Prison Break: Phaeacia

"Rule number one in my country is when things get bad, go to the desert."

Honestly, I'm more than ready for the guys to get out of Yemen. Enough already.

So I'm halfway through this one and I'm thinking, is this it? A chase episode? I didn't sign up for a boring chase episode. Even though, instead of cars racing through city streets nearly crashing into people and buildings, we had three cars chasing around through a completely empty desert, which was different. (I kept thinking of the end of Back to the Future when Doc Brown says, "Where we're going, we don't need roads.")

What is the actual name of this episode? Some sources have it as "Phaecia," and others "Phaeacia." While trying to find out which, I realized that this season of Prison Break has been giving us transparent references to Homer's Odyssey: Odysseus was captive for seven years in Ogygia, and he escapes to the island of Phaeacia, where the natives help him get home. And of course, Odysseus outwits and blinds the evil one-eyed Cyclops, and this season's mysterious bad guy has the code name of the Greek god, Poseidon. Not to mention that Odysseus kept trying to go home to Ithaca, the Greek island, and Sara and little Mike live in Ithaca, New York.

Did everyone else notice these obvious references before I did? Where was my head? I have no excuse. I used to be up on this sort of thing, but it's been too many years since I read the Iliad and the Odyssey.

Comparing the clever, resourceful Michael to Odysseus is certainly apt, although Michael seems to be better defined by his savior complex. The whole red rock/white rock thing was such an obvious fake-out by Michael so that he'd be the one to sacrifice himself in order to take out that miserable, way too persistent Cyclops, who just lost his other eye, except he's still not dead! Are we supposed to believe that Linc went all the way to Yemen to break Michael out of prison only to leave him to die in the desert? Later, Linc was going, I shouldn't have left Michael. Duh, Linc! Really.

But I did like the way the seagulls pointed the way to Phaeacia, and I enjoyed Ja's clever idea to use the fireworks to show Michael where they were. (Michael's face when he saw them was hilarious, like he was certain he was hallucinating.) And now that Cyclops managed to poison Michael with antifreeze, Michael needs a doctor. Fortunately, he's married to one; unfortunately, she's thousands of miles away. With only three episodes to go, are they finally, finally going to bring Michael and Sara back together? Please say yes.

Meanwhile, back in the U.S., Van Gogh and A&W are slowly acquiring personalities. Is Van Gogh an ISIL agent, or was he just using them to kill Michael? We learned that A&W used to be NSA until she got tired of watching bad stuff instead of taking action, and that she had a government agent of a lover named Tricia, with whom she had a hot weekend in Connecticut. A&W was so desperate to get Michael (whom she's still calling "Kaniel Outis") that she was willing to commit to another hot weekend in Connecticut to get him. Okay.

Finally, Michael managed to send a photo of himself with his hands raised to a guy in Portland, Maine who dresses up like Elvis. Is this guy an agent of Poseidon's or a friend of Michael's? And why does Michael have eyes tattooed on his palms? We still don't know.

While I really liked the seagulls and the fireworks, this was something of a frustrating episode. Although I'm encouraged by the parallel to the Odyssey, which strongly suggests that Michael will end up at home with Sara and his son in the end.

Bits:

-- Poseidon's guy Agent Kishida moved into Kellerman's office.

-- I'm still enjoying Ja. I wonder if his addiction problem is supposed to be a reference to the Lotus-Eaters?

-- So much for Omar. I almost felt bad for him.

-- Whip got a good moment, blowing up the gas truck. There were also a couple of references to the fact that we still don't know about Whip's past, or what is going on with his relationship to Michael.

-- What happened to half the cast? No Sara, no Jacob, no T-Bag, and still no Sucre. Not even a moment with C-Note. And only a moment with Sheba, in order to set up the attack on the gas station.

Could have been better. Two out of four classical references,

Billie
---
Billie Doux loves good television, especially science fiction, and spends way too much time writing about it.

2 comments:

Patryk said...

Well if Michael is Odysseus then of course Poseidon can only be the guy who's his wife's suitor... And he has to kill him in the end. But probably not with a bow. ;)

Michael just needs to drink some ethanol to bind the anti-freeze and pee it out safely. (just like in the 2nd season premiere of House with copier fluid).

Josie Kafka said...

Not to mention that Odysseus kept trying to go home to Ithaca, the Greek island, and Sara and little Mike live in Ithaca, New York.

I did get the references, and I actually thought you had, too, based on your reviews. And yet I managed to completely miss the Ithaca reference. :-)

Phaeaecia is a fun place in The Odyssey: isn't that where Odysseus tells his story? Maybe Michael will finally tell us what's going on in the next episode.