List of characters from Orange Is the New Black
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Orange is the New Black is an American comedy-drama series that airs on Netflix. The show chronicles the experiences of Piper Chapman, a woman sentenced to fifteen months in prison for her part in a drug smuggling operation 10 years ago.
- Piper Chapman (played by Taylor Schilling) - Piper a bisexual woman who is sentenced to fifteen months in prison for helping her former girlfriend Alex Vause smuggle drug money in Europe 10 years ago. The series shows Piper's journey through the prison system, beginning with her rough first week during which she accidentally makes some enemies and has a tough time adapting to life on the inside as well as reuniting with Alex. In prison, she is referred to as "Chapman" (as almost all inmates are referred to by their last names), but she acquires several nicknames throughout the series. "Crazy Eyes" refers to her as "dandelion" because she is tall and yellow, "Pennsatucky" refers to her as "college" and Tricia refers to her as "Brain" because she is more educated than most of the inmates. Piper is assigned a bunk with Miss Claudette, who treats her roughly at first until warming up to her. Piper is assigned to the Women's Advisory Council despite not running and asking Healy not to put her on it. She works in the electrical shop at the prison and is responsible for inadvertently taking a screwdriver from the tool crib and losing it. Her ambiguous sexuality (she appears to be bisexual) is a source of amusement to her best friend Polly and frustration to her fiancé Larry. She is considered non-threatening by the other inmates and although she does her best to have empathy and be helpful to others, she has been described as self-absorbed, especially by Alex (by whom she accused of trying to make everything about her).
- Alex Vause (played by Laura Prepon). Vause is a former drug smuggler for an unspecified drug cartel. Years prior to the beginning of the series, she took a sexual interest in Piper after meeting her in a bar and gradually integrated her into the drug trade while traveling the world living luxuriously. Vause convinced Piper to smuggle cash through customs at an airport in Europe, the crime for which both are doing time. Vause specifically named Piper during her testimony which is what led to Piper's arrest. After Piper broke up with her, Vause began using heroin but has cleaned up in prison. She states during an AA meeting that being in prison is her "rock bottom". Vause's mother worked four jobs and her father was a washed-up rock star. Alex tracked down her father and facing bitter disappointment, struck up a friendship with his dealer who subsequently became her industry contact in a drug cartel. She is not particularly broken up about being in prison, but admits to Piper and Nicky that she isn't sure what she'll do with her life when she gets out as her only life skill is "moving massive amounts of heroin". She appears to have moments of depression telling Nicky that she can no longer "get past the swirling darkness in [her] brain long enough to land on anything" and mentioning to Piper that upon entering prison she was on anti-depressants, which she now trades for black eye-liner. Alex is good at reading people and is perceptive, quite often seeing through Piper's true feelings and intentions.
- Sam Healy (played by Michael J. Harney) - Healy is an older prison guard and supervisor who acts as prison counselor to Piper and several other inmates. Healy is outspoken against lesbians and has a strange vendetta against them cautioning Piper at the beginning of the series not to be involved with them. He is initially presented as someone who, though rigid, avoids confrontation and so is referred to as "Samantha" by Caputo, who feels that Healy is not tough enough on the inmates. Healy generally appears weary and often tells the inmates what they want to hear so they will leave him alone. Early on, he appears particularly sympathetic towards Piper and even acts biased in her favor. However, he gradually begins to dislike her the more he hears rumors of her alleged lesbian activities. His hatred of lesbians, first presented as a quirk, is later revealed to be a deep-seated pathological problem when he explosively sends Piper to solitary confinement purely because she was dancing closely with Alex and later when he comments to Caputo that the girls are holding each other when they are mourning Tricia's death and an exasperated Caputo tells him that "now's not the time." Healy appears to be in a loveless marriage with a Ukrainian immigrant bride who has two years left until she gets her green card. He also has a hobby of collecting plastic bobblehead figurines that he displays on his desk. When Sophia takes and swallows one, he is consequently seen purchasing a new one via an online shopping site in a later scene.
