Now that the chaos from the premiere has settled and every inmate has received her complimentary ear plugs, Litchfield is dealing with a power struggle. It was inevitable, given the increase to twice as many inmates as were previously incarcerated, and all the various belief systems forced to clash. Some power moves succeeded more than others.
5. The Israeli/Palestinian Conflict Bunk
Better known these days by her conversion name, Tovah, she’s recreating her own version of the West Bank with her new hijab wearing bunkie. Cindy flexes her muscle by telling her enemy that it’s only fair: “And by fair I mean I’m bigger and stronger and I got more friends.” And, less eloquently: “Go suck a fart.” For now it’s all belongings on the floor and shaken-up Diet Cokes, but Cindy’s never been one to suffer fools and her bunkmate seems to have a short fuse.
4. The Lone Ranger
Piper’s quest to become hot shit hit a snag with “the Hawaiian,” also known as the inmate she tried to intimidate in the premiere: her legs are freakishly strong and she knows how to put Piper in her place pretty quickly. Red tells Piper that the secret to keeping power is “you need them to think you’re stronger than you actually are,” so Pipes employs her new bulky friend to be her security guard. The illusion of Piper’s influence is maintained a bit longer, but an illusion it remains.
3. The One Percent
After some seriously subtle racism to get on Healy’s good side, Judy King has a cushy bunk of her own and a roommate in Yoga Jones. She is exactly what Judy ordered: white and “of the non-threatening variety.” Yoga’s got a real problem with becoming the one-percent, whether it’s because of morality or because special treatment can make you a target of jealousy (read: violence), but Judy insists her luxury accommodations were not of her own doing. “I didn’t ask for this,” she says. “You didn’t turn it down,” Yoga retorts. Judy ultimately shuts Yoga up with some guilt and herbal tea, but the power the Martha Stewart (definitely mixed with some Paula Deen) of Litchfield possesses is dangerous because she will always have the balls of the system in her hand. All she’d need to do is squeeze.
2. The Daddy’s Girl
We were treated to Maria’s backstory this episode, and learn quickly that she is of Dominican gang royalty. Her father resented her relationship with the sweet-but-silent Yadriel because of his Mexican heritage, which ultimately caused Maria to denounce her Dominican identity, calling bullshit on the feud between the two ethnicities. There is more racial and ethnic tension than ever in the prison, and Maria sees it from not just the new white inmates, but even from her Puerto Rican “family” members, Daya and Aleida. By the end of the episode, Maria’s anger (let’s remember last season when Yadriel refused to let her see her child) ignites her knowledge of how to run a gang. She retaliates against the inmate who pushed Flores down the stairs, and Maria claims her place at the top of the prison food chain.
One line: “My power is no illusion. I could fucking demolish you.” Yesss!
Best line of the episode: “Maybe life is all crazy, but at least you can get snacks, you know?” – Yadriel. Yeah, man. I know.
Thank you!: For finally allowing Daya and Aleida to share a genuine, loving moment. It was beautiful.
Questions: Will Tucky actually tell Maritza about Coates’ predilections, or just keep talking about ducks? Will Sophia ever get out of the SHU? What will happen to Daya’s baby?!