OITNB’s season 2 finale ended with a huge bang: did you love or hate it?

OITNB

Have you been watching Netflix’s Orange is the New Black? A lot of people binge watched the second season because it’s such a good show with fascinating female characters. I’m both jubilant and bummed after finishing the season two finale. I’m sad that it’s over, but this episode was probably the most satisfying season finale that I’ve ever watched. This finale didn’t leave any huge cliffhangers, but there was one subtle, dangling loose end with Nicky Nichols and her beloved heroin. We’ll see how that mess turns out next season, but this show just might make me love television again.

SPOILERS follow.

The second season was all about the shifting of power dynamics at both the staff and inmate levels at Litchfield prison. Of lesser importance during the last few episodes was the ousting of asst warden Natalie Figeroa and the insertion of Joe Caputo, a lesser evil. Piper set that transition in motion, and it was a joy to watch Fig’s downfall. Her marriage is a sham, and she lost her cushy job after pouring her heart out (“Heeee used to love me“) to Caputo. Then Fig tried to “convince” Caputo (with a beej) into not reporting her embezzlement, but he’d already tipped off the warden. See ya, Fig.

Caputo quickly learns that running a women’s prison isn’t as easy as Fig’s Louboutins made it look. After a stabbing and a schlocking in quick succession, Caputo must fend with not only the SIS but a gaggle of nuns (as opposed to a murder of crows, ha) who show up to support Sister Ingalls’ hunger strike. Caputo orders O’Neill and his banjolele to entertain and babysit the not-amused nuns. This weirdness frames the rest of the episode as the inmates deal with the biggest problem of all, Vee.

Other stuff happens too. Larry and Polly arrive in their newly coupled-up state and ask for Piper’s “blessing.” Piper makes sure that Alex will come back to Litchfield next season. Bennett and Daya are still whining at each other. Pennsatucky remains a lunatic, and now she has a bad haircut. But this episode is mostly about the swift downfall of evil incarnate.

Over the course of the season, we’ve seen how Vee manipulated Crazy Eyes (and everyone else) into doing her bidding. (Side note: I dislike how they changed Crazy Eyes this season into “the muscle.” She should remain the court jester.) It soon becomes apparent that Crazy Eyes will take the blame for schlocking Red. Red’s girls aren’t about to accept that particular injustice. Nichols and Morello issue a warning. Norma and Gloria whip up a magical kitchen concoction. Counselor Healy (who’s been steadily redeeming himself all season) does his part as Vee’s two remaining girls decide to tell the truth. And Nichols steals Vee’s heroin supply, which may not turn out so well next season. Ugh.

In the end, all of these things help brings bring down Vee, but it all comes down to Rosa, who has concluded, “That Vee, she’s a very rude person.” Rosa only has a few weeks left to live, and Morello feels terrible. What happens next is excellent. The effect was sheer comedy when the nuns dove out of the way as Rosa busts out of the grounds. Then Rosa took care of everyone’s biggest problem in a moment of glory. I hooted, I hollered, and I scared my dogs. It was a swiftly poetic end to the season, and … it will only be another year until the next episode. I’ll miss Rosa, but she went out well.

OITNB

OITNB

Screencaps & stills courtesy of Netflix

 

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48 Responses to “OITNB’s season 2 finale ended with a huge bang: did you love or hate it?”

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  1. Faye says:

    Thanks for this post! I just watched the last episode last week and have been dying to discuss it with people.

    As much as I loved the season overall, I felt there was too much Vee. Lorraine Toussaint is an amazing actress, and she completely inhabited the role, but . . .there was just too much of her. She took over the show the way her character took over the prison. And it really irked me how almost every single character was so easily influenced by her. I really hope this is the end of her.

    That being said, it made the finale so much more satisfying. IFor some reason, the fact that her killer was Rosa, who had the least to resent from her, made it even sweeter. It was almost like an offhand thing – she saw her there and just decided to kill her. And the ending line: “So RUDE, that one” – perfect!

    I enjoyed almost everyone’s stories this season. Morello’s backstory in particular packed a wallop – holy cow, did not see her as a homicidal stalker. I like that the writers were bold enough to finally show us that some people deserve to be in jail and they’re not all “victims of circumstances.” I also like Piper’s evolution. Even though she’s going down a bad road dragging Alex back in, I find the character more interesting now that she’s harsher and more jaded.

    I’m glad that Larry and Polly paired up, although I’m surpised they didn’t explode in a spontaneous combustion of douchiness. Now they can ride off into the sunset and off the show, hopefully.

