TV's 22 Smartest People on Their Favorite Shows - Rolling Stone
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TV’s 22 Smartest People on Their Favorite Shows

From ‘The Daily Show’ to ‘House of Cards,’ TV’s creators, writers and stars on their favorite shows

Orange Is the New Black Matthew WeinerOrange Is the New Black Matthew Weiner

Jessica Miglio for Netflix; Jeff Vespa/WireImage

Orange Is the New Black feels like the most contemporary thing on TV. It's a great fish-out-of-water story. Like Tony Soprano, the main character, Piper, is a very different person than me, but I identify with her. The prison is filled with people that you recognize, and each episode ingen­iously lets the main character recede and tells us about the other people in prison – why they're there, which gives a lot of humanity to the show. You really do think, "What would I do in that situation?" It's fascinating to see a contemporary in this nightmare. Piper's learning something behind bars, which breaks one of the big TV rules the networks tell you: Nobody grows, nobody changes. They say, "Keep remaking the pilot." But Jenji Kohan can't help herself; she has a singular voice and an ability to not embrace a formula. The truth is, I'm completely sucked in. I have a 16-year-old son, and Orange Is the New Black is his favorite show. That's something, especially in a house where it should be Mad Men.


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