Hello and welcome to the sixth recap of the second season of Orange is The New Black, a show about this girl Poussey we all have crushes on. Once again you might notice that I am not, in fact, your style icon Kate Severance, because she’s had to hang up her hat this season due to a brutal work schedule. We’ll have a variety of recappers filling in over the next few weeks, but this episode is mine all mine.
It’s Valentine’s Day Week! We open on the set of Jenny Schecter’s Senior Film Project, “What Is Love?”, starring The Girls of Litchfield, who are taking turns telling the camera what they think love is, unfortunately not to the tune of the ’90s classic “What Is Love?” by Haddaway.
First up is Aleida, who, by the way, looks obnoxiously hot in a grey t-shirt with her sleeves rolled up, and she says love is like a tight/floaty stomach sensation followed by painful smiling, which coincidentally is the same effect procured by the Proud Whopper.
Aleida: Also, fucking. Twenty-four seven, deep-dick, can’t-walk-right fucking.
Sister Ingalls says “love is light,” which is also how intergalactic space diva Haviland Stillwell signs her emails. Sophia says love is horrible pain “that you want again and again.” Morello has “so much to say about love.” Oh girl.
In the kitchen, the girls are discussing sunshine, flowers and love. Just kidding about the sunshine and flowers. Maritza says boys love Valentine’s Day and private jets, Aleida says Sophia Vergara’s tits are real, Flaca says her boyfriend can’t come visit ’cause it’s too cold to drive a Vespa to prison, Maria says her boyfriend stole her flowers from a funeral, Gloria says Valentine’s Day was invented to make single people feel like shit, and Blanca says each couple is perfect in its own way. There you have it.
Daya wants Bennett to play the “pretend we’re a normal couple” game and talk about their imaginary plan for Valentine’s Day, which’s hard for Bennett because he’s a tool. They’ve barely gotten into discussing the slut-factor of her dress for their date to A Romantic Italian Restaurant when Aleida interrupts to give him a list of shit he needs to smuggle in for Daya.
In the bathrooms, the girls are lathering up for their 30-second showers and Vee is guilt-tripping Taystee into giving up her #1 Job in the Library with Poussey in favor of custodial by reminding her of when Vee saved Taystee from a shitty foster Dad by giving her a home and then getting her arrested. This is the case of a rock taking advantage of a hard place. Vee is a real winner, you guys.
Jimmy shows up looking for Jack because he’s gonna bring her chocolates this year for Valentine’s Day. This woman, y’all.
Poussey says love is just “chilling, you know? Kicking it with somebody, talking, making mad stupid jokes, and like, not even wanting to go to sleep, ’cause then you might be without ’em for a minute. And you don’t want that.”
Cut to Flashbackland, Germany, at the army base where Poussey’s family is stationed and everybody is very Nordic and Poussey is winning the joint-rolling contest while wearing a denim vest and 3/4-sleeve baseball shirt. In other words, she is my queen.
Also, she’s dating a lady who I decided to name Doris until I looked it up on imdb and learned that her name is not Doris or Tina Kennard but, rather, Franziska.
Poussey: I am untouchable.
Franziska: I think you are very touchable.
This stupid white guy wants to watch them hook up and won’t speak German because he’s a stupid white guy. Poussey knows German because she’s planning on sticking around for a while — her Pops promised her this’ll be the last base they live on after a lifetime of base-hopping. This means something will obviously go terribly wrong.
In the meantime, girls are kissing on the television and one of them is Poussey!
Back in Litchfield, Watson isn’t enjoying her first day of custodial and everybody has feelings about Valentine’s Day.
Suzanne is speaking to a mop in the British accent and announces that this year she’s “loving someone who deserves me. Me.”
Then Black Cindy and Big Boo show up! Big Boo tells Watson she’s gonna put the “V” in her Valentine, because Big Boo is gross and needs to learn how to admire Watson from afar, like I do.
Meanwhile in the Visitor’s Lounge of Love and Lays, a giant can of pork & beans has arrived to have a conversation with Piper Chapman.
She wants to talk about doing a strip-tease to The Brady Bunch’s “rousing rendition” of “Sunshine Day” as they apparently have done on prior Valentine’s Days, but Larry isn’t having it. Nor is he interested in hearing about how she wants to “go home” when she’s free. Instead, he wants to talk about how all her shit is at his apartment.
