Some people know why I used the name Evil Jenji. I thought Orange is the New Black so good in so many ways that if I had to pick one person’s name to sum all , I would be the creator. But it couldn’t just be Jenji, so I decided to do a little research. In some moment I read about an actresses (I won’t say her name, of course) was afraid of YOU. In my newly constructed view you were funny, in that kind of ironic way that half the room laughs a lot and the other half doesn’t get the joke. So Evil would be my irony about Jenji. This has gotten into my head so much that strangely I find myself putting Evil Jenji when I want to tag Jenji. I often confuse the names, it’s not crazy, it’s admiration…and a little bit ADHD.
Writing a blog about a closed series is not an easy task. So weekly I try to overcome myself. I don’t know anyone more stubborn, I have to beat myself every week. Well, this time I chose to send you a letter. I found it more chic to write on the blog than send it by mail. I thought the mail might not be nice. It might feel like I’m jumping over the fence of a place I haven’t been invited to enter. Blog is cool, I know at some point my post will reach you.
I think that when we meet someone on the internet, the most urgent thing is to observe the tolerances and intolerances of each one. In this thing of having a profile for the first time in which I didn’t use my own name I found out that there are a lot of crazy people out there, I’m not talking about cool crazy, but crazy who chases, lies, is radical and not tolerant of the differences. I needed a strategy to deal with this, because despite being a public space, it was my space. I decided that my criterion would be, when it stops being fun and becomes abusive, block. Somewhere I read that you stopped going to social networks because you had problems with OITNB fans. Jenji, just use the block without save money. Interacting remains one of the coolest things in life. I’m glad you sometimes answer me, I just think: Thank god, she got that I’m cool! This is the first point, there are cool OITNB fans! The second point is: We can help! The third important point is: I don’t know how to make this work! hahahaha kidding..I find myself in love with making the spin-off happen, meanwhile, I know you run away from any word that starts with spin, when someone finishes “off”you are miles away.
Since February 2018, when I created the Evil Jenji profile, I tried to create groups of fans that would work for the spin-off. Until he realizes that these groups didn’t work. They were people who didn’t know each other, who didn’t have the same dedication or who, at some point, thought differently. But the biggest reason has always been the lack of perspective and no concrete information about a continuation of the show. What I see today is a consistent change in the last year. If before people just abandoned their fan profiles, today the engagement on spin-off related news has increased a lot. I’m glad that after two years of the end of the series, the subject comes back with such force. before being a series, Orange is the New Black is a very strong brand, which exists and remains alive even though everyone create new brands instead of investing in what already exists. Most brands don’t have the passion behind the brand, Orange does. And this cannot be created artificially.
Let me tell you, there were rare cases of spin-offs that worked. There are people who make it an argument for not doing it, and others use it as a driving force. There are characteristics that are fundamental for it to work. You know what it is, doing something innovative again. Let’s be more practical, what do you need for this? first of all ingredients that have already been used very well:
Mixing comedy and drama
make the audience empathize
good and bad people (at the same time)
show a new side about old issues
Have you ever thought that we never abandoned our history? even if she is bad. If you release the detainees, they will somehow remain tied up. There are many ways to untie this. One is to tell the story of what came before. I would be very happy to know Alex’s story, how she turned into a drug dealer in rich detail. Maybe it’s a case of adapting the book by Cleary Wolters, the real Alex Vause. I imagine this mixed with a bit of Weeds and Teenage Bounty Hunters. You build female thug characters like no one else! Use your talent. Call Jennifer Euston to find two 20-year-old actresses, we’ll show you the underworld of trafficking they get into. It just needs a season. For the last two episodes call Taylor and Laura where we’ll finally see what happens after Alex is released, and Taystee’s retrial. End full of characters from OITNB of course. Nowadays if you want to transgress, it is showing despite this cruel world that justice exists. It doesn’t necessarily bring happiness, maybe that’s the point to remember. Reliving some Riot moments can be an interesting move to mix with the judgment.
You know, it’s like a cake recipe, we use good ingredients but it’s essential that it’s sweet… and even sweet can be bitter. The right dose is the key. OITNB and the spin-off need to complement each other in a way that can be seen separately but that those who liked it will want to know more. What the spin-off shouldn’t have:
A huge amount of unknown characters
it shouldn’t be about pandemic
make all characters good people
many OITNB characters don’t need to go back
Keep having an organic script.
But what is the reason, the purpose, why is the spin-off so important? I don’t think to say anything that hasn’t already been said, just a brief summary: BECAUSE THE SERIES IS ABSURDLY COOL! but that’s not all. I think (more than ever) people need to learn more about prejudice, differences and tolerance. About respecting ideas different from yours, helping those who need help. And the best time for this is to first provide great entertainment. The tactic, Jenji, you already know. First enter the Trojan horse offering gifts. Then we go to citizenship lessons. I don’t know of any series that has been more efficient at doing this job. I think there are issues that can be added to the spin-off, such as femicide, politics and corruption. Just the fact of showing the B side of life would be reason enough to bring the series back. Only now I realized that few are the scripts of series with this profile written by women. And without a doubt, this can be the reason for success. Intelligence, vision, sensitivity and didactics to understand the world more deeply and digest the information so that everyone understands. We still need your talent Jenji, maybe now more than ever. There are a lot of dumb people out there.
Time to get ready for the next adventure, put on your best colored sock, because the mountain climb will presents us the best landscape. It wouldn’t be so good if it were easy.
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One thought on “A Letter to Jenji Kohan, Creator of Orange is the New Black”
Kocham ten serial i bardzo bym chciała aby powstał 8 sezon
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