Kelly Wynne I Newsweek
Netflix only just released the prison reality series Jailbirds, and viewers are already asking for more. Twitter users who loved the show have commented on the possibility of a follow-up, hoping to watch the inmates continue their lives inside Sacramento County Jail.
The reality series looks inside the relationships formed in a women's prison, as male inmates in the floors above communicate with the women through toilets. From romantic beginnings to breakups and even marriage, Jailbirds Season 1 served up a unique angle on life behind bars.
Fans online proposed a handful of plot points they'd like to see, including explaining whether Katrina and Dolla are together on the outside—they may not be, which Newsweek explained here. Others wanted to know the resolution of that shocking cliffhanger, and if Baby Girl has fought her sister yet.
Kelly Wynne I Newsweek
Jailbirds captured the hearts of Netflix viewers with an in-depth look into the inner workings of the Sacramento County Jail, and a wild cliffhanger after its release on May 10. The good news, for fans looking for real time updates, is with the reality show format, life is sure to carry on for each of the inmates, from those still behind bars to those who were released with hope for a better life. While it's difficult to know what's really going on in the prison while cameras aren't filming, here's what we know about the former inmates who were released by the end of the first season.
Caroline Burke I Heavy
Throughout the Netflix show Jailbirds, female inmates use “fishing” as a means to share contraband with other inmates. They also talk to male inmates through their toilet bowls. But how, exactly, does it work?
Some of the female inmates who are in romantic relationships with male inmates, like Katrina Haslam and Daniel “Dolla” Carter, actually met through their toilet bowls.
Kites are also letters shared between inmates through the process of fishing.
Here’s how it works:
Kayla Cobb I Decider
Just when we thought we’d seen it all Netflix’s Jailbirdsintroduced us to toilet talking. The six-part Netflix docuseries about women inmates has quickly become one of the most addicting new shows on the streaming service. It’s such an unexpected hit, even the queen of Twitter herself Chrissy Teigen has given it her stamp of approval. After spending hours fretting over the fates, interpersonal dramas, and relationship status of the inmates of Sacramento County Jail, Decider spoke to Jailbirds’ executive producer Rasha Drachkovitch about how this ever-entertaining series came together.
“After the success of Orange is the New Black, we wanted to find a facility that mirrored the real life version of that,” Drachkovitch said. Prior to Jailbirds, Drachkovitch was head of another popular docuseries about inmates, MSNBC’s Lockup. Though Jailbirds primarily focuses on a group of female inmates in jail, Lockup was about prison, and its 237 episodes would follow different stories of incarcerated men all over the world. Drachkovitch was naturally able to use his experience with Lockup to create Jailbirds.
“As opposed to prisons, jails are more fluid, more exact decisions. There’s more dramatic intersections literally than prisons, which can be long stays and can be a mundane kind of world,” Drachkovitch explained. “We had filmed (at Sacramento County Jail) before for Lockup. We really enjoyed working with their staff. And it was really because of our experience with them before that they green-lit us to be able to get access.”
According to Drachkovitch, said access is the most difficult part of any jail or prison docuseries. After that, it’s all about finding inmates who are willing to talk on camera about their stories. “I would say typically 80 percent [of inmates] don’t want to be involved. They’ve got bigger things to worry about than being on a show. But the 20 percent that start off, they want to tell their story. And that number grows. We’re there for four or five months.”
Kayla Cobb I Decider
With the premiere of Jailbirds, Netflix has proven truth is just as engaging as fiction. This six-part docuseries about women inmates is just as addicting if not even more so as anything that’s happened on Orange Is the New Black. Now that we’re all invested in this criminal drama, we have to know: will there be a Jailbirds Season 2?
The first season of the show follows a group of predominantly female inmates at Sacramento County Jail. As these inmates explain what life in jail is really like and break down their complicated jail sentences, they also dish on their interpersonal drama, and there’s a lot of it. There’s a whole dating system that involves contacting male inmates through toilets, a wedding, love triangles, backstabbing, and a huge fight that changes the sentences of at least three inmates. It’s a wild show that never fails to demonstrate its subjects humanity while reveling in this jail’s drama.
So when can we expect more episodes? Here’s everything you need to know about JailbirdsSeason 2 on Netflix.
Let’s just jump in because I truly don’t know how to ease into this one. The inmates at the Sacramento County Jail regularly communicate with each other through the prison’s toilets. I know this little factoid thanks to Netflix’s latest docuseries Jailbirds. It’s a detail that has left me repulsed, confused, fascinated, emotional, and annoying to my co-workers. I feel genuine compassion for Jailbirds‘ toilet couples, and I don’t know what this says about me.
Before we get into why I care so very much, you need to know what the hell I’m talking about. Jailbirds follows a group of real inmates at the Sacramento County Jail as they reflect on their sentences, explain what jail is like, and live their day-to-day lives. For the most part the series is a fairly by-the-books prison docuseries, though it’s noticeably lighter than most others in the genre. There’s a lot of flirting and jokes between each episode’s confessionals, proving these ladies have fun whether their behind or in front of bars.
Kayla Cobb I Decider
However, because of how this building was constructed, all floors of this jail share the same pipe system. If you think you know where I’m going with this, you are correct. By emptying out the water in the toilet bowl, the female inmates on Floor 7 can communicate with the male inmates directly above and below them. But this series’ toilet based communication doesn’t end there. By tying an old T-shirt to some spoons and connecting a bag to its end, inmates can — and do — actually send presents and notes. All through the toilet. The whole process is called fishing because it involves inmates literally pulling a line out of a sewage system, and the contraption looks like this: