Enjoy it, cause this is gonna have to tide you over till freaking February. At least.
So yeah, did we forget to tell you earlier this was the Fall Finale? Well it is now! Whistler hasn’t been entirely honest about who he is, which surprises no one except Sofia. Linc whoops some ass, Mahone totally blows it, and even armed helicopters can’t break Whistler out of Sona. But someone makes it out!3.08 Bang & Burn. It looks like just another day at Sona, complete with a Spanish-language version of “Don’t Fear The Reaper.” The DJ at Sona LOVES 70s rock, and I love him for it. Seriously, I kind of want them to release a soundtrack. Anyway, oh my god, T-Mac is wearing a buttondown and khakis cause his dad is coming to visit, and it’s so freaking cute. Michael is distracted at first, but even though he’s had the absolute worst day ever, he finds some tiny bit of energy to humor him. “You look sharp,” he says, and sort of pats him on the shoulder and even smiles a little. Aw.
So these fence visits are going to be a little awkward from now on, huh. We can see workers reinforcing the bars on the cell windows behind Michael as he stoically asks about LJ, who Linc says is alive. “They’ve given us four more days” Linc says, to which Michael replies “good,” then turns around to walk away. Linc stops him to say that there were three body bags at the rendezvous point yesterday: LJ, Michael, Linc. So I guess it’s a good thing it didn’t work. But Michael’s had some time to get angry. “You lied.” He accuses Linc, simply. Well, when you put it that way… Linc tries to explain that he couldn’t tell him, but Michael says that first of all, LJ is his nephew, and he would do anything for him, and he can’t believe Linc would think he wouldn’t. And secondly, “You used me. I guess you and the Company have something in common.” Oooh, low blow, Emo Michael.
Retchin, nÃ©e Snoozin, is surprised to find a guest in her hotel room: General Baldy! Sans his Mysterious Writing Pad Of Mysterious Mystery! Apparently his freakish paranoia about being recorded doesn’t go as far as Panama. It’s kind of awesome, because she’s obviously scared shitless and awaiting the ass-chewing of a lifetime. He comments on what a huge mess this has become, and she clarifies that it was a mess before she got there. He agrees, and says it’s time to clean it up. “We’re ending this today,” he tells her. She reminds him that that option was analyzed and not only is it dangerous, it’s nearly impossible given the time frame. He’s wondering now if he hired the right person, but she says she’s doing her job when she tells him to reconsider. And he’s doing his job when he sics his thugs on her, who hold her down while he gets up real close and tells her she better get it done or he’ll make what happened in Mosul feel like a massage. Wow, that’s a pretty awful thing to say, even to Retchin.
“I’ve kind of been out of the loop lately – whatever happened to that smarmy Asian kid?”
Whistler is at the fence telling Retchin he can’t do it if she keeps coming to Sona. She says it doesn’t matter cause they’re going with the “Bang & Burn.” Whistler says that’s suicide; he might get killed if they do it that way. “And I might get killed if we don’t!” She hisses. She’s on the right side of the fence, so she wins. She says to be ready by five; “everybody goes.” “What about Scofield?” he wonders. She says – surprise! – to kill him.
Whistler’s looking antsy and conflicted as Lechero surreptitiously approaches Michael to discuss the escape plan he got in on at the exact wrong time. Lechero has no more sway with the Colonel after Michael’s antics, so he can’t do anything to stop the work they’re doing to reinforce the bars on the windows. But he does have an idea. Sammy calls Lechero away from his secret meeting to say that they’re having trouble enforcing their rule in there – 3 of the crew dead in a week, maybe they need some new blood? Lechero doesn’t trust anyone right now, but Sammy doesn’t think he and Lechero and T-Bag can run the place themselves, and has his eye on someone he wants to bring in. Incidentally, Sammy is totally rockin the “vest with no shirt” look that earned him the initial name of Skinny Black Fabio. Lechero says fine, bring him in, but no promises.
We’re at the Company’s Panama headquarters, with people milling about a large room with lots of maps and suits and laptops and other things supervillians always have at their disposal. Retchin’s giving orders: small arms, cougars, strikers, something something. Presumably we’re talking about weapons. One of her guys is all “we’re doing this at five?” Yup, they sure are, whether she likes it or not, and she doesn’t look like she does.
Sofia doesn’t like her morning paper, which has a front page story about the failed escape from Sona. She gets a call from a guy claiming to be Whistler’s landlord. She claims to be his wife and says there is no other apartment, it must be a mistake, but she’s visibly shaken. He assures her Whistler is his tenant, and he got her number by looking at his phone bills. Could she come down there? He tells her the address, which is promptly overheard and noted by some wiretapping Company guy.
