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Worst TV Show of the Week

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Prison Break on Fox

By Josh Shirlen


Fox’s ultra-violent drama Prison Break kicked off its third season with more of what we’ve come to expect: hard-hitting, violent programming at the top of the Family Hour. The season started off with Michael once again imprisoned with a short time to get out; but this time he is confined not in a controlled federal penitentiary, but an extremely frightening foreign prison.  The violent content in this episode was enough to earn our pick for Worst of the Week -- and an indication that this will not be the only time the program makes our Worst list this season.


The show opens with Michael trapped in a Panamanian prison run by Lechero, the inmate who has taken over the prison.  One of Lechero’s mistresses is shown getting dressed after an implied sexual encounter with him.  As she stands exposed in her bra and panties, she picks up a crucifix and holds it close to her partially covered breast.  There is no apparent meaning to this shot other than to show a disregard for the sanctity of such a symbol.


Meanwhile, Michael’s brother Lincoln is on the outside and is urging Michael to escape. Other federal agents, as well as the evil prison guard Bellick, also find themselves locked down with no hope of freedom.  In one scene Lechero threatens an inmate, to the point that the inmate wets his pants in terror.  But the most violent scene occurs when Michael is forced to fight to the death with another, much larger, inmate.  Michael and the man engage in a fierce battle that ends when the man’s neck is broken and he dies.


After two seasons of Prison Break, it is still shocking that Fox has such a lack of concern for family viewers at 8 o’clock in the evening.  Violent content such as this is suited for extended cable and R-rated movies, not the Family Hour.  For this reason Prison Break is our pick for Worst of the Week.


Worst TV Show of the Week

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