SINGAPORE A pop-up event by Netflix to promote the fourth season of hit TV series, Orange is the New Black, has been slammed by the book’s author, Piper Kerman, but the event still managed to take off without a hitch.
A scathing article written by Jezebel on Tuesday about the two-day event, criticised Netflix for mocking prison life. The post included a comment from Kerman, which said: “This is repulsive. I am not aware of this being Netflix, but you should ask them.”
Netflix declined to comment directly, when approached by Mashable.
Theevent held in Singapore turned American-style diner, Overeasy, into Litchfield Penitentiary Cafeteria complete with a prison-inspired menu by local chef, Bjorn Shen.
In spite of the criticism it received, the event opened at lunchtime on Thursday to the public and was met with plenty of fanfare.
It seems Singaporeanswere eager for a taste of prison life and the much talked-about “Nutraloaf” dish, which they got to eat for free out of plastic trays while sitting on steel benches.
According to Shen, he had decided to center the menu around the controversial prison dish, and came up with a (far more palatable) version that was made up of “mushrooms, cheddar, quinoa, pumpkin and nori.”
He told The Straits Times: “This whole thing is just a gimmick, and it’s all for fun. No one is disrespecting anything.”
We got to taste Shen’s Nutraloaf and while it sure didn’t seem appetising, it was tastier than it looked.
At the pop-up, patrons were given the chance to fully immerse themselves in the experience.
Everyone was put through stringent security checks before they were let into the cafeteria, and sporting ones even got to dress up in orange scrubs provided at the door. Actors were also hired to fill the roles of prisoners and security guards.
The pop-up event opened for reservations on Jun. 8 via restaurant-booking app, Chope, and within a few days received more than 400 online bookings, said Chope.
The event also allowed for limited walk-ins, which saw a snaking queue stretching to neighbouring shops over the course of both days.
The latest season of OITNB will start airing on Netflix on Friday.
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