How Much of 'Orange Is The New Black' Is Truth vs. Fiction?

How Much of 'Orange Is The New Black' Is Truth vs. Fiction?
Sunnivie Brydum

We've voraciously consumed the entire first season of Netflix's sapphic prison drama Orange Is The New Black, starring Taylor Schilling as Piper Chapman, a self-described East Coast WASP who ends up in prison after carrying a suitcase full of drug money for an ex-girlfriend a decade earlier. 

And while the show has already taught us new and innovative ways to use a screwdriver, maxi pad, and duct tape, it appears the fictionalized show contains a fair amount of truth. 

In an interview with NPR's Fresh Air, author Piper Kerman — whose memoir of the same title served as the inspiration for the show — reflected on the events that really occurred during her year in a women's prison in Danbury, Conn., 

"The Netflix series is an adaptation, and there are tremendous liberties," Kerman told NPR. "What that means is that when you watch the show, you will see moments of my life leap off the screen, such as Larry Bloom's proposal to Piper Chapman, [which] is not so very different from the way my husband, Larry Smith, proposed to me. There are moments in the very first episode, like when Piper Chapman insults Red, who runs the kitchen with an iron fist — that is actually very closely derived from what's in the book and from my own life. But there are other parts of the show which are tremendous departures and pure fiction."

Complimenting show creator Jenji Kohan and her "remarkable team of writers," Kerman seemed pleased with the final product, which has already been picked up for a second season on Netflix. We know we're not the only ones eagerly awaiting that season premiere, so we can once again binge-watch the entire season to get our fix of Chapman, Vause, Red, Crazy Eyes, and the entire captivating crew of OITNB.

Listen to the full 30-minute interview with Kerman at NPR

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