Pros: very exciting season, quite original concept and presentation, very dramatic, quite addicting episodes
With the huge success that FOX had received from its hit show 24 they took a calculated risk in trying another serial drama in the form of Prison Break. A series that would have each episode build upon the last, the first season was set up much like a movie, broken up into many different sections that were presented as episodes. This time around though, there wouldn't be terrorists and Jack Bauer coming in to save the day, but rather a depiction of two brothers struggling to survive. When one of the brothers his falsely accused of a crime (Lincoln), he is jailed and eventually sent to death row for the murder of the Vice President's brother. This is a death sentence he cannot avoid, but there is hope on the horizon in the form of his brother Michael. Michael's intent is to break his brother out of the high-security prison, and in the process save his life from these unfortunate circumstances.
It might seem from the start like your typical jail-break type story, but the twist on this one, is that Michael plans to break IN to the prison. The plan that he succeeds in executing is getting himself thrown in the same prison for staging a crime, and thus putting him at the right hand of his brother to orchestrate a pretty diabolical scheme. It takes a few episodes for everything in the story to get set up, but eventually the show moves towards the brothers planning their escape, and of course, ultimately attempting to pull it off. Along the way there are plenty of surprises, as well as many different sub-plots and important supporting characters that will help to drive the story. The show doesn't just stick with the two brothers, but covers that of people both on the outside, and on the inside of the walls in the form of family, friends, and fellow inmates. Broadening the story is what made the show even more interesting, and keeps the brothers on their toes.
Cast in the two main roles of Lincoln and Michael, they chose Dominic Purcell and Wentworth Miller to play the parts respectively. Dominic had made a career of supporting roles, including parts in Mission: Impossible II and The Lost World before taking a role in the short-run television show John Doe, and finally ending up on Prison Break. Wentworth likewise was seen in many supporting roles including films like Romeo and Juliet and Underworld before producers came calling. Joining them in the cast Wade Williams (who ironically was on 24) and Robin Tunney (The Craft, Vertical Limit) just to name a couple. The supporting characters do bring their own little additives to the story, but it is the brooding nature of the two lead characters that really keep people interested in the story. Add to that their obvious sex appeal, and you can see why a lot of women have fallen in love with the FOX drama.
The one thing that Prison Break really had going for it, was the ramped up level of excitement and drama that each individual episode brought the story as a whole. It was one of those shows where you had to watch each one to keep up with what was going on, and just about every episode left you with a cliff-hanger that enticed you to tune in again next week. Now with the entire first season in a DVD set, it is easy to just sit down and watch many of the episodes right in a row. With the DVD set of the first season, you get all 22 episodes on 6 DVD's. The episodes are presented quite well, and the coloring looks even better than when they aired on television. Several featurettes are added to the set, along with several alternate scenes, deleted scenes, and of course audio commentary if you so wish to turn it on. The story is quite strong, and with the ever-evolving plot that helped create the show, you have a television show that is well worth purchasing on DVD.