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S02.E12: It Was The Change


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I REALLY wish Boo had explained to Pennsatucky what the "Initiation" into the agenda was.  That was a priceless conversation.  Really the only thing I've liked that Boo was involved in. 

 

What did the 2 meth gerbils eat that had them so wasted? I think I missed that part. 

 

I knew Vee wasn't going for an actual truce.  I'd like to see her die painfully and spectacularly at the hands of Red.

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Big Boo and Pennsatucky talking about the  gay agenda.   I have been waiting my whole life for that.

That was too funny. Boo's quietly amused expression was spot-on, and Pennsatucky's misguided earnestness was actually pretty endearing. She's growing on me, even though her views are a little wonky and she's more impressionable than a memory foam bed.

I loved the sing-along. I'm such a sucker for sing-alongs. I know they're the spray cheese of TV, but I'm a big cheap cheeseball anyway.

This episode finally solidified my hate for Vee. I already hated her 99%, but I was holding out that extra 1% thinking she might redeem herself someway. Sleeping with RJ, someone she treated like a son, and then immediately sending him out to his death? Disgusting. She is an absolutely disgusting, evil person. Why couldn't she just be the sweet lady baking bread for Taystee and nothing more beyond that?

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I'm no huge fan of Daya but I loved that while she had her panic attack, the unnamed older man guard (who is new this season?) knew how to help her - even if it was unconventional. .

 

I love Red, but she honestly is as stupid as hell. This woman has proven time and time again that she can't be trusted. She's had her people beat the shit out of Red. And yet Red still believes her. I suppose this is to really highlight the differences between Vee and Red as leaders of their respective "families."  I suppose it also shows that Red really isn't as badass as she wants us to believe. 

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Red isn't stupid so much as she's not a sociopath. That's how I take it. She can be tough and commands respect but she can make the conscious choice not to lose herself in the prison mindset whereas Vee, Sociopathic Master Manipulator, was born with (arguably) a perfect mindset for prison. Vee is definitely the type that belongs somewhere other than a minimum security prison. She always struck me as more of a Supermax kind of lady.

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(edited)

They were eating nutmeg

I kept waiting for one of them to choke on it, and then have no water available.

 

Piper using her leverage with Kaputo to get herself out of the transfer to VA, but not bringing up Ruiz as well? Now I'm starting to understand why some viewers dislike her so much.

Edited by Cranberry
Added spoiler tags for information from episode 13.
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Red isn't stupid so much as she's not a sociopath. That's how I take it. She can be tough and commands respect but she can make the conscious choice not to lose herself in the prison mindset whereas Vee, Sociopathic Master Manipulator, was born with (arguably) a perfect mindset for prison.

 

I get that, but Red more than once has started something with Vee.  She started something she wasn't able to finish. That's more my point. And if you do start something you can't finish, you watch your back at all times. You don't just trust that the person who has more than once bested you isn't going to come after you again after you tried to kill her with saran wrap. 

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Red is an old school gangster, where you can nod at a respected enemy and walk away after an assassination attempt, but a new model prisoner who cares for her charges. 

Vee is a new school gangster who will eliminate her own for profit, but an old school prisoner who, well, will eliminate her own for profit. 

 

And here I thought there was going to be some profound pithiness when I started that. 

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(edited)

So much going on this episode, and so much of it upsetting that Soso getting most of the inmates to sing Lisa Loeb was like a balm for my soul. 

Edited by Kristen
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This episode reminded me of a bit of wisdom imparted in the Weeds pilot: "Don't miss the bear!"  I don't know why that always stuck with me years later, but I still remember Nancy Botwin's sons riffing about that lesson from the hunting programs they watched, and when Red went after Vee I just kept thinking "Don't miss the bear!"  And of course she did.  But of course they want to save her for the final round.  I would have been pretty flabbergasted if they dusted Vee in the penultimate episode of the season.

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(edited)

When Brook suggested a singalong, I rolled my eyes but it ended up being hilarious. Bitch and then Stay? She won some points with me for her song choices because I was cracking up.

