Friday, July 1, 2016

Orange Is The New Black, S4 - Episode Eight: 'Friends In Low Places'

While Piper tries to recover from her branding last episode, events continue to shove the cast toward their own individual and collective cataclysms.

Let's start with the lighter stuff (although that's relative this episode). Nicky hunts around for some ACTION. She doesn't get any this episode, but she does get to learn a bunch of super-dark shit. Her prowling does causes problems for her ex, Morello. Her paranoia about what her husband is up to outside increases.

Meanwhile, Judy King and Cindy come together for the series' most unlikely coupling.

And now to the dark stuff.

Things continue to go downhill on the Spanish side of Litchfield. Maritza tries to back out of the panty smuggling business after she almost gets caught. Maria has other ideas. Ever since her punishment she has really gone to the other extreme. 

Aleida has made a start at her own nail saloon in Sophia's old digs. At least for a hot minute. Like Maritza, she is starting to get bad vibes from Maria. After the discovery of the panty business, the inmates working at Whispers have to be replaced -- so now Maria's crew literally have nothing except drugs to make a business from.


The season's other Bigger Bad, MCC, is also making its presence felt in the cluster-f of Construction 101. All the people who used to make lingerie for Whispers now have to do 'vocational training' i.e. building a new dorm for no pay. The result of Linda's revision of Caputo's educational initiatives, this is the series' biggest (or at least, most obvious) critique of the financial imperatives which make private prisons unworkable.

Speaking of Linda, she has gone from corporate b!tch to full-on psycho. From the absurd amount of salt she pours in Caputo's spaghetti sauce, to pulling a frickin' gun on Crystal Burset (Tanya Wright), Linda is really showing her true colours this episode. And Mr 'sideboobrulez' LOVES it.


Christ, Caputo has really fallen off a cliff. 

I'm hoping this is the set-up to a storyline wherein they break up, she shoots him with that gun, and then she ends up at Litchfield.

Best zinger: "It's not cheating if it's different zip codes" -- Nicky Nicholls

Flashback: No flashback again. We're just stuck in the hell of the present. It's a nice touch that the writers don't feel the need to pointlessly include flashbacks when they don't need to.

Final thoughts: Following on from last episode's cliffhanger ending, it now feels like the set-up is over, and now the payoff begins. A dark episode, but it feels like things are about to get even worse.

For previous episodes

Episode 1 


Episode 2


Episode 3


Episode 4

Episode 5

Episode 6

Episode 7

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