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Prison Break Fodder

Prison Break: The First Season

Despite Fox's hard sell before the show started I think that "Prison Break" kind of came out of nowhere. Sure, it is along the lines of "Lost" in that there is a mystery in the shadows and everyone has a back story that has yet to be fully revealed, and we all knew that shows like this were coming after the huge success of Lost. But to find that it is so darn good was amazing. And I will grant that there are some pretty ginormous logic holes in the story. But that's never stopped me from liking a show before. I'm sure I'll leave out a few details, but I'm going from memory here folks. And of course, this will reveal plot points and twists, so don't read any further if you haven't seen the show yet.

Who are the people we meet during our adventure in Fox River?
Lincoln Burrows - Accused and convicted of killing the brother of the sitting Vice President. He claims that he didn't do it.
Michael Scofield - Accomplished engineer and brother of Lincoln. He concocts a complex plot to get his brother out of prison.
Henry Pope - Warden of Fox River. He's generally a nice guy and treats the cons well.
Brad Bellick - Captain of Fox River's COs. He's a right bastard and treats the inmates like scum.
Dr. Sara Tancredi - Prison doctor. Daughter of the governor.
John Abruzzi - Mafiso, he runs Fox River. Is in search of information about the man who put him in prison, Fibonacci.
T-Bag - Sexually deviant and a child molester.
Sucre - Michael's cell mate. Has a girl on the outside who he desperately wants to see.
Charles Westmoreland - Some think that he's DB Cooper.
C-Note - Big man in the black gangs of Fox River, he's also the go-to guy for drugs inside. He has told his family that he's in Iraq.

Veronica Donovan - Lawyer and ex-girlfriend of Lincoln. She too believes that Linc is innocent.
LJ Burrows - Linc's son.
Paul Kellerman - Secret Service agent assigned to the VP. Also a right bastard.
Danny Hale - Kellerman's partner, has a guilty conscience.
Caroline Reynolds - Vice President of the United States.

The Escape
It all starts in a bank. Well, it doesn't all start in a bank, but from the viewers' perspective it does. We see Scofield, who had recently trashed his apartment and gotten a tattoo, calmly walks into a bank and attempts a hold up. It goes South quickly and the police apprehend young Scofield. Shortly thereafter he sits in court and pleads no contest. After ruffling the judge's feathers a bit, he makes a request to be sent to Fox River where his only brother is being held on Death Row. The judge agrees and sends our hero up state.

Once inside the walls of Fox River, our new "fish" Scofield has to get the lay of the land. Lucky for him, his cell-mate Sucre is more than willing to give him a guided tour of both the facility and the people. Michael eventually asks where they are keeping Lincoln and Scure shows him an isolated yard where the death row inmates have their exercise. After the tour, Scofield gets down to the business at hand; escape.

On one front, he attempts to join the prison work force, or PI, that is run by Abruzzi. He is initially "rebuffed". A while later, and after revealing that he has information on Fibonacci our hero is allowed to join up. Across the yard Michael is working on a relationship with Westmoreland. Trying to gently recruit the old timer. Scofield is 100% convinced that this "old head" is DB Cooper in the flesh, and that he has the legendary bag of cash stashed away near-by. Westmoreland is reluctant and advises Michael to forget about whatever it is he is doing. Michael engages C-Note to obtain a drug called PUGNAc which inhibits the production of natural insulin in the body. Thus simulating a type of diabetes. A type that requires regular injections. And they don't just let you have a needle while you're in prison.

Which brings our hero to the infirmary and the company of Dr. Tancredi. She seems troubled. But she's also one of those "do-gooder" types. We can see that she is instantly attracted to Michael. Their first meeting is all small talk and banter. Though when Sara leaves the room, Scofield drops one of his many origami swans down a grate in the floor of the exam room.

After getting into a scuffle with Abruzzi's crew earlier (the "rebuffing" from above) Scofield is sent to see Warden Pope, or "the Pope". The warden wants to send Scofield to "the shoe" which is con-speak for solitary. Michael is able to work out a deal with Pope. See the Taj Mahal is important to Pope and his wife. And Pope would like to give his wife a model. Trouble is he's not very good at model making. Lucky for him his newest inmate was a structural engineer on the outside. Scofield agrees to work on the Taj model in exchange for not being sent to The Shoe.

With things in place and gears in motion, Michael reveals to Lincoln his plan and his tattoo. Yeah, he has a full body tattoo. The ink appears to be just a big Gothic art piece. But super-smart Scofield has managed to hide the plans for the prison and some other important information within the lines of the tat.

Since this would be very long if I were to recap each and every episode. Instead, I'll try to sum up the action of the major story arcs in a broad overview.

Inside the prison Scofield, Sucre, and Linc end up recruiting T-Bag, Abruzzi, and C-Note into the escape plan. T-Bag comes along as a result of threatening to tattle. Scofield makes his way into the wall behind his cell and then through another wall or two. A key part of the plan is to exit through the floor of a storage building. Though to Scofield's surprise, it has been converted into the guards' break room. To remedy this problem, they stage a fire in the room and PI gets the job of repairing. After quite a few scares from the guards, the crew finally gets through. In the mean time Scofield has mapped their route under the prison from the guard shack and up through a broken pipe in the infirmary. The cons make their first attempt and are stymied when they find that the pipe has been repaired. They return to their cells and begin to regroup. After the failed attempt, Linc begins to accept his fate. The rest of the crew however is not so eager to admit defeat.

T-Bag and Abruzzi never get along and the pedo eventually shanks Abruzzi and he is take away by medivac. His fate unknown. He later returns, after finding the Lord. Or so we're led to believe.

A new batch of "fish" arrive and among them is a little punk kid who thinks that he's hot sh*t in the yard. He ends up turning into Bellick's informant. Bellick will use Tweener to be a spy on Scofield and the Super Friends.

Michael finds another way out, via the "whack shack", where the mentally unstable prisoners are kept. To get into the shack he first steals a guard uniform and sneaks in. From there he scouts out a new escape route. But to get back in he fakes a mental illness while in The Shoe. And once in the whack shack our hero meets up with his former celly (Sucre got cold feet at one point) Haywire. He needs Haywire, who was obsessed with his tattoo to remember a portion. You see, one night while trying to stop Linc's execution Michael had to hide from a guard and ended up burning his shoulder on a steam pipe. Haywire figures out that the tat is a map and that The Super Friends are planning an escape. He agrees to remember the ink only if he can escape too. Michael relents and Haywire is included.

At one point Bellick finds out about the hole under the guard shack. Westmoreland finds Bellick and the two scuffle. Bellick winds up in the hole; bound and gagged. He is, as you might imagine, annoyed. Westmoreland is injured in the fracas. A belly wound that he will keep a secret.

In order to make things to smoothly, the crew grows to include Sucre's cousin and Tweener. So, our escape crew now consists of Michael, Linc, Sucre, Abruzzi, C-Note, T-Bag, Westmoreland, Tweener, Sucre's cousin Manche, and Haywire.

The big night comes and to get things moving Michael steals a support member from the model of the Taj Mahal. When Pope tries to move it and take it home it starts to collapse. He then summons Michael to help him fix the problem. Michael arrives and tells Pope that they are escaping. Pope is of course not amused. Michael ties him to his chair and locks him in the closet. The newly expanded Super Friends make their way through their route. They come across Bellick who threatens them through his gag. A few members of the crew give him a going away "hug". A troubled Sara, after Michael reveals the plan to her, leaves the door to the exam room unlocked. They tie a hose to the elevator and use it to pull down the bars outside the window. Westmoreland begins to collapse and reveals that he is, in fact, DB Cooper and tells Scofield where the money is hidden. The rest of the crew, aside from the cousin and Scofield have made their way across the power cable and over the wall. Linc begs for Michael to get out of there. He heads across the wire. The guards find Pope and the lock down begins. The Cousin gets on the wire behind Michael and the span collapses under the strain of his girth. Scofield scurries up the wire and over. Cousin is left to be taken into custody.

Once over the wall the Super Friends make their way to a waiting van (down by the river). They make their way, they hope, to a near-by airfield where Abruzzi has arranged for a plane. Things go south when roadblocks stymie their progress. The group drops Haywire and Tweener. Abruzzi has his revenge on T-Bag. T-Bag had hand-cuffed himself to Scofield to ensure that he was on the plane out of town. Abruzzi goes all Jack Bauer on T-Bag and separates him from Scofield with an axe.

