EXCLUSIVE: 'Orange Is the New Black' Star Matt McGorry Reveals Why Officer Bennett Had to [SPOILER]

by Shana Naomi Krochmal 2:48 PM PDT, June 12, 2015
Photo: Netflix

Matt McGorry does not want to ruin season three of Orange Is the New Black -- even when asked.

"You're sure you don't mind me spoiling you for this season, right?" he checked. We’re sure, but you should stop reading if you don't want to know all about his storyline in the new season of the hit Netflix show.

We originally called up the Litchfield correctional officer to talk about his newfound feminist fury -- more on that next week -- but in the meantime, here’s what he revealed about Officer Bennett.

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But seriously, major spoilers ahead!

After busting out a gum-wrapper ring and proposing to Daya (Dascha Polanco), who is both the mother of his unborn child and still serving her sentence for drug related charges, Bennett visits her also-incarcerated mom's boyfriend, Cesar, in hopes of connecting and becoming one big happy family of women in prison and the men who love them.

But Cesar is an awful role model who’s prone to using a gun when disciplining children -- not to mention, a hard-core reality check for Bennett, who leaves with the crib Daya slept in as a baby but then ditches it on the side of the road. All that’s left are the fading taillights of his truck -- and that’s a wrap for Bennett, who doesn’t return for the rest of the season.

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"I've been so honored to get to be a part of this show," McGorry told ETonline on Friday. But still, he said, "I've had mixed feelings about it. We're sort of breaking the romanticized bubble of Daya and Bennett and actually delving into what is maybe the most realistic portrayal -- something that can express the consequences of a relationship between a guard and inmate." As McGorry pointed out in a recent Jezebel interview, sex between the two characters -- no matter how mutual -- can never be legally considered consensual, because the guard is in a position of power.


During a flashback to Bennett's time in the military -- the highlight of which is a video he made with his platoon shaking their stuff to Gwen Stefani's "Hollaback Girl" -- we see Bennett is a similarly chill soldier as he often is a guard. But he's not exactly winning any medals for bravery. At one point he jumps out of the way of an incoming grenade in order to save himself, whereas another soldier jumps on it, absorbing the blast.

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"I think he really does want to be the hero," McGorry said. "But he doesn't quite have it in him. He talks a little too big of a game, and I think he bites off more than he can chew. And then when it comes down to it, he’s intimidated and can’t actually follow through."

McGorry’s already felt the social media backlash for Bennett’s deadbeat dad act. "I think undoubtedly it's going to make him less likable to viewers. I already had people tweeting at me, screaming at me, 'Why would you do this? You have to support your baby!' I hope that they know that I don’t actually have a baby in real life!"

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But in keeping with his more recently raised consciousness, McGorry said watching a character he loved to play not get the happy ending might do more good in the long run. "It's a tricky thing, but I think it’s kind of important too. If you watch the show and think of these relationships that happen between corrections officers and inmates, you might think of it a little differently now."

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