Orange Is the New Black ending: What happens to each character in the main cast?

28 July 2019, 23:11

Sam  Prance

By Sam Prance

How does Orange Is the New Black end? The season 7 finale of the Netflix series explained.

The ending of Orange Is the New Black is here and it's time to bid goodbye to our favourite cast with season 7.

As soon as Orange Is the New Black came out in 2013, we fell in love with the Netflix series. The groundbreaking, female-led prison drama boasts one of the most talented and diverse casts on TV and it features some of the most important storylines on screen today. It's hard to think of characters as complex and well-created as the likes of Taystee, Blanca, Red and even Piper. They've weaved their ways into our lives over the past few years and it's hard to imagine life without them.

READ MORE: Who did Taystee "kill" in Orange Is the New Black? Her season 7 storyline explained

OITNB season 7 aired yesterday (Jul 26). Here's how it ended for all of the characters in the main cast.


Orange Is The New Black ending: What happens to the main cast in the season 7 finale?
Orange Is The New Black ending: What happens to the main cast in the season 7 finale? Picture: Netflix

1) What happens to Piper Chapman? - Taylor Schilling

Piper Chapman is released from prison at the end of season 6. Season 7 sees her attempt to readjust to life outside of incarceration, while also being "prison married" to Alex. She lives with her brother and tries working as a waitress. At first Piper and Alex have issues with their relationship. Alex even sets Piper "free" by breaking up with her. However, when Alex is sent to another prison in Ohio, Piper decides to move there and make things work.

We last see her getting a job at a Starbucks in Ohio and visiting Alex in prison. The two of them look happy.

2) What happens to Alex Vause? - Laura Prepon

Alex Vause is still serving her sentence at the end of OITNB. She also struggles to stay with Piper, whilst she is in prison and Piper isn't. When Piper and Alex try being open, Alex strikes up a relationship with a prison guard called McCullough. When Alex ends things with McCullough, McCullough gets Alex transferred to Ohio.

In Ohio, Alex reunites with her former inmates, who she was separated from after the Litchfield Riot. These include the likes of Boo, Yoga, Norma and Brook.

3) What happens to Red? - Kate Mulgrew

Red's season 7 storyline is heartbreaking. Over the course of the series, we see her health deteriorate and she becomes very forgetful. She's tasked with cooking for the people trapped in the ICE detainment centre, alongside Gloria, Nicky, Morello and Flaca, but she regularly makes mistakes. We soon find out she has early-onset dementia.

Red is then transferred to "Florida", the cell block which houses elderly and ill inmates. She reunites with her nemesis Frieda but doesn't even remember her.

4) What happens to Suzanne? - Uzo Aduba

Suzanne "Crazy Eyes" Warren remains in "Florida" throughout OITNB season 7 and it's never made clear when she will be released. We see her looking after the prison chickens. In her last moments, we see her perform a moving rendition of the Mountain Dew jingle to pay tribute to her dead former cellmate Pennsatucky.

5) What happens to Taystee? - Danielle Brooks

Season 6 saw Taystee be sentenced to life in prison for murdering Piscatella even though an officer did it. During season 7, she considers suicide multiple times. However, after helping Pennsatucky and various other inmates get their high school diplomas, she decides to try and set up a loan system for recently released inmates so that they can get their feet off the ground outside of prison.

Taystee's final OITNB scene shows her running a financial literary class for recipients of the new Poussey Washington Fund. She tells them: "This is gonna help you get off the poverty bus. Or at least get you enough money so that you ain’t gotta do illegal shit no more."


6) What happens to Nicky Nichols? - Natasha Lyonne

Nicky struggles in OITNB season 7 because, while she's working in the ICE detainment centre kitchen, her close friends Red and Morello are sent to "Florida" for mental health problems. Nicky also starts a romantic relationship with one of the ICE detainees Shani but Shani is later deported to Egypt.

The last we see of Nicky, she's taken on Red's motherly position in the ICE kitchen and is helping prison drug addicts work through their addictions.

7) What happens to Pennsatucky? - Taryn Manning

Tiffany "Pennsatucky" Doggett spends season 7 trying to better herself. She gets Taystee to coach her for GED training. However, when she takes the test, she doesn't manage to finish it. Even though her dyslexia allows her extra time, the guards won't give it to her. Distraught, she commits suicide by overdosing.

We later learn that Pennsatucky actually passed the test and got her high school diploma. Suzanne holds a moving, memorial service for her in "Florida".

8) What happens to Gloria Mendoza? - Selenis Leyva

Gloria spends season 7 working in the ICE detainment centre kitchen. Here she tries to smuggle phones to the detainees to help them escape. She's almost given extra time but CO Luschek negotiates leniency for her and she ends the series back with her family, out of prison.

