Prison Break - Season 1 [DVD]
All 22 episodes from the first season of the popular drama series created by Paul Scheuring. Michael Schofield (Wentworth Miller) is a desperate man in a desperate situation. His brother, Lincoln Burrows (Dominic Purcell), has been convicted of a sensational murder and subsequently put on death row in the Fox River State Penitentiary. Despite the overwhelming evidence against Lincoln, Michael is convinced of his innocence. With no other options and time running out, Michael holds up a bank to get himself sent down alongside his brother. Not just content to while away the hours until Lincoln's execution, Michael hatches a plan, helped in no small part by his skills as a structural engineer. With the blueprints to the prison tattooed on his body, Michael plots an elaborate escape to break out Lincoln and prove his brother was framed. The episodes are: 'Pilot', 'Allen', 'Cell Test', 'Cute Poison', 'English, Fitz Or Percy', 'Riots, Drills and the Devil', 'Behind the Walls', 'The Old Head', 'Tweener', 'Sleight of Hand', 'And Then There Were 7', 'Odd Man Out', 'End of the Tunnel', 'The Rat', 'By the Skin and the Teeth', 'Brother's Keeper', 'J-Cat', 'Bluff', 'The Key', 'Tonight', 'Go' and 'Flight'.
Season one ofPrison Breakis great television. Here's the set-up. Lincoln Burrows (Dominic Purcell) is framed and wrongfully convicted for assassinating the Vice President's brother. Lincoln's brother Michael Scofield (Wentworth Miller), whojust happensto have designed Illinois' Fox River Penitentiary where Lincoln is on death row, hatches an elaborate escape plan. Michael's plan involves gettinghimselfincarcerated in Fox River and smuggling the prison's blueprints by having them hidden in tattoos that cover his entire torso. Once inside, Michael must form alliances with a rogue's gallery of felons with their own sometimes unsavory motives. Meanwhile, on the outside, Lincoln's lawyer and one-time girlfriend Veronica Donovan (Robin Tunney), pursued by Secret Service agents, attempts to unravel the conspiracy that sent her man to the slammer.
Prison Breakis anchored by tight, suspenseful writing clearly relished by the largely little-known cast. Standouts include Robert Knepper as the murderer/pedophile T-Bag, who somehow makes such a despicable characterlikeable. Stacey Keach ofMike Hammerfame plays the warden-with-a-heart-of-gold, who clashes with Captain Brad Bellick (Wade Williams) over whether to rehabilitate the inmates or makes their lives more miserable. Peter Stormare, famous for his skills with a wood chipper inFargo, turns in a deliciously menacing performance as mob boss John Abruzzi, while Amaury Nolasco's winsome Fernando Sucre shares a cell and secrets with Miller's Scofield. Watching the show one gets a sense that this is the opening salvo of Wentworth Miller's career, which will doubtless include roles as assassins, detectives, super heroes, and perhaps the champion of staring contests. Midway through the season it's explained that Scofield is a genius with an heightened sensitivity to other peoples' suffering, which sums up what makes the show so great--the mind-bendingly intricate plot is a framework for moments when people make others suffer and cope with the burden of their own suffering.
The six-disc set includes 22 addictive episodes, audio commentary on selected episodes, three featurettes, and alternate and deleted scenes. As with most TV shows on DVD, the "previously onPrison Break" intros can get tiresome, but that's what the fast forward button is for.--Ryan Boudinot