Poussey and her gorgeous grin won the hearts of anyone who watched Netflix’s Orange Is The New Black, snagging a spot as fan-fave throughout her escapades with BFF and comrade Taystee (a.k.a. Tasha Jefferson, played by Danielle Brooks) and a budding, touching romance with Brooke. In the recently-dropped and much-acclaimed season four, Poussey’s story [<<<<<MAJOR SPOILER ALERT>>>>>] comes to a tragic end with her accidental death at the hands of hapless guard Bayley, a timely, important plotline that garnered widespread attention for its parallels with the Black Lives Matter movement. Wiley, along with some of her other OINTB castmates, touched down in Toronto for Pride, giving us a few minutes to chat OITNB, reminisce about her time playing Poussey—and where we can watch Wiley next.
1. Her favourite part about Toronto Pride 2016: “All of the titties [giggles hysterically].”
2. Her most treasured moment from her time as Poussey Washington: “All the time spent with Danielle [Taystee] in season 1. It was such an awesome friendship with a lot of goofy moments.” Poussey and Taystee were based on a true bestieship IRL—the pair graduated from Julliard a year apart.
3. Her thoughts on Poussey’s heart-rending final scene: “Life is confusing and death is usually senseless. Nothing in life is black and white; it’s many, many shades of grey.”
4. How OITNB changed her outlook on life: “It gave me perspective. I was a bartender before I started the show, and I kept that job all the way through the first season. It wasn’t until people started recognizing me that my friends were like, ‘girl, you don’t have to do this anymore!’ It was weird.”
5. Where we can watch her next: As Justina, a therapist for Gretchen (Aya Cash), on FLARE favourite You’re the Worst (returning to FXX August 31!). The recurring role is a chance for Samira to play a character completely different from Poussey, plus she gets to reunite with ex-Orange writer Stephen Falk. Falk is giddy with excitement (same), telling The Hollywood Reporter, “Samira is an incredibly talented, thoughtful and exciting actress. When I worked on Orange Is the New Black, I got to write the episode with Poussey’s backstory, and we had such a good time that early on in writing this season of You’re the Worst, I hit on the random thought of having Samira play Gretchen’s therapist.”
More Orange Is the New Black:
Yael Stone Shares 10 Secrets From the Set of OITNB
Orange Is the New Black: Meet the Breakout Stars
Laverne Cox Talks OITNB Season Three
10 OITNB Stars Reveal the ONE Book They’d Bring to Prison