- Miss Claudette (played by Michelle Hurst) - Piper's cubemate. Miss Claudette is a woman who is very strict and feared at the prison. She treats Piper roughly when they are first assigned to live together due to her obsession with cleanliness and dislike of the messy situations Piper brings with her, but softens to her over time. Miss Claudette was inducted into forced child labor and sent to the United States to pay off a familial debt. She later ran her own illegal child labor cleaning service. She murdered a customer who beat and abused one of her cleaning girls which is the basis for the rumor amongst the prisoners that she is in for murder. It's not clear if she was convicted for her business, the murder, or both. She never attends mail call, has not received a visitor in a decade of being incarcerated, and initially refuses help with her case as she has resigned herself to her prison time. However, when she receives a visit from an old friend, she decides to appeal her conviction. After her appeal is denied, she assaults a prison guard in anger and is sent to a maximum security prison with an extended sentence.
- Galina 'Red' Reznikov (played by Kate Mulgrew) - Red is a trustee who runs the prison's kitchen as the Master Chef and is the behind-the-scenes leader of the prison's Caucasian population. She and her husband ran a restaurant and got involved with the Russian mob. Red drew the ire of the mob bosses by punching one of their wives in the chest (rupturing a breast implant), but later impressed the same boss by offering sound advice that allowed her to swiftly climb the ranks of the organization. Red is feared and respected by most of the prisoners, has a lot of pull with Healy, and is considered the de facto leader of the white inmates at the prison. She is the closest with Nicky whom she considers a daughter, and is always accompanied by Norma and Gina who cater to her needs and work with her in the kitchens. Red runs a smuggling business out of her kitchen, but refuses to import drugs of any kind. When Mendez begins to force her to use her connections to bring in drugs, she hatches a plan to have him removed from the prison. She also uses her resources to help some of the inmates overcome drug addictions, although they have only two strikes before she cuts them loose, as she "doesn't play baseball". She is initially nice to Piper until Piper insults her cooking and in response "punishes" her by starving her in order to force her to appreciate her food. Piper eventually repairs their relationship by making a lotion to help soothe Red's bad back. Red also has an odd obsession with a chicken that is allegedly seen on the prison grounds from time to time as she wants to cook real food and also wants to absorb its power.
- Larry Bloom (played by Jason Biggs) - A freelance writer trying to get established, Larry is blindsided at the beginning of the series when his fiancée (then girlfriend) Piper reveals to him her former life as a lesbian who smuggled cash for the drug cartel 10 years ago. Larry is initially very supportive of Piper and gets engaged to her before she goes inside. As the series progresses, he begins to cool toward her, becoming upset when he learns that Piper's former lover is in the same prison and she didn't tell him about it. Later on, he begins writing a column titled "One Sentence, Two Prisoners" (which Piper and Alex agree to be a terrible title due to its similarity to the infamous 2 Girls, 1 Cup) about the experience of having a fiancée in prison which gets him published and allows him to move up in the journalistic world.
- Nicky Nichols (played by Natasha Lyonne) - A former drug addict, now in Red's group in the prison. Nicky has a loud mouth and is Red's most trusted girl, and swiftly befriends both Piper and Alex, expressing curiosity about what happened between the two of them outside of prison. Red helps Nicky get clean when she lands in prison, and Nicky looks to her as a mother figure, to the point where she actually refers to her as "mom". Her real mother, a wealthy socialite, lived in a separate house and Nicky was raised by a nanny. Nicky was involved in a sexual relationship with Morello until Morello broke it off, which Nicky is bitter about for some time but she later develops in interest in Alex. Nicky has a scar on her chest from having heart surgery as a complication of a bacterial infection in her heart.
