Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Season Premiere Review: Prison Break (Season 3)

Prison Break [s3 ep1]: "Orientacion"

*** Spoiler Warning ***

Key Plot Points of Season Premiere

  • Picking up right where the season finale left off, "The Company" has arranged for Michael Scofield to be dropped in Sona, a prison in Panama that is so bad that guards backed out after riots a year ago, leaving the inmates to run their own little society.

  • Michael's brother Lincoln Burrows has been acquitted of all charges. As a free man, it is up to him to help out Michael. He confers with the American Embassy in Panama to get Michael released. For now, they hope to at least get him transferred to a safer prison.

  • Other characters also imprisoned in Sona along with Michael: former Fox River Prison guard Brad Bellick, former FBI agent (and killer of Michael's father) Alex Mahone, and former Fox River inmate Theodore "T-Bag" Bagwell.

  • Sona is run by an inmate kingpin named Luchero.

  • Someone with the Company visits Michael telling him they want him to break out and that they'll help him if he finds someone named Whistler and breaks him out too.

  • Lincoln is visited by a mysterious woman with the Company. Afterwards, Lincoln visits Michael agreeing that he has to break out with Whistler as the Company has insisted because the woman has shown Lincoln video of Michael's girlfriend Sarah and Lincoln's son L.J. being help captive by the Company.

Opinions and Observations

  • While I don't have a lot of sympathy for the Bellick character, it is getting annoying and creepy to see him stumbling around, thirsty and beaten, wearing nothing but his white jockey underwear. (Because I'm reviewing the season premiere a little late, I've already seen the 2nd episode, and luckily, Bellick is able to make a deal for clothing by the latter half of the episode. Unfortunately, he obtains the clothing by supplying Luchero with intel and betraying Michael in the process.)

  • Thanks to Sarah Wayne Callies having left the show permanently after the birth of her baby, her character of Sarah Tancredi is seen in the hostage video facing away from the camera. This show has seemed plagued with casting problems, especially among its female support characters.

Hopes, Concerns, or Expectations for New Season

  • This should be an interesting season because Michael once again must depend on unlikely allies to break out of a prison. But, this time, he has no plan, a shorter time frame, and even worse allies than before (Bellick, Mahone, T-Bag).

  • Because I've also seen the 2nd episode, I happen to know that Sucre (not seen in the season premiere) finds out that Mari-Cruz is safe and that he must give her up for her to stay that way. Previews for next week seem to imply that Sucre joins up with Lincoln to help get Michael and Whistler out of Sona.

  • For a show that probably should have lasted only one season, two at the most, I do actually like the concept they've established for season three. With the theme back on breaking out of prison, it will feel more like season one, but with the conspiracy backstory from season two and a Panamanian setting, the third season should have more flavor and twists and turns. I just hope they don't have any more casting issues.

  • Because of the aforementioned casting issue, I wonder how long it will be before the character of Sarah is killed off (or re-cast, although I'd doubt they'd do that considering the prominence of her character for the first two seasons). If she survives, perhaps they'll go the plastic surgery route. She could be severely beaten as a hostage and need facial repair or she may elect for plastic surgery in order to change her identity upon eventual return to the U.S. I doubt they'd go that far. On the other *hand* (pun partially intended), they did spend a lot of time on T-Bag's character finding a prosthetic replacement for his severed hand in season two.

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