Oh, Piper. Oh, Piper. Piper, Piper, Piper… When will you ever learn? Fans of Orange Is the New Black who were hoping for closure after last season's jaw-dropping cliffhanger had to wait almost as long as Piper to learn Pennsatucky's fate. Long-story short: Piper beat the hell out of Pennsatucky, apparently to the brink of death, and was then thrown in the SHU for a month. The season opens with Piper being awaken and dragged off to a bus, then a plane, then another bus – all without anyone telling her where she's going or why. She's convinced that she killed Pennsatucky and is being reassigned and possibly resentenced.
First, calm down: She didn't kill Pennsatucky. Her reassignment is temporary; she's being moved to testify against Alex's old boss.
Second, get riled up: Piper starts season two on an unbelievably, frustratingly and mind-numbingly stupid note. She lies for Alex. On the stand. Under Oath. Why, Piper, why?
The short answer is because Piper is not the girl she was when she entered prison. We saw it last season with two really big moves:
1. Cheating on Larry with Alex
2. Beating down Pennsatucky
In just the first hour of Season 2, Piper does the following:
1. Willingly drops trow and pees (after five hours of holding it) under the glare of two male U.S. Marshals.
2. Offered a male inmate (and suspected rapist — don't worry, he turned out to be "just" a hit man instead) a hand job in exchange for delivering a note to Alex.
3. Actually gave said male inmate her four-days-worn-without-a-wash underwear to deliver that note to Alex.
4. Let down an inmate who started a fight expecting Piper to have her back.
5. Called in Larry's dad to fly to Chicago and be her lawyer, asked his advice and then did the exact opposite.
6. LIED IN COURT TO SUPPORT ALEX'S LIE.
7. Got double-crossed by Alex. Because of course she did.
Yes, the episode ends just as you'd expect; Alex goes second on the stand and double-crosses Piper, striking a deal with the prosecutor to save her own ass by outing Piper's perjury.
Which brings us back to Piper, Piper, Piper…When will you learn?
On the one hand, it's nice to see Piper lose her Little Miss Perfect in Prison persona. On the other, it's devastating to watch her make the same predictable mistakes over and over. It's a bit like watching the buxom blonde in a slasher flick; she walks down the dark alley all alone and you know she's walking to her doom, and even though you've known this moment was coming since the second she graced the screen, you want to physically, actually scream at her to stop. Turn around. Go home! DON'T. GO. IN. THERE.
That's how it feels watching Piper make decisions when Alex is in involved. Alex is the dark alley and Piper just can't seem to turn around and go home, no matter how dangerous the alternative is.
But let's look on the bright side: Thank god Netflix releases a full season at a time.