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Cynthia Nitovia "Tova" "Black Cindy" Hayes is a main character and an inmate at Litchfield Penitentiary. Cindy is referred to as "Black Cindy" due to there being another Cindy who is white. She is often seen with Watson, Poussey, Taystee and Suzanne. She grew up in the church and knows biblical references. In Season Three, Cindy converts to Judaism and adopts the name Tova (טוֹבָה). She is in Maximum Security in Season Six. Cindy is based off "Pom-Pom" from Piper Kerman's Orange Is the New Black: My Year in a Women's Prison. In real life, the character that Cindy is based off, "Pom-Pom", actually did have a back ulcer just like Cindy, only "Pom-Pom" died from it.
Early in the series, Cindy is shown to be selfish and carefree, rarely thinking about the consequences of her actions. She seems to have problems with authority and is seen willing to stand up to anyone who challenges or tries to control her, including her family, Red, Vee and prison staff. She is one of the more outspoken and brash inmates in Litchfield. Occasionally she is friendly and helpful, but typically only when it suits her. Cindy doesn't appear to think about others when she may have to give something up that she wants. Cindy initially asked to be Jewish just for kosher food as a result of the new substandard fare brought in by MCC in Season Three, a tactic quickly jumped on by many other inmates. However, after researching the religion in an attempt to fool the Rabbi who was summoned to Litchfield to figure out who was truly Jewish, she realized that she wanted to be Jewish for a love of the religion as well. In a rare display of emotion, Cindy openly wept as she talked with the Rabbi about what she had learned, and was granted permission to convert.
Later on, she develops real feelings for her friends, as shown when she gives Suzanne advice and a pep talk and also her devastation at Poussey's death and her genuine concern when Suzanne's condition deteriorates during the Riot in Litchfield Penitentiary
Physical Appearance Edit
Cindy was born in 1987. She is an African-American inmate. She has black hair which is often put into different styles like an Afro, Afro puffs, or a single ponytail. She has a wide nose, big lips and well-groomed eyebrows. She is a heavyset woman. She is very tall, taller than characters like Abdullah and Sophia. In Season Five, Cindy stole Lee Dixon's CO shirt and wore it herself with a belt. Usually, a comb is kept in her hair.
For a list of episodes featuring Cindy's flashbacks, see here.
Before Litchfield EditCindy grew up in a strict religious household. A flashback in Season Three shows her as a girl being loudly scolded for eating from her plate during a dinner prayer ("Trust No Bitch"). She is roared at and is told she will go to hell after her father recites scripture.
Age 16, Cindy has sex with a boy named Curtis in her high school's boy's locker room. They narrowly avoid being discovered by Curtis' friends, whereupon Curtis is mocked for being alone with Cindy whilst having simultaneously a girlfriend at the time. When they leave, Cindy feels her stomach and puts on a large jacket.
Several months later, a heavily pregnant Cindy discusses the identity of her baby's father with her sister, Joy Hayes. Her father, Lucas Hayes, enters the room, and demands Cindy tell her who the father is. Afraid of what Lucas may do, Cindy refuses, and is shouted at.
Cindy has a nine-year-old daughter named Monica who she left with Lillian, and now claims is her sister. Cindy worked at an airport as a security officer and TSA agent in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She stole passengers' items and food from the airport kiosks. She would grope men while she was searching them. Cindy was portrayed as a very irresponsible worker, as shown during Monica's birthday when Cindy gave her an iPad she stole from an airport traveler's luggage. She then took her out for ice cream before leaving her in a car for several hours while she smoked marijuana with her friends. It's hinted by Cindy's mother that she has a history of kleptomaniac behaviors ("Comic Sans"). Her and her mother argue about Monica's custody and it ends with Cindy in tears.
Black Cindy is one of the inmates involved in the "Scared Straight" program at Litchfield ("Bora Bora Bora"). After Taystee gets released, she and Poussey are seen together a lot and play pranks on people like Piper.
When Vee arrives at Litchfield, Black Cindy initially dislikes her. When Vee asks for a favour from Cindy, and says that she would be grateful if Cindy does it, Cindy replies “If grateful paid the bills, we’d all be Bill Gates!” before leaving the cafeteria. However, Cindy starts to come around when Vee brings the girls cake as a peace offering ("Hugs Can Be Deceiving"), and eventually takes part in her new business.
[...] She turns against Vee again when she is physically threatened with strangling by Vee when Vee’s heroin goes missing. She and Janae return to the library and state that they are done with Vee to Poussey and Taystee.
