First of all, it is called Prison Break: Sequel. It is a television miniseries, and let me tell you: even for those of us that were less than thrilled with season 4 of the original Prison Break (I mean come on, what did it really even have to do with the show? They just wanted to keep it going!), we are super excited for its return. In fact, 2017 seems sooo far away because I want it now, now, now!
But season 5 is currently being filmed in Vancouver, Canada, and has been since April of this year. It will conclude filming very soon, on July 5. Of course, like many shows and movies, nothing will ever come close to the original, but when you love a cast and their story-line so much, that hardly matters, because you just want more, more, more! Like it was with season 4. Although I thought the idea, while interesting, did not fit in with the other seasons, I was still glued to the screen watching it – and more than once.
Prison Break aired on the FOX network from 2005-2009, and the year after it wrapped up, series lead Wentworth Miller implied that it was unlikely to return to television, having this to say on the matter: “I feel as though we told the story we intended to tell. That’s something that’s very rare in television- that you’re allowed closure- and we were.”
It is a nice sentiment- and a true one. But nevertheless, I am happy he was wrong, and that there is more to be seen from the gang we love so much! Season 5 will be rife with Prison Break‘s signature thrills and cliffhangers, and I, for one, cannot wait. 2017 cannot come soon enough in that respect! But sadly, for the time being we will have to stick to re-watching old episodes and gossiping about what is to come. Let’s begin with the 15 things we do know about Prison Break’s return.
15. Michael Is -Gasp- Alive!
How, you ask? Well, nothing is known officially, of course, but plenty of people have their theories. When we last left Sara at the end of season 4, she was standing at Michael’s grave with her young son (Michael’s son) who never got to meet his father because he was, well, dead (brain tumor). The kid looked like he was maybe 4. But Michael never knew Sara was even pregnant because he was definitely a goner… or was he? Apparently he was not and we don’t know why, but Dominic Purcell, who plays Michael Scofield’s hot-headed brother Lincoln Burrows, says of Michael’s return from the dead, “The concept that I’ve heard for his resurrection is completely brilliant, so people will be fine.” Sources say that the revival will provide a “logical and believable explanation as to why the characters are alive and still moving around the world.” Hope so! I mean, I will love it even if said resurrection is ludicrous, but it will be all the better if it is not!
14. The Plot Thickens…
Sarah Wayne Callies, who plays Michael’s prison-infirmary-nurse-turned-love-interest-turned-baby-mama in the first series, officially joined the cast in March of this year. A trailer for the Prison Break reboot provides clues to what is going on, 8 years after we last saw them all. Sara teams up with Lincoln when evil villain T-Bag (Robert Knepper, who we love to hate), of all people, brings shocking intel suggesting that Michael might be alive somewhere. So Lincoln and Sara plan to find him and help him escape from wherever he is in the world, because of course nothing would keep do-gooder Michael from his family and he would be there if he could. Thus, he obviously cannot, and needs help. But this is Michael Scofield we are talking about, so how much help could he really need?
13. And It Takes Place In…
Yemen, of all places. Yes, Yemen, which is just as random of a location as when Chandler from Friends tried to escape his ridiculous girlfriend Janice by telling her he was moving to the most random place he could think of off the top of his head- yup…Yemen. Well, now it is Michael trying to escape from Yemen and not to it. Apparently, he is holed up in some not-so-cushy middle-eastern prison, but of course he is already plotting his own escape. I mean, think about who we are talking about here: the man purposely put in a Panamanian prison (season 3) with the sole purpose of breaking someone out of it, because he is just that damn good.
Michael is sending cryptic messages to Lincoln and C-Note (Rockmund Dunbar, one of their fellow escapees from Fox River State Penitentiary in Illinois) to secure their help with his escape. He ended up working for some organization (of course he did) and wasn’t actually dead, after all. Dominic Purcell revealed recently that, “It got to the point where he couldn’t do it anymore and they threw him in jail in Yemen to change his mind. He didn’t change his mind. They set him up.”
