After its explosive season 4 finale and its ensuing season 5 upheaval, it looks like Orange Is the New Black is going back to basics for its upcoming sixth season. Picking up one week after the emergency response team stormed Litchfield Penitentiary and broke up the prison’s revolt, the Netflix series has thrown our favorite inmates into a new facility: Litchfield Max. Echoing season one, we’ll get to see not only Piper (Taylor Schilling) navigating a new prison environment, but all the friends and foes she’s made since she first arrived to Litchfield all those months ago.
In between getting to know the lay of this new, more dangerous, land, the likes of Daya (Dascha Polanco), Maria (Jessica Pimentel), Gloria (Selenis Leyva), and Flaca (Jackie Cruz) will have to face the consequences for rioting, which culminated in yet another death at the end of last season. As the new trailer shows, it seems as though it’ll be every woman for herself in the new max prison. Though, with Piper tending to “Crazy Eyes” (Uzo Aduba) and Black Cindy (Adrienne C. Moore) getting along with Flaca, the Litch girls will forever be bound by what went down following Poussey’s death. Maritza, the character played by Diane Guerrero and BFF to Flaca, is not visible in any scenes from the trailer. Maybe she was sent to a different prison?
As each inmate gets interrogated — to get to the bottom of who did what and who lead whom during the riots — we’re sure to get an even fuller picture of things to come. In particular, it looks like it’ll all come down to whose allegiances are still intact after all that’s happened. But, as Red (Kate Mulgrew) puts it in her blunt no-nonsense way, “We have iron wills and fucking nothing to lose.” If you thought Orange couldn’t go darker, you were wrong — not only does this new season look even more claustrophobic than those that came before (guess our ladies don’t have many “going outside” privileges), but it has the biting edge that we haven’t seen since the Vee-driven storytelling from way back in season 2.
Check out the “Criminal”-scored trailer for season six below, which looks like it’ll be part Homeland-like FBI probe (with its very own wall of suspects), part grittier prison drama (more punches! more tears!), and, as always, part fun romp-filled, female-led comedy (stay put for the final aerobics visual gag that will have you, well, gagging).
Orange Is the New Black returns to Netflix on July 27, 2018.