♡ 10 THINGS WE LEARNT FROM SEASON 4 OF ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK ♡

By now most of you have had the chance to binge watch all 13 episodes if not, then click off this page and go read one of my other motivational posts like this one if you want to avoid a bunch of spoilers. Season 4 of OITNB has been one of the most controversial seasons to date, not just for the show but it's touched upon subjects that a lot of other shows have been scared to discuss. From rape culture to 21st century outright racism - it's explored a lot of issues that are very real and very personal for a lot of people. 



1. HOW TO GET AWAY WITH MURDER


Well, sort of - at the end of the day a lot of them are in jail for doing exactly that. If we look at the whole situation of Lolly/Alex killing Aydin (the guy sent to kill Alex) - they enlisted the help of Frieda and then went to great extremes to hide the body and pretend the whole thing never happened. If it wasn't for Lolly's mental health, they all probably would have got away with it (poor Lolly) and Red would have taken the fall for it. So if you ever get into a messy situation where someone is trying to kill you, cut up their body parts and plant them in your garden - or if that were my case, our communal garden. 

2. HOW TO RUN A BUSINESS STRAIGHT OUT OF PRISON


I don't know about you - but this show finds a way of teaching you about shit. Now I assume if you're reading this you're not locked up in a prison cell, but for anyone who's ever wanted to start up a small business, then there's no better motivation than knowing a bunch of women in prison made big dollah by selling used panties to creepy men. Moral of the story is, there's a niche market for anything. 

3. EVERYTHING WE LEARNT IN PSYCHOLOGY ABOUT AUTHORITY STILL STANDS

Back in my a-level days we learnt about the "Stanford Prison Experiment" where a bunch of regular folk were divided into being prison guards and inmates - to see the effect their roles would have on their behaviour. It turned out the "authoritative" figures took things a bit too far and were beating and carrying out horrendous acts to the "inmates". We can see this mirrored in OITNB when the new guards were brought in, who although veterans had really no prior experience in working in a prison. Soon we quickly see they think their status gives them the "right" to sexually harass, provoke and treat inmates like they were their playthings. There are a lot of cases today where police officers have abused their roles and there are many things in the criminal justice system that need to change. 

4. DISCRIMINATION IS STILL A THING, BUT IT'S GETTING BETTER


This show makes it very obvious that the white/blacks/hispanics/"others" all segregate themselves from each other and hang out in their own cliques. We've seen a lot of moments this season where different ethnicities have come together for the greater good and even had interracial relationships (Poussey + SoSo 4eva) that have been adored by fans. Even Pennsatucky the "lesbian hater" manages to change her prejudice ways and becomes BFFs with Big Boo. Something we never really see on TV is the outright racism that we saw on the second half of the season coming from the new white inmates, in which a lot of other characters actually stood up against their actions and manner towards the blacks and hispanics. One of the most iconic scenes this season was when they all joined forces to protest in the kitchen against the prison guards, I'd say good things happen when we're all one big happy family (#RemainInEU) but the episode does have a very fatal ending - cries. 

5. MENTAL ILLNESS DOES NOT DEFINE YOU


We're all very familiar with Crazy Eyes, who despite her name is probably one of the sweetest  and most lovable inmates in there and genuinely means no harm to anyone. Her backstory was so tragic and unfortunate and could have been avoided had she been given the treatment/attention she needed. The same with Lolly, she saved Alex' life and gets sent to the SHU for it. In our society mental illnesses are seen as somewhat of a "trend" for some bizarre reason. If you actually suffer from something, you're either thought to be exaggerating or people treat you differently because they think that's all there is to you and people would rather ignore than learn to understand. It's definitely something that I think should be incorporated into the educational system especially in middle schools when a lot of teens are confused as to if what they're feeling is"normal" and should have more than Tumblr as a reference guide to their emotions and actions. 

6. WHAT DOESN'T KILL YOU MAKES YOU STRONGER


Cliche - but true. Seeing so many of these ladies' backstories and the things they've had to overcome, it would probably break the strongest of people. It's been great watching some of the inmates reform in their time in prison and seeing what you can actually achieve when life knocks you down - may it be overcoming a drug addiction or simply learning not to be a cold hearted b*itch anymore just because of the previous things you've encountered in life. 

7. RAPE IS RAPE


This has probably been one of the most controversial topics on the show to date, regarding Pennsatucky's (Doggett) rape by one of the prison guards in the third season. We come to learn in SE4 that prison guard Coates seems to be in denial that he actually raped her but instead thinks she was cool with it because they shared a few moments with ducks and he told her "he loved her". One of the things the series focused on was that Coates had been ignorant about the situation and almost seemed to pretend it never happened and not take responsibility for his actions (and probably hadn't been educated on what boundaries or consent was).We see that Doggett ends up forgiving him for his actions which is something not everyone is ok with, because he is very much still a rapist. Our generation is more aware about "Rape Culture" than ever before, and shows like this and Game of Thrones are definitely giving the matter the attention and discussions that it needs. 

8. PRISONERS ARE STILL HUMAN BEINGS. 


If you've murdered children or people in cold blood then there is no empathy for you. Looking at some of the inmates who are in there for taking the fall for someone else, having next to nothing of drugs on them or simply being dragged into something - you do start to feel for them, especially seeing the way they get treated and most notably Sophia Burset. We never really get the opportunity to learn about day to day prisoners and thus as a society believe they should all rot in hell and be given nothing in terms of funding and a chance for redemption. When Caputo tries to implement educational programmes in to the prison, his idea is quickly replaced with more manual labour for the inmates, which is not really going to do much for them in terms of bettering themselves inside and outside of prison doors. The show has actually sparked a lot of debates about prison reform, why shouldn't prisoners be given a chance to better themselves whilst doing time? To an extent of course, it's not the Ritz after all. 

9. STEREOTYPES DON'T ALWAYS APPLY


All butch lesbians are mean, beer drinking, wife beating assholes right? At least that's what people perceived them to be before Big Boo came onto the scene as one of the most big-hearted, hilarious characters on the show. Actress Lea DeLaria has had a lot of say on the matter and was ready to break that stereotype on the TV show, unlike most of the roles she's played in the past and ones she's constantly being asked to do. Poussey also shut down SoSo when she assumed she'd be a poor, uneducated rap-loving black girl from the hood - when in fact her dad was a major in the Army and she's probably one of the most intelligent inmates in there. We're all so quick to judge a book by it's cover, but I've met so many great people by just being open minded instead of judging peeps by their race, disabilities, gender preference etc. - something we should all take on board. 

10. BLACK LIVES MATTER


Episode 12 of OITNB is probably one of the saddest things I've seen on TV in a long time - I'm still mourning over Poussey's death. She died during a peaceful protest in the kitchen where one of the more human prison guards Bayley accidentally suffocated her. This scene has been widely linked to the real-life tragic deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner as well as the "I Can't Breathe" movement that followed Garner's death in 2014. It's something that people were greatly saddened about not just because we all grew to love Poussey but because it's something that is still happening today in real-life, not just on our TV screens for 13 hours. 

I'd love to hear your thoughts on these matters in the comments below and what you thought of series 4 as a whole, without getting too debatable guys! 

♡ GS ♡

TWITTER | INSTAGRAM | FACEBOOK | BLOGLOVIN 


1 comment

  1. thanks Sarah! They're always risky posts but ones that I feel are needed now and again! x

    ReplyDelete