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Turns Out These Five ‘Orange Is The New Black’ Characters Were Completely Different In Real Life

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Orange Is the New Black is certainly filled with its share of wild characters. It’s based on Piper Kerman’s memoir about her time behind bars, but how much of it is true? Check out these five OITNB characters and see how the TV story differs from real life!

Creative License

Yes, it’s true. Piper Kerman was caught smuggling drug money for her girlfriend, landing her behind bars. However, not even an ounce of the drama on the show happened in real life. Comparatively, time in prison was pretty smooth sailing for Piper. There was no furlough, solitary confinement, or even beef with Pennsatucky. But a quiet prison sentence doesn’t give fans an entertaining show to binge, so the writers got a little creative.

Cafeteria Queen

Piper referred to the jail food maven Red as “Pop” in her book. While Red is portrayed as vindictive and unforgiving, the real Red was nothing like that. Piper did really insult her food once, but Pop merely gave her a warning instead of starving her. After that, Piper and Pop became close friends throughout Piper’s time in prison.

The Girlfriend

Laura Prepon’s on-screen character Alex Vause was named “Nora” in Piper Kerman’s memoir, but the real woman behind Alex was actually named Cleary Wolters. Ready for a huge twist? Piper and Cleary were never even in prison together! So their drawn-out relationship drama on OITNB never happened. Cleary also denies that she and Piper were an official couple, stating instead that they were friends with benefits. Go figure!

Only Sort-Of-Crazy Eyes

The real Suzanne (“Crazy Eyes”) was indeed a lesbian, and behaved peculiarly towards other women in the prison. She also made unwanted advances towards her ‘dandelion’, Piper. But Crazy Eyes didn’t stalk people around the jail or have mental breakdowns during her stay. The writers definitely embellished there. Another interesting fact? She also wasn’t black, apparently.

The Tastiest of All

Over the course of Orange is The New Black‘s five seasons, Taystee has grown into a standout character that fans love. Taystee’s real nickname behind bars was “Delicious,” and she was fun and outspoken like her TV counterpart. However, she didn’t really interact much with Piper. Everything else from Taystee snagging a lock of Piper’s hair to her bold activism was completely made up.

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