    My wishlist for next season: more of Red’s backstory (I want to know how she landed in jail), and more story/action for the Hispanic girls. The African American inmates got great backstories and current action, but the Hispanic group isn’t that well fleshed out except for awesome Gloria. I also want to know more about silent Nora. Less Daya and her baby . . .and less stereotyping of the men who work at the prison.

    • Decloo says:

      I think the Vee takeover of the prison AND the show was deliberate. I don’t think I’ve actually been so scared of a TV character before (or ever). I was really rattled by her and was so disappointed when Red failed to strangle her. I was totally relieved when she got her comeuppance at the end. Great season finale to an amazing show. But now I miss it and am depressed.

    • Mixtape says:

      FYI, they covered Red’s backstory and explained how she ended in jail in the first season (the convenience store as a front for the Russian mob–ring any bells?)

      • Faye says:

        @Decloo – Maybe that was deliberate, I think it was just too much for me. I agree with you about feeling scared; I was literally holding my breath through some scenes. It was so much more intense than season 1.

        @Mixtape – I remember her backstory from Season 1, but for some reason I don’t think it was ever established exactly how she ended up in jail. Was the convenience store really a front for the mob? I thought it was legit but her husband was associated with mobsters and she ended up giving them advice adn getting enmeshed with them. And they definitely showed at the beginning of her journey she was more naive re the criminal element. I’ll have to go back and re watch sometime.

    • iseepinkelefants says:

      I hope we get more of the Hispanic girls next season too. I find myself liking them more and more, if not for comedic sake alone.

  2. mom2two says:

    I loved it! Rosa was easily my MVP of the season, not just for killing Vee but for her excellent backstory and acting. The character and actress will be missed on the show.
    I do agree that there was too much of Vee and it made no sense to have Red (who had previous run-in’s with her) to trust her so easily and the same with Tastyee. Lorraine Touissant was terrific in the role, she played a snake in the garden very well and knew how to prey on the women’s vulnerabilities-Tastyee’s need for a family, Suzanne’s need to fit in, etc. The only one immune to Vee was Poussey (another one who had a terrific season, go Samira Wiley!).
    I did love Lorna’s backstory, I am glad Yael Stone got to show off some considerable acting chops this season.
    I do hope with Larry and Polly getting together we will no longer see them on the show, but I doubt we’ll be that lucky. It would be nice for Daya to just end it with Bennett. He really got on my nerves by the end of the season. I prefer Piper a lone wolf, not tied to Larry or Alex.
    I am really loving Natasha Lyonne as Nicky, don’t go for the heroin girl!
    Caputo is going to find that heavy is the head that wears the crown. I would love to see the show develop the administrative nightmares that job entails.
    OINTB is my favorite show, definitely took that spot from Game of Thrones. I can’t believe it will be almost a year before it debuts the third season again.

    • Faye says:

      Samira Wiley was amazing this season – I’m glad we got to see more of her this season.

      Natasha Lyonne just killed it in her final few minutes. The way she looked at the heroin – fear and fascination/desire at the same time- was so well played. I hope she doesn’t get hooked on drugs again after she was strong enough to give them to Red instead of taking them earlier in the season.

    • Bridget says:

      Red definitely didn’t fall for Vee’s game, she just knew to bide her time.

  3. JustChristy says:

    I spent a week watching the entire series. Twice. I wish there was more to watch, but in total agreement, this was one of the better season finales ever. No real cliffhangers, yet enough “what next?” for season three. My heart hurts for Suzanne, I worry for Nicky, Miss Rosa will be missed, and I, too, hope for more of Red’s back story. Polly and Larry deserve each other. And dear god, maybe Soso will take a vow of silence! :p

    • ray says:

      ugh, this. i watched season 2 in 2 days and then watched season 1 and 2 and now im kindof lost haha. im so happy they had miss rosa more in this series though, i was kinda ambivalent to her in season 1 but i LOVED her in this one and im not gonna lie i almost cried when they told her she had a few weeks to live. also totally agree about more of red’s back story, i really enjoyed what they had of her back story in season 1.

      • JustChristy says:

        I’m curious what will happen to Piper if Red finds out she lied about how well the business is doing. Unless, of course, Red wants to be lied to. I doubt tit punching ol Pipes would be satisfying.

        More of Poussey’s story wouldn’t suck, either. And Miss Claudette! I miss her most of all. Next summer will not be here fast enough.

  4. minime says:

    I binge watched the all two seasons some weeks ago. This is such a great show and I think that the second season is in no way lesser than the first. Now it will be a bummer to wait for one year till the next one. The all season had a lot of interesting backstories and twists in the plot. Rosa’s story was very well put and that ending will stay forever: “Always so rude, that one”!
    I agree with @Faye, I hope that in the next season they show better the stories from the other Hispanic girls and also a bit more from Poussey’s story!!

