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"Tattoo You" is the twelfth episode of the fifth season of Orange Is the New Black. It is the sixty-fourth episode of the series overall. It premiered on June 9, 2017. It was written by Tara Herrmann and Carolina Paiz, and directed by Mark A. Burley.


Boo dabbles in blackmail, Nicky promises to help Lorna, Doggett makes a discovery, and Piper comes to a realization about her girlfriend Alex.



Gina posted the video of Piscatella breaking Alex's arm onto YouTube, and it made its way to the news. This causes the public to believe this is the type of treatment the inmates of Litchfield had endured when MCC took over. The governor and Nita discuss how big of a problem this is for MCC over the phone. Later, Gina reports that the video skyrocketed to 600,000 views, with the comments indicating that the viewers are on the inmates' side.

Ouija and Pidge drag Luschek and Gloria back to Spanish Harlem from the yard to frisk them for contraband. Ouija takes the phone Gloria had been using to cooperate with Lourdes about her son's condition in the hospital. After that, under Ouija's command, Zirconia locks Luschek and Gloria in the guard's room. Pidge and Ouija get sick from the coffee snorting from the previous episode. 

Doggett escapes the prison through a hole in a fence. She seeks refuge in the guards' house where she finds a gun, stashing it in her pants. She later lays down in bed.

After discovering Linda Ferguson’s real identity, Boo blackmails her. She asks for $5000, but is still annoyed at the fact Linda was ‘sleeping with the enemy’. Linda feels sorry for treating inmates as variables on the profit after living in the prison. Boo demands that Linda PayPal her the money immediately, but Linda feigns a dead phone without a charger.

Nicky returns to find Lorna with lots of pregnancies tests. Lorna thinks she is ‘seeing things’ but in every test, it is shown that she is indeed pregnant.

Nicky checks out the inmate emergency phone book, and finds Vince Muccio’s number and calls him. She makes a very moving speech on how Lorna is crazy but only because she loves him. Vincent remarked how she “thinks he slept with her sister”, but later realizes he loves Lorna after Nicky announces she is indeed pregnant.

Yoga and Alex have a talk about Piper. She is angry that Piper didn't hang out with Alex during the Riot.

Red talks with Piscatella and is acting more like herself. She talks about how they are similiar and how he has too much pride. In the trade of insults, he begins coughing as Red gives him beer which he spits. 

Alison is upset when she finds out Taystee rejected the offer after ‘Justice for Poussey’ was not reached (Bayley prosecuted). However, Janae is seen to be happy that she was strong and hopeful Fig will return with all demands reached, as is Taystee. Taystee also finds out that Cindy gave Suzanne lithium.

Piper checks out the support from the civilians. She sees Carol Chapman, her mother, in the crowd whilst being told by the door-guarders that it is because of ‘some video’, Piper is impressed the video reached so much. Piper later goes into an office and makes a phone call to her mother, where they have a very important conversation, and Carol places her blessing on Piper and Vause but is suprised to learn Piper is the one protecting Alex, stating “I always thought you’d be the girly one” and that she “needs someone like that” (someone that loves her a lot). They are interrupted when the SWAT tells the civilians to back away 40ft. Carol says goodbye as Piper knocks on the window trying to get her mother’s attention, but fails.

Caputo and Fig talk before one suggests a ‘quickie’, Natalie states “don’t ruin the hair” and Joe responds that it is built like a brick. When bending over, The governor's assistant comes in and interrupts an almost intimate Joe and Natalie, stating that Taystee didn’t send the inmates, Maria did, and Taystee ‘clearly’ doesn’t have any intention of ending the riot.

Doggett puts on Coates' shirt.

Gloria and Luschek discuss trepenation and he tries to comfort her. She is surprised he went to college, but he actually committed fraud and just stayed off campus and accepted the tuition checks. He says that survival rates are high in trepenation

Nicky pulls up Vince Muccio's number and scares him into loving her and tells her she's crazy, but adorable and lovable. She states that Lorna needs love and states that he is fucked up too and it's clear that she loves Lorna too.

Taystee finds Cindy with Suzanne in a cube, Taystee scolds Cindy for using lithium but cindy states “at least I tried”. Carmen Aziza and Pidge enter the cube, and Taystee and Cindy berate them for abusing Suzanne, but not as Black Cindy makes them feel threatened. They state the hostages are all gone because Gloria and Maria set them free to see their families. Taystee and Cindy are angered, Taystee shouts “shit” when Black Cindy says “shit is not the right word” and says right now it is kind of a “holy fucksville” situation. Taystee runs out the ghetto to try get Natalie and stop the SWAT team.