- Sophia Burset (played by Laverne Cox) - Sophia is a transgender woman who went to prison for credit card fraud. Originally a firefighter named Marcus, Sophia was unhappy with life as a man and transitioned with the support of her wife Crystal. Sophia committed the fraud to finance her operation and hormone therapy. She has a young son named Michael who was angry with her over her gender identity of female. It is implied that he turned her in. In the prison, she works as a hairdresser and spends the first half of the series railing against a reduction in her hormone dosage (stated to be over concerns about liver damage, but she is convinced it is discrimination) and becomes friends with Sister Ingalls to try and get some of hers. Sister Ingalls convinces her to try to reconcile with her son instead, and also to let Crystal move on. Sophia is kind and understanding. Early on, she provides Piper with the cocoa butter she needs to create her lotion for Red in return for a lock of her hair. They later develop an amiable relationship often trading gifts or advice. She, like Piper, also seems to be more educated than many of her fellow inmates, being concerned about issues such as healthcare and benefits.
- Dayanara "Daya" Diaz (played by Dascha Polanco) - She is serving time with her mom and it is shown that they were both sleeping with her mom's drug dealer boyfriend. Her relationship with her mom is strained. Her mom often ignored her and her sisters in favor of going out and partying. She is criticized by the other Latina inmates because she cannot speak Spanish (though she can understand some). Daya develops a relationship with the prison guard Bennett by whom she becomes pregnant. Knowing that Bennett could be imprisoned if it is discovered she became pregnant by him, Daya willingly joins forces with Red to trick Mendez into having sex with her so that he can be blamed for her pregnancy.
- Aleida Diaz (played by Elizabeth Rodriguez) - Daya's incarcerated mother. She was involved with a man who had her cutting and bagging drugs in her kitchen. In flashbacks, it is shown that she had little concern for her children and was obsessed with her boyfriend. She says during a visitation that she took a fall for him and is upset that he won't visit her. She treats Daya roughly in the prison and goes so far as to attempt to seduce Bennett to make Daya angry. She later shows a softer side and advises Daya to keep her baby even going so far as to concoct a plan to allow Bennett to keep his job. She has a high status amongst the other Spanish inmates.
- Tiffany "Pennsatucky" Doggett (played by Taryn Manning) - A drug addicted prisoner who frequently preaches about God. She was sent to prison for shooting an abortion clinic worker in broad daylight. Although the local press believed it was because of her religious beliefs, it was actually because the worker made a snarky comment about this being Doggett's fifth abortion, and Doggett dislikes people disrespecting her. Doggett's religious rants are often laced with racism and hostility. She dislikes Piper after Piper is put on the WAC despite not running for it. Doggett causes the ceiling of the chapel to collapse when she hangs an oversized cross from an overhead pipe and it tears the pipe down. She has a hostile relationship with Alex, the two of them clashing frequently. After an incident where Doggett locks Alex in a drier, Alex gets her revenge by convincing other inmates to make Doggett believe she is capable of faith healing. The scheme culminates into Doggett trying to heal a visiting juvenile in a wheelchair and subsequently being locked up in the psych ward. Although it is Piper who gets Doggett released from the psych ward, Doggett declares a violent vendetta against Piper.
- Suzanne "Crazy Eyes" Warren (played by Uzo Aduba) - A mentally unstable prisoner who develops an obsession with Piper. Warren is a lesbian who according to Healy has been a problem in the past. She refers to Piper as "Dandelion" and follows her around the prison. After Warren put a request in with Healy to bunk together, Piper confronts her and rebuffs her advances. This causes Warren to retaliate by urinating on the floor of Piper's cubicle while she is sleeping. As the season progresses, she starts to leave Piper alone and a more vulnerable side of Warren is revealed. It is shown that she is hurt that everyone calls her "Crazy Eyes." She has a flair for reciting literature and poetry often writing her own.