Whistler flips through his little bird book, and comes to a page with the word “MAHONE” scrawled on it, followed by “Special Ops? Company? Drugs? Family” Who in the what now? How old is this particular notation? Does this mean he knew about Mahone, or he was the one who recruited him, or did Susan write it when she had the book? Anyway, cool. He tears out the page and burns it just before Michael comes in to tell him they’ve got four more days. Whistler, of course, knows that no, actually, they’ve got till 5:00 before some serious shit goes down, and Michael’s supposed to be dead by then. He’s glancing at his watch and Michael smartassily wonders if it’s a bad time, to which Whistler responds that it’s been an intense 24 hours. Michael takes this opportunity to ask about his little visit with Retchin – now, Michael doesn’t know she’s who Linc’s been in contact with, i.e., the girl who cut off Sara’s head, but he does know she’s not the girlfriend type. “She’s Company,” Whistler admits. She was reminding him he’s got a stake in this too. He then gets all uppity with Michael about how he’s not all that excited about a possible escape plan that may or may not work. Um, dude. A little gratitude maybe, and actually, it was your “leave the ladder on the windowsill” that really started all the crap, so shut up. He just wants out, he doesn’t care how. He leaves Michael, then meets up with a really big scary guy who’s got something for him. Whistler hands him some money. “You never met me.” Well that’s a sign of a totally legitimate exchange of goods.
Mahone’s got jungle fever! Oh no wait, that’s just regular fever, from the heroin withdrawal.
Mahone, in his hotel room, is FREAKING. OUT. I’ve typed that sentence many times, but it’s extra super true at the moment. He’s flashing back to dead people, and sweating and twitching and essentially he’s the very opposite of a compelling witness in his own defense. His appearance startles Lang, and he doesn’t even greet her, just starts rambling about Oscar Shales. That’s the guy that started this whole thing – the nasty rapist-murderer he killed instead of arresting. He felt good at first but then the visions came, and the drugs helped the visions. Once he got to Sona he had to “improvise.” William Fichtner is so awesome that he actually manages to pronounce those quotation marks. They’re sitting rather close and I can’t help but think that under less utterly batshit nuts circumstances they’d totally make out. He’s essentially begging her for drugs, saying he can’t testify like that, and yeah, he’s got a point. I mean, they give methodone to homeless people, you can’t get your hands on some for a Federal Agent?
Whistler apologizes to Michael for his earlier outburst, and fakes concern for LJ. T-Bag walks up: “Knocka knocka!” Heh. Robert Knepper is really rockin this Iago-as-played-by-Blance-DuBois version of T-Bag, incidentally. I’m glad they keep finding excuses to keep him around, because this really is a completely unique character and he does a great job. Teodoro has a super-secret envelope for Michael from Lechero and wonders what he’s got cookin up with him – is this an invitation to the Sona Hawkins Dance or what? Ha! Michael tells him it’s none of his business, but T-Bag reminds Michael that he can treat him like a pesky insect if he wants, but “information, like crumbs, always trickles down to the vermin on the floor.” Michael opens the envelope to find a cryptic drawing with “4:00″ and “4413″ at the top. It’s no origami swan, but still. Michael recognizes it as a sketch of Lechero’s quarters and heads off to investigate, as Whistler unwraps his purchase from earlier, which, yes, is a bigass knife.
Sofia, meanwhile, is being let in to the bare but rather nice secret apartment he’s been keeping. The landlord tries to comfort her – just because he kept some secrets doesn’t mean he didn’t love her. Sofia’s all, yeah, nobody asked you, Panama Jackass. He runs off to get some insurance papers and she starts looking around, but finds mostly bags of shredded documents. I’m sure it’s nothing! He just wanted to make some confetti for your birthday party, Sofia! She rifles through a few more drawers and finally finds an envelope with a passport and social security card.
“Is that a knife in your back pocket or are you just…oh, it is a knife.”
Whistler, his bigass knife tucked safely in his waistband, follows Michael to Lechero’s. According to the sketch, there’s another door in here, and yup, there it is behind that tapestry. It’s locked, but Michael has the code, 4413. The door leads them down a staircase to a storage room of some kind with yet another door at the end. 4413 doesn’t work on this one though, and while Michael tries to figure it out, Whistler goes for the knife. For a second it looks like Lechero didn’t send the message at all and it’s a setup. “I’m truly sorry you got caught up in all my troubles, Michael,” he says ominously, but before he can get all stabby, Lechero shows up.