She and the other black girls later help intimidate Vee when she enters into Taystee’s bunk.
When Red is attacked by Vee, Suzanne is blamed in a situation that Vee orchestrates. Initally Cindy and the others corroborate with Vee's story, but they go to the FBI and tell them that it was Vee; although they are too late, Mr. Healy presents falsified work duty evidence "proving" how it could not have possibly been Suzanne.
After the meals have changed in the kitchen as a result of MCC takeover, becoming rather unpleasant, Cindy sees inmate Lolly Whitehill with a Kosher meal and then starts to ask for Kosher as well, wanting eggs and brocolli. Later, more and more people start to ask for Kosher meals, and it becomes prohibited unless you are confirmed to be Jewish by the rent-rabbi Elijah. Cindy was deemed not Jewish by Elijiah, much to Cindy's annoyance, who was told she was following Jewish culture, not the religion. Cindy meets with Ginsberg and Elijah to attempt to be given permission to reconvert, he refuses twice, until she gives a moving speech and he accepts, happily. Cindy later converts to Judaism, with the help of two other Jewish inmates, Ginsberg and Boyle, really feeling connected to the Jewish religion. She adopted the name Tova. At the end of the season, Cindy is immersed by Ginsberg in the Lake behind Litchfield ("Trust No Bitch"), which completes her conversion.
After Janae is racist to Soso, and Soso mocked Janae for 'moist' being a 'trigger word', a bored Cindy pretends that Soso said "n****r" After being berated by Taystee, she states "Can't we have a race war? It'll be fun!" Upon returning to the Litchfield campus, Cindy clashes with her new Muslim bunk mate Alison Abdullah. The two, at first, argue about their religious viewpoints while also messing with one another (Cindy telling her that the floor was bottom bunk property and Alison leaving a shaken soda as a trap as she knew Cindy would steal it). The two eventually learn to get along as the guard situation worsens. She also gives Suzanne advice about love telling her that everyone has a soulmate.
Cindy becomes obsessed with getting a picture with new inmate celebrity Judy King, so that they can sell it to the press. Judy, who is caught up in a scandal after a video is leaked of her doing a racist puppet show sketch years earlier, agrees that they can capture a picture of her and Cindy kissing. A furious Caputo confronts the pair whereupon they claim that they are in a "real" relationship and play up to their ruse. Cindy is disheartened when she realises that Judy has played her, and does, in fact, show racist tendancies.
When Poussey is accidentally murdered by CO Bayley, Cindy and her friends are devastated. Upon learning that Caputo did not even name Poussey during a press statement and that Bayley is not going to be punished, they become enraged. They storm through the prison yelling and waving items, which initiates the Riot in Litchfield Penitentiary. One of the COs, Humphrey, has smuggled in a gun to the prison, which falls from his uniform. Season Four ends with Dayanara Diaz holding Humphrey at gunpoint whilst the other inmates look on.
Cindy sees Humphrey being shot in the femoral artery by Dayanara and complains when her pants are soiled with his blood. She, Taystee, Janae and Abdullah go to Caputo's office where they capture Caputo and Josh, and Cindy claims that he will hurt him with a broken chair foot. While Taystee records Caputo on a tablet talking about Poussey's death, Cindy appears in the frame drinking a frappucino, which ends up becoming a meme on the internet.
During the night, Cindy, Janae, Alison and Taystee take and wear clothes that belonged to the inmates before being arrested. As suggested by Alison, they go to the cafeteria over dinner and ask for suggestions for demands from each inmate, stating that the riot is not only theirs. They note every demand in the visitation room, where Cindy is seen trying to take food from food machines. They tally the demands, then stick the top ten on a window at the front of Litchfield for the guards, police and the press to see.
Later, Cindy, Taystee and Janae reluctantly attend a spiritualist session with Maureen, Soso and Suzanne, who believe that Poussey's spirit still remains where she died; in fact, the noises heard throughout are Coates crawling through the ducts of the ceiling. Taystee is outwardly cynical but Cindy chastises her, telling her that everyone has their own way to grieve.
