With every new season of Orange Is The New Black (OITNB) comes a fresh batch of buzz. Together with Netflix, OITNB creator Jenji Kohan has created quite an empire with the much-hyped series. Based on the book by Piper Kerman, Orange is the New Black has been the number one show on Netflix each summer since 2013. This year, as we watch along, we’ve been talking about how buzz can make or break content.
In the more recent seasons, the series has offered storylines that touch on real social issues from each year, including the murder of Eric Garner, the death of Sandra Bland, and most recently, the controversy surrounding immigration. They’re risky topics to tackle, and with them comes a wave of critique and opinion pieces. Whether positive or negative, it’s all user-generated press, and it begs the question: is all press good press?
Much like the Kardashians (and anyone who makes money from having their content consumed), the team behind OITNB profit from a large number of views. And that number rises, regardless of whether the viewers’ opinions are positive or negative—some people just watch, even if only to share their dislike for it (a trend we like to call “hate-watching”). To us, it’s all a sign of an interesting shift in the way people consume content, and why. Sure, they’re posting negative opinions online, but how much do those negative comments really affect the bottom line? Thoughts to linger on.
Either way, we can’t wait to see how more brands take risks and push the envelope in the future. In the meantime, check out this moodboard we created inspired by this most recent season of OITNB!