- Lorna Morello (played by Yael Stone) - A feminine and sometimes racist white inmate with a strong Boston accent, still hopefully planning for her wedding whose fruition is mocked by her fellow inmate and casual sexual partner Nicky Nichols. Morello is the first inmate that Piper talks to being in charge of driving the van that carries new inmates and she helps Piper acclimate in her first few days. She finally breaks off her lesbian relationship with Nichols after feeling that she has been cheating on her fiancé. Although it is later revealed that he stopped seeing her since he never visits. Red picks her to run for WAC as the white representative stating that she is "pretty and unthreatening, (she) like(s) her lipstick, and she listens." During the campaigning for the WAC, she expresses both excitement and nervousness over the upcoming election although everyone states that she is guaranteed to win.
- Janae Watson (played by Vicky Jeudy) - A gifted former high school track star arrested after she became involved with a criminal boyfriend and was caught robbing a store. Flashbacks reveal that her downward spiral was mostly her own fault as she was given ample opportunities to walk away and take advantage of her future by the local gang leader who ejected her from his parties in the hope that she would go home and take advantage of her college scholarship. She is initially very rude and standoffish toward Piper and has problems with authority, confronting Ms. Claudette and the prison guards. Watson is assigned to the tool crib in the electrical shop and loses a screwdriver (which was absentmindedly taken by Piper) on her first day. After refusing to be searched by a male prison guard, Watson is sent to the SHU by Caputo. She blames Piper for this since Piper lost the screwdriver that started the whole confrontation. Although Piper is able to make it up to her by convincing Susan to reopen the running track so that Watson can run again. After getting out of SHU, Watson takes out her anger on Yoga Jones who slaps her in the face after a confrontation where Watson mocks her about why she is in prison. However they later talk it out and are able to form a trusting relationship.
- Tricia Miller (played by Madeline Brewer) - A prison inmate who grew up on the streets and one of the youngest inmates. Miller is a drug addict and lesbian who sports a tattoo on her throat. While outside prison, Tricia showed kleptomaniac tendencies, often taking things that she promised herself she would later pay for. She kept a list of all the things she ever stole with the intention of settling all her debts when she had the money. She is caught by Miss Claudette attempting to plant drugs in her girlfriend's bunk so she would get more time, but ultimately backs down and lets her girlfriend get released. She asks Piper to help her in writing her letter of appeal so that she can get out faster and be with Mercy, although she has not been able to contact Mercy. She gets her drugs from the prison guard Mendez. When he is late with his deliveries, she goes into withdrawal and is taken to SHU. Because Red does not tolerate drugs and it is her second offense, Tricia is ejected from Red's "family." Although Red later states that she had only intended it to be temporary as a way of scaring Tricia straight. Miller dies of an overdose when Mendez locks her in a closet with the drugs hoping to keep her away from some Scared Straight teenagers out of fear that she might accidentally reveal the drugs. When he returns to let her out, he finds she has taken the drugs, overdosed, and died. In a panic, he manipulates the situation to make it look like a suicide.
- Yoga Jones (played by Constance Shulman) - An inmate who teaches yoga. She once was a marijuana farmer who accidentally shot and killed a child thinking he was a deer eating her crop. Jones displays extreme calm in all of her appearances, until being taunted by Watson for killing a child, causing Jones to slap Watson in the face. Jones later confides in Watson about the child she killed, and they are able to become friends.
- Poussey Washington (played by Samira Wiley) - A prison inmate. She has been in prison for two years at the start of the series and has four years left. Her mother died while she was in prison. She is a good-natured jokester and is often seen with her best friend "Taystee" (whom she helps out in the library). During the season finale, she is shown to have a great singing voice and performs an improvised rendition of Amazing Grace.
- Tasha "Taystee" Jefferson (payed by Danielle Brooks) - An inmate and the black representative on the WAC. She works in the prison library and sports a weave made of blond hair taken from Piper Chapman. With coaching from Washington and a makeover from Burset, Jefferson is paroled from the prison. However as she has been in institutions her whole life and finds it hard to adapt to the rough life she finds outside the prison walls, she re-offends and is subsequently sent back to prison and is assigned to the recently-vacated bunk of Ms. Claudette as Piper's roommate. Due to the time spent in the library, she is rather well-read and considers herself to have a large knowledge base when it comes to law.