9) What happens to Cindy? - Adrienne C. More

Cindy is released from prison in OITNB season 7 (she got early release after being coerced into falsely claiming that Taystee shot Piscatella). Cindy then goes to live with her mum and her daughter. However, her daughter has been raised to believe that she's Cindy's sister. Taystee tries to get revenge on Cindy by sending a letter to Cindy's daughter revealing who her mother really is. This leads Cindy to fall out with her family. She then leaves home and become homeless.

The series ends with Cindy meeting with her mum and her daughter, promising to step up and be a proper parent.

10) What happens to Daya? - Dascha Polanco

When season 7 begins, Daya has transformed from the sweet girl she was in season 1 and become a tough drug lord. She even accidentally kills her girlfriend Daddy with an overdose. The last we see of her is her mother Aleida punching her in the neck for trying to stop her from selling drugs. It's unclear what happens next.


11) What happens to Lorna Morello? - Yael Stone

Things go from bad to worse for Lorna Morello in the final season of OITNB. After giving birth at the end of season 6, we find out from her husband Vinnie that they lost their baby to pneumonia. Morello refuses to accept it and pretends that her son is still alive. Vinnie eventually tells her he wants a divorce. Morello has a mental breakdown and tries to escape prison.

Morello's story ends with her being moved to "Florida".

12) What happens to Flaca? - Jackie Cruz

Flaca spends season 7 working in the ICE detainment centre kitchen. Here she tries to help ICE detainees contact lawyers and do anything she can to set them free. These detainees include her best friend Maritza. Flaca continues to do this when the series ends.

13) What happens to Maritza Ramos? - Diane Guerrero

In season 7, we find out that Maritza is out of prison on parole. However, at a club, she is detained by ICE because she's forgotten her ID. Maritza believes that she was born in the US but she later finds out, via Flaca phoning her mother, that she was actually born in Columbia. Flaca then finds Maritza a number for a free lawyer.

After getting the number, Maritza passes it around the detainment centre to help other detainees but the guards notice what she is doing and she is then deported to Columbia.

14) What happens to Aleida Diaz? - Elizabeth Rodriguez

Aleida Diaz starts season 7 out of prison but she is sent back in after she assaults her teenage daughter Christina's much older boyfriend. He was getting Christina involved in drugs. Back in jail Aleida continues selling drugs herself and she attempts to stop Daya from selling them too. In her last scene, she punches Daya in the throat.

15) What happens to Maria Ruiz? - Jessica Pimentel

After the riots, Maria is sentenced to 10 extra years in prison. Season 7 sees her struggle with the fact that her boyfriend still won't bring her daughter Pepa to visit her in prison. However, at the end of the series, we see that he's changed his attitude. The two of them visit Maria. Not only that but Gloria gifts Maria with children's books to read to her daughter.


16) What happens to Blanca Flores? - Laura Gómez

After being sent to the ICE detainment centre in OITNB season 7, Blanca works hard to be released. Her boyfriend Caesar comes to visit her to help her get out but, while doing so, ICE detain him as well. Whilst Blanca is being trialled for deportation, she asks for her initial conviction to be overturned in court. The judge allows her to do this.

Later we see her being released and getting her green card. Caesar has since been deported though so the season ends with her flying to reunite with him in the Dominican Republic.

17) What happens to Sophia Burset? - Laverne Cox

Sophia was released from Litchfield at the end of season 6. She barely stars in season 7 but she bumps into Piper when they realise that they share the same probation officer. We find out that she is now working successfully as a hairdresser outside of prison. She cuts Piper's hair for an event and advises her to try and leave prison behind her.

18) What happens to Poussey Washington? - Samira Wiley

Poussey was accidentally killed by a guard in OITNB season 4. However, she does make a surprise appearance in season 7. Just as Taystee is considering suicide, we see a flashback from when Taystee made it out of prison in season 1. Poussey calls her from in prison to see how she is. Taystee says she's tired of struggling but Poussey gives her a pep talk about trying because "there's good shit working it's way to you that you don't even know about".

Taystee later creates the Poussey Washington Fund with Judy King in honour of Poussey.

19) What happens to Joe Caputo? - Nick Sandow

Caputo ends OITNB being fired from Litchfield after former Litchfield CO Susan Fischer pursues legal action against him for sexually harassing her. Having matured since then and understood his wrongdoings, Joe accepts that he deserves this and leaves Litchfield looking for work elsewhere.

The last we see of Joe is him living with his girlfriend Fig and the two of them trying to adopt together.

20) What happens to Fig? - Alysia Reiner

In OITNB season 7, Natalie Figaro is taken from her position as warden of Litchfield Max and given a job at the ICE detention centre next to it. She is moved by the terrible ways in which the detainees are treated and even goes out of her way to help one of them have an abortion.

We last see Fig adopting a young girl with Caputo.