lorraine_toussaint_at_paley_fest_orange_is_the_new_blackAge: 54

Role: Queen Bee

Who I’d Cast: Lorraine Toussaint

Before she was queen of San Judas, Mercy Peters was the queen of smack. She was installed at San Judas a decade before Lark arrived — after the first wave of deaths and subsequent breakdown of the prison colony.

Mother Mercy is serving hard time for trafficking heroin (and other crimes) with her three adult sons, Hudson, Clarence, and Zachariah. (Her sons were all offered plea bargains to turn on their mother, but they refused and were imprisoned right along with her.)

Mercy has been at San Judas the longest and is considered the matriarch of the prison. On the outside, she was known for doling out violent punishments, and she rules the women’s colony with the same iron fist.

Mother Mercy walks with a cane, smokes like a chimney, and surrounds herself with a ring of “daughters” who act as her body guards and enforcers. Nobody dares to cross Mother Mercy because doing so would be a death sentence. Mercy values loyalty above all else.

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