- Carrie "Big Boo" Black (played by Lea DeLaria) - A prison inmate and lesbian. She has had several "wives" during her incarceration. She and Miller have had problems in the past fighting over a girl. Black has Piper helping her write a letter for her appeal and takes the missing screwdriver from Piper's bunk unbeknownst to Piper, which she uses to aid in masturbation. She later returns the screwdriver to Piper when Piper becomes stressed over the fact that "Pennsatucky" is threatening to kill her.
- Gloria Mendoza (played by Selenis Leyva) - Red's opposite number among the Hispanic and Latina inamtes, though with no organized crime connections. She is a mother of four. She organizes domino games and looks out for the other inmates, either by giving advice or by posing as a santera. She is often critical of Daya's inability to speak Spanish but still accepts her as one of her own. Despite this, she tricks Daya into drinking a concoction that makes her feel sick at the request of Aleida, Daya's mother. When Red is put under investigation after her smuggling operation's cover is blown, Mendoza becomes the new head cook, with some finding her breakfast better than Red's. Red tries (and fails) to sabotage Mendoza. At the end of the first season, it is shown that Mendoza is starving out Red in a similar way that Red did to Piper at the beginning of the series.
- Cindy "Black Cindy" Hayes (played by Adrienne C. Moore) - She is seen often with the other black inmates. During Taystee's time on the outside, she is seen more frequently joking around with Poussey.
- Norma Romano (played by Annie Golden) - Norma is a member of Red's crew who doesn't speak. She works in the prison kitchen, and a flashback reveals that she was the first inmate Red interacted with upon her own arrival. She is often seen with Gina Murphy, as the two of them work in the kitchens together and cater to all of Red's needs. In the season finale, Romano steals the show at the Christmas pageant with her beautiful singing voice for the first time in anyone's memory. After Red's attempt to sabotage Mendoza hurts Gina, Norma expresses frustration and angrily storms away from Red, leaving her in tears.
- Leanne Taylor (played by Emma Myles) - An inmate who is often seen with "Pennsatucky". She almost fanatically listens to everything "Pennsatucky" says and is like her groupie or right-hand woman. She is also addicted to drugs and has been seen exchanging sexual favours with Mendez.
- Maria Ruiz (played by Jessica Pimentel) - A pregnant inmate who acts as the Hispanic and Latina representative for WAC. When she goes into labor she is taken to a hospital, and later returns to the prison after having her newborn taken away from her, which elicits extreme sympathy from her fellow inmates. She describes Daya and Aleida's relationship as a "cautionary tale" and states that a minute with them is better than Plan B, as she would never talk to her daughter the way Aleida does toward Daya, or allow her daughter to talk to her the way Daya does Aleida.
- Sister Ingalls (played by Beth Fowler) - She is a nun who helps with services in the prison chapel. When Burset finds out she is getting hormone pills, she tries to cozy up to the Sister to obtain some. Instead, the Sister tries to convince Burset to reconnect with her son. It is not clear what she is in for, with the most credible suggestions being that it was for overzealous political activism. In spite of her faith, Sister Ingalls accepts Sophia as a close friend and strongly dislikes Doggett's religious fundamentalism. She is shown to be rather modernistic and "hip" in her faith and views.
- Gina Murphy (played by Abigail Savage) - She is a member of Red's crew and worker in the prison kitchen. It's implied she was incarcerated for murder and embezzling. She is often seen with Norma Romano. When Red's scheme to sabotage Mendoza backfires, Gina is hurt by a blast of fire from the oven which Red coated in a flammable substance, her arm being set on fire. Her status post this incident is not made clear.