12. ISIS Plays A Part In Season 5
The new season of Prison Break will deal with aspects of ISIS, ISA, and what is happening in our modern world of terrorism and all the threats that presents. This is not surprising, given where the season is taking place. Yemen (officially known as the Republic of Yemen) is a small Arab country at the southern end of the Arabian peninsula, in close proximity to Saudi Arabia, Oman, Djibouti, Eritrea, and Somalia. Though Yemen is not typically the first country that comes to mind when we think of ISIS these days, Dominic Purcell confirmed that “The plotline in the Middle East has much more to offer as it deals with terrorism and the real life threat of the Islamic State. “He also has this to say about the aspect of terrorism in the new Prison Break reboot: “I’ve seen the dailies of it, and it looks like a cross between Bourne Identity and American Sniper. It’s crazy. It’s really, really cool.” Many fans theorize that Michael may have actually been working with ISIS before being thrown in the foreign slammer. Can you imagine? Serious but sweet Michael working for the enemy of the world? We sure hope not!
11. There Will Be 9 New Episodes. Or 10.
Last August, the FOX Network wasted no time breaking the news that the cult series loved (and missed) by so many had been officially ordered. Reports vary- some say 9 episodes, but some say 10. However, most say 9, so that is what we will go with, and if it happens to actually be 10, well, that is just a bonus! So many months before the premiere airs (and, actually, over a week before filming is even due to wrap up) perhaps it is not yet even decided for sure. Either way, these new episodes will launch on FOX in early 2017 as part of the network’s mid-season schedule. This means that one year from right now, we will have seen (and watched and re-watched) Prison Break: Sequel, and be satiated… for like a minute. As with the Netflix original series Orange is the New Black, I am sure we will be left dying for more, like, now. Prison Break: Sequel will air Thursdays at 9/8 CST.
10. Sara Is Married!
Say, whaaa? Aw, hell’s naw! The ex-junkie and Governor’s daughter who helped the Fox River Eight escape, then fell in love with Michael and had his son, is apparently now married to someone else, and raising Michael’s son with this mystery man! Dr. Sara Tancredi is now reportedly married to a man named Scott Ness, played by Royal Pains star Mark Feurstein. This news comes as a (sad) shock to “Sarchael” (or if you prefer it, “Michra”) fans. Yeah, Michael and Sara’s names do not mesh as well as Brangelina or Bennifer, but I tried. Anyway, you know what I mean.
Moving on, I am already freaking out about what this is going to mean for Sarchael/Michra! Of course, their love rivals Romeo and Juliet, so even this Scott Ness character cannot stand in the way of that. But still, it has me worried (but not really- I mean who can compete with coming back from the dead, and breaking out of like every prison ever? No way does he come close to Michael’s level of bad-ass-ness). But also, does this mean there has been a huge time jump between seasons 4 and 5? All of these answers about the new seasons, but they just lead to so many more questions!
9. Lincoln Almost Died (For Real) While Filming
It’s true. The indestructible Dominic Purcell came close to losing his life while filming when an iron bar fell into his head! The poor guy had to actually be airlifted from the set- yes, airlifted! You know it is serious when a helicopter has to fly you to a helipad on top of a hospital! This injury happened in May, but luckily he was ok (after 150 stitches) and it was able to be written into the script. Whew! Because the script is what we were worried about (well, not gonna lie, I was…). Anyway, later on the actor admitted that he had feared for his life, which is nothing new for Lincoln Burrows, but apparently is a very new feeling for his real-life counterpart, Dominic Purcell. He said of the frightening experience: “I’m not being hyperbolic when I say this — I expected that I was either going to black out or die, because in my brain, when he said my skull was showing, I just assumed that my skull was cracked, and blood was going to go into my brain, and I was going to f**king die in Morocco. I thought I was going to die…” Freaky! We’re just glad old Linc is ok!
