This week on Prison Break: Hot damn! This episode was chock full of awesome, and I don’t think that’s just the Mardi Gras hangover talking. Not entirely. Anyway, Michael and Sara enlist the help of the former Warden Pope, who is still kind of sore about the whole thing where Michael played him like a portly, mustachioed violin the whole time he was at Fox River. Then tied him to a chair, knocked him unconscious, left him in a closet, and ultimately made him look like a total ass and lost him his job. Sheesh, that was like, last season! Get over it already! Sucre finally meets up with Maricruz, so presumably he’ll be able to shut up about her and get a real storyline now. C-Note is cornered and he does what he gots ta do, which might be bad news for Michael, but is probably just a lucky break for Kacee and Dede. Plus, Kim gets the snot punched out of him! Kellerman gets the door slammed on him! And at long last, an answer to the age-old question: “Mommy, where do T-Bags come from?” 2.17 “Bad Blood.” Michael and Sara stroll in to the Chicago cigar club. Sara leaves Michael to chill out at the bar and heads to the private humidors with the key she’s thrown her life in the toilet for, and also the bathtub, so this better be good. She’s looking for her dad’s box when she hears some guy say “Miss Tancredi?” Gulp. He needs to have a word with her, and presumably anyone who knows who she is knows that she’s not supposed to be rooting around in cigar clubs. Sara politely says “of course!” but scurries past the helpful gentleman towards the door. Michael’s spidey sense is tingling so he heads for the exit as well. He grabs Sara: “It’s time to go.” You think? The guy’s still calling out to Sara as they make their way out through the kitchen. They totally ignore the “Do Not Open: Alarm Will Sound!” sign on the back door and run out, only to come face to face with a police car. They escape through a side gate.
Mahone walks briskly through the Minneapolis airport and calls his son, Cameron, who you might recall is hospitalized due to a very suspiciously timed hit-and-run accident. An accident which ultimately resulted in the death of a certain blond Kellerman-in-Training, at the hands of the totally awesome badass Daddy Mahone. It was like 4 episodes ago that Mahone left his own hospital bed, telling his ex-wife/Baby Momma Pam he’d be there right away, so she’s probably kind of annoyed by now. Cameron has noticed his absence: “Daddy, are you mad at me?” Aww. No, son, I just got kind of sidetracked murdering the guy who ordered your “accident” and coaxing crazy people to suicide in order to prevent any further mishaps. William Fichtner is so awesome. That probably goes without saying at this point. Daddy wanted to be there, but if Cameron doesn’t want to be hit by any more cars Daddy really probably should take this other call coming in. It’s Lang, letting him know that C-Note has been positively identified by another witness to the diner robbery, which incidentally was in Minnesota. You know, the robbery where he saved everyone’s ass, and now all of a sudden they want to rat him out like a bunch of little bitches.
Lang knows Dede has some kind of chronic medical problem. Mahone wants a mugshot at every hospital in the state, but Lang’s already on it. Lang: “With any luck, she’ll get sick enough to need one and he’ll show his face.” Dag, yo. The One World Consipiracy might want to keep an eye on this one to fill their suddenly vacant Kellerman-in-Training position. Mahone: “You don’t have kids, do you? He stops short of using any C-words that are not “C-Note,” although you can tell there’s at least one right on the tip of his tongue, and just tells her to call when she gets something else.
Sara and Michael make it back to the Family Truckster™, where Linc and Kellerman have no doubt been passing the time playing “I Spy.” They didn’t get it, Michael tells them, but they’ll have to get back in there quick, because the Company’s bound to find out Sara’s been there. He tells Linc and Kellerman to find a place close by to lay low for a couple of hours while he and Sara borrow the car. Linc and Kellerman are visibly thrilled at the prospect of more quality time together, and Kellerman is visibly amused that everyone else in the world is so utterly incompetent when it comes to nefarious dealings. Anyway, turns out there’s one member of the club that may be able to help them: Michael presents the pamphlet thing he was looking at earlier and points out a photo of the Former Warden Henry Pope. Yay!