 

I also LOVED the Healy/Pennsatucky conversation about the gay agenda and then the ensuing Pennsatucky/Boo talk about it. It reminded me of Dwight K. Schrute every time he discussed Oscar being gay ("Do you think his roommate knows?"). I will say that Pennsatucky seemed much more open to discussing this with Boo now. If this had happened in S1, she would have just condemned Boo for her sinful choice and told her she was going to hell. That's definitely some character growth from Pennsatucky, but I really can't blame Boo for totally fucking with her the way that she did.  Hilarious!

 

I agree that Red is more old school. She comes from a culture where your word and your handshake mean something. If you agree to a truce, you call off the dogs. Vee, however, comes from a world where you lie and do whatever is necessary so you can live another day and then take out your enemy. I knew during the scene out in the rain that Red didn't have it in her to kill someone with her bare hands and that Vee was just biding her time so she could regroup and attack.

 

I found it totally hypocritical that Vee criticized Red for having her underlings stab someone considering that until now, Vee has done the same thing. She had her people beat up Red years ago and she had Suzanne beat up Poussey in the bathroom.

 

I was really afraid that Taystee would work herself up into such a frenzy that she would kill Poussey in the library. It's sad to see how she has fallen right into Vee's trap, blaming Poussey for ruining her life. Really? Your whole life, Taystee? Because Poussey is the one who got you into prison too, right? Just as sad is that when Poussey told her that Vee isn't a good person, Taystee admitted that she doesn't care. Yikes.

 

Vee is a bully, plain and simple. She is like any other bitchy middle school queen bee, deciding who is accepted and who to ostracize.

 

I wasn't at all surprised that she hooked up with her foster son and then had him murdered. And she didn't even have the balls to admit to Taystee what she did. She lied right to her face about someone that Taystee loved. Vee just gets more despicable as the season goes on.

 

Ha, I loved when Piper got caught coming out of Fig's office with those files. Luckily, Caputo seems like he's open to hearing the dirt on Fig. Interesting that we learned she started out as the warden's secretary. Her husband is a complete idiot for kissing the campaign assistant kid at the party. Even if his wife hadn't seen, there were a lot of people at that party who could have seen the same thing. If he's dumb enough to do that, he's going to get caught doing something eventually, whether it's with this guy or something completely unrelated.

 

So now that Caputo is pissed at Fig and Piper is going to hand him dirt on her, and Fig is pissed at her husband about his gay infidelity, who is going to burn whom first? Her husband is a piece of work too. He was totally dismissive of the fact that he had her embezzling money from the prison to fund his campaign. Heh, I guess that means he was born to be a politician.

 

I didn't like the ultimatum that Daya gave Bennett. Why are the only two choices for him to turn himself/go to prison or walk away from her and their kid? It's not that simple, no matter how much she wants it to be. And has she even considered the fact that prison guards don't fare well in prison? And that's before you remember that Bennett is a pretty small guy. She thinks he will just do his sentence and be out in a few years but chances are pretty good that he could not come out at all. I thought that the beginning of their conversation was promising because yes, they both made some choices that led to this. But then it devolved into Daya trying to make it into choose A or B.

 

Watching Piper and Nicky wading through that water was disgusting (and probably really dangerous). But when the lights out and the electrical guy cheerfully suggested a threesome, I laughed.

Edited by ElectricBoogaloo
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DAMMIT VEE. That was the sudden violence from her I've been expecting since the beginning. And to think I thought it might be OK once she and Red declared their truce. toddthomas upthread was dead-on: Red is from the world where a handshake means something, Vee is from the world where you claw your way up, loyalty and honor be damned.

 

If Poussey and Taystee come out of this friends again and both OK I will be so happy. Not sure it'll happen, but it looks like at least there's a chance.

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That Poussey/Taystee scene in the library was so heartbreaking. Both Samira and Danielle seriously brought it this season. Did anyone know what Taystee meant when she said "you said plenty of words" re Poussey's feelings for her? I only remember one scene about it this season. 

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(edited)

 

Vee is a bully, plain and simple.

I think she's worse than that, a psychopath. I don't think she's ever had real feelings for anyone but herself. She manipulates and uses people, that's all she's able to do. 

 

When Taystee said to Poussey that Vee was the only one who have taken care of her I wanted to yell at her. Poussey has risked her life trying to protect her. She's been fighting for her even when Taystee didn't deserve it. I'm glad Taystee realized that at the end. 