8. The Brothers Are The Only Reason For Season 5
Wentworth Miller and Dominic Purcell were the driving force behind season 5’s existence. Of course, they are, always have been, and always will be the main characters of Prison Break, so in a way it makes sense. The two also costar on the 2016 action/adventure/sci-fi series Legends of Tomorrow, and it was on the set of this new show (which, by the way, is weird that it casts the two leads of this other amazing show, is it not?) that Dominic pitched the idea about a Prison Break reboot. We are sure glad he did! Because in the end, the idea came to fruition, and now we are just months away from bingeing on it!
Reportedly, Wentworth agreed with the reboot idea, they pitched it to FOX, and voila! I am sure there is more to the story than that, but from where I sit, it seems like it was pretty easy. Prison Break was such a hit that FOX probably figured, why not? It’s worth a shot! And already the hype is crazy. People want more, and we have wanted more for almost 8 years! And (don’t get too excited now) there could possibly even be a season 6 in the future. Eek!
7. Fan-Fave Sucre Is Back
We love ourselves some Sucre! As in, Michael’s Fox River bunkmate Fernando Sucre, and not the word that so resembles the word sugar, though his name (and his face… er, body) are essentially synonymous with the sweetness of said sugar. Though his resolve was never as strong as Michael’s, Sucre always ended up doing the right thing in the end, and he always had Michael’s back, no matter what. Plus, clearly he is eye candy. I, for one, am thrilled the Puerto-Rican native is back for more. He confirmed that he will be “back with the gang” for new episodes on social media. Since his successful stint on Prison Break, the actor who portrayed Sucre, Amaury Nolasco, has kept busy with several roles on various television shows, but nothing comes close to his largest role on all 4 seasons of our favorite prison show. Can’t wait to see what he has to bring next spring!
6. The Other Familiar Faces
Others returning from the original series include the awful (but God, we love to watch his sleaziness!) T-Bag, aka Theodore Bagwell, the inbred southern charmer who is also, of course, a sociopathic serial killer/child molester who cut his own hand off in the escape. There is also C-Note, played by Rockmund Dunbar. He is quite normal compared to the others, with a loving wife and daughter who thought he was away in the military when he was actually in prison. Then there is the not-to-be-trusted Paul Adelstein. You never really know where this guy stands, as he frequently switches “sides”, from helping the prisoners to trying to capture them for the feds. I wonder whose side he will be batting for this season? He is another character who is pretty evil (in season one he shot point blank a bound and gagged woman in the woods, for no other reason than that she knew too much, even though she was begging for her life). But he also helped Michael escape a few times, and gained sympathy when he almost committed suicide. So we shall see. Only time will tell…
5. The New Faces
Well, we have already discussed Sara’s new love Scott Ness (Mark Feurstein). In addition to her husband, there is also a genius identity thief, played by Rick Yune of The Fast and The Furious fame. Plus, Kick-Ass 2 actor Augustus Prew portrays a man called “Whip”, and newcomer Amin El Gamal has been cast as “Cyclops” (whatever that means, though it is not hard to venture a guess). There is Torchwood actress Marina Benedict as the villainness called “A&W” (no idea, don’t ask), and Kunal Sharma playing “Sid”, an artsy inmate who is apparently in jail for his sexuality. Hmm, this is quite the bunch, and should make for some interesting antics. Basically, we have, as I read it: Sara’s new hubby who no one wants (or will want) around and will just cause trouble for viewers and inner turmoil for her. We can add to the list an identity thief, a random guy called Whip, a one-eyed dude, an evil woman with a weird name (but really, could she be more evil than Gretchen was?), and a (presumably) gay guy who did nothing wrong other than being gay. I don’t know, Michael, this does not sound like the bad-ass crew we are accustomed to assisting in your escapes…
4. Linc’s New Lover
Let’s be honest- so far Lincoln has landed some hot ladies, but they have fallen victim to some less-than-desirable demises. First there was his longtime love, friend, and lawyer Veronica Donovan (Robin Tunney), who was executed by a secret service agent in season 2. Lincoln’s wife, Lisa Rix (Jessalyn Gilsig) was murdered by some agent working with Kellerman (the good/bad fed guy). Then there was Sofia Lugo (Danay Garcia) in Panama in season 3 who was kidnapped and suffered all sorts of trials and tribulations due to the escape plan from Sona. Let’s just say that Lincoln’s ladies do not always end up better for having been with him. But now we meet activist Sheba in season 5, played by Inbar Lavi, an Israeli actress who has an impressive number of television shows under her belt. We can only hope that she has better luck, well, staying alive and unharmed than did the women who preceded her in Lincoln’s heart. Then again, of the show’s 17 regular characters thus far, Veronica Donovan and Sofia Lugo were the only 2 to never be arrested; that’s something, right?