- Marisol "Flaca" Gonzales (played by Jackie Cruz) - One of the Spanish inmates. She is shown to be rather misinformed at times, genuinely believing that black people cannot float due to their bone density. This leads to Maritza stating that her head is full of "caca" and Aleida referring to her as "Flacaca". She is also somewhat aggressive, getting into a brawl with "Taystee" over an ice-cream cone.
- Maritza Ramos (played by Diane Guerrero) - A Spanish inmate. She is often seen with Flaca with whom she has a rivalry/close friendship. She is shown to be similarly ditzy. She has a baby on the outside.
- Anita Demarco (played by Lin Tucci) -
- Blanca Flores (played by Laura Gomez) -
- Miss Rosa (played by Barbara Rosenblat) -
- Mercy Valduto (played by Katie Iacona) -
- Chang (played by Lori Tan Chinn) - Chang is the "golden girls" and "other" representative on the WAC.
- George "Pornstache" Mendez (played by Pablo Schreiber) - A corrupt and seemingly psychopathic prison guard who frequently abuses his authority. His personality can be both laughably exaggerated as well as frightening. Mendez uses his position as a guard to smuggle drugs and contraband into the prison until the prison begins to search the guards as well. He tries to strike a deal with Red to use her connections to smuggle drugs in, but she refuses him. He often trades sexual favors with the inmates and is one who supplies Miller with the drugs that kill her. He is put on unpaid leave after being set up by Daya and caught having sex with her.
- John Bennett (played by Matt McGorry) - A prison guard who is in a secret relationship with Daya. He has an artificial leg which Daya discovers while having oral sex with him in a utility closet. He is also approached by Daya's mother whom he rebuffs. He confides to Daya that he is under a lot of pressure to be tougher on the girls and fakes reprimanding her in front of everyone while secretly putting a note in her pocket.
- Joe Caputo (played by Nick Sandow) - One of the prison counselors and an administrative official just below Natalie Figueroa, whom he despises and whose job he desires. Caputo is a sleazy character who believes in keeping the inmates dehumanized and who masturbates in his office immediately after his first encounter with Piper. Caputo dislikes Healy, who he feels is not tough enough on the inmates. When the screwdriver disappears from the electric shop, he is the one who orders Watson sent to the SHU and threatens the other inmates. He appears to have romantic feelings for the new recruit to the staff, Susan Fischer.
- Natalie "Fig" Figueroa (played by Alysia Reiner) - The corrupt prison administrator ranking just below the as-yet-unseen warden. Figueroa claims to be a women's advocate for the prisoners but is generally unconcerned with them and refuses to get involved in their problems, though she shows odd displays of humanity and sensitivity, usually when the rest of the prison staff are being insufferable. Figueroa tries to avoid any scandals or media attention about goings on at the prison, and her desire to cover up incidents allows Mendez to get away with his schemes, although it later works in favour of the inmates. She is revealed to have been embezzling funds from the prison's budget, a secret which is in danger of being exposed thanks to the publicity the prison is getting from Larry's articles and radio interview.
- Scott O'Neill (played by Joel Marsh Garland) - An overweight prison guard in a relationship with Wanda Bell. He is frequently shown eating despite claiming to be on different diets.
- Wanda Bell (played by Catherine Curtin) - A prison guard. Bell is gruff and displays a general apathy to others. Nonetheless, she tends to be the most professional of the guards and takes her work seriously, especially the occasional visits from the Scared Straight program. During these visits, she displays a much deeper understanding of individual inmates, their histories and personalities than the other guards. For example, she specifically requests Miller and later Piper to scare an unusually resilient, wheelchair-bound delinquent aware that their more philosophical natures will be more effective in reaching the kid.
- Joel Luschek (played by Matt Peters) - The sarcastic, uncaring and barely competent young prison guard who runs the electrical shop. He displays blatant racism, and generally doesn't care what the women in the shop do as long as they leave him alone. His method of teaching repairs tends to consist of handing his inmates a manual for the broken appliance and giving them a few minutes to read before sending them off. He buys a new screwdriver and replaces it in the tool crib to cover up his mistake in failing to properly train Watson.
