Television revivals seem to be the popular new thing and, unlike remakes or reboots, I fully support them. Bringing back the original cast of long cancelled shows and creating new episodes is very appealing. Sometimes the shows can be massive successes, other times they they can sour your love of the original. Fuller House is one of the biggest success stories in Netflix history. The 24 revival in 2015 was popular enough to bring the show back as a full series this year (though with a mostly new cast in the current version). Last year, Fox brought back The X-Files and the result was the highest ratings on the network in over a decade. On the flip side, we got Heroes: Reborn which was so incredibly stupid that it effectively killed the franchise completely. The latest revival to hit our screens brings back most of the cast from one of Foxes bigger hits – Prison Break.
The first season of the series revolved around Michael Scofield (Miller), who gets himself sent to maximum security Fox River Prison in order to break out his brother Lincoln Burrows (Purcell). With the help of the resident doctor, Sara Tancredi (Callies), as well as cellmate Sucre (Nolasco), fellow inmate C-Note (Dunbar) and convicted murderer T-Bag (Knepper), Michael plots the escape in order to free his brother and clear his name… and of course there’s a huge government conspiracy going on.
Season 2 followed the escaped inmates on the run. It was a major change of pace, as instead of trying to break out a prison, they are trying to survive. The gang is being
pursued by Alex Mahone (William Fichtner), and he will stop at nothing to bring them all down – and keeping them alive isn’t a top priority. The 3rd season is basically the flipside of the first season. Michael finds himself in a Panamanian prison, and its up to Lincoln and his friends to get him out. The fourth, and final, season has the whole crew trying to take down The Company, the organization responsible for all the troubles the gang has had over the prior three seasons. This was followed by a TV movie called The Final Break, which had Michael trying to break Sara out of prison. This was the end of the series, and Michael sacrificed himself to save his friends in the end…
Or so we thought. With the nine episode Prison Break revival, we find out that Michael isn’t quite as dead as we thought. Fresh off being released from prison, T-Bag gets supposed proof that Michael is in fact alive. He brings this to Lincoln, who lets Sara know, and Lincoln discovers that Michael is in a prison in Yemen. He enlists C-Note and Sucre to help him find out what is going on as he heads to the Middle East to rescue his brother.
Even at the best of times, Prison Break always bordered on ludicrous. But as far fetched as the show was, it almost always worked because of the chemistry of the group (especially Miller and Purcell). While the entire gang isn’t back for the revival, as some characters didn’t survive the original series, enough of them returned to make the show worth watching. Knepper is still the standout for his slimy and menacing T-Bag. Not bringing back Mahone was a mistake though – his level of craziness is sorely missed. The first episode was welcome return. If the next several episodes can keep up the pace, we may have one of the better revivals to come in recent years.
I’ll review the new season as a whole once it has finished airing, but as of now…