A scruffy and be-flannelled Pope opens his door to find Sara standing there. Sara has something he needs to hear but first she needs to know if he’ll listen. Answer: No. They have nothing to discuss, he says. She begs for five minutes. “After that, if you want us to, we’ll leave.” Pope’s all, wait, who’s the plural in that first person plural? Cue Michael and his old-school Steely-Eyed Glare gliding dramatically into view. Pope just stands there, mouth agape.
He lets them in, but he’s not happy about it. Linc is innocent, Michael says steelily, and they might have the evidence to prove it in a box at the club. Pope does not care. He starts to scold Sara for getting in with the wrong crowd, but she interrupts him, saying her dad was looking in to Linc’s case when he died, and this key is the only thing she could recover from his body. Pope mulls this over. Or maybe he’s thinking about that Taj Mahal Michael owes him.
T-Bag and the Hollander Family Hostages, which would be a great band name, are cruising along an Alabama highway. Susan asks where they’re going, but T-Bag ignores her, electing instead to stare creepily at the road ahead. Suddenly he brings the car to a screeching halt. “Alack a day,” he drawls in genuine dismay. “Miscreants. Defilers. Defacers. Despoilers.” He carries on his Shakespeare-by-way-of-Faulkner monologue and we see that they’ve stopped in front of an old abandoned house. When Susan gets up the courage to ask where they are, he replies that this is his home. Oh good. I’m sure a visit to the birthplace of his homicidal behavior is sure to take the edge off that psychotic break he’s been working on lately.
Okay, let’s talk about Sucre. He’s racing down a dusty Mexico road when his stolen-but-not-really-stolen Beetle breaks down. He curses at it for awhile but as luck would have it there’s a car just a few moments behind him, and this guy’s headed to l’aeropuerto too. Sucre says his girl’s on the four o’clock flight. Something bloops in the backseat and the driver tells a gigantic radio, you know, the kind that’s got “law-enforcement officer” written all over it, that he’s about 20 miles out. He explains to Sucre that he’s airport security. Apparently an American fugitive is flying in or something. Ruh roh! When they get to the airport Sucre’s all “thanks, gotta go, bye!” Five seconds after he’s out of sight, the security guy’s colleague hands him a flyer with Sucre’s mugshot on it. He blurts out the Spanish equivalent of “d’oh!”
Maricruz, who I keep forgetting is pregnant, is in the terminal arguing with her girlfriend about whether or not Sucre will show. He’s let her down before, time and time again. But not this time! He comes barreling through the airport and they embrace and it’s cute and would be sort of touching if I wasn’t so freaking over this whole plotline. But yay, they’ve found each other, and Security immediately spots them from across the terminal. They’re like “Okay, anonymous friend, thanks for risking your ass for our love! Byebye now!” and take off. They lose Security in the terminal somewhere and make their way out to a taxi, which drives them off into the sunset.
And now for C-Note, who’s in a hospital ER in Minneapolis, so hey, good call, Mahone! He sits Dede down while he tries to get her seen by a doctor, which, seriously, what happened to all that medicine Kacee just got arrested for a few days ago? Anyway, the woman at the check-in desk wants to know if he’s a resident of the county, if he has insurance, a driver’s license, etc., and he sort of explodes at her. Which, hey, I feel you, man, but now is maybe not the time for a rant about the failings of the US health system. She goes to get her supervisor and poor Dede sits there all pale in her little grey hoodie. Cheer up, Dede! Soon all this trauma will keep some lucky therapist in business for many many years. The supervisor comes out and, with poorly concealed disdain, tries to convince C-Note that there are places that can better serve his needs. Which is code for “get your broke uninsured ass out of our ER.” It’s a hospital, not a homeless shelter, she snits. For some reason this really sets him off. Of all the things she could have called him out on, (“liar,” “felon,” “deserter,” “con,” “neglectful parent,” “crappy husband”, etc.) I’d think “homeless” would be the easiest to swallow. He storms out and sees Mahone, who’s just pulling up outside. C-Note grabs Dede and runs back through the hospital and out the back door where a bus is waiting. He makes it on to the bus but Mahone’s right behind him, gun drawn. “Okay, okay.” He gives up. He and Mahone try to convince Dede to get down so they can take care of their Grown Folks Bidness. She’s not letting go, and the bus doors are closing. Mahone can’t shoot, but warns C-Note not to let her pay for his mistakes. The doors close and the bus rolls off. Presumably the driver was not aware of the gunpoint standoff, as it took place in one of those “If You Can’t See My Mirrors, I Can’t See You!” blind spots that multi-axled vehicles have.
