This marks halfway through the series, and I’m already dreading having to wait another year for season 3.
This episode opens with Vee’s crew rolling dozens of cigarettes in the warehouse. This doesn’t bode well for the ladies that are under Vee’s influence — I have a well-substantiated fear that it’s going to land at least one of them in the SHU.
Caputo is angry that Jimmy, the old lady, escaped during the party on Valentine’s Day when half the guards were at his band’s gig. He gives a 5-shot a week quota for all of the guards except Fischer, to whom he gives a 6-shot per week minimum. It’s clear that he’s retaliating against her for not being interested in him — a man around 20 years her senior, who masturbates under his desk after talking to the more “attractive” inmates. This man is scum.
Flashback to Black Cindy’s life before prison as a TSA agent in the airport. Immediately we see her stealing things out of people’s suitcases, including a nice pink iPad. She drives through the airport on a go-kart, stealing stuff as she goes.
Red is getting back into business with the grate under the floorboards in the greenhouse, which will probably anger Vee, who is sending Taystee around with cigarettes to sell. Continuing with the theme of contraband, we see that Bennett has smuggled some in through his prosthetic leg. He brings “presents” to the women in the kitchen to keep them quiet about Daya’s pregnancy, but Maritza pushes her luck and Bennet throws her into the SHU. This is not a man who does well under pressure.
Cindy gives the pink iPad to her little sister for her birthday, but her mother knows what’s up. She can see the pictures of another family on the iPad and realizes that Cindy stole it for her sister. She is reluctant to let Cindy take her to get ice cream, but Cindy assures her that she will be careful.
In the library, Nicky and Poussey are talking about how Vee is manipulating the other women to sell cigarettes for her, and Poussey is concerned about Taystee. Nicky accuses Poussey of being in love with Taystee, explaining how young lesbians sometimes fall in love with their best friends and end up pushing them away when the friend starts dating a guy. Nicky compares jealousy over a guy to Poussey’s jealousy over Vee’s relationship with Taystee. Jealous or not, I think Poussey’s concern is legitimate.
Piper gets Caputo to agree to a prison newsletter, printing letters, stories, and comics by the other inmates. I think it is a great idea, but it’s sure to backfire in this environment. Caputo demands that Piper run stories about how the guards “are people too” to reduce anger from the inmates about the shot quota.
For some reason, someone thinks we still care about Larry. In some sick twist, we have to watch Larry and Polly get intimate. I don’t even have words for the revulsion I’m feeling.
Vee set the price at one sheet of stamps per cigarette, because stamps are something that have monetary value on the outside. It turns out that Cindy has been accepting services for goods, and doesn’t have Vee’s stamps. This revelation leads back into Cindy’s flashback, where she leaves her little sister in the car while she goes inside her friend’s house “for just 20 minutes,” though I have a feeling it will be much longer.
Jimmy escapes again, throwing herself off the chapel stage and breaking her arm, because the guard wasn’t watching her like she should have been.
Daya confronts Bennett about throwing Maritza in the SHU, and this power dynamic is starting to cause palpable tension. I still hope they get caught, if for no other reason than Daya will get proper medical care, and Bennett (who is a rapist) will get punished.
In a hotel room, Figueroa’s husband, Jason, is running for state senate. When she says, “You have to have sex with me in order for me to get pregnant,” my radar beeped, but when I saw him with his staffer, the CLOSETED POLITICIAN KLAXON sounded louder than a tornado alarm in the Midwest.
Vee gives Cindy a “come to Jesus” talk, and while I do hope that Cindy gets it together, I don’t want her to be under Vee’s influence. In the flashback, we see Cindy’s mom giving her a similar speech when Cindy brings her sister back way too late. We find out that it’s not her sister, but in fact, her daughter. Whoa.
Fischer has taken an interest in listening to the inmates’ phone calls, and being fluent in Spanish catches on that Daya is pregnant. Will she tell anyone?
Jimmy is given “compassionate release,” which is anything but. They dump her off at a bus stop, with no family, no money, and no medical care which she so desperately needs due to her advancing Alzheimer’s.