Judy King, who was on her way to be released at the start of the disorder, has been caught up in the riot and taken hostage by the White Power Group. On the second day of the riot, Cindy trades Judy King with the White Power Group at auction, making her her slave, tying a lead around her neck and forcing her to do her nails. Judy King is released by Taystee later on. The tenth demand, for hot cheetos and tampons, is fulfilled as a goodwill gesture by the governer's office. However, when the group realise that the governer's office currently has no plans to honor any of the other demands, they publicly burn the supplies on the lawn in front of the press. Meanwhile, the COs have been locked in "the bubble", one of the observation rooms in the dorms.
Cindy notices that Suzanne is acting more erratically than usual, due to her lack of medication and the uncommon routine that has settled in the prison. She negotiates borrowing the hostages from the bubble and takes them to Suzanne, ordering the guards to indulge Suzanne's delusions, until they are reclaimed later by Pidge and Ouija.
Suzanne later returns to the infirmary and realizes that Humphrey is dead. Freaking out, she attempts to reach Taystee with his corpse in a wheelchair and takes him close to the ongoing negotiation, but Cindy and Janae manage to hold her before Caputo and Figueroa see them.
During the night, Cindy patrols alone in the corridors of the prison while Piscatella is nearby capturing Red's family members. She sees Leanne and Angie trotting, Maritza and Flaca in a dark hallway, and is also scared when she hears a noise in the bathroom, which is actually Piper and Alex being picked up by Piscatella. Later, when Suzanne begins to have an outburst in the dormitory due to her meds being omitted by Morello, a panicking Cindy gives lithium to her, causing her to sleep.
At the end of the revolt when SWAT invades the prison, Cindy and Taystee try unsuccessfully to wake Suzanne, and then, with Nicky's help, take her to the pool where Frieda gives Suzanne an injection of adrenaline, making her finally wake up. Cindy hugs her, visibly sorry and ecstatic her friend is okay.
In the final moments of Season Five, all the prisoners in the pool hold hands as the SWAT team is about to enter. The team detonates the door with a bomb and then the screen turns orange, leaving the pool occupants' fate unknown.
Shortly after the storming, Cindy and Suzanne hide under a box to avoid detection by the SWAT team, witnessing Herrmann, Natoli and several others bringing down the body of Piscatella. They watch as Herrman picks up the gun that Taystee used to threaten Piscatella and proceeds to empty the clip into the walls and through the wound in Piscatella's head, making it look like a murder by the inmates. Suzanne nearly screams before Cindy covers her mouth quickly and shushes her, convincing her not to talk of this incident to anyone as the two may be incriminated for the crime and/or silenced with violence by the SWAT team. After relocating to a closet on the first floor of the prison and being discovered by the SWAT team, they feign being deaf in order to avoid talking and to explain why they have slept through the riot. Cindy and Suzanne are taken to the prison bus and then transferred to Litchfield Max.After arriving at Max, Cindy pleads with Suzanne to remain quiet about their secret. During her testimony with the FBI, she states that she wasn't in the pool area but the agent quickly notes that Cindy's DNA was found on the gun that killed Piscatella. She then slips up and states that she "only had it for two seconds when she was taking the gun from T", then the agent soon realizes that "T" is Taystee, and Cindy is left battling over the decision to save her bestfriend or herself. Upon confering with her lawyer and being reminded by the agent that they can only grant immunity for testimony they can use, Cindy thinks back to needing being involved in the parentage of Monica and shatteredly gets tricked into incriminating Taystee in order to protect herself.
Shortly after, she is assigned to D-Block and rejoins Lorna Morello, Flaca and Daya, almost immediately running afoul of Daddy whom confiscates her catty bag and toiletries. The girls are all assigned to cleaning duty where they make a plan to steal a catty bag left behind by one of Daddy's gang members, but are disgusted to discover the shampoo bottle is filled with urine during their shower as Daddy enters the area and mocks them.
While standing in a line, Cindy strikes up a rapport with Flaca who realizes that Cindy's witty personality would make her the perfect co-host for a prison radio show. After being granted the gig on the spot by a disinterested Luschek, the duo team up to start their 4AM radio show called "Flava to the Max" (a portmanteau of Flaca and Tova).
Cindy is thrilled to see Taystee as she is released back to general population to great acclaim from the inmates, but as the two embrace, a look of guilt is seen upon her face as Taystee reveals that she's going to trial instead of taking a plea deal. Cindy then realizes that she will have to speak her testimony in front of Taystee and is hulled with chronic back pain throughout the rest of the season.
