Netflix's Orange is the New Black is coming to an end

The women from Litchfield are finally getting out of prison.

Netflix has confirmed season seven of Orange Is the New Black will be the last instalment of the award-winning drama.

The Netflix original series was first released in 2013, snapping up 12 Emmy Award nominations in its first season alone. Critics praised the show for humanising women prisoners – especially inmates of colour and those with mental health issues – and for showcasing diverse sexualities and bodies.

Well over 90 per cent of reviews for the first four seasons were positive, according to review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes. The show also propelled the career of Laverne Cox, helping her to become the first transgender actor nominated for an Emmy.

However, reviews for the fifth and sixth seasons were mixed. Some critics argued the show was beginning to lose direction. Rolling Stone's Alan Sepinwall said while season five was action-packed, it was a "chore" to get through. Season six, he wrote, "feels stuck between a reboot and a reset".

Time's Judy Berman, meanwhile, wrote that the plot "sags a bit midway through the season, largely because Orange devotes too much time to one-note characters". But she did praise the show's deep-dive into the "darkest panorama" of the American justice system.

Netflix has revealed Orange Is the New Black will come to an end with season seven.

Netflix has revealed Orange Is the New Black will come to an end with season seven.Credit:Netflix

News of the show's ending came in the form of a video message from some of the show's key cast members, who praised everyone involved for creating one of the "most groundbreaking, original and controversial" TV shows of the decade.

Actress Taylor Schilling, who plays the unlikeable protagonist Piper Chapman, told The Hollywood Reporter it was going to be hard to say goodbye to a show she had worked on for six years.

"It's very poignant," she said. "It's a very kind of surreal time. It's as surreal as it was when the thing came out of the gate and was so powerful those first few seasons. It's equally as surreal now to be ending it all."

The Orange Is the new Black announcement means Netflix will farewell two of its earliest original series in just a matter of months – the other being House of Cards, with its final season coming out later this year.

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