 

I hated Pennsatucky so much last season but this year I'm enjoying all her scenes. The bit with the gay agenda was one of the funniest moments of this season. 

Edited by Helena Dax
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Rewatched this episode last night, and a couple of things really stuck with me.

 

What was the point of Vee seducing TJ before sending him to his death? Seems she could have manipulated him without sex. Was she just scratching an itch? I just don't get where her mind was at there.... We've established that she's a sociopath/psychopath, but going to bed with someone you viewed as your child and who viewed you as a parent is a whole level of creepy. I really wish I knew what they were trying to accomplish there, because it seems to be such a twisted way to get TJ to be in the park to be intercepted by Officer On-the-Take.

 

Second, after Red released her grip on Vee, and said that this place was getting to her, Vee said something along the line of, "I'll say. You just tried to kill me so you can sell mascara in prison". It was the most self aware statement of how crazy they both were. Made me wonder, is self awareness a trait of someone as crazy as Vee? Because thinking about that line and the end of the episode made her even more evil, in my eyes.

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I loved this episode -- so many events snowballing into one another, and yet all of them true to character.

 

Vee shocked and scared me -- the woman is ice-cold. I knew Red was in trouble even after their 'truce,' but the flashback to Vee sleeping with RJ and then coldly having him killed was pretty scary, and so sad.  However, I did think it was cool that this show is so equal-opportunity about the nude scenes for its characters. I really find it refreshing to see old bodies, young bodies, men and women, etc., on this show. It lends the show its cinema verite feel but also a warmth and humanity -- and kudos for Lorraine Toussant for letting it all hang out, too. 

 

I was really expecting the nutmeg high to go horribly wrong, as nutmeg in high enough doses can also be a poison. But they seemed to come through okay.

 

Lastly, I can't believe I'm saying this, as I hated the character and actress last season -- but I find Pennsatucky absolutely adorable this season. If this is her growth after the shrill constant proselytizing last season, I'm all for it. She is so much nicer now that she's had to get a taste of life as a lonely peon, evicted from her role as a tiny dictator. The conversation with Boo was one of the funniest yet sweetest moments of the episode. 

 

Speaking of which, Soso has grown on me too. Anyone who can start up a prison singalong to "Bitch" and "Stay" is fabulous. I laughed out loud.

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After this episode I had to read a recap of the finale just so I could watch it. It was TOUGH. And Vee is totally a psycho. I knew she had RJ killed the second she heard about his name on the list. I'm SO GLAD Taystee is OK.

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Love Red vs. Vee.  Two great actresses.     Vee is despicable and I don't know if she'll make it through to next season but I'll miss the actress if she's only a 1 season character.  I love watching her. 

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I think she had sex with RJ before she had him killed because, well, she COULD. no other explanation needed for me. She was shown earlier feeling a bit uncomfortable with her impending menopause, and RJ had mentioned finding her hot, so she went for it and had a good old time before sending him off.

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What was the point of Vee seducing TJ before sending him to his death? Seems she could have manipulated him without sex. Was she just scratching an itch?

 

 

Vee is a Narcissist and a Psychopath.  Her reasoning is far more complicated then just scratching an itch.  TJ was pulling away from her; striking out on his own and and seducing him got his defenses down so that she could kill him.  That at least is part of it.  There is also ego involved and a whole lot of other things that take way to long to write and i am lazy.  

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This episode certainly puts the kibosh on my observation that Vee's afraid to get her hands dirty.  

 

Hopefully someone will stop the holodeck "women's prison" program before Captain Janeway gets seriously hurt.

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We've established that she's a sociopath/psychopath, but going to bed with someone you viewed as your child and who viewed you as a parent is a whole level of creepy.

I took it as confirmation that Vee did NOT see him as "her child" -- or see anyone else that way. People have value to Vee only to the extent that she can use them. If she has no further use for you, well...

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I think it was a combination of things. First, it showed that despite what she told him and Taystee about how she was their mama, those were just words to manipulate them into doing what she wanted. She didn't actually see them as her children but as employees who should obey her. Secondly, seducing him was her way of reasserting her dominance and showing that she could still get him to do what she wanted (first for him to sleep with her and then for him to obediently go fetch the popsicles she said she wanted). It was also a way of distracting him so that he wouldn't question why she was sending him out.