They find the absolute seediest clinic in the universe. It’s all smoky and hazy, and no one even bothers to stop him from barging in to an exam room, where some puffy doctor is sitting at a desk looking stoned out of his gourd. C-Note demands that he see his daughter. The doc looks up at him like “Wait, what? Oh right, medicine. Yo, dude, you got any FunYuns™?” C-Note empties his pockets. That’s $400, it’s all he has, please fix his kid. The doc knows that wad of bills will buy a lot of munchies, so he agrees to look at Dede. Eventually he realizes it’s pretty bad and she needs dialysis. They’re not equipped for it there, but he’s going to try this halfass desperate measures type treatment which involves a catheter to the neck with no anesthesia. The sight of the big scary needle snaps C-Note back to reality. He scoops her up and runs out. Eventually he ends up at a rest stop or park or something where he just totally breaks down, and it’s really pretty heartbreaking. He’s sobbing, apologizing to her over and over, because wow, this really has turned in to a huge clusterfuck, hasn’t it? Mahone has just gotten a report of a C-Note sighting and is on his way to check it out when he gets a call from the man himself. He wants to turn himself in, but on one condition: his girl is sick and she needs her mom. Mahone’s all “Yeah, I don’t think you’re in a position to be making deals with me right now, on account of I’m a total badass and I’ve already pretty much got you cornered.” But he’s a big softie and he knows it. Besides, C-Note might be able to get him something he wants.
Cut to Mahone, shoving a little “Get Well Soon” bear we saw him buying earlier under Dede’s IV-ed arm. Aww. Kacee’s been released, and Dede’s going to be just fine. Now it’s C-Note’s turn to hold up his end of the bargain. Oh, he will. “I’ll get you Scoffield,” C-Note confirms, in case we hadn’t figured that out yet.
The Erstwhile Warden Pope has stopped mulling and resumed ranting. He doesn’t give a rat’s ass about Michael or his brother. “I trusted you! Day after day you lied to me. What kind of a man does that?” Michael looks suitably chastened. “A desperate one.” He replies breathily. Pope, immune to the steely eyes, ain’t havin’ it. He has no choice but to call them in. Michael levels his gun in Pope’s general direction. “I’m sorry. I can’t let you do that,” Michael says, clenching up his entire face in a way that would make Sheriff Seth Bullock proud. If this is the only way he can convince Pope, then so be it. Michael never wanted to ruin the Warden’s life. The Pontiff’s all yeah, that’s great, but unless you’re here to un-ruin it you can stop trying to convince me to help you. Sara interrupts: “You’re not saying anything to him I haven’t said myself, Henry.” She’s looked in to this. She believes what he says. He just wants people to know the truth. Pope says that’s easy for him to say, standing on that side of the gun. Michael, always up for a good dramatic gesture when the circumstances call for one, puts the gun down on the counter and spins it around. “What if I’m on this side of it?” Dun!
