The third season of Prison Break is a severely truncated affair, having run foul, along with many other shows at the time, of the writers’ strike.
Hence we are presented with a mere 13 tight episodes of brothers Michael Scofield (Wentworth Miller) and Lincoln Burrows (Dominic Purcell) continuing their quest for justice and answers in regards to the shady “Company” who constantly keep them on their toes.
In a reversal of the far superior first year, this season begins with Michael incarcerated and Lincoln plotting his brother’s escape, with the season pretty much vacillating between the two intertwined stories. The prison this season is Sona, a vicious (as far as network television can show without aggravating the censors – it sure ain’t no Oz!) inmate led heat-hole in Panama. The overall theme of this season (according to writer and executive producer Paul Scheuring) is “redemption”. Whereas the conspiracy storyline has not yet been fully concluded, this season reverts very much to the early parts of the first season and does away with many of the seismic changes that Season 2 brought about with its “on the run” motifs.
The show itself is still an enjoyable watch, even though a consistent through line of attempting to break out and being thwarted is inevitable. The introduction of Australian inmate Whistler is a diverting distraction from the main strands and the finale’s shocking conclusion (which unfortunately is whelched upon in the start of Season 4) makes for an intriguing cliffhanger. However, it seems that the show’s days may well be numbered with the current season, following a definite dip in quality with this outing.
Released on DVD and Blu-ray on Monday 6th October 2008 by 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment.