Carol Denning was an inmate at Litchfield Penitentiary Maximum Security. She was the sister of Barbara Denning and Debbie Denning, and is a main antagonist of Season Six. She was portrayed by Henny Russell and her younger self by Ashley Jordyn.
Carol Denning displays many sociopathic tendencies, such as a disregard for the feelings of others and a willingness to do almost anything to serve her own desires. She has a temper that flares up at various points. That tendency to lash out leads her into trouble during her youth. As she gets older, she learns to use that rage in a slower, more intelligent way. She never appears to express guilt, unless it is for herself. Her mindset is vengeful and self-centered, causing her to be highly manipulative and violent.
Carol was the younger, less popular sister. She had glasses and did not seem to draw men to her like Barbara did (although it’s possible Carol’s personality and angry demeanor contributed to why she did not have the same magnetism).
Her anger plays out in various, powerful ways throughout the season. Before prison, she is shown being impulsive when angry. She almost hits her younger sister and does not think of a solid plan after she suggests killing her ("Look Out for Number One").
After she is incarcerated, she behaves erratically and violently. This scares most inmates into obeying her. Despite her impulsiveness, she does seem aware of her inability to think long-term (her sister, Barbara, had helped with those details before and Carol knew both of their strengths). This is why she employs Frieda (and probably others) to act as bodyguards and to keep her from making mistakes when angry. (Look Out for Number One)
As she gets older, she appears to quell much of her impulsiveness. She relies on others less. She now uses them to her advantage instead of actually needing them. When put into a cell with Barbara, both realize they cannot beat each other because of a present guard. Instead, they wait and carry out their attempted murders long term. Therefore, Carol and Barbara may have evolved in some ways, but they ultimately remain anger driven.
Her father was shown to have been abusive in some manner, which was possibly a contributing factor to Carol's cold and sociopathic nature.
Physical Appearance Edit
As a younger girl, Carol was slender with brown hair. As she got older, her hair got grayer and her face hollowed out. She retained her glasses.
Flashbacks of Carol from her days before prison show her with candy in her mouth. While young and in prison, she is shown constantly smoking cigarettes. Now, she is almost always shown with a lollipop in her mouth.
Before Litchfield Edit
As teenagers, both Carol and Barbara worked in an eatery as waitresses. One evening, while Barbara worked at the bar and Carol on tables, a man entered and asked a separate waitress for a glass of ice. The waitress misheard, assuming he said "the Classifieds". The waitress went to the store to buy a newspaper and handed it to the customer. Confused, the customer informs the waitress he asked for a "glass of ice". The waitress later relayed this tale to Barbara and Carol, who both burst into laughter ("Be Free").
Carol and her family moved around so they could cater to the youngest member, Carol and Barbara’s sister Debbie, and her rhythmic ribbon competitions. This deeply bothered both Carol and Barbara. After learning of another move, Carol angrily suggests murdering Debbie. Barbara shows apprehension at first but it fades as she considers the possibilities, reminding Carol that they would need a plan. Carol then shows Barbara her graphic drawings of her killing Debbie. Some of the disturbing drawings appear to predate their conversation.
When their parents reveal once more that they are moving, this time to to Plano, Texas, they older sisters are infuriated. Whilst they watch a school assembly in which their sister is competing, Carol suggests murdering their sister as a joke, showing Barbara that she has sketched different scenarios, such as feeding Debbie Yoplait with glass shards. Barbara shows discomfort towards this at first, but this almost immediately fades as she adds her own advice. At home, Barbara and Carol argue with their parents over moving once again to cater to Debbie's competitions. Their father gets confrontational when Barbara mentions she knows people who will let her stay with them until she graduates. The two parents leave, saying they will be home later and that Barbara and Carol are expected to stay home on their last night in town to look after Debbie.