Now we've got Scofield, Linc, Scure, C-Note, and Abruzzi on their way to the airfield by foot. The police find out about an unscheduled landing at the local airfield and send units. The wise-guys get nervous and high tail it out of Chicagoland. The Super Friends are left to run away from the police.

And so ends the Escape portion of our program.

The Defense
All the while Veronica is working hard to get Linc out by legal means. She attempts to contact a couple of witnesses, but they mysteriously disappear. She also gets involved with an anti-death penalty law group and one Nick Savrinn who we will suspect has shady motives throughout the season. The dynamic duo turns over more and more evidence until their apartment is blown up. Yes. Blown up. They high tail it out to the country to hide out. While there they meet up with a mysterious man claiming to have been in an accident. Turns out he's the enforcer agent that had been tormenting Hale and Kellerman. Anyway, he threatens the trio of Veronica, Nick, and LJ. They eventually subdue the enforcer and toss him down a well. His leg is broken and he is unable to get out of the hole. The trio covers the well and leaves him for dead.

They have the video of Linc shooting the VP's brother (Terrence Steadman) analyzed. Their crack video analyst determines that the video is doctored, but expertly so. They return to the cabin to retrieve enforcer's phone. After analyzing the numbers in the phone book of the phone they find a number to a house in Montana. A house purchased by the VP.

Other evidence leads the team to think that the brother is still alive. So they go in front of a judge and get the body exhumed. After the body is dug up the coroner finds that it is badly decomposed, but the dental records match. Our trio is crestfallen.

The Duo (LJ has been put in jail, more on that later) plans to head to Montana when Nick gets a call. It seems that Nick is under the thumb of Abruzzi and his crime family. Nick goes along with his masters and helps them kidnap Veronica to use as leverage against Michael and Linc in order to make sure the reveal the location of Fibonacci. But Nick has a change of heart and gets Veronica out of town and on her way to Montana.

Abruzzi's thug finds out about Nick's double cross and executes his father, their leverage against Nick. And then Nick is dispatched. Veronica eventually finds the house and sees that someone is home. She breaks in and confronts the resident.

The Conspiracy
Kellerman and Hale are flunkies for the VP. They're secret service agents who are sent to ensure that Linc is executed and no one interferes. At one point Hale has his doubts and has his pregnant wife pack up and make ready to leave town. He then meets up with Veronica to try and give her information about the grand conspiracy.

You see, our friend, the Vice President is running for the top job. But she's being "handled" by a group of powerful corporate masters ("The Company"). Their contact with the VP is Ensign Ro Laren (Michelle Forbes). Ensign Ro has very little respect for the VP and treats her like the tool that she is.

Kellerman finds Hale (who has hidden Veronica) and sends him to his fate. When things at Fox River are not going according to plan, The Company arranges for Linc to see his son. Oh yeah, LJ is in jail for B&E and assault against Agent Kellerman. On the way to the meeting Kellerman attacks the bus with a semi. When Linc comes to, Kellerman is there trying to kill him. A mysterious stranger saves Linc and they evacuate the area. This mysterious stranger, who Linc saw in the viewing room just before his botched execution, is his father. Pops fills Linc in on the grand conspiracy (at least what he knows about it). Eventually Linc is recaptured and sent to The Shoe back at Fox River. Pops gets away.

The VP is threatened by The Company and they pull their support of her campaign. A mysterious lab is show developing some kind of poison liquid. It is said to stop the heart in just a few seconds. And that it will appear to be a heart attack.

The VP is shown giving a speech while bottles of water are delivered to her. During her speech she opens a bottle and starts to drink. An advisor whispers something to her and she drops the bottle. Nearly everyone not convicted of a felony is gathered around a television to hear the news that the President has died of an apparent heart attack. The VP takes her oath in the kitchen of the hotel where she was giving the speech and becomes the second female President (after Geena Davis) of the United States. Ensign Ro confronts her. The Pres, in no uncertain terms, lets her know that she's in control now and The Company can stuff it.

Veronica, meanwhile, at the Montana house finds Steadman. Alive and kicking and putting in his dentures.

And so ends the first season of "Prison Break". The Super Friends are on the run, Veronica has found proof that Linc didn't kill Steadman, and Reynolds has become President.

Season Two of "Prison Break" will return to Mondays on Fox at 9 PM ET beginning August 21.

Posted by Jeff on July 7, 2006 6:52 AM
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