  5. Froggy says:

    I thought Morrello’s back story was a great twist.

  6. GiGi says:

    We’ve tried a couple of times to get into this show and for some reason, I just can’t. Someone tell me what I’m missing!?!?! I want to like it, but it hasn’t hooked me so far.

    • ray says:

      thats how i feel about game of thrones, i tried but i just can’t. different strokes i guess

    • Missa410 says:

      I’m not sure how many episodes you’ve watched, but I remember the first few being very Piper-centric. IMO, Piper is the least interesting/most irritating character, especially in the beginning. I’d definitely give it at least three or four episodes, when the other characters become bigger players, before giving it up for good.

      • GiGi says:

        Thanks for the tip! I think we’re on episode 4… I’ll give it another go :)

        That is exactly how I was feeling – I am not tolerating Piper well, so the show has just felt kind of sad and slow. But if they change the focus, we might have a shot!

      • minime says:

        I agree with Missa410. I think that after some episodes it starts giving more emphasis to the other characters. If you can’t stand Piper then season 2 is the ideal one, since it starts having a more balanced focus on all of the main inmates that not only Piper.
        I have a soft spot for Piper, she is a completely self centered snob, but she is still very naive and it is interesting to see the development of her character. Still, there are other more interesting characters on the show.

      • Just Me (and my Bobby McGee) says:

        Agree with everyone else. Hang in there. Wait til you start learning about the other characters and their backstories. They’re what make this show so great. Keep watching!

      • iseepinkelefants says:

        Anyone notice this season the back stories were actually less revealing and left you with even more questions? Maybe I need to rewatch the first season again but it felt like I learned a lot about them in their back stories the first time around, this time I barely got a snippet that left me wondering how they got to where they are. Not so much with Lorna though. That was really shocking and really changed my opinion of her. I still like her but who knew she was so batsh-t crazy? She seemed so sweet.

  7. Froop says:

    I’ve been binge watching this whole show over the past couple of weeks. The ending was amazing and a great way to finish the season but I agree there was far too much Vee and she took over and I just didn’t care. I hope she’s gone for good. I still want to know what happened to Boo!

  8. uninspired username says:

    They really know how to end a season. I loved it.

    Suzanne breaks my heart, though.

  9. nancypants says:

    I loved the ending BUT are we sure Vee is dead?
    Just because she is laying on the road with her eyes open doesn’t mean she’s dead.
    I could see her blinking, moving a little and moaning in the the first scene of the next season’s opener.
    Also, how is Piper sure Alex will return to Litchfield and not some other prison?

  10. AG-UK says:

    I clapped when Vee got it, she did dominate the entire series and I was tired/over her half way in real life being stuck that hard in a van would finish you off but who knows. Love Natascha and she seems so funny in real life, after reading an article about her apt hunting in NY (in NY magazine) she had me laughing out loud at my desk..

  11. mkyarwood says:

    LOVED IT. I love the back stories, and Rosa’s was my favorite by far. Vee got what was coming, ‘always so rude’ so, even if she’s not dead it was a satisfying ending anyway. The dude who plays Porn Stache needs to be given more work. As for the series being Piper centric, well, it is an autobiographical story written by Piper. I’m not sure it was a bad thing to start there and evolve.

  12. Sherry says:

    My 17 year old daughter got me to start watching this show. She kept saying how she couldn’t wait for Season 2 to start and was so looking forward to it. So I decided to start watching Season 1 shortly before Season 2 aired. Now I’m hooked. I love this show and loved the way Season 2 ended. However, both my daughter and I have questioned if it’s really “the end” for Vee.

  13. SW says:

    So many great comments! Poussey is such a beautiful, wonderful talent. I can’t wait to learn more about her. Morello’s story was a fantastic twist! I want more of it! Rosa will be missed, but had that amazing final line. I want to learn more about Suzanne, as well. Such a great actress! The way Vee used her broke my heart. I hope she makes a real friend next season. She needs friendship.

  14. Lisa says:

    I will always carry a torch for Natasha Lyonne and Nicky, and it’s burning even brighter after this season. I loved the way she handled Morello.

    Anyone else seeing The Sopranos influence? Morello’s “Crisufuhhh” always reminded me of Adriana. Healy’s psychiatrist and the way they relate to one another makes me think of Tony and Melfi, though that doesn’t explain why she’s sitting in a bookshelf alcove. There’s a whole room for her to sit in!