Debbie asks her sisters for help releasing some tadpoles she has been keeping as pets. Carol threatens to kill Debbie's tadpoles. Barbara steps in and tells Carol to stop and let Debbie release her tadpoles at the lake, however, this is Barbara and Carol's plan to kill Debbie. At the lake, Carol remains in the car while Barbara takes Debbie to the lakeside. Debbie reveals that she dislikes moving as much as Carol and Barbara and had asked her parents to stay but they didn't listen to her protests to which Barbara seems to empathize. Barbara tells Debbie the tadpoles will die from the cold after she releases them, but Debbie informs her of the adaptions tadpoles have for winter. Impressed, Barbara tells Debbie that she's "alright", but this is interrupted when Carol runs at Debbie with a hatchet. Barbara tells Debbie to get into the car and lock herself in. Debbie obeys her eldest sister, and runs to the car. Smiling, Barbara and Carol start to push the car towards the lake. Debbie realises she cannot get out; the locks in the inner doors don't work, as Carol has removed them. Together, Carol and Barbara roll the car into the lake while Debbie screams and begs for them to spare her. The two sisters then watch the car sink as Barbara hums "She's a Maniac" before walking away ("Chocolate Chip Nookie").
Arrival at Litchfield Edit
At Litchfield, shortly after their arrival, Carol and Barbara are together in the same cell block. Barbara listens to Carol as she tells the story of the classifieds/glass of ice mix up, but as if it happened to her. Barbara interrupts Carol's story and tells the group that it instead happened to her, and not Carol. The two argue and begin a fight. This is what caused the original rivalry between C-Block and D-Block when the sisters are seperated ("Chocolate Chip Nookie"). In the 1980s, when Frieda Berlin is incarcerated, Carol and Frieda begin selling drugs out of the library. Barbara arrives to confront Carol and Frieda about mutually agreed-upon rules that had been breached between the cell blocks on what contraband they may sell. Barbara attempts to intimidate Frieda and Carol, until Frieda pulls a shiv out on Barbara and her gang, causing them to walk away. As a result, Carol commences an ambush on the opposing dorm during a game of kickball, after realising that her stash has been stolen. Carol stabs the ball during her turn as a symbol of war, and charges at Barbara and tackles her to the ground. Carol demands Barbara confess what she did with the contraband, but Barbara denies all knowledge and says that it was most likely Frieda who took it. This is later revealed to be true and the reason that Frieda got moved to minimum security. Carol got 30 more years added to her sentence as a result of the ensuing violence between C- and D-Block ("Look Out for Number One").
Carol is the head honcho of her block and becomes a close associate of Red when they bond over their mutual hatred towards Frieda. Madison Murphy and a few other inmates take on the jobs as her underlings to bring death to Barbara’s block. Carol is always seen playing cards with her closest friends.
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The gang war is supposed to go down during the kickball game but both Carol and Barbara aren't there. Instead, they've hidden in a utility closet together. They both change into B-Block (Florida) pink scrubs with the aim of getting in and murdering Frieda in all the chaos. and wait for the fight to begin. Unfortunately for them, their plan goes awry when the fight never breaks out and instead the C- and D-Block girls just play kickball. Barbara and Carol turn against each other, Carol saying that she was only there to kill Frieda, but Barbara accused her of lying, like she does all the time, and Carol using her famous catchphrase,“Bulltrue!”. After a quick flashback to the “Classifieds” joke, revealing it, in fact, happened to neither of them, Barbara’s body can be seen lying on the floor in front of the closet with her throat slit and a dying Carol is crawling away with a shiv in her back before she dies a few seconds later. CO Copeland and CO Alvarez discover their bodies.
- Ronnie Denning (father)
- Alice Denning (mother)
- Barbara (older sister; deceased)
- Debbie (younger sister; deceased)
Memorable Quotes Edit
- — Carol Denning's catchphrase
|Orange Is the New Black: Season Six|
|"Who Knows Better Than I":||"Shitstorm Coming":||"Look Out for Number One":||"I'm the Talking Ass":||"Mischief Mischief":||"State of the Uterus":||"Changing Winds":|
|"Gordons":||"Break the String":||"Chocolate Chip Nookie":||"Well This Took a Dark Turn":||"Double Trouble":||"Be Free":|