Orange Is the New Black recap: Bad Habits

Sister Ingalls gets a heavenly spotlight, while a shocking act ramps up tension between Vee and Red
Ep. 11 | Aired Jun 6, 2014

Let's move on to something a little more uplifting. Just kidding! There's no such thing in this episode, which also finds Healy struggling to make himself feel useful by soliciting submissions to his desktop "feelings jar" and launching a new group therapy initiative called "Safe Space." All the self-help-book-gleaned jargon in the world can't convince any inmates besides Tiffany to actually show up for the thing -- until he decides to award any attendees by taking a shot off their record. Even after the bribery, Safe Space isn't quite as successful as he hoped it would be. Nobody's really honest about their feelings; when Poussey gets close to truth, she's frightened into silence by Suzanne, proving in one scene why everyone used to call her Crazy Eyes. (Suzanne, however, seems to have a surprisingly great time at Safe Space, probably because their activities seem to be mostly "creative play" theater games.)

And then, at the end of the episode, Healy's brought down even further when he has to deliver upsetting news to Piper: She's being transferred to Virginia. Whaaaa?! Healy says the decision was totally random, and that this sort of thing happens all the time -- but it's almost impossible that Piper's in-house visits from Andrew the Journalist don't have something to do with this. There's no way she's actually going to be moved south, right? I know I've talked a big game about how OITNB doesn't really need Piper, but at the same time, it's pretty tough to imagine how the show would work without her. Then again, season 2's gotten along pretty well with only occasional visits from Alex, so maybe Piper's absence wouldn't be insurmountable. Argh, I don't know how to feel! Quick, somebody hand me Healy's chart.

Oh, also in "Take a Break From Your Values"? One of the craziest things that's happened on Orange so far: Now that Red's been found out, she tells the Golden Girls that she wants to get out of the contraband game. But they've grown to love their time in the greenhouse -- so Taslitz, a.k.a. the white-haired one who isn't Jimmy, hatches a just-nuts-enough-that-it-might-work plan to murder Vee. The problem: Taslitz knows Vee only as "the one with the big hair" -- and thanks to a combination of Old Lady Eye and her, uh, less than practiced ability to tell black women apart, she ends up shivving the wrong person -- an inmate identified in the credits only as "Vee Doppelganger #1." Vee sees the whole thing go down; there can be no doubt in her mind as to whom she thinks is responsible. Considering this women can make even eating pudding look menacing, how much more dangerous will she get after learning that someone tried to kill her? Buckle your seatbelts: That ominous winter storm won't be the only earth-shattering event to hit Litchfield next episode.

The Commissary

- Speaking of Alex: Now that she and Piper are finally in contact again, she breaks the news that Kubra the drug lord lucked into a mistrial -- and that she's holed up in Brooklyn, unable to leave the state or truly flee from Kubra's flunkies. She also tells Piper that she's coming to Litchfield to tell her something important... though that visit is planned to happen at the same time as Piper's surprise transfer. These two, always passing in the night.

- How appropriate: The B Dorm bathroom is finally getting fixed just as the Vee/Red sh--storm is about to hit.

- Daya's horribly depressing final comic goes a little something like this:

Hawk: "I heard you're pregnant."
Horse: "Does everyone know?"
Hawk: "Pretty much. Do you have a man to help you?"
Horse: "I don't have anyone."
Horse [next panel]: "I must shoulder the burden alone."

- Also in the last edition of The Big House Bugle is this stirring anonymous poem, which I'm choosing to believe was written by Suzanne:

I am a poet
and this is my trip
down the staircase of a thousand [unintelligible]
to the foot of the BeBop Goddess
A Together we make music
to calm our souls
and fill the holes
of our solitary sadness
Behind Bars and in Stars

- I know I made a similar reference in the last recap, but: The guards have to be playing with Chekov's Riot Gear, right?

- Best micro moment of the episode: Suzanne calling Tiffany "Pennsabama." Actually, wait -- it's a tough call between that and Leanne becoming Edward Pizzahands.

- Red: "Don't you remember what happened to Tricia?" Cindy: "I remember the Alamo too, but that don't keep me from eating Mexican food."

- Nicky, after Cindy swiftly tells Red that Boo ratted her out to Vee: "That was a short mystery."

- Even people whose names rhyme with Larry are the worst: "Terry runs a bakery that sells anti-authoritarian cupcakes."

- Today in Larry: He and Polly have come clean to Pete; they're going to give their relationship a go. Good luck, you crazy kids -- and bon voyage!

- Fig, who manages to be even worse than Larry, is planning some sort of small prison benefit concert called Rock Against Rape. Or maybe Rape and Roll. Or Rape the Vote. Eh, all that really matters is that the word "rape" gets in there somehow, right?

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