Netflix is host to an array of big hit series, but what if two of its buzziest shows joined forces? That's what the streaming giant imagines in its Orange Is The New Black meets Black Mirror mash-up, a cross-promotional clip released ahead of OITNB's forthcoming fifth season. Viewers were previously left on a heart-pounding cliffhanger. Fan favorite Poussey Washington (Samira Wiley) had been murdered at the hands of an ill-trained guard, resulting in a prison-wide riot that left off with Dayanara (Dasha Polanco) holding a guard at gunpoint while a howling mob of inmates urged her to shoot.
That's where the show will pick up when it returns June 9, unfolding over the course of three days as the rebellion presses on. Trailers thus far have teased the inmates finally taking a stand, uniting as one, and pushing back against the inhumane circumstances they're often forced to confront. But as much as the season is about empowerment, many of the characters will also still be grappling with the grief of Poussey's death.
The OITNB-Black Mirror video offers a lighter take on that emotional baggage, imagining Taystee (Danielle Brooks) reuniting with Poussey in an '80s-fueled dream sequence. It's a callback to "San Junipero," a season 3 episode from Black Mirror in which Yorkie (Mackenzie Davis) visits a beach resort town and falls in love with a gregarious local, Kelly (Gugu Mbatha-Raw). Except the town is actually a simulated reality: the minds of the dead or dying can be uploaded there to live as alternative versions of their younger selves forever, and the living can visit them for up to five hours per week.
It's more of a silly one-off than an actual scene fans can expect from OITNB season five, but it's nonetheless appreciated, and perhaps a hint Poussey may be popping up in flashbacks. It's clear Poussey's death shifted things in Litchfield Penitentiary unalterably, and it seems the narrative will be largely driven by the inmates' reclaiming of power, but it's reassuring to know there may be some more sentimental moments as well.
Poussey was never given a proper goodbye — not for the characters and not for viewers — and she deserves a bit of justice. But she also deserves an homage to her spirit: kind, joyful, fun-loving. The Black Mirror promo reflects that, but hopefully it will come across in the season, too.
Orange is the New Black season 5 premieres June 9th, 2017 on Netflix.
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