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It’s Time You Gave ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK a Shot

OitNB

This Sunday, ’round about 11:00 PM, a decently-sized portion of the population will be gaping at their televisions, wide-eyed, half-shouting some variation of “Holy Crap!”

HBO’s Game of Thrones will be ending its fifth season around that time, and the show has a knack for gobsmacking audiences (although it isn’t like the show needs an excuse like a season finale to shock people; the Red Wedding happened in the second-to-last episode of season three). There’s no doubt that it’ll be up to its old tricks when Sunday night rolls around.

By 11:07 PM though, we gluttons for good serialized drama will be pining over the end of another season of GoT and waiting the painful week before True Detective returns with its new cast (side note: casting Vince Vaughan was a piece of sly genius; don’t let anyone tell you different).

Might I suggest sating your pulsing hunger for backstabbing, territorial disputes, morally complex characters, disturbing violence, and consistent sartorial vacancy (that’s pedantic for nudity) with something just a little different?

I might? Oh, joy! Well, then here goes: WATCH ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK!

Pardon me for shouting. How rude. You go and give me a chance to suggest something to you and I muck it up by going all caps. Sorry. Really. It’s just that I was worried that you had it in your head that OitNB was “that lady prison show” and you’d already dismissed it. And maybe that’s unfair, but it feels like a lot of the conversations I’ve had (with guys, mostly, but not exclusively) surrounding OitNB start with the following kind of exchange:

Me: “Yeah, it’s great. Have you seen it?”

Other Person (usually a dude): “Wweeeeehhhhhhhhhhheeeeeeeeeeellllllllll…”

I translate this response/guttural noise differently depending upon context, but a couple of factors are almost certainly contributing in some way to the hesitancy it communicates.

1. Orange is the New Black is a show that is almost entirely about women. There are male characters, and they sometimes have important roles to play, but 90% of what happens onscreen is about female characters and their stories. I’d like to believe that people (maybe mostly dudes, but not exclusively) who’ve rejected the show without watching it haven’t done so just because it’s essentially the inverse of nearly every other major drama on television, but it’s probably naive to think that’s true. (There are, after all, groups of men in the world who actually think that the world is out to get them and that they’re being disadvantaged in some meaningful way.) It’s also probably naive to think that the show’s diversity hasn’t played some role. To wit:

2. Gay characters, transgender characters, and people of color are a part of the show’s DNA. Yes, I know it’s 2015. I saw Caitlyn Jenner’s photo shoot too. Attitudes are changing. Still, frank discussions about or depictions of homosexuality, gender, and race make a lot of people uncomfortable. Fine. Discomfort is a natural part of developing understanding and empathy. Heck, soccer made me uncomfortable until I actually started watching it with the intention of understanding (rather than lazily ridiculing) it.

But an amazing thing happens when we stop making assumptions about other people and actually try to engage with the world the way they experience it. One of the cool (and rare) things about OitNB is that many of the gay characters are played by gay actors. Laverne Cox, a transgender woman, plays the transgender Sophia on the show. The people of color are actually people of color (which you think would be a no-brainer but how often has Hollywood cast white people in non-white roles; hi Cameron Crowe). OitNB gives voice to marginalized people. This is important, even if it means that what those voices say doesn’t fit neatly into the vision of the world held by those of us fortunate enough not to be one of them. Roger Ebert once said that movies are empathy machines. I’d argue that the same applies to stories in general, so Orange is the New Black is an empathy machine too. It’s impossible to watch it without evaluating our assumptions (about race, class, gender, sexuality, and, not least of all, the many tragedies of our criminal justice and prison systems).

Any show that can challenge its viewers like that (while also making them cackle and tear up in equal measure) should be given a chance.

If you’re already on the bandwagon, I hope that what I’ve written reflects in some small way what is true and awesome about OitNB. Maybe you’re all already watching it and I was a fool to think otherwise. But if you aren’t, I hope you’ll hop on.

Seasons one and two of Orange is the New Black are currently streaming on Netflix. Season three debuts this Friday, June 12.

Article written by Josh Corman

Josh Corman is a marketing writer and Contributing Editor at bookriot.com. He lives in Central Kentucky.

49 Comments for It’s Time You Gave ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK a Shot



  1. Annoyed UK Fan
    5:20 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    Really KSR??? What does this have to do with UK sports??? Why do you feel the need to cram this type of agenda in the face of the fan base? We do not come to this site for politics or social agendas. Please stop!!! I could care less what an individual wants to do with their body, who they want to do it with, and what anyone else thinks about my opinion or theirs. Its bad enough having to see this type of stuff crammed through at every turn on ESPN. Now here? Why? For what reason? sports? no. Its annoying. Please stick to sports and leave the social agendas alone… or start another website for that.



