Formerly incarcerated woman on why 'Orange Is The New Black' is mostly inaccurate




Always a good reminder that fantasy land is fantasy land.


Again: the show is an amusingly different take on a rom-com, that just so happens to take place in a prison. The book is a very good, and also quite scary at times.


I started to read this similar article the other day but gave up because I wanted to punch the author.


Next they’ll tell that prison sex isn’t as hot as it on OZ.


I think someone is a little confused about how fiction works. Was she expecting a documentary?


Well the show is ostensibly based on an autobiographical memoir, so a casual fan might be forgiven for thinking it was somewhat true-to-life.


I’ve seen people complain that this critique isn’t a good fit since the writer was in a high-security prison (she went to jail for armed robbery) whereas Orange is the New Black is based more on a lower security setting. I suspect the ‘white fantasy-land’ description of the show is still fairly accurate though.


It’s DESIGNED to spread propaganda about the acceptability of Prison in our culture and move people away from REFORM of a corrupt, inhumane, racist torture system that rehabilitates nobody and serves only as an outlet for a nation’s SADISM.


Weren’t at least some of the characters in the show incarcerated for murder?


Well, maybe… but I haven’t seen any reason to believe that Jenji Kohan is on anybody’s payroll. Personally if I were to write a show with the intent of making prison seem more acceptable I’d probably depict less corruption, abuse and inefficacy on the part of the warden and correctional staff.

More likely they took liberties with the truth because they thought it would make for better television.


So I’m confused. Are you saying I shouldn’t continue trying to build a Meth empire?


My coconut radio research must continue…


Lol! That is exactly what the anti prison reformists want you to believe.


I’m pro-reform. Do you have any actual evidence that Jenji Kohan or others behind the show are anti-reform? I’m not ruling out the possibility, just curious.


Minimum-security federal prison is different than a state prison that ranges from minimum- to maximum-security? Who would have thunk?

And it’s interesting how she criticizes the show for not showing omnipresent guards, yet says she was “fortunate” there was a guard nearby when she was attacked in the library.

I’m sure there is considerable dramatic license being exercised, but I bet that if you asked Martha Stewart her opinions on how realistic the show is you might get a different perspective.


Spore… I find most of the “TV isn’t real” blogging\articles boring and narcissistic, and my first reaction is to mock the author. Through that filter I had interpreted Kopimi’s reply as being in jest, and if it wasn’t in jest I would agree with your opinion.


Ah, thank you.


I dunno how real it is or not, but all I want to do is dub the Seinfeld transition music right at the beginning of every flashback.

A laugh track would also work.


While I certainly agree with your assessment of the prison-industrial-complex, I’m not sure the show itself is a cheerleader for the prison system. Lots of fucked up things happen to the women on the show - it certainly isn’t a positive spin on prison, even if there is a tendency to white wash what’s happening in the privatized prison system. The women depicted are often subjected to the exactly the kind of things you’re talking about. It actually does a decent job at showing how the prison system is rigged against African Americans especially, how inhumane it can be, and how the system works in terms of setting up inmates for recidivism.

It might not be the kind of eye opening investigation on the evils of the prison industrial complex, but it’s hardly pro-prison.