‘Orange is the New Black’ Season 5 Wishlist: 6 Things We’d Love To See In Litchfield

‘Orange Is The New Black’ Season 5 Wishlist
  • Comedy
  • Drama
2013-07-11

Orange Is The New Black returns to Netflix for its fifth season in a few short months, and while we can’t say for certain where the story will go after Season 4’s dramatic cliffhanger, we do know there are some characters whose sentences we’d like to see extended, and other Litchfield inmates who are well overdue for release.

If you haven’t seen all of Orange is the New Black Season 4 yet, please turn back now! We’ll be discussing some major plot points throughout and don’t want to spoil them for you. Still here? Let’s get to it.

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Orange is the New Black Photo: Netflix

Piper should get out

We’re huge fans of OITNB, but the series had clearly outgrown its source material by Season 3, which had an oddly lighthearted, summer camp vibe compared to the rest of the series. We’re hoping Piper gets out of Litchfield in Season 5, but that doesn’t have to mean the end of Taylor Schilling’s role in the show. She could team up with Litchfield whistleblower Danny Pearson (Mike Birbiglia) to advocate for change in the prison from the outside, a nod to Piper Kerman’s real-life work on criminal justice reform.

Still, we already know OITNB will be around for at least seven seasons, and Piper leaving Litchfield in Season 5 might not be terribly likely (even if the remainder of the cast can more than hold their own). One excuse the writers may have for keeping Piper around is that the show’s timeline doesn’t adhere to our real-world one. The OITNB Wiki notes at the end of Season 3, “Piper's already been in Litchfield for about nine months and has still six to 12 months left.” That kind of timekeeping suggests one season translates to roughly three months. In other words, even though it seems like Piper has been in jail forever, it hasn’t actually been all that long in the chronology of the show. UPDATE: On the red carpet at the SAG Awards, actress Danielle Brooks (Taystee) revealed that all of Season 5's episodes will take place over a period of only three days.   

Bring Back Stella (a.k.a. Ruby Rose)

First of all, she’s easy on the eyes and super cool. More importantly, if the showrunners decide to keep Piper around (which they probably will), Stella’s got a legitimate axe to grind with Litchfield’s flaxen-haired panty magnate. Back in Season 3, Stella was about to be released and stole some of Piper’s money; Pipes returned the favor by hiding contraband in Stella’s bunk and getting her sent to Max. We only saw Stella once in Season 4, in a brief moment during episode 6 (“Piece of Shit”), where we learn she’s a user and has been hooking up with Nicky (Natasha Lyonne). Did Stella play a part in Nicky’s eventual relapse? Is there any deeper connection between the two?  Apart from her grievances with Piper, these aspects of her character would be interesting to explore in Season 5.

Healy finally gets a win

CO Healy (Michael Harney) is a compassionate -- if remarkably awkward -- man at heart. Learning about his childhood struggles to cope with his mother’s schizophrenia throughout Season 4 made Healy’s emotional investment in the welfare of Litchfield’s inmates all the more clear. His desire to help Lolly (Lori Petty) allows him to overlook her (true) confession about participating in the murder of the hitman sent to kill Alex Vause (Laura Prepon). But when the body is eventually discovered and Lolly hauled down to psych, it’s too much for Healy to take. The next we see of him is in the season finale; he watches Caputo’s speech from what appears to be a mental treatment facility and appears to have been sedated. Hopefully he returns from his treatment with a reinvigorated desire to help others, and will manage to get some of the professional recognition he deserves. Which brings us to…

Lolly gets the help she needs

We don’t expect to see Lori Petty’s character right away in OITNB Season 5. After all, she’s going to be locked away in psych experiencing godknowswhat. But we wouldn’t mind something similar to Nicky, where she reappears at the tail end of the season. She’s a great character and we hope Season 4 won’t have been the last we see of her. Still, as Petty told Variety back in June, she’s under no illusions her character will have a happy ending. “Crazy people get locked up now, there’s no mental health government subsidized places that take care of people. I live in Venice Beach and I see these poor homeless people obviously in need of medical attention and they’re just homeless, that happens. Usually the cops turn a blind eye because they don’t want to deal with all the paperwork and figure out where to take you and ‘How crazy are you?’ They usually just look away. Or you get locked up. As it stands, [Lolly] didn’t really do anything wrong, until she got to prison. She was in need of help and nobody helped her.”

More Flaritza

Taystee (Danielle Brooks) and Poussey (Samira Wiley) have been the reliable banter duo OITNB’s first four seasons. Now that P’s gone, it’s certainly going to be interesting to see the impact on Taystee, but where will OITNB fans look for lighter moments and snappy one-liners? Maritza (Diane Guerrero) and Flaca (Jackie Cruz), collectively known as Flaritza, brought the laughs in Season 4, bonding over defecting from Piper’s panty scheme, and pampering themselves with clay masks in preparation for the arrival of news crews after Poussey’s death. The expansion of Litchfield’s Latina population was a central plot thread of Season 4 and they’ll likely continue to be a dominant force among the women in Season 5.

Soso grows the hell up (or gets the hell out)

Much like Piper, Soso hasn’t taken prison life terribly seriously and strikes us as having some serious growing up to do. Up until Poussey’s awful, unexpected death in the penultimate episode of Season 4, it seemed like Soso thought of Litchfield more like sorority house (albeit with lamer outfits) than, y’know, a prison. We’d like to see a more gravity and maturity from this character, proving she’s more than just a stereotypical millennial snowflake.  

Orange is the New Black returns to Netflix June 9.

Which characters would you like to see more of in Season 5 of Orange is the New Black? Think we got it right or dead wrong? Drop us a line in the comments below.

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