    • Get over your sorry self
      7:47 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      I like these posts, and I’ve been reading this site for years. You don’t get to speak for everyone. BBN is a huge and diverse fanbase with all kinds of opinions. And if you’re that sensitive about social agendas you’re probably a bigot.



    • Dee W.
      9:35 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      “But an amazing thing happens when we stop making assumptions about other people and actually try to engage with the world the way they experience it”

      Actually a completely imaginary world. Depending on the study or survey, anywhere from 1.5% to 3.0% of the population is homosexual. Per recent Gallup survey, well less than 1% are actually in a relationship. Even fewer of this group still are the kind of activists pushing this kind of stuff in the media and are actually embarrassed by the way they are being portrayed. However, studies show those of us in the younger generation believe about a third of the population is gay. So perceptions and viewpoints are indeed changing due to the media, but they are not based on anything approaching reality.



  2. 8generationsblue
    5:32 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    Amen, annoyed UK fan! Josh Corman and others at KSR have drunk the cool aid! Attitudes are not changing! Pro sodomite and transvestite news is being forced down the throats of the American people. It is presented as though people are for it but that is not so. Millions are horrified!



    • Westboro is in Kansas, not Kentucky
      7:49 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Your kids or grandkid are surely embarrassed by your antiquated bigotry. Luckily you will die, they will take your place, and the world will be better for it.



    • wu slang
      8:05 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Made’up name “westboro”



    • SADmaninKY
      11:13 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Westboro Bro:
      Reading your comment reinforces why I fear for my grandchildren’s future.



  3. wu slang
    5:47 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    The first two comments remind mind me of when a KY fan calls the KSR show complaining about what they heard on Louisville stations. Matt (almost in disbelief) asks “Why in the world were you listening to these people?” Yeah this is a stupid article, but just change the station (scroll to a better writer.)



  4. Times HAVE changed..
    5:56 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    I’m struggling to see how this is relevant to sports at all. People don’t come to this website to read articles on why they should watch a show because the actors/ actresses are gay, lesbian, transgender, or “people of color”, they come here to read the great articles you guys write on sports. What’s happening?



    • Shocklee
      6:58 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Gay, lesbian, and transsexual issues are not the same as racism.



  5. CATandMONKEY
    6:01 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    Newbs. All the above. Obviously not longtime KSR fans…or VERY deeply veiled sarcasm.



  6. KSR Addiction
    6:05 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    Um lighten up guys…this is KSR!



    • CATandMONKEY
      6:14 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Exactly.



  7. UKCATS1226
    6:24 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    I’m not sure what makes less sense, the bigoted attitudes or the fact that people come here for great sports writing. I don’t care for OITNB- Jenji Kohan absolutely uses her shows to put forth her agenda. While I agree with her on most social issues, I find agenda driven tv/movies/music just come across as shrill and grating. With all of the injustice in the prison/justice system, maybe you should encourage people to go watch Oz or the wire instead of this lame pop culture mashup that just uses the setting to make points.



  8. lexslamman
    6:46 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    Love Jenji Kohan. I’m a LGBTQ-friendly liberal. Loved Weeds. Don’t care for OITNB. Totally unrealistic, doesn’t treat drug addiction fairly, treats men like Spike Lee treats white people, and it gets really boring after season 1. Also, while Weeds was a weird, woman-driven show, it had a strong narrative core surrounding the story of the family of main characters. Once you get past the novelty of featuring so many talented women, people of color, and vibrant gay and trans characters, OITNB has poor storytelling and little to offer us.

    I think season 3 is where the rest of America realizes this show’s schtick and looks elsewhere.



  9. StepheninSacramento
    7:12 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    KSR wouldn’t let me put my original post up. There was no profanity or crude language in the post. Well I guess referencing Christianity and morals is profane to these liberals. Really sad that they won’t allow an opposing argument to be laid out.



    • Mrs. Tyler Thompson
      7:23 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      The word “bigot” flagged the censor.



    • StepheninSacramento
      7:29 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      I’m pretty sure that you have a manual override…..



    • StepheninSacramento
      12:32 pm June 11, 2015 Permalink

      Hey Mrs. TT, the word that supposedly had me flagged has appeared a few times in post #13. So please tell me again why mine wasn’t approved?



    • Mrs. Tyler Thompson
      12:48 pm June 11, 2015 Permalink

      Maybe it’s because you referred to me as an “ingrate.” Isn’t “respect” a Christian value?



  10. Amy R
    7:13 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    “There are, after all, groups of men in the world who actually think that the world is out to get them and that they’re being disadvantaged in some meaningful way.”

