In line with the massive popularity of the hit comedy-drama series "Orange Is the New Black," Adrienne C. Moore and Jackie Cruz, members of its ensemble cast believe that representation is very important for TV shows, not only in entertaining an audience, but in sending a message across and making an impact.
Speaking on Netflix's #FirstTimeISawMe campaign, Moore, who plays Black Cindy in the prison-set series, recalled how she felt when she saw television shows that featured African American people. "I think what made those shows real and so relatable was the fact that they dealt with a lot of situations that I felt I dealt with as a kid," she shared in the interview.
The actress added that she feels a certain kinship with the character she portrays. She said that when she first read about the character of Cindy, she felt like she knew who the character was. Moore also voiced her appreciation for the impact that the show has on its audience. "Working on a show that hits on so many different people and so many different topics that affect people's lives is even inspiration for me," she said. She believes that as an artist, she can not only entertain people, but show them what the world looks like.
Jackie Cruz, who stars as Flaca, on the other hand, said she never saw any television shows character who was like her, growing up. "There wasn't a Latina that I saw that kind of represented who I was," she said in a Hall of Fame report. "I think it's really important to have a representation of yourself." She added that the reason why "Orange Is the New Black" is so popular is because the viewers are seeing themselves on TV.
The 30-year old actress also shared her experience in dealing with stereotypes as a young actress in Hollywood. "It was very hard for me to get roles because they put us in a box," explained the actress.
Both Moore and Cruz will continue inspiring audiences as they return for the sixth season of "Orange Is the New Black" in 2018.