Almost eight years after Prison Break ended its fourth and what was considered final season, Fox has revived the Paul Scheuring-created action drama as an event series debuting April 4. Unfortunately, this latest iteration of the once impressive series led by Wentworth Miller, Dominic Purcell and Sarah Wayne Callies should have been kept on lockdown.
As I say in my video review above, what makes the punishment all the worse is that the original run of Prison Break was one of my favorite shows of the first decade of the 21st century right from when it debuted in 2005. Sure, it went into pantomime territory pretty regularly after the tight and nervy premise of Season 1, but the sheer momentum of any season of Prison Break could keep things going. Hell, I even like the TV movie of sorts that went straight to DVD in 2009, and I tuned in to the CW’s DC’s Legends Of Tomorrow partially because Miller and Purcell were on it.
Weighed down in its homage to Homer’s epic poem The Odyssey, this Season 5 of sorts is trapped in the prison of its own pedigree and shortcomings. Outside of a lot of yelling and running, nothing really happens for way too long once the set-up is established that Miller’s presumed-dead Michael Scofield is actually alive and behind bars in war-torn Yemen. Which means his down-on-his-luck-again brother Lincoln Burrows, played by Purcell, has pulled together Robert Knepper’s T-Bag and most of the old gang to go get him.
Even with some Middle Eastern politics rather carelessly thrown in and, more thoughtfully, Rockmond Dunbar’s C-Note having converted to Islam, the 20th Century Fox Television-produced revival feels old hat from what I’ve seen.
The ultimate expression in family fare in many ways with its sibling dedication, Prison Break was always two or three steps over the line of the absurd with the hand break off towards nutty – that was part of what made it so fun and adrenalizing in the early days. Prison Break Season 5 only serves to prove that, even in this age of revivals and reboots, sometimes there really are no more good tales to tell and some things really should just be left alone — now matter how great the temptation.
Click on my Prison Break video review above for more of what I think of the revival. And tell us what you think – were you a fan of the series and will you be watching April 4?
You can also watch the first five minutes of tomorrow’s much promoted premiere right here:
— Prison Break (@PrisonBreak) April 3, 2017