Orange is the New Black Season 1 Review

Unless you have been living under a rock for the past couple of years, you've probably had at least 60% of your friend and acquaintances demanding that you top what you’re doing to download Netflix, and more importantly, watch ‘Orange is the New Black’. This Netflix original series is essentially the whole reason that I got an account (which I'm sure will now ruin my summer) and after now completing Season 1 in about 3 days, it is safe to say that I certainly wasn't disappointed.  
Not only is this series sleek, smart and sexy, it also exhibited the clear, and most vital, characteristic of being easily binge-able. Each episode is heavily intriguing, and leads you wanting more, which is also my prime excuse when people ask me how I watched 13 hours of it in less than three day. The season’s finale is also intense and grasping, making the whole series worthwhile, just for that episode.
The script is faultless, particularly for characters like Piper’s boyfriend (Larry). For many series, there’s always the odd line that a character says which do not compliment their persona's; however, not once has this been the case within Series 1. On top of this, the character development is also heavily in depth and enjoyable, often focusing on a flash back per episode, thus allowing us to know why other characters are in the prison, as well as not just focusing on Piper. It is also worth noting that a large number of references are used throughout, and are then referred back to, whether it is the ‘eggplant’ joke, or even the story of an inmate who wears an eye-patch (who is then shown in later episodes). 
My final key factor of admiration within this series has to be the appearances of the characters. In many TV shows, the character can go through so much, and still look glamorous; however, in Orange is the New Black, this wasn't the case. In flashbacks, many of the girls do look realistically healthy and well-presented, which is in heavy juxtaposition with how they then look in prison. For example, after being in prison for a while, Piper’s roots begin to show and she develops dark circles under her eyes. This may not be something that many people notice, but I do and I really appreciate it.
Now, time for the blog to briefly change its tone.
One aspect of this series which I didn't like was…Piper. I know she is meant to be realistic and probably likeable; however, her stupidity and naivety becomes incredibly frustrating and infuriating after her first five seconds (okay, slight exaggeration) of screen time. She seems to want to make things worse for herself, and in turn, makes me want to punch the screen. With all that said, if I ever end up in prison, I would probably react in the same way.

All in all, series one was great, and definitely worthy of its hype and popularity. It’s quick to hook the audience in, but not let them free until they have watched every second of it. I’m also finding Netflix as a whole to be a great investment (even though I am using sister’s account) as it does have such a variety of shows and films on it, and I will definitely be borrowing it throughout university (especially for the later series of OITNB). The prison isn’t a plaice, the girls are not privileged and there are even some deeply unsettling scenes (two words – tampon sandwich), but it is still deeply enjoyable, and the prison setting is not, for a single second, overlooked or forgotten.   


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