    *SPOILERS*

    Vee had me in her corner every time. She tricks everyone. Just when you think you can trust her, she turns. The first time she had Red beaten up was brutal. Lorraine is an amazing actor. I wish we could see her again in s3 for that reason, but that van hit pretty hard…

  15. Apsutter says:

    Can we please talk about Lorna’s crazy ass?! The ep with her stalking blew me away! When they showed her calmly sitting in the courtroom making eyes at Christopher…yikes!

    • Katija says:

      Oh, I know. For me, that was the highlight of this season. I actually got a little misty eyed when Christopher goes to see her. That actress is brilliant, you could feel the pain in her crazy head. And I gotta say, she reminds me of Brittany Murphy (RIP) in her heyday, which makes me love her even more.

  16. RTMS says:

    Hmm not a bad season but I agree that Vee was too much front and center this year. A much better women’s prison show is the Aussie import Wentworth, less sex and more stories that are meaningful. Rosa was a stand out for me this season, though the accents didn’t seem to line up with the younger actress. Red was another stand out and so sneaky. She just isn’t the killer she would like to be hence not being able to take out Vee. She was suckered in the beginning and in the end but still survived.

  17. Katija says:

    I STILL can’t get over the fact that Christopher is actually Morello’s VICTIM, not her fiance. And I wept like a baby when they showed Rosa driving away and she flashed back to her 20-something self. Oh my God. I had doubts that OITNB could top season one, but they essentially crushed season one. I am so in love with this show and can’t wait for season three. Come faster!!!

    • Katija says:

      Oh, and I gotta say: I always despised Piper, but in the moment during “Furlough” when she chose the 40-ounce over the wine and drank it on the bridge… I kinda fell in love with her. Such a subtle but powerful moment that showed how much she’s grown.

  18. Jo says:

    I enjoyed season 2 much more than season 1 (Piper was grating in season 1). I guess I’m in the minority about the ending because I was disappointed that Rosa was the one who took out Vee. I was rooting for Red to come up with the Master Plan to take Vee out herself. I would like to see me more backstory on the Spanish girls. I’m a bit of a conspiracy theorist and I thought that Daya’s baby was actually her mom’s boyfriend until my husband reminded me that she would of been tested for pregnancy before she ever made it to gen pop. I’m still holding on to the possibility of the baby actually being her Kim’s boyfriend.

  19. MaiGirl says:

    I agree with so many posters here about Morello (NEVER would have thought she was a stalker, just maybe clinging too hard to her pre-incarceration relationship!), Rosa (I know it’s wrong to admire a criminal, but Rosa was so badass!), Poussey (great actress who really got to stretch in Season 2), Crazy Eyes (so tragic!). I am also sick to death of Daya and Benett–the “relationship” can never be healthy, and there have been too many lies and reversals for me to give a crap anymore. I do want to say that Vee dominating this season probably has to do with the number of storylines that got lame or dragged on too long, like Daya and Benett, and Larry and Polly (HATE Larry and Polly, individually, and as a couple. I hope their entire wedding party is consumed by forest fire!). It was a little too much Vee, but better Vee than those annoying simps!

  20. JENNIFER says:

    Now that it’s over, try watching RAY DONOVAN on Showtime. OMG! It’s a great show.

  21. polly says:

    MISS ROSA! best character ever.

    that being said… ugh. daya and bennett are so lame now, i stopped caring. i used to really like them together at S01. they definitely took over piper’s place as most annoying character.

  22. Lucy2 says:

    I binged the whole thing the first week- loved it,especially the ending with Rosa taking out Vee. All of the back stories were great, and all of the characters are so interesting and well portrayed.
    I can’t stand Larry and Polly though I hope there is less of them in the next season.

  23. iseepinkelefants says:

    I knew they were going to have Rosa go out in some kind of car chase and it made me happy when it happened but I was really hoping Vee would pay for what she did. Maybe send her to max where her old cronies get back at her. Killing her was a funny moment but it didn’t seem punishment enough. I really hope she got a good look at Rosa before she bit it.

    Next season I really hope they pack piper off back home and the focus is left on the other inmates. I find myself increasingly wanting to fast forward through her parts. And with Alex back it’s just going to get worse. When I heard 8 months left I was yes! Maybe she’ll get sent home.

    And Enough with Larry and Polly too. Boring. Good on Larry for getting back at Piper but Pipers whole story and it’s ensuing characters is just dullsville. She’s a horrible person and the people she surrounds herself with are horrible. It’s funny because out of all of them, her crime is probably the least but no one deserves to be in there more than her. Go figure.