In fact, Larry’s also on a journalistic mission — now that a reporter from The Post has contacted him to see if he can secure the inside scoop on the sketchy financial dealings of Litchfield, he’s decided to steal the pitch for himself and wants Piper’s help. Piper’s not into it and thinks Larry should maybe stop being the moon and instead be his very own shining star.
Larry thinks Piper is like the sun who burns everybody up. I want Larry to be like Pluto and become the farthest character away from the rest of the galaxy.
Meanwhile in the Greenhouse, Red’s recruited her son Vasiliy to build an underground tunnel while she yells at him about how to treat a lady.
Over in electrical, Piper’s exerting her rage on a fuse box and Nicky is serving her duty as comic relief.
Piper: When you get out of here, what do you imagine yourself going home to?
Nicky: Fiona Apple in the Criminal video.
Piper’s thinking she might wanna re-evaluate her prior plan for home, seeing as there’s not much to come home to anymore.
Piper: I lost my manipulative, gorgeous, psychopath ex and my sweet, kind, unfocused fiancé. I don’t have a home anymore.
Nicky: Yeah Chapman, you do. This shit pile. Home sweet home.
The wires explode and Nicky says Larry’s on the right track with this story — nobody’s spending money in these parts, and there may not be a lot of money, but I mean, there has to be SOME money, somewhere, for something. Right? The hamster wheel in Piper’s brain starts turning…
We then traverse to another room in this fine institution, where Fischer has summoned Caputo to tell him that she’s been on the wire listening to the inmate’s phone conversations and that this shit is “amazing” and “like reading Dickens.”
Fischer gives Caputo props for standing up to Fig’s demand for a Shot Quota. Caputo asks how her boyfriend is and she says they broke up ’cause he wore a lot of vests. I think we’re all familiar with where this story is headed.
Caputo invites her to the next Side Boob gig. “I love music!” she says. It would’ve been so much cooler if she’d said “I love sideboob!”
Back to Love, Lies and Videotape — Leanne had a thing with her boss at Long John Silver’s and then she found out that his wife was wicked hot, “so that was nice.” So basically love is a bunch of lesbian hushpuppies, according to Leanne.
In Tastyee Poussey’s Library of Love, Poussey and Taystee’s jovial reading of Alice in Wonderland is interrupted by Maxwell telling Taystee it’s time to leave the library for her new job in custodial.
It’s clear this is the first Poussey’s heard about this, and quickly her face falls like a little lesbian flower. Why would Taystee leave the enchanting forest of literature for the murky swamp of mopping? WHY GODDESS WHY?
Taystee explains that Vee’s got a little “something” in the works and that’s why she’s gotta switch to custodial. This is probably like at Socialist Jewish Youth Camp when all the cool kids picked custodial as their work assignment so they could smoke pot in the bathrooms and fuck around by the dumpsters. I picked painting, by the way. We made a mural. It was really pretty. Where was I? Oh yes, in this sad world where Taystee and Poussey won’t be knocking boots in the stacks anymore. Also, Taystee says she “owes” Vee and that Poussey wouldn’t understand what that’s like — basically, she’s drawing a line in the sand between what she perceives as Poussey’s privileged upbringing and her own, in which riskier choices had to be made and loyalty holds unusual power.
“She could probably get you transferred I bet,” Taystee offers.
“Nah,” Poussey replies. “No. I know when I got it good.”
Flashbackland: Scissortown, FullBoobsville, Germany. We’ve got two naked ladies rubbing their vaginas against one another on a bed and one of them is Poussey, so basically this moment should bring you back to about three PM on June 6th when you had to change your underwear.
Poussey and Franziska are straining to make the legendary sex position work to no avail — a leg cramps, a thing feels good and then it doesn’t and then they laugh. “I told you scissoring wasn’t a thing,” Poussey resigns as they both grin, flopping into bed beside each other like two girls in love.
Poussey tells Franziska that she likes the saying, “Love is not about staring at each other, but staring off in the same direction.” But Franziska says she likes staring at Poussey too much to like that saying, a feeling to which all of us at home can relate.
