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Prison Break

Prison Break is a drama about Michael Schofield, a gifted engineer who deliberately gets incarcerated in order to try and break his brother Lincoln out of prison. FOX 2005-2009

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Viewer
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Episode 22 - Killing Your Number

14 July 2017

Synopsis: T-Bag manages to save himself when Sucre calls and they set up a meeting. C-Note and Sucre torture T-Bag into telling them the General’s location. The General captures Michael, Lincoln and Sarah outside a hospital, Mahone was arrested inside. Back at the loft, the General threatens to kill Sofia unless he gets Scylla. Sucre and C-Note arrive to save the day and the General is arrested. Christina attacks Michael once more but is killed by Sarah. Michael hands Scylla over to Kellerman and the UN. The gang are all granted their freedom and they agree to send T-Bag back to prison. Krantz eventually gets sentenced to death. Kellerman becomes a Congressman.

Four years later, Mahone (now with Lang), Sucre, Lincoln (still with Sofia), Sarah and young Michael all visit Michael senior’s grave.

The Good: The last five minutes had more depth than the rest of the last two episodes which was nice to see. Kellerman ended up trying to put the world right in a more conventional way and running for Congress. But the widow of one of the men he killed spits in his face, a nice reminder of who he was and how death matters. Mahone and Lang ending up together was a nice moment and a plausible one. She helped him out for three seasons when it did nothing for her career. Plus after all the trauma Pam was put through because of Mahone, it would be understandable that they couldn’t get back together.

Sucre was the most predictable good guy character on TV, so his happy ending was fine. C-Note’s deep breath of freedom was a nice touch and T-Bag deserved to be behind bars. General Krantz and Don Self suffered particularly karmic farewells. Krantz was strapped into the electric chair, where he once sent an innocent Lincoln. Where as Self ended up like his wife, a vegetable. Michael’s death certainly made this seem more final. The final scene of his friends and family visiting his grave was a nice touch to show them remembering the man who saved all of their lives.

The Bad: Everything up to the final five minutes sucked.

We have sat through four seasons of the giant conspiracy that is the Company and yet we never get an answer to who they are or what Scylla is. Yes we have a vague idea and it may not be the focus of the story, but to not give us an explanation feels like a cop out. Once season two began the implicit story of the show was that Michael would bring down the Company once and for all. In the end all we see is Krantz suffering, but the Company could well carry on without him to frame new people for crimes they didn’t commit. Similarly Scylla was never fully explained. Who did all the research on it? What was Krantz up to in Laos? In the end Christina muddied the waters of the Company’s story and the clues about Scylla were forgotten. The whole second half of season four was some of the most disappointing television I have ever seen.

The General threatening Sofia was more mindless writing. The General has Michael, Lincoln and Sarah in his custody. Just kill Lincoln and tell Michael that he will torture Sarah if he doesn’t give him Scylla. They are right there yet he goes to the trouble of getting a satellite feed to Panama. Just foolish stuff.

I don’t see the point in Mahone and Sucre being interrogated by the FBI. They both bark about the Company but there is no particular reason that these two agents would know anything about it. Those scenes seems like a complete waste of time. As did Self’s decision not to help them. He was slipping toward a coma of some kind, so it would have been understandable for him to give up information on Michael and Lincoln in order to get the treatment he needed. But instead he wastes his valuable time and energy by writing “Kiss my ass” on a piece of paper. Did we need to see any of that?

As for Kellerman, he ends up being one of the most convenient plot devices ever. Michael has absolutely no reason to trust him. He has no evidence beyond C-Note’s word that Kellerman has his best interests at heart. Worse than that though is again that Scylla isn’t explained at all. This was the technology which could change the world and yet Michael hands it over to a stranger after risking everything to keep it out of the wrong hands. The meek way Michael finally gave everything up to Kellerman just felt like the wrong tone for the end of the story. There was no glory, just a very fortunate turn of events for Michael. And why did he have to go to Kellerman alone and bleeding? Where was C-Note? The moment when Kellerman said it was over was such an anti-climax. That’s it? It’s over? I waited four seasons for that?

Finally poor T-Bag gets sent back to jail. I am not sympathising with him the murderer but him the character. He deserved a gruesome death or an honourable one. Either he should have finally been shut up for good or found some form of redemption. To see him back in prison rueing the lost opportunity to be respectable felt so tame an end for such a compelling character.

The Unknown: Apparently Michael may not have died from a return of his brain tumour. There is an as yet unseen two hour story which should show us what happens to Michael. That might provide one or two good moments of closure for the show.

Best Moment: The ending.

The Verdict: I still can’t get over how much was lost once Don Self turned on the gang. All the little character stories, all the hints about the General’s plans and Scylla were slowly eradicated. In the end we got one lame gun toting standoff after another until no one cared any more. Prison Break deserved a lot better than this. It’s one of the most disappointing ends to a show I have ever seen. Perhaps the two hours still to come will give us all one last good memory.

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  • As opposed to you, I don't think that having T-Bag sent back to Fox River ruins his redemption process carried througout this whole season. It rather shows that you can't escape your past and supports the idea that human beings are prisonners of their own condition which is emphasized by Gate's quote "prisons of your own creation".

    I also appreciated the small and yet symbolic details that the writers left such as Franklin working for UPS (he was arrested for driving a truck carrying illegal stuff) or the quote from Ghandi in Michael's tombstone which was also Sara's senior quote, the origami paper, the scars in Sara's back, Self and the General's endings which tie them to their past as you highlighted, Michael's bloody nose and his death at 31, the thoughtfully chosen music that set a soft and delicate tone, Lincolns's tears when Michael told him it didn't change anything whether they were true brothers or not. Those simple tiny touches were very moving for me; and showed the writer's subltility which compensated their carelessness during the second half of the season as they gave us a very nice last memory of this show.

    Viewer score: 65 / 100

    Posted by Caio, 13/07/2017 9:21am (9 days ago)

  • Well I just finished watching this and wondered if you would come down hard enough on it. As I would expect, you did and this was possibly the worst end to a show i've seen. When I look back on 4 seasons, I think there has been very little of interest at all since the 1st. But this last season was beyond a joke. I actually thought it might get good when three characters died in the middle of the season (bellick, roland and the hired killer guy), but they didn't have the guts to write anything heart-wrenching. It would have been so easy to have a glorious death or two during those pointless stand offs... More importantly I think it's a travesty what happened with T-bag. Up until 3 episodes before the end they were hinting at a sort of redemption for him only for him to "turn heal" and end up in prison. Anyway, I completely agree, this show kept reaching new heights of disappointment following an entertaining beginning. So many unanswered questions, it was like watching lost without knowing there was a good explanation coming. It ended up being a very poor version of 24, which is pretty bad in itself...

    Posted by the G man, 21/10/2009 4:57pm (8 years ago)

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