Brow Beat

Netflix Says 105 Million Subscribers Have Watched an Episode of Orange Is the New Black

Danielle Brooks and Taryn Manning sit on separate benches in a prison yard, facing each other.
Danielle Brooks and Taryn Manning in Orange Is the New Black Season 7. JoJo Whilden/Netflix

It will soon be lights out for Orange Is the New Black. The long-running, award-winning series will close the jailhouse door for good after the seventh and final season premieres on July 26, and Netflix now reveals that one of its first ever Originals is also its most-watched. According to a Variety cover story, 105 million users have watched at least one episode of the series over the past six years. More than half of viewers are outside of the U.S., and the show has a strong fanbase in France and Germany in particular, as well as Brazil. “I remember going to Brazil for Pride and feeling like the Jackson 5, the way people were just hollering at us on that float,” Danielle Brooks told Variety. “It was a whirlwind. And when we got off the float, we had to run, because people were chasing us to get a photo. It blew my mind.”

Based on the memoir of Piper Kerman, Orange Is the New Black begins with the story of how a mistake from her past landed her in the (fictional) prison of Litchfield Penitentiary. Since its debut in 2013, it has diverged from the book, branching out to the lives of all Piper’s cellmates over the years and addressing political issues, prison conditions, and the difficulty of rejoining society after being incarcerated for so long. Cindy Holland, Vice President of Netflix Content, said that the success of show has allowed the platform to be more adventurous. “It has certainly encouraged us to take more risks and to really think big about the types of content that we could program for an audience willing to try new things and discover different things,” she told Variety “And also to push into making sure that we’re programming for underrepresented audiences and really try to serve all audiences.”