Orange is the New Black Review: Turning Over a New Leaf

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Litchfield's future is at stake, and no one is fighting as hard to save it as Caputo.

Naturally, the drama didn't end there.

On Orange is the New Black Season 3 Episode 3, Nicky's self-destructive behavior sent her to Max, and Orange is the New Black Season 3 Episode 4 explored Big Boo's history of never being accepted. 

Nicky Gets Into Trouble - Orange is the New Black Season 3 Episode 3
Big Boo Gets a Makeover - Orange is the New Black Season 3 Episode 3

Nicky has always been a well-liked, popular character, but her pattern of self-sabotage is an all too familiar one for junkies. 

Watching her get carted off to Max at the end of "Empathy is a Boner Killer" was hard to watch, especially the emotions that came from Red and Lorna. However, I'm more relieved she didn't take any of the drugs herself.

The flashbacks have been an interesting role in the show since the beginning, but they don't always service the story like they should. 

Nicky's flashbacks did nothing to inform her current situation. We already knew she had a terrible relationship with her mother and a history of making bad decisions. 

The flashbacks should be there to tell us something about the characters we haven't seen or know already. 

What I did love in this episode was Berdie's attempts at connecting with the inmates. The drama class set up was a funny, if not an obvious way for Alex and Piper to work out their issues.

Alex's commentary to Berdie about attempting to make a difference within the prison system were spot on.

And you're not just another shill taking a paycheck from an evil system of oppression 'cause you're fighting it from the inside with drama class. Fine. Whatever you need to tell yourself to get by, but excuse me if I don't want to spend my precious time catering to the delusion that you're making a difference. I have my own quilt of lies to sew.

Alex

Elsewhere in the hour, Caputo reached out to Figueroa for help with the prison closing. I absolutely despise this woman, but her manipulative ways could help save Litchfield, so I'm all for her involvement. 

In the following episode, "Finger in the Dyke," we finally got a look at Big Boo's back story. Again, these flashbacks did nothing to change my opinion of Boo in the present. I always figured her general anger and unpleasantness came from a place of never feeling accepted.

No one wants to feel like they can't be themselves. Still, she recognized her mistake in not seeing her mother before she died.

Pennsatucky and Boo's friendship has been one of the most enjoyable plots to watch. Even she knew that Boo didn't look right with her makeover. Trying to conform isn't Boo's style.

I refuse to be invisible, Daddy. Not for you, not for Mom, not for anybody.

Big Boo

Her conversation with the homophobic church member was like watching water boil in a pot. There was only so much venom Boo was going to listen to without losing it.

Pennsatucky was right when she told Boo she has to be herself and embrace it.

Caputo spent the majority of the installment trying to give the members of the MCC a great tour of Litchfield so they would want to take it over.

Watching everyone play their part was a lot of fun, especially seeing Piper talk back and Flaca and Maritza trying trying to help. 

Mike Birbiglia had a cameo, and I'm sure we'll see more of him now that the MCC wants to acquire Litchfield. 

Even though Caputo was thrilled, I'm sure it won't be as smooth as he thinks it will be.

Meanwhile, Taystee and Crazy Eyes had a touching moment when they both broke down over Vee. It was great to watch them lean on each other in that moment, but I don't want Crazy Eyes to continue to mourn Vee. She was the worst!

Daya continued to worry about Bennett's absence, and Caputo told her what she already knew... Bennett is gone.

It's heartbreaking to see her so upset, especially since the last time she saw him, he proposed to her. I had a feeling Bennett was skipping town when he left the crib on the side of the road in Orange is the New Black Season 3 Episode 2, but it's still hard to accept he took the coward's way out. 

Maybe Daya will actually go through with giving over her baby to Mendez's mother. 

Other Thoughts

  • Taystee and Poussey's funeral for the books had me laughing out loud. 
  • Could Piper's birthday reunion with her family be anymore awkward?
  • With all the religious and mystical talk going around the prison, I'm worried someone may take it too far.
  • So happy Soso isn't acting as naive as she did before.

Empathy Is a Boner Killer Review

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Rating: 4.9 / 5.0 (9 Votes)

Amanda Steinmetz was a staff writer for TV Fanatic. She went into retirement in June of 2027. Follow her on Twitter.

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Orange is the New Black Season 3 Episode 3 Quotes

And you're not just another shill taking a paycheck from an evil system of oppression 'cause you're fighting it from the inside with drama class. Fine. Whatever you need to tell yourself to get by, but excuse me if I don't want to spend my precious time catering to the delusion that you're making a difference. I have my own quilt of lies to sew.

Alex

Poussey: Books are made from paper and trees, so we thought they should be returned to the trees from whence they came and everything.
Taystee: The ultimate book return.