'Prison Break' Revival: Why Michael and Sara's Reunion Is Going to Be Heartbreaking
By Philiana Ng
Get those tissues ready!
In less than three months, Fox brings back Prison Break for a new nine-episode season with Wentworth Miller and Dominic Purcell reprising their roles as Michael Scofield and Lincoln Burrows for the latest chapter in the brothers’ saga. While it’s only a matter of time before Michael and Lincoln reunite, there’s another anticipated reunion that will be far icier.
For the majority of the show’s original four-season run, the heartbeat of Prison Break was the love story between Michael and his future wife, Sara Tancredi (Sarah Wayne Callies). In the new installment, however, Sara is newly married to Jacob Ness (Mark Feuerstein), while raising her and Michael’s son, unaware that her ex-husband, presumed dead, is, in fact, alive and -- shocker -- behind bars.
“I don’t think that it’s as simple as tension ensues because it’s too easy for Mark to be foiled. Obviously, the audience wants to see Michael and Sara together,” Prison Break creator Paul Scheuring told reporters during the Television Critics Association session on Wednesday. “It’s critical that we have somebody that is potential fallout from that. [He’s a] character who finds himself, despite his own emotion and his own invested interest, actually [helping] Sara to facilitate Michael’s escape. The noble part of his soul says, ‘I have to do the right thing to help this guy escape, but if I do that, I might effectively lose my wife to him.’”
“We want to create those kinds of complexities within the narrative, so it’s not just tension. I don’t think it’s just a love triangle,” Scheuring continued.
Callies posited a deeper question about why a reunion between Michael and Sara goes deeper than the “will they, won’t they” tension of former loves coming together years later.
“When that reunion comes, there’s a lot of water under the bridge, mainly, I think, possibly from Sara Scofield, which is her last name now,” she revealed. “I think from her perspective, the question is: ‘If you had been alive, why haven’t you raised our son? Where have you been? I almost died from grief and if you were there....’”
“Those are a lot of questions that make it unlikely a [happy] reunion where two people are going at each other from opposite sides of the field full of butterflies and sort of fall into each other’s arms,” Callies hinted. “It’s layers, if anything.”
Miller spoke more broadly about reuniting with his old castmates, many of whom reprise their roles, but noted that because so much time has passed, their relationships with each other are different to a degree.
“It was like a high school reunion. You know these people, there is a shorthand and there’s a familiarity that’s kind of different now. There’s also a newness and an awkwardness and a discovery, and that speaks very specifically to the story that we address in the reboot,” he said. “Who are these characters now? When they see each other, will they even recognize each other?”
Added Scheuring: “Michael doesn’t come out of the gates the noble hero. The question is: Who is this guy? Has he been compromised? Is he even Michael? Was it the Michael we knew all along? That’s one of the central things that runs through the entire season. It’s fun when your protagonist might not even be the good guy.”
Prison Break premieres Tuesday, April 4 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Fox.