ByPeter Flynn, writer at
An advocate for understanding the phenomenological wonder of the moving image. Also Tremors is the best.
Peter Flynn

I wouldn't say that [Orange Is the New Black](tag:761587) Season 3 ended on a cliffhanger, but it sure felt like it! The show manages so many engaging storylines that seem to be ploughing towards some climactic conclusion, that when it simply stops for the end of the season, it all feels like it's holding something important back from us. That sure isn't the case. [Netflix](tag:1234550) and Jenju Kohan simply have so much story on their hands that it will always feel like the show is building to something we'll never see.

Season 3 did however feel a little more egregious in that respect, so fans are left with only a set of pressing questions to tide them over until Season 4. Let's take a look at some of those questions, and see just how likely it is that they will be answered by the time we reach Orange is the New Black Season 4!

What happened to Alex?

Seriously. What happened to Alex Vause?
Seriously. What happened to Alex Vause?

This is quite obviously the most pressing question fans have. One of the show's primary characters might well be dead, the story she exists in seems not to care one bit. Much of season 3 was spent depicting Alex growing more and more paranoid at the prospect of a ruthless drug lord and former employer sending someone to whack her behind bars.

The show mostly dismissed these worries, until the very last episode, where a man managed to get through Litchfield's very lax screening process with the supposed intention of killing Alex. What's weird is that this was not the end of the episode. An entire ending was tacked on after it, so the show left us hanging, and doesn't even seem to know it!

What happened to Daya's baby?

After some of the most fascinating turns of character we've seen in the show, and with a particularly brilliant bait and switch on the part of Daya's mom, the incarcerated pregnancy story ended about as badly as it could. After the baby is put into the care of the sleazy Cesar, it's taken away by authorities during a raid by the DEA. Three seasons worth of build up, and an entire human life is simply passed off to another governmental faction. It's a callous move that exhibits the harshness of the world. I'm only left wondering what Daya's reaction will be, if she even finds out!

Piper's crime syndicate

Much less trust going on in Season 4.
Much less trust going on in Season 4.

For me, Piper's foray into organized crime was perhaps one of the weakest elements of Orange is the New Black Season 3. It manifested as little more than a joke, and when it did get serious, it only served to make Piper less sympathetic as she got Ruby Rose's Stella sent to maximum security. This whole plot-line does however provide some interesting avenues for Piper's character. Are we to see her descend into a system of ruthlessly gaining power in Litchfield? Judging by her brief confrontation with Gloria, probably not, yet we may still see her descend further into unsympathetic realms.

New inmates

Perhaps the most ominous moment in Orange is the New Black Season 3 was seeing the prison population be doubled, with crowds of prisoners arriving at Litchfield while the other inmates frolicked blissfully in the lake. This all suggests that our favorite characters will soon be living in much closer quarters to each other, and potential conflicts and even violence will be much easier to ignite. I'm worried that these vastly inferior living conditions we're to see in Season 4 could render the show not fun anymore, but perhaps that's the point. Perhaps we were always supposed to be hit by the unfunny truth of our characters' situations.

What are your thoughts, hopes and fears for Orange is the New Black Season 4? Let us know by voting in our poll, or commenting below!



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