Taystee mentions Suzanne (who has been placed in B-Block) and notes how they should invite her to the yard to see her, but Cindy expresses doubt as she secretly wishes to keep Suzanne apart from Taystee to avoid her potentially talking.Taystee and Cindy are talking when Cindy is preparing for her show. She makes jokes to a panicking Taystee who is worried about her hair cut. Taystee mentions about her trial deposition being soon because Caputo has to leave his testimony. Cindy gets a sudden sharp pain in her back due to the guilt, as the back pain begins to develop. During her show, her and Flaca are giving advice and Cindy lies on the ground to avoid the pain being worse. The next day, Cindy leaves in her own note secretly because she wants advice from Flaca. She tells the story of her accidental betrayal discretely which ends in Flaca calling her selfish and Cindy getting offended and telling her to pipe down. Flaca then goes on to say the person who did that should suffocate which makes Cindy snap and she pushes the table at Daya and storms off. Later on, Cindy and Taystee are in the library and Taystee is getting Cindy to hold several law books for her because she couldn't understand the lawyers vocabulary. Cindy has another spike of guilt-pain and she attempts to finally tell the truth to Taystee, but ultimately hesitates and admits that she has a daughter instead. She cries and repeats that she isn't a good person. ("Break the String")
Cindy is still guilty and develops a plan while on haitus from her show. She and Crystal Tawney exchange; Cindy would read Crystal's haiku if she gives Cindy her phone. Later, she rings Caputo and uses a fake voice at first, but then gives up and tells him to look into the CERT team. ("Chocolate Chip Nookie")
Before the trial, Cindy speaks to her lawyer and alludes to the true circumstances in the pool area, begging to change her testimony. Her lawyer responds that this is impossible and that changing her testimony at the last minute would ultimately help no-one, as it would not be enough to clear Taystee and could possibly earn Cindy ten more years on her sentence at most. Feeling defeated, a saddened Cindy answers during the trial that Taystee was the last one she saw holding the gun as Taystee bursts into tears in the courtroom.
Back at prison, Cindy is beside Frieda during Red's attack on the latter. She was also present alongside Flaca during Piper and Alex's "prison" wedding.
While Cindy and Flaca work as commentators during the prison's kickball game, Flaca admits that she knew that Cindy was feeling guilty about Taystee ever since she read the letter on the air. Encouraging her to move on, Flava uses a loose analogy involving a McGriddle and Southwest Chicken Salad to explain that someone can always start anew regardless of what they previously did. Temporarily comforted by this, Cindy is motivated to rejoin the commentary and enjoy the kickball game, waving to Suzanne playing on the field prior to a successful kick. ("Be Free")
- Her Inmate No. is 2198-7453.
- Her birth name is Cynthia.
- Taystee (“strained” best friend; In court Taystee is annoyed and betrayed when Cindy has to say yes to certain contradictory statements. However after court, Joe Caputo states that Cindy still probably cares, and “we don’t know what happened behind closed doors”. Taystee seems to think about it and perhaps forgive Cindy, but Cindy is overrun with guilt throughout the rest of the season (See: Black Cindy and Taystee)
- Poussey Washington (best friends; Cindy and Poussey spend a lot of time together after Taystee is released, playing pranks on inmates and sitting together).
- Janae Watson
- Suzanne Warren (prison daughter)
- Brook Soso
- Alison Abdullah (they become close after realising they both hate scientology)
- Ginsberg (fellow Jewish inmate, helped convert to Judaism)
- Rhea Boyle (fellow Jewish inmate, helped convert to Judaism)
- Galina Reznikov (Despite stealing Red's corn , she and Red become friends during the Riot)
- Blanca Flores
- Nicky Nichols
- Frieda Berlin
- Flaca (host a radio show together; met when they were going to the gynecologist and joked about pubic hair which surrounding inmates enjoyed).
- Lorna Morello Muccio (Despite a dispute in season 5, they become friends in season 6)
- Dayanara Diaz
- Vee (held Cindy at Strangling point with a broom)
- Alison Abdullah (former)
- Marisol Gonzales (former)
- Kasey Sankey (white supremist)
- Helen Van Maele (white supremist)
- Brandy Epps (Nazi, white supremist)
- Lorna Muccio (former)
- Jennifer Digori (white supremist)
- Baxter Bayley (killed Poussey)
- Galina Reznikov (former; Stole her corn, and disrepected her)
Memorable Quotes Edit
- "Ain't no gangster called Barbara"
- — Cindy Hayes to Lorna Morello & Marisol Gonzales
- "In the Bible, God told Saul, Kill em' all! Utterly destroy them motherfuckers! That's what God said."
