Amidst a flurry of old favorites being restored to their rightful places on your television, one stands out: Prison Break is coming back with a sequel series on FOX. It originally aired four seasons, from 2005 to 2009, with a feature-length finale called "Prison Break: The Final Break." I was a massive fan of the show during its original airing, and pretty gutted when it was cancelled, so I'm thrilled it's coming back — for purely nostalgic reasons, of course. It will run for 10 more episodes that take place several years after the conclusion of the original series, according to Deadline, and much of the original cast will return — including the series' stars Wentworth Miller and Dominic Purcell.
Though it's been six years since the original series concluded, I'm still going to issue a spoiler alert here. I was a bit confused when I heard Miller would return, because his character Michael Scofield dies in "The Final Break." Or, I guess, so it seems. According to Entertainment Weekly, Fox CEO Dana Walden explained that, while series creator Paul Scheuring would not totally ignore "The Final Break," "what he pitched to us was a very logical and believable explanation in the world of Prison Break for why are character’s alive and still moving around the world."
So, what would be a "logical and believable explanation"? Here are a few ideas about what the original characters of Prison Break, from inmates to prison officials to secret agents, may have been up to between the wrap on Season 4 and the new series.
At the end of Season 4 of the show as it originally aired, Wentworth Miller's character — the centerpoint of the show, who gets himself voluntarily imprisoned in an attempt to save his brother by committing armed robbery — dies of a brain tumor. Sara Tancredi, the prison doctor he starts a relationship with, is seen visiting his grave who-knows-how-long into the future. And in "The Final Break," Michael — knowing his tumor is a death sentence — sacrifices himself to allow her to escape incarceration for a murder she didn't commit (a recurring theme in the show). So, how is he around this time? Well, we never actually witness his death in "The Final Break," though the audience and all the characters are led to believe he's died. Maybe he emerges heroically from the prison in a real final break, and the revived series will just occur in the interim between "The Final Break" and his eventual death from the tumor?
At the end of "The Final Break," Michael asks his brother to take care of his unborn child. Hypothesis: While Michael recovers from the electrical shock he received in Sara's escape, Linc and Sara could flee to somewhere they won't be found, and where Sara could raise her child. Neither of them would know he's alive — they escaped by boat at the end of "The Final Break," so it would be as much of a shock to them as to viewers that he's still around. When we meet them again, it could be at some remote location only accessible by boat.
See above. She, Linc, and her newborn child coudld flee those who would see them imprisoned or dead. Maybe, in fitting with the occasionally saccharine and overly earnest tone of the show, Sara could do some sort of charitable work, putting her medical skills to use.
Fernando Sucre is Michael's cellmate from the beginning of the series. He appears in nearly every episode, but at the end of the series he has been exonerated and returns home to be with his wife Maricruz and their daughter. There's not a lot left to the imagination for Sucre, who's seen in Chicago with his family and then visiting Michael's grave after his death. I'm hoping he stays out of trouble, because he's definitely one of the gentlest-hearted inmates at Fox River.
He's the character you love to hate — the slimy, double-crossing agent who sort of redeems himself by the end. You're never quite sure whose side he's on. He's totally brilliant and acts as a foil to the similar genius of Michael Scofield, but it's an unstable kind of brilliance. I can picture him several years on much like Matthew McConaughey in the first season True Detective flashes forward — still smarter than everyone around him, but without an outlet and channeling it into drugs (he already has a pill problem during the original show).
And T-Bag is the character you hate to love — equally slimy, but there's something horribly appealing about him. Perhaps it's just the stellar performance by Robert Knepper, who oozes psychopath. I don't think there's any freedom in store for T-Bag, unless it's by escape. He was last spotted entering solitary confinement in "The Final Break," and I can see him staying there for a while. When he emerges for the new series, he'll be more demented than ever, after such a long time spent with only his thoughts.
An agent for The Company, the organization behind the conspiracy that framed Linc at the beginning of it all, Gretchen Morgan goes by the alias Susan B. Anthony. In "The Final Break," she returns to prison for the murder of Linc and Michael's mother, but unlike T-Bag, Gretchen once had friends in high places. Odds are, she'll get an early release, leaving her to wreak more havoc (or perhaps finally ally with our heroes à la Agent Mahone)?
Honestly, the last moments of Prison Break didn't leave much to the imagination. It will be exciting to see where the showrunners take it for these last 10 episodes, because there was never any predicting where the series would go next.
Images: FOX (8)