Everyone stands around listening to the tense strings on the soundtrack for awhile. Pope says “I could shoot you right now and not even think twice.” Which, who do you think you’re fooling, man? You’re a big softie and the guy who made your wife’s Taj Mahal knows that full well. Michael reminds him he’s spent too much time around prisons to throw his life away like that. Somehow I don’t think he’d get into all that much trouble if the #1 fugitive in America turned up dead in his breakfast nook. In fact, wouldn’t he just get $100 grand? His Holiness just asks what the hell Michael is trying to pull. It’s simple, he says. That’s the key to an innocent man’s freedom. He gestures toward Sara, who is helpfully displaying the humidor key like it’s a tennis bracelet and she’s one of Barker’s Beauties. “We both know there’s something going on here. Too many people have died.” Pope has no moral obligations toward Michael. For all he knows, Linc could be guilty as hell. Then why doesn’t he take a ten-minute drive with Michael and find out? Sara reminds him that he’s looked in to this before, but he’s a man of the law, and right now he has a convicted felon standing inside his house. Michael, with so very, very much steel: “Well maybe there’s something I can offer you that’ll make you change your mind.” It’s actually rather suggestive, but the music does not start going “Bow chicka bow wow” and Michael does not disrobe. Rats.
We’re back at the old Bagwell family manse, and I am not optimistic. It’s at least seventeen kinds of creepy in there, all dusty and full of holes and graffiti and evil. T-Bag is wide-eyed and lost. The Hollanders shuffle in behind him, giving him a Moment with his dark, horrifying past. He reaches in to a hidden spot in the wall and pulls out a giant leather-bound dictionary marked up in colored pencil. We hear an echoey chuckle, and it’s clear that it doesn’t exist outside of Teddy’s scary mind. Oh, fantastic. Susan, noting the extra dose of Crazy in his eyes, carefully asks what he intends to do with them. He doesn’t answer, choosing instead to thousand-yard stare his way right in to a full-on flashback.
Little Teddy, who incidentally is freaking adorable, is listening to his dad and his dumb drunk loser friends calling each other dumb drunk losers. One of them tells Teddy Senior that the Stupid seems to be genetic, and Daddy responds: “Teddy! Ten synonyms!” He tells the guy to pick a word. “DEEEstroy!” says the most vocal Dumb Drunk Loser. Little Teddy stands up obediently like he’s at a spelling bee, “Ten synonyms for ‘destroy:’ annul, mutilate, liquidate…” The Dumb Drunk Losers are suitably impressed, and Daddy declares “Stupid my ass. My boy’s gonna be President.” Present Day T-Bag shakes off the memory, and in an exquisitely creepy gesture I can’t help but think was an Acting Choice by Robert Knepper, holds the old dictionary up to his nose and inhales deeply. Disturbing. The Hollanders, who probably really have to pee by now, just kind of hang back as T-Bag continues to regress and reminisce.
He opens a door to another flashback: this time young Teddy is laying on his bed, being scolded for not studying. Daddy reminds him that it’s in his own best interest. Daddy is doing a nice job with some familiar T-Bag mannerisms, by the way, and I totally buy that he’s responsible for molding Teddy in to the witty, clever, charming monster we all know and love. Also helpful in reaching that conclusion? The incredibly icky way Daddy is fondling Teddy’s thigh. Daddy is working straight from the award-winning Good Housekeeping Remorseless Serial Killer Recipe (Serves 25-Life!). Susan tries to bring him out of his reverie, pleading with him to tell her what he’s going to do with them. As Flashback Daddy closes the door in T-Bag’s face, he answers dreamily: “We’re gonna put down some roots.” Yikes.
Cut to Kellerman and Linc, hiding out on a rooftop. “You wanted me dead, Paul,” says Linc, and see, don’t you guys wish you had brought some Mad Libs™ now? “Just following orders,” Kellerman replies. Linc continues that he was willing to send him to the chair, all for the President. “Just. Following. Orders.” Kellerman chirps, in that familiar smarmy-yet-unnervingly-hot way of his. Linc’s not buying the tough guy act though. “Steadman said you loved her,” he says, failing to add “Paul and Bitchface sitting in a tree!” But the sentiment is there. Steadman was deranged, Kellerman says, protesting too much. “You don’t love someone who loves power more than life.” Linc, who’s a little slow on the uptake, observes that Kellerman’s kind of bitter. Kellerman: “No offense, but you’re not capable of understanding the relationship.” Linc does his best impression of the Steely-Eyed Glare, and I have to tell you, he’s getting pretty good at it. Kellerman responds with a delightfully evil little smirk.
