Prison Break renewed

22 03 2007

As I have eulogised already this season, Prison Break has seen the biggest improvement of any returning series. Coming towards the end of season 2 now, and I can’t believe how many different story lines they have not only managed to keep interesting, but bring together for the big finale. I really underestimated them, and yesterday FOX rewarded them by announcing that the modest hit would be returning for a third season.

Paul T. Scheuring (I’m spelling that from opening credits memory) promised big changes as well, with an extended stay in Panama for some, and death within the opening episodes for others, if I haven’t misconstrued his words. Although in an earlier article, he did say that 80% of the storyline of the last two years would be tied up in the next two episodes, so I would like to know the hook for next year. Maybe Lincoln was guilty all along, that would be funny.

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5 responses

22 03 2007
Corrupted Mind

I have to agree with you, Prison Break has been outstanding this season… Oh and see as the writer is keen on killing off some characters – I would like to put forward Lincoln “Link” Burrows!

27 03 2007
Duane

Call me a cynic – and I know I will be gunned down for saying this having not watched the show. Is this not another American Series that will run and run – until the plot becomes so utterly ridiculous that no one watches it. The network will cancel and then it will have a silly abrupt ending (is that not what is happening with Lost)..

28 03 2007
ebarnieh

A moderately successful show like Prison Break will always have enough of a fan base to allow the producers to wrap up all the storylines on the show.

If you had watched Prison Break from day one with your tongue firmly in your cheek and belief suspended, you would find that it has always been “utterly ridiculous”, that wouldn’t be the thing that kills the show, and you could enjoy the thrills and spills from there. Kind of like a summer blockbuster where you leave your brain at the door and watch the ride, only it’s piped into your home every week for free. 42 minutes of escapism, if you will.

US shows are aiming for 100 episodes, because for syndication reasons, this is where the big money starts rolling in. Because of the competition, a program has to be pretty damn good to make it to 100, so in theory it will have been worth watching all along. Because of the democracy of US television, if viewing figures tumble, theoretically the people have spoken, and it is cancelled in a worst case scenario, but much more likely wrapped up very quickly. In 80% of cases, the system works perfectly, with a survival of the fittest analogy worth a mention here, or something about sorting wheat from chaff.
Ricky Gervais has spoken out about the UK adopting this method, as it invigorates the whole industry at least once a year. Bad programs disappear, and are replaced by attempts at good ones every September, and the cycle continues. Never stale.

As for the implication that it is US series that “Run and run”, you need look no further than the UK for that one.

Prison Break, along with every other US network TV drama, runs for 22-24 episodes a year. That is pretty much the output of Hollyoaks or Emmerdale a month. and when Prison Break is but a distant memory, I’m sure the latter two will be up to 6 or 7 times a week.

The longest running drama on US TV is Law and Order, with 381 episodes over 17 years. Just a few less than Granada produced episodes of Coronation Street over the last 17 months.

Although no longer at it’s peak, given the choice of 25 infuriatingly mind-bending episodes of Lost a year for 5 years (of which your description is a bit inaccurate) or 250 eps of Eastenders a year to follow in which the plot has always been, still is and will be utterly ridiculous long after I have taken my last breath, I know which I would prefer.

28 03 2007
Corrupted Mind

Have to agree with Ed on this one… My brain has always been checked at the door for this. The premise says it all, Tony Blair’s sister is killed, but wait the death is a fraud and she’s living in a ‘prison-like’ house in berkshire, and secretly they were having an incestuous affair. The guy whose been locked up has a genius brother who tatoo’s his escape plan all over his body. etc… etc… as you can see with this analogy – check your brain at the door! Truth is this show has gone from prison drama, to the fugitive and next season will need to reinvent itself again. We’ve had pay-offs on Sucre,T-Bag, Franklin, Michael and Link – we had reveals from their back story and all love interests have played out or not depending on whether they had a good or bad character in the plot so my heart says it has to end for most if not all of them! I thought the title of the show kind of ties them into the prison/fugitive dichotomy but then maybe it doesn’t – this whole season and I’ve only seen Bellick and Franklin in a cell and then for all of a single episode each. Anyway that’s enough fanboy rambling…

Will it “run and run” until cancellation? I doubt it, while there is pressure to do another season, a successful season leave the producers and writers with power to choose their direction. – The nuclear option of writing their ending is always on the table. The increasing importance of the presidential conspiracy and the genius of Michael basically means they can pit the third season as a battle between this shadowy organisation and him (a sort of 24 episode Enemy of the State). The added complexity of T-Bag and the IA investigation of Mahone are also threads that are still outstanding. It could be that they decide to switch emphasis for season 3 and have Mahone on the run. He has made himself out to be just as ingenius as Michael. Also there is are Disgruntled Federal Agent also on the run. Again all interetsing stories that can run either by themselves or in tandem. – There you go, I’m rambling again… short answer no, for the reasons Ed wrote… what a crazy (useless) post.

1 04 2007
Duane

Gunned down like a b52 over Berlin in 1942… Well maybe I will watch to see this man on the run.. But if it is rubbish – POW, POW

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