Lechero opens the second door with a code only he knows, and Michael questions the wisdom of using T-Bag as a go-between if he’s trying to keep secrets. Lechero says by the time he figures it out they’ll be long gone. He leads them into an underground tunnel. The old administration used it to go between cellblocks A and B, but after the riots, they put everyone in B and blew up the tunnel. Sure enough, there’s a giant pile of rubble, and Michael’s like, yeah, we can dig through this. If we have a couple of payloaders. They can’t tunnel out, that’s for sure, but they might be able to tunnel up. Cool. Whistler looks at his watch.
And back in the city, Sofia is looking at his passport. It’s Whistler’s picture alright, but the name on it is Gary Miller. Yeah, that’s way less cool than “James Whistler.” Also, Gary Miller was born in Dallas, so hey, shoutout! (I’ve mentioned before that they shoot the prison yard scenes there.) And his birthday’s coming up next week. Anyway, Sofia’s jaw barely has time to drop before Retchin shows up all “I’ll take that, thanks.” She introduces herself as an “old friend” of James, and what follows is the least sexy sexual tension scene that’s ever been filmed between two incredibly hot women. I don’t know what went so terribly wrong here, but it just doesn’t work. Sofia tries to leave but Retchin pins her to the wall. She can see why he loves her; she really is beautiful. She essentially tells Sofia that she should really probably just forget anything she saw in there or terrible things will happen, in a “I’m being tender and hot but also it’s very clear I’m not here to make out” kind of way. Sofia leaves the crazy lady alone in the apartment to start gathering whatever’s left of Whistler’s Big Secret Identity.
Inexplicably, lesbian overtones have never been less sexy. Rosie O’Donnell’s blog poetry notwithstanding.
Michael evaluates the tunnel/debris situation. He notes that the soil is sandy so they’d need some kind of support brace if they were to dig upwards and not be buried alive in the process.
Sammy brings the new recruit and his pals into the penthouse and announces he’s off to get some rum. From the storage place thingy where Michael and Whistler totally aren’t supposed to be! They’re discussing the plan – Michael needs to figure out exactly where in No Man’s Land they are, but after that it should only take two days to dig out. They’re almost caught, but Lechero hides the gringos and is able to fend Sammy off by just generally acting like a dick. He follows Sammy upstairs, and Michael whispers to Whistler, “Let’s get back to work!” They don’t have the code for the tunnel door, but MacGyver Michael has slipped something in the lock and they have access without having to go through Lechero. Whistler is visibly antsy – he’s got that 5:00 appointment and all – but he hides the knife in the storage room and follows.
Sullins calls on Mahone next, and he is not nearly as friendly as Agent Lang. Mahone looks so crazy, so totally batshit nuts, that he is rendered speechless. He’s puzzled at first; Mahone tries to blow it off as nerves, but Sullins has seen him do live press conferences forever and calls bullshit on that particular defense. Eventually he goes from puzzled to disgusted. And yeah, Mahone doesn’t really look courtroom-ready. Sullins barks at him to get his shit together, get a suit on, and let’s go.
Back in the James Bond Supervillain Headquarters place, Retchin is satisfied that everything on their end is covered. Now it’s up to Whistler.
“How long is this trigonometry lesson going to take? Cause I kind of have a Thing at 5.”
Michael is sort of thinking out loud, but Whistler keeps glancing at the door. He’s all nervy and Michael notices. Whistler’s just all “Oh, I’m claustrophobic all of a sudden even though I spent the first two episodes behind a wall in the sewer. I’ll just step out for some air.” But Michael knows something’s up. He follows behind, saying if he gets caught in the penthouse with Sammy up there he’ll never need air again. Clever! Whistler just very seriously says he needs to get out. Now. Michael Is convinced that he’s up to something. He’s getting angry, but Lechero shows up to let them escape. Before he leaves, Michael asks to borrow the phone, and it’s cute, cause he sort of sounds like he’s a 14 year old girl. “But I have to call my brother!” He insists, but nope, the phone stays with Lechero. Now get out.
Linc and Sucre are renting a romantic cabin in the woods. And by “romantic cabin” I mean “crumbling shack.” The guy they’re renting it from smirkily warns Sucre against growing any marijuana. He makes an offended face, and Linc makes a “well, you do look like the pot farming type” face, and it’s very cute. Anyway, it’s a real shithole, and Linc gives the guy $100 bucks for the month, then he and Sucre head out into the woods. Now, we have to wait till freaking February to figure out why the hell they do this, but Sucre has this c.1988 boombox with him, and they stand in the middle of nowhere and record the sound of Linc emptying his handgun, pyow pyow pyow. “I hope this works, Papi,” Sucre tells him. Me too, Sucre! Oh no wait, I mean, what the hell are you talking about?
