Of my friends who like Orange is the New Black (and really, you might not be my friend anymore if you don't like the show), there seems to be one consensus: none of us really like Piper Chapman. Minor problem considering she is, after all, the character at the center of the Netflix dramedy that takes us inside a minimum security federal women's prison. Not only does Chapman seem very self-involved, her story-line simply doesn't take hold of one or stir empathy or make one curse the gods the way those of her fellow inmates do. But then I met the real Piper Chapman, err, Piper Kerman, the woman who wrote the memoir on which the show is based. Okay, well I didn't really "meet" her as much as she was a guest on Forum and I was able to listen to her answer questions and tell her real story for an hour and wow, she impresses. So as a way to absolve my judgmental-ness towards Piper Chapman, here are reasons to like the real Piper, Piper Kerman.
1. She Knows It's Not About Her:
"My belief, when I started to write the book, which I did after I came home from prison was that by telling my own story, I would possibly be able to get folks to come and read a prison book who might otherwise not pick one up. And if they did that, they would meet, in the course of reading that book, an amazing, fascinating group of woman," said Kerman.
"What is wonderful to me about the creative choices that [show creator Jenji Kohan] made during the show is that she took that even further. She didn't choose to focus on a single protagonist but rather she recognized that every single person in a prison or jail is the protagonist of their own story, even though from the outside we don't always think of people who have been locked up in that way."