3. The Behind-The-Scenes Magic
Working their talents from behind the scenes for both Prison Break and Prison Break: Sequel, are the people who make all the magic happen. Plenty of the original producing team will be returning to work on the new project, like Paul T. Scheuring (who was the series’ creator), Neal Moritz, Marty Adelstein, and Dawn Olmstead, all names you’ll likely recognize, as they were credited on the bottom of the screen of every single episode. As they deserved to be, since they are the ones that led Prison Break to be an immediate hit when it premiered in the fall of 2005, gathering Golden Globe Award nominations for Best Television Series – Drama and Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series – Drama for series lead Wentworth Miller. So rest assured, all of these talented people are on board for the reboot, with Scheuring writing the episodes and running the show.
2. Prison Break Is Banned In Prison
Weird, right? But I mean, it kind of makes sense. Obviously, the people in charge don’t want their inmates getting any bright ideas about how to escape a prison (season 1 or 3), or if they somehow do escape, how to elude authorities (season 2). Thus far, there are at least 13 prisons nationwide that prohibit the show, but let’s face the music: if you have a Michael Scofield in your midst, it doesn’t really matter what you do. Am I right? Michael Scofield, himself, is of course as fictional character, but he is portrayed brilliantly by Wentworth Miller who was cast only a week before filming began (and who has received criticism for a “flat” performance, but come on- that’s just Michael). Anyway, there are legitimate and obvious reasons for the higher-ups in the prison system being nervous about their inmates watching this show, but except for a lucky few each year (most of whom are caught soon after escaping) and someone with the I.Q. and determination of Michael Scofield (who does not actually exist), I doubt they have much to worry about.
1. Those We Left Behind
Or perhaps we should say that they left us behind… so to speak. I am talking about the characters we love (and love to hate) that will definitely not be joining the cast of this reboot- the ones who died. That is, unless they pull a Michael Scofield-esque resurrection, which I highly doubt. There is mobster John Abruzzi who, even though he cut off Michael’s toe, I love anyway. He did the whole “suicide by cop” thing in early season 2 instead of going back to prison. Then we have Lincoln’s ex and a close friend of the family, Veronica Donovan, who was killed by the secret service, as we’ve talked about.
Third, the despicable but ultimately lovably-pitiful Brad Bellick, who drowned trying to save the mission in season 4, thereby redeeming himself. Fourth is James Whistler, who we don’t care about because he dies trying to steal Scylla (the mission of season 4) for himself, and besides, he was never likable since being introduced in season 3. Then there is David “Tweener” Apolskis, a young kid and one of the original Fox River 8, murdered by Alex Mahone, who we like later on. We have the psych ward guy who was basically manipulated into jumping off a lighthouse to his death, and finally, Agent Donald Self, who was likable but untrustworthy, and he paid for it with his life. These are the people we will definitely not see in season 5, leaving a few to wonder about (Mahone, Sofia, and LJ, to name a few…) Guess we will have to wait and see! But damn, is it going to be a long wait or what?