Piper returns to Frieda’s bunker and gives Alex her glasses, stating she thought Alex wanted her “sexy librarian” look back. Alex jokes that of course that’s what she uses them for, not sight. After some continued small talk, Piper bends down on her knee and makes a speech to “Alex Pearl Vause”, filled with metaphors and ultimately proposing to her, which Alex accepts.

Taystee runs towards the prison entrance and screams to the door guards, “Tell them to wait!” But it’s too late, the guards move along and the doors are blown open, the scene disappears into orange.


Note: Flashbacks are arranged in chronological order, not the order in which they occur on the show.

Piper Chapman[]

Piper is in a tattoo shop, getting a tattoo of a fish in the back of her neck, which symbolises beauty. The artist wonders why she didn't get it in somewhere she can see it,  to which Piper replies that it's not for her. She talks about her ex and mentions a metaphor of not letting sea sickness ruin the (beauty of the) beach.

Alex Vause[]

During Kubra Balik's trial, Alex goes out to a bar.

She is seen drinking when a French man reads her tattoo "love is pain" which she says she got in response to Piper's. She states love is not beauty. He asks if it is her girlfriend and Alex replies ex, and that she is purely gay and would not sleep with him ever. She asks if wants to here if he wants to hear the rest of the story, to which he replies yes as it will distract him from his own love-pain.

He orders a drink for himself and Alex. She says her lovepain is worse than his lovepain. He says pain isn't a contest. She also says that Piper broke her heart, but she messed up and acknowledges she ruined Piper's life (gave her name) by saying she went nuclear. She refuses to tell more info as her drink is laid down.

He tells his story of how his wife was having an affair with a butcher, which led him to have an affair with a flight attendent, and then she responded with an architect, him a history teacher, Jazz singer, secretary and two waitresses in response. He states he is now alone as she is with the architect. 

She revealed that she gave Piper's name and incriminated her more, in return for less time. This was six years after their breakup.

Alex is with a girl and receives a call from Piper and sends it to voicemail, thinking that Piper knows about Alex naming her. She listens to the voicemail as she sends the girl out, saddened.

Piper Chapman (After being named)[]

Piper and Larry are in a tattoo parler as Larry is getting his buttocks tattooed. Piper suggests that she should get a tattoo of the 'chinese character of tranquility' he makes a joke that chinese people couldn't pronounce that word. They talk about superheroes and Piper mocks him for saying "spidirmin" instead of "spiderman" She suggests that she should get a ying-yang as it is revealed that Larry is getting the Kool Aid Man, who he says he is a good superhero. Piper says Larry's mother will kill him, to which he responds his mother doesn't see that part of his body anymore. Piper decides not to get a tattoo, and lies that the fish symbolises Larry, a pisces Later Piper is in a bathroom, drunk, shouting Larry and she rings Alex and she goes to voicemail as Piper says that her boyfriend got a Kool Aid Man tattoo and mocks Alex's tattoo and she is clearly sad as she states she still thinks about Alex. She asks if Alex misses her and she says she misses Alex.

Memorable Quotes[]

"All I'm saying... is you can't tell people to go, and then blame them for leaving"
Erica Jones to Alex Vause.
"You really think "shit" is the best word for this situation? 'Cause me, personally, I'd upgrade to "holy fucking Fucksville""
Cindy Hayes to Tasha Jefferson.
"You have taught me that love hurts. You've taught me that life... It hurts. And I want to be there for you. I want us to be there for each other. So that maybe it hurts a little less"
Piper Chapman to Alex Vause.







Main Cast[]

 Guest Starring[]

  • N/A



End credits: Miss Li - My Heart Goes Boom



Piper's Flashbacks
I Wasn't Ready  •  Tit Punch?  •  Lesbian Request Denied  •  WAC Pack  •  Moscow Mule  •  Bora Bora Bora  •  Tall Men with Feelings  •  Thirsty Bird  •  Little Mustachioed Shit  •  Tattoo You  •  Who Knows Better Than I  •  Beginning of the End  •  The Thirteenth
Alex's Flashbacks
Lesbian Request Denied  •  WAC Pack?  •  Fucksgiving  •  Tall Men with Feelings  •  Little Mustachioed Shit  •  Fear, and Other Smells  •  Tattoo You  •  Who Knows Better Than I  •  Beginning of the End  •  The Thirteenth
Episode Navigation
Season 1 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
Season 2 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.
Season 3 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
Season 4 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
Season 5 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
Season 6 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
Season 7 Beginning of the End   •  Just Desserts   •  And Brown Is the New Orange   •  How to Do Life   •  Minority Deport   •  Trapped in an Elevator   •  Me as Well   •  Baker's Dozen   •  The Hidey Hole   •  The Thirteenth   •  God Bless America   •  The Big House   •  Here's Where We Get Off