Franziska is thirsty so Poussey produces a magical glass of water and tips it into her mouth, letting a lot drip onto Franziska’s body, providing a slippery trail Poussey traces with her mouth all the way down between Franziska’s thighs.
…BUT THEN WHO SHOULD WALK IN BUT…
Oh whoops sorry, wrong “parent walks in on their child they didn’t know was gay having sex with a lady” scene. HERE:
It’s Franziska’s father!
We return to Litchfield, where brave Bennett is nervously smuggling in Daya’s important pregnancy vitamins.
In the kitchen, the girls prepare heart-shaped sugar cookies with frosting and Maritza’s are really truly awful. “You’re lucky you’re pretty,” Maria says, ’cause she tells it like it is. “You know that, right?”
Bennet shows up with the goodies but Daya doesn’t wanna play the normal game anymore ’cause she’s depressed about how they’re never gonna be normal. Good observation.
Elsewhere in the Hallowed Halls of Litchfield, Healy overhears Soso telling a new inmate who’s been assigned Healy as her counselor that none of the girls really like him, so he might not be the best shoulder to cry on, but if she’s tough, she’ll be fine.
Healy feels sad.
Piper’s snooping, yeah she’s snooping. She’s doin’ work — fixing shit, wires are involved, tools have been extracted — but she’s also snooping. She’s snooping for the scoop with 20 questions for Luscheck.
Like — have you noticed all these fuses blowing? Luschek has, yes, is she just now noticing that the place is falling apart? What happened to the electrical budget, Piper wants to know! We upgraded a thing, says Luschek! Did you though? Asks Piper. Obviously not, he implies. This place is fucked up, she says. You don’t want to know the half of it, he tells her. DUM DUM DUM.
Cut to a rousing session of Yoga with Yoga Jones. Today’s session will be rudely accompanied by unwanted molestation from our resident lesbian, Big Boo!
It will also entail a visit from Red and her magical caravan of treats — sunflower seeds for Boo, eyeshadow for Anita, tea for Yoga Jones.
Yoga Jones: “Well look who’s back.”
Red tells everybody to continue being a dolphin. Good call.
Back in White Girl Row, Nicky’s congratulating herself on bagging a four-pointer when Red shows up to tell everybody that they have to forgive each other and be her friend. She even brought presents for everybody to convince them that it’s Friendship Super Time!
Nicky says you can’t buy their love, but Red is in a HOT PANIC about how they need to band together now because otherwise Vee is going to destroy everything and everybody forever. This feels accurate.
Over in commissary, Maxwell’s threatening to vote libertarian because they can’t stock cigarettes anymore what kind of fresh hell is this!?!?! Then Poussey drops by to ask Vee if they can step outside for a little one-on-one.
Vee obliges and the two relocate.
Vee: Lemme guess, “Yo, Vee I’m just so mad since y’all got Taystee transferred to custodial. Just left me in the library with my titties in my hand.” Close?
Poussey: No, you left out, “If you get her in trouble, I’ll kill you.”
Vee challenges Poussey like it’s all just posturing — how are you gonna kill me? Poussey doesn’t know. Poussey would figure it out. Vee’s not scared.
Poussey: I know she thinks she owes you, but from what I heard, you’re just a bully who uses lost kids for her own shit and then dumps them soon as the heat comes down. You’re a fucking vampire!
Vee: There was this kid growing up. His name was Haro Jones. He had these arms. I just wanted to lick the length of his arms. And then one day I walked into the park, found his hand up Jamela Larkin’s skirt. Broke my poor fool heart.
Poussey doesn’t give a fuck about Vee’s little stories, but you get the point, yeah? We all know where this story is going, don’t we? To that point that so many lesbians have had thrust in their face by people who are mean like Vee and people who aren’t mean but think they’re doing you a favor you can’t already do yourself.
Vee: “Taystee. Will never. Love. You. She will never love you. Not the way you want.”
Poussey laughs. She’s heard this one before.
Poussey: “Yo I don’t want her like that. I’m just looking out for her, that’s all.”
Of course Poussey does, in fact, want her like that, but that’s not what this is about, is it? Whether or not Taystee can ever love Poussey back “the way she wants” is irrelevant — Poussey loves her, and wants to keep her safe.