It was hard to watch, but we all have to admit it felt good to see Piper’s punishment from the last episode have an effect on her. When her Hawaiian ex-bodyguard asked if she was okay, Piper responds, “Not even a little bit.” It appears we’re seeing legitimate emotional progress happening, and not just in Piper. Several characters have developed some newfound humility, which led to moments of confession. These were the best ones:
3. The Friendliest Racist You’re Ever Going to Meet
A little misunderstanding and a lot of racist puppetry led to Judy King having a heart-to-heart with Poussey. She’s given up trying to make up for her racism by telling everyone how many black friends she has, and instead blames it on doing a lot of blow in the ’80s, which didn’t do much for her “cultural sensitivity.” Eventually she admits that she may be racist, however unintentionally, apologizes, and makes a plea to be friends. It’s a start.
2. The First-Time Crack Smoker
And then there was Piper. Reeling from the experience of having a swastika burned into her arm and the realization that she was the cause of all of her problems. In a surprising turn of events, and while high on crack for the first time, Piper rattles off a refreshing list of self-aware confessions: “I’ve brought this on myself.” And then: “My parents didn’t teach me to be like this. What I did to Maria? I didn’t feel bad. I didn’t think twice. I just went too far. I always go too far. I always go too fucking far. And I can’t stop it.” And then she discovers why: “I think that I’ve been trying to win prison. And I’ve destroyed people’s lives.” It’s a bit too soon to be cheering for her, but this was at least a taste of the kind of introspection we’ve all been waiting from Piper. It only took being branded to get it out of her.
1. The Time Traveler
Coates has been undergoing a lot of personal reflection ever since Tucky confronted him on raping her. It was hard to figure out what was most surprising, the fact that it happened at all or is unawareness that it was, in fact, rape. Coates finally tracks down Tucky to let her know what he’d do with a time machine: “I’d go back to when we first met. I would have treated you like a person. Not like a duck, or a thing. I would have liked our first time, if we had gotten there, to have been nice. And I would have wanted to see your face. And to have told you what I told you about loving you, but softer. I wish I hadn’t been so mad. It wasn’t fair what happened.” And after admitting he’s still trying to figure out what happened he says, with the utmost sincerity, “I’m sorry, Doggett.” This show just achieved the unthinkable feat of turning a rapist into a sympathetic character. Who knew that was possible!
Bonus: Morello’s Sister
“Tommy, go back to your room, your mommy and daddy are making love.” That was just hilarious.
Best line of the episode: “When God gives you a swastika, he opens a window. And then you remember there is no God.” – Red. Appropriate for the circumstance.
Thank you!: For Cal! I’ve missed that weirdo.
Questions: Has Caputo officially gone over to the dark side? Does Judy have a phone too? Will Aleida make it out, or will Maria’s drug dealing get in her way? Is Morello’s husband actually cheating on her?