He follows with a speech about how no matter what happens, there’s no light at the end of this. They’re all dead. Michael too, which is a shame considering how much he’s done for Linc. Kellerman has a sister he hasn’t talked to in 15 years, think she’s better off for it? Linc just says “We’ll make it.” Kellerman scoffs at Linc’s faith. All he sees is a black hole, and sooner or later they’ll suck them all into it. “But when they come for me, I’m taking as many of them with him as I can.” Kellerman looks like he thinks this is a pretty cool plan. Linc just beams at him and says “she must have really broken your heart, Paul.” Heh. I like it when they remind me I like Linc.
Agent Kim is scribbling furiously, watching news coverage of President Bitchface’s Chicago trip. One of his minions informs him that Sara was spotted in Chicago an hour ago, at the Corona de Oro Club. Her dad kept a private humidor there. Kim makes that “Aw, hell no!” face we’ve seen so much of lately and hisses into his phone that he needs a jet to Chicago.
The Family Truckster™, which we can at least temporarily re-christen “The PopeMobile,” creeps along in front of the cigar club. Pope kind of can’t believe Michael’s snowed him under yet again, and asks him if he’s sure about what’s in the box. No, actually, he’s not, but it’s all they have. Sara thanks him sincerely as he dismounts from the PopeMobile and sets off for the club. There is some of that cute Michael/Sara flirty gallows humor and some actual smiling. Linc and Kellerman watch from the rooftop, and they all agree to give him five minutes – any longer than that and they’ll know something’s up. Pope approaches the Governor’s humidor like it’s the Ark of the Covenant. He opens it to find a tiny box with a memory stick type portable hard drive in it. Well, not the most cinematic thing he could have found, but hey. He comes in to the lobby sniffing a cigar in precisely the same way that T-Bag sniffed that dictionary earlier. He asks a fellow aficionado if he can borrow his laptop. I’m totally impressed that His Holiness knows what a USB port is.
T-Bag has gotten his second wind. He’s recovered from his icky disturbing flashbacks and is merrily clearing debris from the floor. You know, so they can start putting down those roots! Poor Susan. “We can’t live here,” she says. “You can’t do this to them. Look at them.” T-Bag looks at the kids as instructed then promptly shoves them in a closet so he can have some alone time with his Suzie Q. And oh man. Does Robert Knepper ever bring his A-game to this rambly diatribe. Chew all the scenery you want, my friend, I’ll be right here saying “awesome!” out loud. I don’t know if it would even work in anyone else’s hands, but he just knocks it out of the park. “I am not the monster you think you see before you.” he intones gravely. “I am the laws of karma all come down wrong.” Whoa! That’s a pretty nice encapsulation of this character right there. A-plus to whoever shouted that out in the writer’s room. Anyway, it’s quite a monologue. He is the sin of his father. He’s just as grateful as the rest of us that he cannot procreate, and his squicky family tree, which we are to understand does not branch all that much, will stop with him. He wants to end that bloodline and start a new one, and she and the kids are his salvation. All he needs is for her to love him, just a little bit. It’s really kind of heartbreaking. I mean, little Teddy never even had a chance, and grownup Teddy is smart enough to know he’s a lost cause. He’s the end product of a nasty gene pool. A stagnant, moldy gene pool, with leaves and dead bugs floating around it and maybe the bloated remains of a couple of clumsy squirrels.
Susan, who we must remember really did genuinely love this man not too long ago, breaks down. Can she do that, he begs? Can she at least try to love him? “No,” she sobs. She’s sorry, but she can’t. Bzzzt! I’m afraid that’s not the answer we were looking for. Teddy’s sad puppy dog eyes turn into cold murderous pitbull eyes in about .18 seconds and it’s freaking scary. Susan is just too exhausted to lie anymore. She looks like she’s pretty much given up on getting out of there alive.
