Fox has finally cottoned on to the fact that Prison Break has been its sleeper hit of 2005. Wisely, it’s chosen to bring the show back in March.
Fox has a history of not spotting sleeper hits. Tru Calling and Firefly were both cancelled before their time and The X-Files nearly bit the dust at the end of the first season. Of course, it also has a history of preserving shows beyond their natural lifespans: witness Married With Children, The Simpsons, Millennium, Melrose Place, The X-Files and a whole heap of other shows that should have been cancelled years before they eventually bit the dust (of course, The Simpsons is still going and it’s on season 15). That might well include 24, given season three and four’s ever-increasing stupidity and offensiveness and the probability that season five is going to go even further into the realms of science-fiction and Republican make-believe.
With the hefty promotion House is getting and the reverse of fortunes of Prison Break, there’s the possibility that Fox is finally learning some quality control. Let us nurture it and enable it to grow.
Incidentally, UK readers, Prison Break will be on Five from January.