Will Sophia Get Out Of SHU On 'Orange Is The New Black'? Laverne Cox's Storyline Hits Solitary Confinement

In Season 3 of Orange is the New Black, both the inmates and the staff of Litchfield Penitentiary struggled to adapt to their new roles when the management of the prison was taken over by Management & Correction Corporation. However, to say everyone didn't handle the transition well is putting it lightly. One result of the take over (as well as a season-long arc that I'll get to later) was Laverne Cox's character Sophia being sent to solitary confinement. So, in Season 4, will Sophia get out of the SHU on Orange is the New Black?

Now, let's backtrack a bit to Sophia's larger Season 3 storyline, which featured her struggling with being a mother to her son Michael while in prison. She formed a tentative bond with Gloria Mendoza, whose son Benny had trouble getting rides to Litchfield. Gloria asked Sophia if Benny could ride with her wife and son, but when Michael began acting out, Sophia blamed Benny. Later, Sophia learned that Michael's behavior wasn't Benny's fault, but she and Gloria got into a fight and she ended up pushing and injuring Gloria. Seeking revenge for her friend, Aleida spread rumors about Sophia around Litchfield, leading to Sophia's salon being boycotted and Sophia being attacked.


Last we saw of Sophia, MCC ordered her to be placed in the SHU (security housing unit aka solitary confinement) in the penultimate Season 3 episode, "Don't Make Me Come Back There." Unlike other characters who seemed to leave in Season 3 — like C.O. Bennet, Stella, and Nicky — Sophia does appear in the trailer for Season 4 of Orange is the New Black . She can be seen still in the SHU, but she doesn't appear to be maintaining her appearance in the same way as when she was in general population. The brief glimpse we get of her is when Caputo seems to be checking in on Sophia.

So, does that mean Sophia will be getting out of the SHU in Season 4? Well, Caputo was never particularly on board with MCC's decision to put Sophia in the SHU for "her own protection." Perhaps he'll try to fight his new employers. Or, considering all the new inmates who will be joining Litchfield at the beginning of Season 4 — leading to the sardine-like conditions referenced in the trailer — perhaps there won't be enough room for Sophia in the SHU, and MCC will be forced to let her back into general population.


For now, it remains to be seen whether Sophia will bet let out of the SHU in Season 4. But, considering her appearance in the trailer and the photos that have been released from the premiere, it's safe to say she'll have a storyline this season — which just might include her returning to the rest of the Litchfield ladies (especially since a storyline of her entirely in the SHU might not be very exciting). Unfortunately, we'll have to wait, and marathon Orange is the New Black Season 4 on Friday to see.

Images: JoJo Whilden/Netflix; Giphy (2)