- Susan Fischer (played by Lauren Lapkus) - A rookie prison guard hired onto the prison staff during Piper's time at Litchfield. Fischer used to bag groceries at the store where Piper and Larry shopped, and recalls how Piper used to be a difficult customer. However she is friendly toward Piper, informing her that she does not think any less of her for being in prison, since the only difference between them is that Fischer didn't get caught making mistakes. Piper appreciates her kind words and convinces her to reopen the prison track. She displays a perpetually naïve and cheerful demeanor, which endears some (especially Caputo) and irritates others. She struggles to come across as authoritative and strict, and her attempts to appear tough do not appear to intimidate any of the inmates at the slightest, who on occasion, even admonish Susan in return. Caputo seems to have a romantic interest in her but it is revealed in the season one finale that she has a boyfriend.
- Eliqua Maxwell (played by Lolita Foster) - A female prison guard.
- Igme Dimaguiba (played by Kaipo Schwab) - Nurse at Litchfield Penitentiary
- Wade Donaldson (played by Brendan Burke) - He is the first person Piper meets when she surrenders to the prison.
- J. Thompson (played by Harold Surratt) - He was placed on extended leave after an incident that resulted in a serious injury to a prisoner.
- Polly Harper (played by Maria Dizzia) - Piper's best friend of many years on the outside. Polly and Piper own a business together which Polly runs while Piper is in prison. Polly is very pregnant at the beginning of the series and is upset at Piper for getting herself locked up. She begins cutting Piper out of their business after Piper ignores a conference call they were supposed to make together. Flashbacks reveal that Polly was supportive of Piper exploring her sexuality, but disliked Alex and found Piper's taste in romantic partners of either sex horrendous.
- Carol Chapman (played by Deborah Rush) - Piper's mother. Carol doesn't seem as supportive as Piper thinks she should be and their visitations are usually awkward.
- Howard Bloom and Amy Kanter-Bloom (played by Todd Susman and Kathryn Kates) - Larry's parents. Larry's dad dislikes Piper and feels that Larry is making a mistake by being with her. They own Larry's home and let him slide on the rent. Howard wants Larry to find a real job and encourages him to lie to Piper about who really named her in her criminal case.
- Jean Baptiste (played by James McDaniel) - Baptiste originally brought Miss Claudette to the US and set her up at the cleaning company. He later broke her heart by marrying another woman but reconnects with Miss Claudette when his wife dies.
- Crystal Burset (played by Tanya Wright) - Sophia's wife. Crystal is supportive of Sophia's transition into a woman but encouraged her not to have gender reassignment surgery. In any case, Crystal felt it was better that her son have a father who was there for him, even if it was in a dress. She sometimes visits Sophia in prison and updates her on their son. Crystal refuses to smuggle in hormones for Sophia when the prison cuts her dosage. Later on, Crystal becomes close to the new pastor of her church, sparking Sophia's jealousy. Sister Engalls convinces her that this is about Crystal's needs and not about Sophia or their son, and Sophia gives her blessing for Crystal to act on her interest.
- Pete Harper (played by Nick Stevenson) - Polly's husband and a friend of Larry and Piper. A running gag is that most characters have some sort of minor dislike of him and are a little confused as to why Polly married him.
- Cesar (played by Berto Colon) - Aleida Diaz's boyfriend and a drug dealer. He is shown using Diaz's kitchen to cut/package drugs for sale. It is implied that Aleida is in prison after taking the rap for him, at which point Daya started an affair with him. Aleida contacts him about Daya's pregnancy, prompting him to come upstate and threaten John.
- Cal Chapman (played by Michael Chernus) - Piper's brother. He was generally ignored by his parents who let him be an underachieving slacker. Since Piper's incarceration, they have begun expecting more of him much to his dismay. He is friends with Larry, who often visits him at his trailer in the middle of nowhere, which he eventually comes to share with his hippie girlfriend.