Plot twist of the summer goes to “Orange Is the New Black” – season 3 of Netflix’s original breakout hit was released a day early, to unprecedentedly enthusiastic reception. Die-hard fans scrambled Thursday evening to begin binge-watching the long-awaited return of Piper Chapman and her band of ragtag inmates at Litchfield, after the new season hit the web a day before its anticipated release, Friday at midnight.
The release 6 hours early came as a surprise yesterday at OrangeCon in New York, after Uzo Aduba (better known for her stunning portrayal of Litchfield’s resident lovable nutcase, “Crazy Eyes”) announced at the fan convention that the new season had just been released on Netflix. News of the season 3 surprise release leaked to fans worldwide after Netflix tweeted from their official twitter account, “Attention inmates! Orange Is the New Black season 3 is out on early release. #OrangeCon,” just after 6 p.m. on Thursday.
So far, the season is packed with the same wit, depth and originality which made it a standout in its first and second seasons. The comedy-drama, first released in 2013, was among Netflix’s first forays into creating its own original shows, and remains its most successful original endeavor by far. “Orange Is the New Black” is based off of Piper Kerman’s bestselling memoir of her experiences as an upper-middle class woman thrust into a women’s prison for money laundering in her younger days. Netflix picked up the idea in 2011, spun it into a comedy, and broke the mold in regards to success for non-mainstream-cable shows. Seasons one and two were spectacular, and season three is poised for even greater reception than its predecessors. One day into its release, it’s already a breakout (no pun intended) hit.
Fan-favorite characters are back for season 3, of course – Taylor Schilling as precocious prisoner turned badass protagonist, Piper Chapman, stars alongside on-again off-again girlfriend, Alex Vause (Laura Prepon). Behind them is a stellar cast of eccentric inmates, both recurring characters from seasons past, along with new additions to the cast, including brand-new star Ruby Rose as Piper’s new tentative love interest, Stella Carlin. Plot and character development are strong and intricate, as always, and season 3 is well-poised to maintain OITNB’s title as reigning champion of Netflix’s summer lineup for the third year running.
Like seasons 1 and 2, season 3 is comprised of 13 hourlong episodes, and is currently available for streaming on Netflix.