Orange is the new…what now?

I am only one to spend every waking hour my son is not awake finishing Orange is the New Black?

I have been absent from the blog this week. I will post my updates at the weekend. The TV has kept me a bit busy…

And now it’s done, stories wrapped up more or less completely, how do we process the loss of these loved characters.

Jenji Kohan changed the game and helped create the juggernaut that is Netflix for content creation according to this interview in The Guardian this week. What she did more for me is to put women and their multitude of voices front and centre. She proved there is no excuse, really no-one need fail the Bechdel Test again. And that kind of quiet feminist revolution it changes story-telling.

While the final season rushes to conclude some character arcs (and includes a death that’s so unnecessary it is painful), there is also a warmth in the final episode. Even the cheesy waves from the actors in the final credits left me satisfied because the inclusion of so many of the ensemble cast speaks to how beloved these characters are for everyone.

You are gripped by each tiny slice of their lives outside prison. The bounce and hurly of all the stories makes you hone in on what it is you connect with for each woman. The effect is a deep connection with so many characters, it’s actually quite startling.

I am feeling shaky having sobbed for the last few hours. Adding the pain of what is happening in the Immigrant detention centres to the final season more than updates the conversation, it wrenches at you powerfully. An urgency in the writing elevates the messages that have been so clear. The prison system was broken season one, look how much worse it is.

But in the mean time for me, I am trying to recover from the unique loss that book lovers know too well…

Recommendations to get you through

Podcasts around or about prisons, links here for Spotify:

Convicted and Wrongful Conviction with Jason Flom. Looking at how Wrongful Conviction can occur.

The excellent Ear Hustle from inside San Quentin prison

And if you want compelling true crime told well In the Dark podcast and The Fall Line. Both of whom represent marginalised communities and discuss issues of race and prejudice in the justice system.

How is everyone else holding up now Orange is the New Black is over?

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