Review: Orange Is The New Black Season 3
Many times we fans see our favorite shows get green-lit for multiple seasons and we both cheer for joy and at the same time seized by a fear that it may get worse and we’d have to see something we love struggle for years to end with dignity, the Simpsons may never get the sweet release of death. So when it was announced that after the smash success of season one of Orange Is The New Black, two more seasons were confirmed. The second season came and went with almost as entertaining plots and conflicts as the first season. Season three was released earlier this year and many of us binge watched the season as fast as we could. But how did it measure up?
Exploration Of Side Characters
One great aspect of season three in my opinion was their episodes dedicated to explaining the backstory of not second string characters but extending to 3rd string characters. I won’t give anything away but it was refreshing to see my personal favorite characters get their time on screen rather than to be used as a simple comic relief for the overall plot. Although I try my best to love and appreciate every character, there were a few they covered that really surprised me. Good on them!
The Rise Of Caputo
Joe Caputo was the underling to the corrupt Assistant Warden Fig. In season one he is a simple enough character who does his job enough to keep it, in season 2 he chooses to no longer just survive but to thrive by tackling a lot of the issues the prison had. In season 3 he has much more power and attempts to be the white knight as a financially conservative company both saves and ruins the prison with their frugal spending. This was my personal favorite storyline as we are even informed that Joe Caputo has always been the nice guy and always finished last. He tries with all of his might but the surprise at the end of the season may be far too major to allow him to survive season 4.
New Love Interests
Although this section certainly applies to the main character, Alex Chapman, she was not the only one who found love. Both Chapman and Crazy Eyes encountered new inmates and fell for their charm. One for the better and one for the worse. Actress Ruby Rose joins the cast as Stella and assist Chapman in less than legal activities while Crazy eyes gains a die hard fan who later loves her enough to overlook all the crazy. Speaking of Crazy Eyes…
Crazy Eyes Actually Gets A Positive Plot
After dealing with the the aftermath of Vee last season, Crazy Eyes remains unstable for a good amount of time before finding a creative outlet: Writing. As expected, Crazy Eyes pumps out content similar to a Japanese Hentai and it explodes throughout the halls of Litchfield. Instead of forcing others to read her material, they force her to write more. Her work is loved by all and even makes it’s way to the guards as well. In the previous seasons we’ve only seen Crazy eyes as a broken character with no hope of accomplishing anything of substance, their flip this season won major points with me due to my love for the underdogs in life.
Still No Real Grit
When it comes to grit and Orange Is The New Black, they make attempts to show how ‘hardcore’ prison is but never actually follow through. Yes, last season they had some beat downs and a shanking but no one died and everything was fine. they attempt the same tactic to Season three by introducing an assassination on Alex Vause. Vause fears that her old drug lord would send in a trained killer to take her out for betraying him in court. She spends the entire season pointing fingers at other inmates and when one character in particular seems the best suited for the kill, it all falls apart into this lackluster explanation. I understand that OITNB is written for their female demographic and gore/violence must only be used to further a plot but still, the prison feels false and unrealistic but then again, there are plenty of prison shows I could watch instead but I suppose this is to be expected with a Prison Comedy.
In conclusion, I had a great time watching season three. They tied up a lot of plot points while creating others still open and in it’s prime which left me yearning to know what happens in season 4. I would say this was not as good overall as the first season, yet better in certain aspects. Good going, Netflix. I feel less guilty for spending over ten hours watching this show in the course of two days.