T-Mac is heading out to the yard for his visit with T-Mac Sr, when Michael stops and – surprise! – asks for his help. He asks T-Mac to have his dad call Linc’s number and deliver a simple message. “Hell no!” is his initial response, which, first of all, ha! And yeah, being friends with Michael isn’t the safest thing in the world. Poor T-Mac. Michael begs him – if his brother doesn’t get this message something horrible is going to happen to him. He’s doing that earnest shiny-eyed thing that would melt the coldest heart, so naturally it works on the adorable little sucker. He has a really sweet little visit with his Papi. T-Mac Sr holds it together, mostly, but breaks up a little when he says “you should be in school now. With your friends.” And this seems to clinch it – T-Mac responds “I have friends in here.” “The American?” Papi asks, which, aww, he knows about Michael. I know there was a big T-Mac-Papi scene cut from an earlier episode and this scene makes me kind of angry that we never got to see it. Anyway, T-Mac says he’s a good man; he keeps his word. That’s rare in Sona.
So while this is going on, while T-Mac is about to tell his dad about the bad people after his friend, Whistler is standing right next to him talking to Sofia about the same bad people. Whistler tells her that whatever she does, she is to stay away from Linc. It’s not safe to be around him. He’s scared and sort of choked up. “Just go home and stay there, and I will call you tonight.” She’s all, wait, what? You trade sexual favors for an iPhone or something? But he just says to promise, and she does. Then she takes a breath and tells him she got a call from a guy saying he’s his landlord at another apartment. Should she call him back? He’s like, oh, I have no idea what he’s on about!” And she’s kind of heartbroken. She gave him a chance to come clean but he didn’t take it.
Papi has a birthday present. It’s T-Mac’s birthday! Aw. He doesn’t want to see it, and Papi says he’ll put it with the others. Papi gives good Brave Face, let me tell you, but T-Mac says “I’m not coming home. Accept that.” I want to hug him so bad.
T-Mac, like his namesake, is cute in his jersey but downright adorable in his street clothes.
Linc gets a call. It’s T-Mac Sr, saying he has a message for him: “Don’t come home for dinner.” Yay Papi! Good hustle. Linc recognizes it immediately as a code phrase he and Michael used when they were kids; Michael’s telling him to watch his back. Which comes a little late, because we see that there are other people watching Linc’s back, and also his front, most notably, Sweaty Guy, who calls Retchin to confirm he’s got him in his sights. Sofia shows up at this exact wrong moment: “Why haven’t you returned my calls or my car?” she demands kind of hilariously. Sweaty Guy asks Retchin if she has “a directive” re: Sofia, and she says “I warned her. Take them all out.”
Sofia finally gets it across to Linc that a woman followed her to James’ secret identity’s secret apartment and threatened her. He realizes it’s Snoozin/Retchin, and when Sucre tells her she’s the one who has LJ, she becomes suitably alarmed. She tells Linc about the Gary Miller passport, and Linc impatiently reminds her that he told her from the start that Whistler was full of shit, but she confesses that James told her to stay away from Linc today. Now that’s two “watch your ass, baldy” warnings in a row, and Linc looks around and realizes he’s kind of a sitting duck. As Sweaty Guy and his backups prepare to just shoot them all down in broad daylight, Linc calls Lechero’s phone and asks to speak to Michael, but Sammy hangs up on him. Sammy then immediately starts giving Lechero shit about it, all “why is Scofield’s brother calling you?” Lechero says that who he calls and who calls him is none of Sammy’s damn bidness. Sammy is acting so much like a girlfriend he might as well ask if his Fabio vest makes his butt look big.
Sweaty Guy corners Sofia first, holding his gun to her and asking where her friends are. She’s all damsel in distressy, which gives Linc the opportunity to answer him with a gun to his sweaty back. “Why are you coming after us?” Linc shouts, but Sucre has brought a large pipe into the equation and his only answer is a few punches. And you guys, Linc is SO. BADASS. His coup de grace? Smashing one guy’s head clean through a car window. By this time Sweaty Guy has Sofia at gunpoint “Different day, same problem!” he taunts. Now didn’t Linc learn a lesson from when he was in this situation with LJ? Linc says yes, as a matter of fact he did learn a lesson, and just shoots the guy right in the head. Which he probably wishes he’d done yesterday, but still, awesome.