Cut to T-Bag scowling outside as Susan, who’s been locked up in the storm cellar, begs for him to let them go. T-Bag just glares menacingly at a nearby axe.
Michael et al are getting nervous. Pope is taking way too long and they’re afraid something’s up. They get even antsier when one of those scary dark government sedans pulls up in front. They’re about to make a run for it when they see Pope leaving the building, just as a tiny man emerges from the car. “Hello, Henry!” Agent Kim says brightly. Eeee!
Of course, Pope doesn’t know who the hell he is, so they have an amusing back-and-forth in which Kim tries his best to be menacing and which is worth the price of admission if only to hear Pope call Kim “young man.” Ha! Kim knows he wasn’t in there smoking cigars, and he should probably hand over whatever he found. As incentive Kim draws the Pontiff’s attention to his gun and his armed thug driver. Everyone’s watching this with some interest, but only Kellerman knows who they’re actually dealing with. Michael lays low until the very last minute, then throws the Family Truckster™ into gear and guns it straight for the sidewalk, where he totally and completely RUNS KIM DOWN! And I feel like I should warn you that that’s not the last exclamation point I’ll be employing for this scene. Because while Kim’s down, Linc manages to disarm him with a well-placed kick. When Kim tries to get up, Linc proceeds to just punch the snot out of him over and over for good measure. Ha! It’s pretty fantastic. Michael has to do his Linc Whisperer thing and “Tsschh!” him off before he’ll stop.
Linc reluctantly abandons his beatdown and piles in to the car with Pope, Sara and Michael. Kellerman’s right behind them, but as he reaches for the door handle, Dr. Sara looks him right in the eye. And totally locks him out. Awe! Some! They speed off without him and he’s left with a diminutive asskicked Secret Asian Man and at least one dead or dying thug to deal with. Oh man. I do love me some Kellerman; that is no secret. But he so totally had that coming. Even he knows it, the Magnificent Bastard. He shakes himself off a bit, looks around in exasperation, and runs off as sirens approach.
We’re back in Alabama now, getting a creepy POV shot outside of the storm cellar Susan and the kids are in. The door is jerked open and the three of them are cowering inside, terrified. But it’s just a nice cop, who tells them it’s going to be okay. They got a call there was a hostage situation out here. Susan is totally dumbfounded and manages to even look a little pleasantly surprised. “But nobody knew we were here!” Cut to T-Bag in the driver’s seat of Susan’s car, sobbing loudly and miserably, a cellphone lying in the gravel. I don’t think we’re meant to think he’s reformed here or anything, just that he knows he can’t have the only thing he wants, and that while he’s perfectly capable of killing random postal employees, he can’t quite kill the woman he loves. Robert Knepper, ladies and gentlemen!
The PopeMobile pulls up outside the Warden’s house. He stares at Michael significantly as he gets out and just kind of stands around. Linc wonders what’s going on, and Michael says he made a deal with Pope (remember?). He said if Pope helped them he’d turn himself in. It was the only way to get the truth out. But they don’t even know what it is he got for them! What if it’s nothing? Michael is a man of his word, but His Holiness is a man of honor himself. He listened to that conversation, he says, meaning whatever’s on the memory stick, and they really do have something there. He kindly instructs them to get the hell out of his driveway before he changes his mind.
They find, I don’t know, is this Sara’s apartment? A really nice hotel room? Anyway, they’ve found somewhere to check out exactly what they’ve gotten their hands on. Dr. Sara got tortured for this damn thing, so it better not just be Kellerman and President Bitchface cooing at each other. Much ado is made of them setting the computer up and plugging it in before they totally leave us hanging.
Next week: holy crap! I know some of you don’t want to be spoiled by the previews, so I will just say that I was afraid after tonight that they wouldn’t have anything for Kellerman to do, but boy howdy, I cannot freaking wait.