    Apropos of absolutely nothing. Keep that in mind, next time you hear a third wave feminist claim that they don’t trivialize men’s issues. On a sports website, he comes out of nowhere to pimp a show that he apparently follows for its political bent as much as anything, then throws in comments like this entirely out of left field.

    I sure wonder who you’re contrasting men to, Corman, in this situation.

    I’m going to take a wild guess and say that the people who instilled this worldview in you (while you earned what is almost certainly some kind of spongy-soft liberal arts degree absolutely brimming with unfalsifiable cat-lady drivel) are primarily white, western women. They lean on the genetic fallacy to argue “you’re only allowed to punch up” “you can’t comment when you’re more privileged” etc, but yet they have, across the board, the highest quality of life metrics in the *history of human beings on this planet*. By their own privilege/power structure rules, they should never be able to talk to anyone, yet nobody stops and listens less than they do. The loudest ones are those who are privileged enough to have parents to put them through a 6 figures degree with zero earning potential (eg. gender studies). Let that sink in.

    They try to compare their plight to black men, which is hilarious, because, again, white women in the West are literally the most privileged people who have ever walked the earth, while black men are on the opposite end of the totem pole.

    What part of men having no disadvantages would you like to discuss first? Particularly in the West.

    The fact that they are murdered more than women? Assaulted more? Commit suicide more? Suffer more from drug abuse? Suffer more from alcohol abuse? Are vastly more likely to be homeless? Vastly more likely to be incarcerated? That they receive over 50% longer sentences on average for the same crime as women do? That they die earlier? That they suffer more from basically all the leading causes of death? That they are less likely to be adopted? That they graduate from high school less? That they graduate from college less?

    I could go on and on.

    The truth is that every single one of these causes (and basically any other quality of life measurement you can imagine) favors women, and yet whenever public or private funding towards fixing these problems can be broken down by gender, there is vastly more funding going to the women’s side?

    But you know, I’m grateful for people like you. Social Justice Warriors like yourself do a great job of demolishing the popular feminist claim that they have nothing to do with man-hating.

    A real equality movement would have zero problem talking about the numerous very serious female issues while also acknowledging the male issues that I’ve pointed out. A true egalitarian sees no mutual exclusivity there.

    Only someone with an ideological axe to grind would pull out such an uninformed, completely unprompted outburst like yours, on a sports site of all places. And don’t you dare use that line about “these problems can only perpetuate under a patriarchy”, because posts like yours demonstrate exactly how much empathy SJWs have for men. If you guys were suddenly in charge, those problems wouldn’t go anywhere, because they’d be ignored, and we’d have a hell of a time trying to discuss them after you all repealed the first amendment due to all the offense that is causes.

    So thanks SJWs. Your own bile, hatred, and petty nonsense continues to destroy 3wf with each passing week. More and more women and men of all races and orientations continue to see through your nonsense every day.
    Keep bowing to the altar of Jezebel – the mother ship of the movement where they make jovial, gloating posts in response to studies of domestic abuse against males (google “Jezebel beat up boyfriend”) all the while pretending like you’ve been framed when someone accuses the movement of being corrupted.

    Feminism was great. Now it’s overrun by a bunch of bigots like Josh Corman, who would like to apologize for existing given his offensive chromosomal alignment.

    Egalitarianism is the future. Embrace it and stop being a bubble-thinker.



  11. Only complete dbags use "SJW" and expect to be taken seriously
    7:53 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    “Only someone with an ideological axe to grind”

    Clearly you would know.



  12. chris gettelfinger is not walking through that door
    8:09 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    So, Jim Harbaugh says football is the last bastion of toughness in young men, and that sniveling Bryant Gumbel says he can’t believe Harbaugh would say that in this day and time. And you, Josh, have the nerve to insinuate that there are not people out there trying to change the definition of a man? When some people are calling Bruce Jenner “she” and bludgeoning those who refuse to bow to political correctness?

    Oh, and by the way, can you actually make it in football if you don’t have some modicem of toughhness? Last I checked it was a pretty violent game. I can’t believe Gumbel actually was an NFL announcer. The world has gone absolutely mad.

    I’m done.



    • chris gettelfinger is not walking through that door
      8:12 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      BTW, I don’t mean to be ugly to anyone even if I believe their lifestyle to be wrong. However, I strongly resent being told I’m paranoid about something I know is going on.



    • Resenting Truth
      8:35 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      It isn’t so much that you’re paranoid….it’s that you think anyone cares about your opinion of thoselifestyle. Arrogant jackarse.



    • chris gettelfinger is not walking through that door
      8:51 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      So someone writing a “You should get on board with LGBTQRSTUV” post and you trying to bludgeon me into accepting this is not arrogant but me stating my opinion is. Got it!



    • SADmaninKY
      11:17 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      I will call old Bruce “she” when he changes all of his Y chromosomes (one in each cell in his body) to X chromosomes.



    • Brian
      11:49 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Hey Sadman, thanks for making the rest of our fanbase look bad. When you’re ready to stop living in the 1940’s, let us know.



  13. Annoyed UK Fan
    8:20 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    Get over your self & everyone else tossing the word bigot around,

    The fact that someone comes to a sports site for sports and gets annoyed when politics and social agendas are discussed does not make one a bigot. You have no idea what my opinions are on this matter. I do not come to this sit for politics or social agendas, plain and simple. If that offends you, perhaps you are the one that is bigoted – simply tossing the word out because you assume someone doesn’t agree with the topic, classifies you more than it does me. I never shared my opinion on issues of sexuality. I merely stated that I am annoyed by every sports outlet feeling they have to cram the agenda at everyone. If I wanted to discuss social issues or politics, I would do so on a news or political site. GASP!!! what a concept! I want to read about sports on a sports website!!! Cleary bigotry!!! Please tell us again how open minded and inclusive you are lol We are dying to hear how accepting of anyone you disagree with you are lol



    • Resenting Truth
      8:37 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Don’t like it? Fine, BYE!



    • SADmaninKY
      11:19 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Thank you, Annoyed!! Agree totally!



  14. Annoyed UK Fan
    8:43 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    Resenting truth,

    Beautiful answer! so open minded of you… Please tell me what OITNB has to do with UK sports before I go BYE BYE lol



  15. Fail
    8:54 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    Keep posting these, KSR, and hopefully the shitheads will find the door, and it will be a better place around here.

    One can only hope, anyway.



  16. Annoyed UK Fan
    8:59 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    Yeah KSR … keep posting non-relevant threads to a sports page so the rest of us sh*theads can find another website to read about UK sports! beautiful logic on display.



    • Fail!
      9:05 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Still here? When are you gong to leave? Shithead.

      Pro tip: scroll to the top of KSR. Under the KSR logo, and the title that reads “Kentucky Sports Radio”, you will see the site slogan. It reads as follows:

      “University of Kentucky Basketball, Football, and Recruiting news brought to you in the most ridiculous manner possible.”

      This site has done this before you, during your recent discovery of this site, and way after your crybaby ass decides to troll somewhere else.

      This site is wildly popular. You know it, and everyone else knows it. Deal with it. Quit being a hater.



    • SADmaninKY
      11:25 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Fail! Yes you did! You failed to put the emphasis in the right place: “University of Kentucky Basketball, Football, and Recruiting news……….” NOT “POLITICAL GARBAGE” “brought to you in the most ridiculous manner possible.” If I wanted that I would go to Ed Schultz’ website.



    • Fail!
      11:36 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Then you came to the wrong site. Off you go! The Herald-Leader covers UK.



    • SADmaninKY
      11:40 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Fail!ed again! LOL



    • Fail!
      11:42 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Why are you so SAD, man?



    • Fail!
      11:43 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Because you’re old? Or bald? Or is it because life has passed you by……..?



  17. CatManDo
    9:10 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    For those of you who CANNOT HANDLE the free content this site provides to you, I’ll give you this site.

    Have fun. We won’t miss you.

    http://www.allkyhoops.com/

    (Mr. Wireman runs a great site, BTW)



    • pfife
      11:36 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Is that you Matt?



  18. CatManDo
    9:11 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    Methinks you’ll still hang out here, though. 😉



  19. Annoyed UK Fan
    9:25 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    Fail,

    Just found the site? what?????? you are some kind of genius!

    Followed KSR since 2011 … You still can’t answer what this has to w UK sports. theres no ridiculous connection…

    Your commentary reeks UL fandom … if you can’t answer a question, call names, take your ball, and demand others leave or you are going home…



    • Fail!
      10:28 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

      Right. You can’t even find the ‘reply’ button.

      You’re adorable.



    • Annoyed UK fan
      1:24 am June 11, 2015 Permalink

      Fail, keep deflecting. It’s a beautiful tactic. I’m sure you would think I am adorable, which would most likely be why you are defending OITNB so passionately…



  20. pfife
    11:35 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    People justifying their own existence thinking they need popular acceptance? No wonder these insecure people commit suicide. Your fakes are obvious. I suggest cremation instead of polluting KY soil. Happy trails.



  21. catdaddyd
    11:41 pm June 10, 2015 Permalink

    I’ve watched the first two seasons, it’s OK, not great. It certainly isn’t Breaking Bad, that’s for sure.



  22. Shaun Steven
    7:30 am June 11, 2015 Permalink

    If you want to watch Orange is the new black online on Netflix, but you are outside USA, then you can access it by using with PureVPN.