Oh god. Mahone’s hearing. He has lost all ability to keep his shit together and is just a total crazy person. Sullins sees that he’s scratching his hands so badly he’s drawn blood, and actually says out loud, “you gotta be kidding me.” At first Mahone tries to answer their questions, but he can’t really stay on topic. “But it’s all connected. It’s a web. It’s a web that I got caught in.” Oh my. And really, the story is so ridiculous in the first place that he sort of derails into a huge monologue about how they were all just like flies drawn into this trap, and he was just a guy trying to do the right thing for his family, but the government he dedicated his life to manipulated and extorted him. Which it did, and it’s really sad that it sounds like the ravings of a lunatic junkie and no one believes him. Sullins is practically rolling his eyes. Do I have to mention that William Fichtner is awesome? Should I just start using an acronym or something? Lang comes in with some little pills but sees she’s too late. His goose? She is cooked.
“Agent Mahone, I am genuinely impressed with the thorough display of batshittery you’ve managed to pull off here in a court of law.”
At Sona, Whistler is looking up at a loose ceiling tile when Michael finds him and asks where the hell he’s been. Whistler just barely humors him, saying he was looking for scrap metal for their tunnel support. But Michael sees the ceiling tile, and wonders if the claustrophobia comes and goes, cause that’s a tight squeeze in there. Whistler gets all snippy about how tough it must be, not trusting anyone, but their little spat is interrupted by Teodoro, who says that Lechero would like a word with Michael regarding his big brother. Lechero strongly recommends that Linc never call his cellphone again, ever, but holds the phone up for Michael to use. Cool! He calls Linc who says he was right, they just tried to take them all out. Michael says Whistler got a visit from the Company and has been acting weird ever since. Linc’s like, yeah, know what else is weird, is he told Sofia it was too dangerous to be around me today, and he was totally right. Spooky! Michael finally realizes the Company doesn’t need them anymore, because they’re breaking him out themselves.
And sure enough, a big scary helicopter shows up above Sona and it means business. (Incidentally, I remember my friend Brian showing me the press release from Fox, warning Dallas residents that they would be filming a helicopter battle during their morning commute, which is cool.) Whistler comes through a trap door onto the roof and holds his hands up, waiting for rescue, but Michael is right behind him. They have a totally awesome fight scene, on the roof, with the helicopter hovering overhead. Another helicopter rounds the bend and shoots the occasional guard, blows up the occasional jeep. Badass. Aw, is that Sleepy Guard there, who radios in just before he’s gunned down? Tough week for Sleepy Guard. They lower a ladder down for Whistler to grab, but ha! Michael totally grabs on to him, and they just hang there. It’s kind of funny, but it’s also pretty awesome, because I don’t think Michael cares if he goes along with Whistler or just stops him. The other helicopter is shooting everybody now, taking all the Colonel’s men down one by one. Michael’s too close to Whistler for them to shoot, and when one of the Sona guys takes out the sharpshooter they have to abort. Whistler and Michael tumble down to the rooftop. “Mission failed.” Back at headquarters Retchin makes the kind of face you make when you know you’re in deep, deep shit with bad, bad people.
Don’t look down!
Whistler makes a run for it, beating Michael down the trap door as the alarm starts sounding. Before he goes out to line up in the yard, he takes his shirt off, presumably so he’s not recognized as being one of the guys on the roof. Good thinking, and do that more often. Michael fights his way through the crowd, and okay. He gets to this cell, right? And my brain hears that “Hallelujah!” music as he peels off his grey shirt and we see the tats in all their glory! Yay tats! For like five seconds. Because just when I have time to think “Oh cool, great idea, you go out there with those tats and no one will ever identify you as one of the guys on the roof!” he grabs a COMPLETELY IDENTICAL GREY SHIRT and puts it on instead. So like, what the fuck? Maybe they were shooting another, awesomer scene which required the tattoos and they decided to take advantage of the opportunity? Either way, thanks, and more please.
Retchin’s phone is ringing, and boy does she ever not want to answer it. She takes a drink instead. It’s kind of fun to see her looking like she’s about to be sent to the principal’s office. If the principal were the head of a murderous international conspiracy and had just threatened you with horrific torture a few hours earlier.
Mahone’s hearing is over, and hey, guess what? It didn’t go so well. They’re taking him back to Sona.
Some white guy we don’t know enters the big Sona prison yard doors, and plods around till he gets to Michael. “Mr. Scofield, there have been two escape attempts in the past two days, it can’t be a coincidence that you arrived shortly before they happened.” Michael says he had nothing to with that, and gets a nice elbow to the nose for it. The guy says he’s made too much trouble in Sona, so maybe he shouldn’t be there. He calls his guys over and they lead Michael by the shoulders. “Say goodbye to Sona, Mr. Scofield.” And they just parade him right out the door.
So yeah, despite the cool cliffhanger there, this wasn’t supposed to be the last one we saw for months and months, but there you have it. So like, what the hell?