- — Cindy Hayes
- "But I been washing my pits, tits and naughty bits in the sink!"
- — Cindy Hayes
- "You get that wet Chapman treatment."
- — Cindy Hayes
- "Bitch! If grateful paid the bills, we'd all be Bill Gates!"
- — Cindy Hayes
- "Shabbat Shalom, bitch!"
- — Cindy Hayes
- "Don't be cheap in the hand, I ain't got no cooties or nothing!"
- — Cindy Hayes to Judy King.
- "If it comes down to swimming, I will save myself. I will stand on a bitch's head"
- — Cindy Hayes
- "Why you sneakin' around all stealth and shit? You ain't the Pink Panther."
- — Cindy Hayes to Yvonne Parker
- "I'm ready to get my Jew on."
- — Cindy Hayes to Alan Tatelbaum ("Trust No Bitch")
- "Oh, I went there, bought a house; moved in, bitch. And now I'm remodeling the kitchen."
- — Cindy Hayes to Alison Abdullah
- "I'm gonna have to call bullshit on that, I'm sorry; we may not be able to act on our racism, like, put them in the ghetto, send them to shitty school... kill 'em in the back of police vans. But we sure as shit can be racist as everyone else, 'cause this is America. Land of the free, home of the racist."
- — Cindy Hayes to Janae Watson
- "In case math ain't your jam... I got like fifty pounds on you, easy"
- — Cindy Hayes to Vee in ("We Have Manners. We're Polite.")
- "A little spray here, a little spray there, a little spray in my underwear makes the buggies back off! Ooh, makes the buggies piss off. Makes the buggies back way the fuck off, way the fuck off."
- — Cindy Hayes singing as she sprays herself in disinfectant ("Bed Bugs and Beyond")
- "By fair I actually mean I'm bigger and stronger, and I got more friends. It's from the Latin word, "fæger" meaning "go suck a fart"...five times a day."
- — Cindy Hayes to Alison Abdullah.
Promotional Pictures Edit
Season 2 Edit
Season 3 Edit
|Orange Is the New Black: Season One|
|"I Wasn't Ready":||"Tit Punch":||"Lesbian Request Denied":||"Imaginary Enemies":||"The Chickening":||"WAC Pack":||"Blood Donut":|
|"Moscow Mule":||"Fucksgiving":||"Bora Bora Bora":||"Tall Men with Feelings":||"Fool Me Once":||"Can't Fix Crazy":|
|Orange Is the New Black: Season Two|
|"Thirsty Bird":||"Looks Blue, Tastes Red":||"Hugs Can Be Deceiving":||"A Whole Other Hole":||"Low Self Esteem City":||"You Also Have a Pizza":||"Comic Sans":|
|"Appropriately Sized Pots":||"40 Oz. of Furlough":||"Little Mustachioed Shit":||"Take a Break From Your Values":||"It Was the Change":||"We Have Manners. We're Polite.":|
|Orange Is the New Black: Season Three|
|"Mother's Day":||"Bed Bugs and Beyond":||"Empathy Is a Boner Killer":||"Finger in the Dyke":||"Fake It Till You Fake It Some More":||"Ching Chong Chang":||"Tongue-Tied":|
|"Fear, and Other Smells":||"Where My Dreidel At":||"A Tittin' and a Hairin'":||"We Can Be Heroes":||"Don't Make Me Come Back There":||"Trust No Bitch":|
|Orange Is the New Black: Season Four|
|"Work That Body for Me":||"Power Suit":||"(Don't) Say Anything":||"Doctor Psycho":||"We'll Always Have Baltimore":||"Piece of Shit":||"It Sounded Nicer in My Head":|
|"Friends in Low Places":||"Turn Table Turn":||"Bunny, Skull, Bunny, Skull":||"People Persons":||"The Animals":||"Toast Can't Never Be Bread Again":|
|Orange Is the New Black: Season Five|
|"Riot FOMO":||"Fuck, Marry, Frieda":||"Pissters!":||"Litchfield's Got Talent":||"Sing It, White Effie":||"Flaming Hot Cheetos, Literally":||"Full Bush, Half Snickers":|
|"Tied to the Tracks":||"The Tightening":||"The Reverse Midas Touch":||"Breaking the Fiberboard Ceiling":||"Tattoo You":||"Storm-y Weather":|
|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":|
|Credit Only||Appears||Appears||Appears||Credit Only||Appears|