By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act July 29, 2013 at 3:04PM
I have yet to watch a single episode of Netflix's new original series Orange Is the New Black, which debuted on July 11. However, just about every single person I know who's binge-watched the series, loves it!
Needless to say, I'll have to check it out eventually.
In the meantime, you should know that, not only has the series been renewed for a 2nd season, it's beefing up its cast, adding veteran actress Lorraine Toussaint, who will play a character named Vee, described as a street-tough inmate who used to run a drug business, using kids are runners.
Also announced today, Danielle Brooks, who plays a recurring role in season 1, has been promoted to a series regular.
Created by Jenji Kohan (Weeds), the dramedy stars Taylor Schilling and is set in a women's prison. As Netflix did with its previous original series, all thirteen one-hour episodes in the series were made available at launch.
Its key cast includes a number of actresses of African descent, including Danielle Brooks, Samira Wiley, Vicky Jeudy, Lolita Foster, Michelle Hurst, Uzo Aduba, Adrienne C. Moore, Laverne Cox, Dascha Polanco, and now Lorraine Toussaint.
Here's a synop:
Orange Is the New Black follows engaged Brooklynite Piper Chapman (Taylor Schilling), whose decade-old relationship with drug-runner Alex (Laura Prepon) results in her arrest and year-long detention in a federal penitentiary. To pay her debt to society, Piper must trade her comfortable New York life with fiance Larry (Jason Biggs) for an orange prison jumpsuit and a baffling prison culture where she is forced to question everything she believes and form unexpected new alliances with a group of eccentric and outspoken inmates.
Clips from the new series, introducing its key characters, featuring Danielle Brooks, Laverne Cox, Uzo Aduba, Dascha Polanco and Vicky Jeudy, are embedded below.