesty, this heavy hitter could some serious damage anytime of the year. Here’s my spoiler free review.

Orange is the New Black is about Litchfield Prison for female inmates. The story starts off through one character’s perspective in season one, Piper Chapman. This was a smart choice by the writers as viewers would be overwhelmed if they were introduced to the show and story through the various inmates because there’s so many! In other words, as awesome as Game of Thrones is, the show was overwhelming at first as we’re introduced to a crapload of characters with funny names. I don’t know about you, but Wikipedia helped me get through season one of Game of Thrones.

Ned, Rob, Jon Snow, Bran, Ned's wife, Sansa, Sansa's sister, the crippled boy, Ceresei, Tyrion, Jamie, Fat King, Little Finger, Daenerys...too much!

Ned, Robb, Jon Snow, Ned’s wife, Sansa, Sansa’s sister, the crippled boy, Ceresei, Tyrion, Jamie,  Inebriated King, Joffrey, Little Finger, Dragon Queen, bald guy…too much!

By season three of Orange is the New Black, you’re watching the story of Litchfield Prison through several characters and it works so well because we’re introduced to these characters slowly over the course of three seasons.

Like most TV shows, each season has a major story arch and you can expect the usual prison drama: gang wars, trading to get what you want, lies, betrayals, unlikely alliances, romantic relationships, etc.

Now the best thing about Orange is the New Black is the characters. The major story arcs are fun and entertaining but nothing unique. But the characters and the way they make you care about each and every single one is truly an accomplishment and deserves all the praise it gets. There were some characters that I never bothered to remember their names at first because they seemed so boring, but as you continue to watch, you will learn everyone’s name and care about all of them.

It’s easy to assume these women are terrible people. After all, they’re in prison for breaking the law. But the show gives us flashbacks to what these women were doing before their incarceration and man, these flashbacks are so powerful and always shed new light. There were so many characters that I hated, but gradually started to sympathize and even admire. Yes, these women did bad things, but sometimes they had good intentions!

It's hard to choose because they're all awesome, but Chang and Boo are definitely some of my favourites

It’s hard to choose because they’re all awesome, but Chang and Boo are definitely some of my favourite characters

The point is, Orange is the New Black deserves a lot of credit for being able to introduce and successfully develop several different characters over the course of three seasons. So take note TV writers! It doesn’t always have to be about the story. Focusing on the characters (if done correctly) is just as entertaining. Until next time, nerd out.

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  1. E3 2017: Who Won? » Not Enough Nerds says:

    […] the summer just great? Patio weather, new seasons of Orange is the New Black, blockbuster franchises at the movie theatres, Comic Con, and of course there’s E3: The […]

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