How Does The 'Orange Is The New Black' Cast Feel About Poussey's Death? They Pay Tribute To The Character In A New Video
It's been a couple of weeks now since season four of Orange Is The New Black hit Netflix, and if you marathon watched the entirety of it over a single, emotional weekend like I did then you're no doubt still feeling devastated by the events of the final few episodes. Not up to date, yet? Then stop reading now, as this article contains details about the major Season 4 spoiler. While fans have been understandably feeling bereft since the shocking death of Poussey Washington, a new video has now revealed how cast members of OITNB feel about Poussey's death, and it's just as touching as you might imagine. In the video, which was revealed by Netflix on Wednesday morning, cast members Samira Wiley, Danielle Brooks and Uzo Aduba pay tribute to the fan favourite character in a way which will no doubt help dismayed fans with their current grieving process. So grab a box of tissues guys, because it gets super emotional.
Wiley, who played the peaceful, book loving character on OITNB, looked clearly emotional as she spoke about what a pleasure it was to "have the opportunity to give life to someone like Poussey," and broke down all of the qualities which made the character so likeable and so hard to say goodbye to. "I just see so much potential in Poussey Washington: I root for her, I want to see her outside of prison making it," Wiley explained at the start of the video, before later becoming clearly tearful as she stated that having to pull away from the character was "devastating."
The emotional bond that the characters and cast members of OITNB have made with Poussey since Season 1 of the show is also echoed by the way that Brooks and Aduba pay tribute to the character (who is accidentally suffocated by prison guard Bayley during a protest). When she spoke of the way in which Poussey's death is covered up by the management of Litchfield Penitentiary (which is reported in a manner that doesn't even name the inmate during the announcement of her death), Brooks made the touching statement that, "She's more than a number. She was [Taystee's] friend, her sister. She was Poussey Washington."
It's a sentiment which not only supports the parallels that OITNB made between the Say Her/His Name and Black Lives Matter movements, but which also highlights the impact that Poussey had on the show as a whole; she was an emotional lynchpin and she was an essential part of her prison family.
It's a feeling that Aduba, who plays troubled inmate Suzanne on the show, also shared: "This season was tough to go through and to see that we were losing one of our own ... Who doesn't love Poussey?" Beyond the connections that the cast mates had made with the character, Poussey's death also impacted on Wiley, Brooks, and Abuda on a personal level. As Brooks told Bustle in a recent interview, she's known Wiley since they were at Julliard together and the trio had a tough time processing the news:
"We sat in Uzo’s apartment, and we just talked about it for two, three hours ... How does she feel, what it meant for the show, what it meant for us ... [Wiley] will always be a part of the family, but to know that we won’t be filming together every day anymore, it just really was sad."
In the video, Brooks elaborates on this emotion, stating that she remembers "just hugging" the actress afterwards, and celebrating the deep bond that the two have in real life, explaining: "It was just a moment of really being grateful for life, being grateful for friendship and I'm glad I got to do that with her."
It'll be both interesting and heartbreaking to see how Poussey's death may impact on the future of Litchfield Prison, its inmates, and those characters who dearly loved her when OITNB returns in Season 5. But if the personal and deeply emotional reactions seen in this video are anything to go by then fans may need to be bracing themselves for a shockwave which will be nothing less than devastating.
Images: Netflix (3)