Tax-evading TV culinary host Judy King is making waves in Litchfield Penitentiary this season

By Sara Vilkomerson
Updated June 14, 2016 at 04:46 PM EDT
Credit: JoJo Whilden/Netflix

Watch for one inmate to cause a particular stir when Netflix’s Orange Is the New Black returns for its fourth season on June 17. We caught up with Blair Brown to talk about playing Judy King, a master manipulator with a killer smile.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Judy King seems like she’d be an awfully fun character to play…

BLAIR BROWN: She’s really a piece of work, isn’t she? I usually play polite and responsible people. [Laughs] Judy is a person who continually makes wrong decisions. I’m having the best time.

I think the easy assumption to make about Judy is that she’s kind of a Martha Stewart figure.

Actually, in some ways she’s more like Paula Deen, just sort of that weird Southern friendly quality. My mother was Southern, and I know Southern women. I’ve really loved playing her — and the show is just so great, they give you so much leeway.

Were you a fan of Orange before signing on?

Oh, yes, I wanted in. Luckily [creator] Jenji Kohan was a fan of The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd. [Brown starred on the comedy from 1987 to 1991.] I got a call about being on the show, and I was on a plane the next day. And then, of course, it turned out that Orange is filmed on the same soundstage that Molly Dodd was. So two of my happiest TV experiences happened in the same place. It’s a good-luck building.

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Episode Recaps

Orange Is the New Black

Jenji Kohan’s absorbing ensemble dramedy, based on Piper Kerman’s memoir of the same name, takes viewers inside the walls of Litchfield, a minimum security women’s prison where nothing’s as simple as it seems—especially the inmates.

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