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I find it interesting how Fig acts like she is VP of the United States when she is just an assistant warden in a women's prison. And all of these government employees have union representation so her constant threats against their employment is just bull. And yes she looks awful with her hair up. They are making her way too much of a villain, just so we can root for her downfall.

 

Vee is really an evil, evil woman. She doesn't care about anyone and I feel sorry for Suzanne when she finds out exactly who and what Vee is. I really like Red and I was almost wishing she would go through with killing Vee.

 

I still cannot stand Daya. She has the personality of a dishrag and is not all that attractive either. What does she want Bennett to do? Would she really be happy with him in prison with her baby having neither parent to take care of him/her. I understand what Bennett did was wrong, but Daya was part of it too. I just find it hard to believe two Co's would fall for her.

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I find it interesting how Fig acts like she is VP of the United States when she is just an assistant warden in a women's prison. And all of these government employees have union representation so her constant threats against their employment is just bull. And yes she looks awful with her hair up. They are making her way too much of a villain, just so we can root for her downfall.

 

I think they are almost going for comedy with how over the top powerful Fig acts. Especially with how big a deal she makes about her husband's political ambitions. I mean he is running for state senate right? And he hasn't even won yet. The plot line really reminds me of Angela from the Office who was also married to a state senator and also thought it was a way bigger deal than it was. Her husband was also secretly gay.

 

What does she want Bennett to do? Would she really be happy with him in prison with her baby having neither parent to take care of him/her.

 

 

To be fair right now neither of the baby's bio parents can take care of him either because it is not like Bennett can really show that the kid is his.

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I think they are almost going for comedy with how over the top powerful Fig acts. 

Absolutely . . . and it's funny because it's true, right? Haven't we all known people like that?  I'm often reminded of that line from The Office (U.S.), spoken by Jim about Dwight: "Wow. That is the least amount of power I have ever seen go to someone's head." 

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To me what's fascinating about Vee is that Toussant doesn't play her from moment to moment as an ice-cold bitch. It's the charm and warmth that get me. For instance, in so many scenes with Red, she has seemed to be a real person -- warm, laughing, genuinely connecting with Red even while acknowledging that they are enemies. 

 

That warmth and charm feels unforced so I kept wondering in this episode what Vee's actual feelings for Red were. Was she regretful about the violence? Did she really feel that camaraderie with Red but feel that she had to resort to violence because it was expected of her?  Or is she simply a psycho?

 

I think Vee's a sociopath but it's just interesting to me that she's not remote or aloof -- in most scenes she has seemed very present, often warm and approachable. It's a new take on this kind of character and I find it really fascinating and effective. And scary.

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Yeah, I wonder about that too. She also seemed warm in the dinner scene with Taystee and RJ, and was laughing when the girls were playing the game this episode-i think it was "fuck, marry, kill". Were those real moments or all an act? Definitely a testament to Lorraine Toussaints acting

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Nutmet causes hallucinations in high dosages.

and it can also kill you if you eat too much

With Red and Vee......wow Red is just stupid. I feel for her but really, should be obvious Vee is not backing down. Its going to have to be poussey and Tastyee that take her down now. It actually made me think of Breaking Bad and the "Half Measures" episode.

So looks like Piper has an ally now in bring down Fig.

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(edited)

Vee is a sociopath, that is part of the game, manipulating others for your own gain with no regard for how it hurts others.

sociopaths are often very charming and endearing, superficially. Its how they get people to their side. But its all an act. Its classic sociopath behavior. They don't truly care

Edited by DrSpaceman
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This episode reminded me of a bit of wisdom imparted in the Weeds pilot: "Don't miss the bear!"  I don't know why that always stuck with me years later, but I still remember Nancy Botwin's sons riffing about that lesson from the hunting programs they watched, and when Red went after Vee I just kept thinking "Don't miss the bear!"  And of course she did.  But of course they want to save her for the final round.  I would have been pretty flabbergasted if they dusted Vee in the penultimate episode of the season.

I didn't watch Weeds, but that line made me think about what Omar Little said to Wee-Bey on The Wire. "When you come at the king, you best not miss."

