Warning: Spoilers ahead for the first six episodes of “Orange Is The New Black” Season 2. Please stop reading now if you haven’t caught up to this point.
What’s going on
Valentine’s Day at Litchfield turns out to be Poussey’s standout episode.
All of the inmates are preparing for the V-day party, baking and the like, when the Spanish ladies decide to make Daya’s pregnancy benefit them. They convince Bennett to start smuggling things in, which he figures out are well hidden inside the shoe with his fake leg, and they threaten him they’ll squeal about the pregnancy if he fails to comply. The scenes where Bennett and his baby momma pretend to be a “normal” couple are beyond adorable and make you wonder what life for them will be like once the baby is born. There’s nothing more romantic than manipulation combined with the continuation of Nicky and Big Boo’s “bang-off.” Sadly, neither prevails and the two decide to call the game when they tie at 36.
Adding to the super loving things going on at Litchfield is Vee, who convinces Taystee to leave her cushy job in the library, where she loves working with her best friend Poussey, and switch to custodial, which is a lot more work. Poussey finds it in herself to confront Vee about her manipulation of Taystee. Surprisingly Poussey standing up for herself motivates her bestie to do the same, and she gives Vee a piece of her mind about her new position. Finally Vee reveals her master plan: She will be receiving contraband through the maintenance department, and one of the most important and lucrative products she will be getting is tobacco. Cha-ching!
We can say one thing for sure about this episode, we didn’t expect Poussey’s backstory to include anything like what’s revelaed. While growing up moving from military base to military base, she falls in love with a senior officer’s daughter in Germany. Things quickly go south for the steamy couple when the girl’s father catches them together and transfers Poussey’s father back to a base on U.S. soil. We get to see a glimpse of Poussey’s temper too, when she almost pulls a gun on her girlfriend’s father, before she is stopped by her own.
Larry visits Piper, but it is selfishly motivated. He wants her to be his eyes and ears on the financial corruption going on at Litchfield. After initially declining the offer, Piper gets curious herself and starts asking questions about a new gym and the like for which money was allocated but not used. Piper surprisingly is quick on her feet when Healy questions her about her curiosity and tells him she is starting a prison newsletter. He gives her permission to do the project, partly because he had just overheard Brook So So tell a new inmate no one likes Healy.
Meanwhile Caputo asks cute guard Fischer to come see Sideboob play and she plays coy — we can’t judge her yet, she hasn’t actually seen Sideboob and has no idea what she is in for.
Red and the Golden Girls start sprucing up the green house, which we find out Red has created a tunnel where her son can smuggle things in for her to try to win back the other inmates’ love. Sadly one of the oldies but goodies can’t stop wandering around looking for some guy named Jack.
Larry, mad at Piper for not initially going with his prison mole idea, goes to visit her best friend Polly, and the two kiss. Hmmm. Is it wrong? Do we like it? Well, we don’t even really have time to wrap our heads around it because Polly’s absentee husband interrupts their lovefest.
Bennett and Daya sneak away during the party to go have sex and the Golden Girl looking for Jack sneaks away and somehow ends up at the Sideboob show. Speaking of which, Caputo gets super depressed when Fischer, not realizing his invitation was a date and he had made special arrangements for her to get the night covered, shows up with a hodgepodge of Litchfield co-workers who are there ready and willing to make fun of Caputo.
At the show, Pennsatucky and Healy share a moment where they bond over their lack of friends.
Two Valentine’s Day cards have a strong significance. The first, being a card from Alex Piper receives and throws away before opening. Then Daya gets a card from who she thinks is her lover Bennett at first, but both are disappointed to find out it is really from Mendez, a.k.a. Pornstache, who we have yet to see in the flesh in Season 2.
Fischer: “It must be hard, being locked up on Valentine’s Day. That’s all.”
Suzanne: “This year I’m loving someone that deserves me. Me.”
Piper: “You’re the moon, Larry, you’ve got to stop being the moon. It doesn’t have its own light.”
Larry: “That makes you the sun? You’re the center of the solar system and I’m just the dead hunk of crap rock? At least people can walk on the moon. Anyone gets near the sun, they burn right up.”
Joel: “You look like the gay Edge.”
Piper: “It’s like coming home after a long trip. That’s what love is like. It’s like coming home.”
“Valentine,” Jessie Ware & Sampha: End credits
“Hey There Delilah,” Plain White T’s: Flashback Poussey hangs out with her friends in a German military recreation room.
“Heartbroke and Busted,” The Crossroads Band: The inmates line dance at the Valentine’s Day party.
“Daytime aka There Goes The Night,” The Stereo System: Poussey and her girlfriend get intimate.