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I haven't liked Vee all season, at all, and this episode only reinforced my dislike. Jesus, are there any redeeming qualities in that woman?  At first I was expecting it to be Suzanne with the sock of change, because she's been the one doing all the dirty work for Vee so far, so that surprised me.

 

Pennsatucky and Healy's relationship is sort of endearing, I've always thought Tucky was hysterical and I like her even better this season. Same goes for Soso, I love her and want to see where her story goes next season.

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I agree Vee's seeming warmth is part of her socipathic nature.  And I love that Toussaint is playing it with just the right amount of nuance and restraint so that it doesn't come off as over the top.  Vee is a villain.  Her actions portray her as such.  Toussaint isn't twirling her mustache or chewing scenery to get the point across. Instead, she's portraying Vee very warm and maternal yet allows her ruthlessness and coldness to undercut it.  As much as I despise the Vee character, I am loving watching Toussaint portray her because it is a joy to watch an actor play a charismatic villain without making it too broad.

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(edited)
What was the point of Vee seducing TJ before sending him to his death?​

I thought she was looking at his phone after he left, and saw something that made her decide to kill him.  But now I realize that it was probably her phone, and she was texting the cop.  So, no idea!

 

I think she had sex with RJ before she had him killed because, well, she COULD.

Although, there is that... :-)

 

is self awareness a trait of someone as crazy as Vee?

I saw it more as the ability of a socio- or psychopath to read people very well, rather than Vee really being self aware; she figured that Red would respond to that sort of comment and go along with the "truce."  And she was right.  Charming sociopath for sure.

 

I don't really understand the Daya/ Bennett situation.  Or, I guess, I don't have any idea what they're going to do.  Daya is a ward of the state, as is her mom.  Unless she has some other relative on the outside that can take the baby, it'll go in to the system, right?  Unless some kin of Mendez shows up to claim it?  I just don't know what they think the plan is here.  As mentioned above, Bennett going to jail for a few years is not really a great option, and there's no guarantee either he or Daya will be able to get custody when they're free.  It's all confusing, and I cannot figure out what the plan is here, either Daya/Bennett's plan, or the show's plan.  

 

Agree with all about Pennsatucky & Boo.  I hate Boo, but that conversation was hilarious.  

Edited by Turtle
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Couldn't Daya designate her mom's boyfriend for custody but have it worked out that Bennett would take the baby off his hands and care for it round the clock, hiring day-care?

And I have a prediction for next season!

Are there rules about posting predictions, I assume?

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I thought the RJ and Vee scene at the beginning was her trying to get him to own up to screwing her over, wanting to hear why her "son" had betrayed her... Once she didn't like the answer she stopped seeing him as her "son" which is why she allowed herself to have sex with him--a way to make him think things were cool while she plotted out her next move--the cop may have already been in place but was waiting on Vee's say so. She very much uses people by giving them what they think they want which then leads them open to her doing what she wants to them and this was always her MO.

It's very classical narcissism and psychotic at the same time.     

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Vee is not psychotic--that would involve hallucinations, delusions etc, none of that here. I read recently that Jenji told Toussant that her character was to be a sociopath...but didn't let her know until the first day of filming! How's that for amazing acting?

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Are there any redeeming qualities in that woman?

 

I guess you could say she makes good bread.  But as a person?  Nope, nada, not at all.  Truly evil.

 

Also, agreed that Daya is just ridiculous in what she expects Bennett to do.  I thought that Daya's grandmother was taking care of the other children, so would take the baby, at least at first.

 

The sing a long was great, as well as Tucky' and Boo's conversation.  Great comic relief to balance out the drama with Vee. 

 

I can't believe Red would believe Vee after what happened to her before.  But I'm not sure Red could have ultimately killed Vee either, I think Vee just wanted to have a better time to get back at Red, i.e. when no one else was around, and Vee could come up with an alibi.  Right now, if she attacked Red, even in self-defense, she'd get put in Shu (like Piper and Tucky did), so she 'gave up', offered a fake truce, then when she could do in anonymity, slocked her.  Red should have known better than to be alone.

 

I hope Caputo is willing to listen to Piper and side with her against Fig.  He seems to be more on their side, even if he acts out his fantasies a bit too much.  Can't believe Fig didn't already know her husband was gay.

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