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Fox Gives "Prison" Another Year:

Posted By: William "Bill" Buckington

By Natalie FinnWed Mar 29, 1:48 AM ET

Fox has decided that it takes longer than one season to bust out of prison.

The network gave an early greenlight Tuesday to a sophomore season of Prison Break, which has performed very impressively for a show that doesn't come on after American Idol.

The suspense drama, centering on a wrongly convicted death row inmate (Dominic Purcell) and his architect little brother (Wentworth Miller) who got himself sent to prison purely in order to help his big bro escape, has averaged 9.3 million viewers this season. Another 10.3 million people tuned in Monday to see the show's second new episode since its return from a four-month winter hiatus (or, as it's otherwise known--Christmas, the Olympics and multiple three-night onslaughts of Idol audition shows).

November's midseason finale pulled in a season-high 12.2 million viewers.

"The midseason cliffhanger was a Fox programming decision," series creator and executive producer Paul Scheuring told Entertainment Weekly. "We originally conceived this series as a single saga, like a novel, told over 44 sequential episodes. We try to end every episode on a cliffhanger--so episode 13 was 'just another cliffhanger,' as far as we were concerned."

He added that the show's second season will mimic the first, with a cliffhanger built into the 13th episode before the series takes a break.

While the show itself is fraught with tension, Fox can relax, seeing as how Prison Break is up seven percent in total viewership from its fall numbers, according to the Hollywood Reporter. The network's overall performance in that timeslot, Monday at 8 p.m., has jumped 57 percent this season among the 18 to 49 demo.

The second season could be subtitled "The Fugitive," E! Online TV columnist Kristin Veitch reported earlier this month. The plot will focus on "unraveling the conspiracy that put the brother in jail, with the inmates traveling around the country," Miller, who plays avenging younger bro Michael Scofield, has said.

"Basically it's going to be the second half of The Great Escape," Scheuring told the Hollywood Reporter.

So it sounds like the aforementioned Break is going to work out. Actually, eight inmates are expected to fly the coop during the spring finale.

But while they remain under lock and key for another seven episodes, the Prison Break scribes have planned a series of twists and obstacles to keep the audience entertained.

"I kinda thought the breakout would have happened earlier," Purcell, who must be glad his character is escaping execution this year, told EW. "But the writers have kept coming up with fresh ideas that keep the story line alive."

Prison Break joins American Idol, The Simpsons, King of the Hill and fellow freshman series Bones on the short list of shows that have been given the early go-ahead for 2006-'07. The Simpsons, whose crew learned last week that they will be returning for an 18th and 19th season, scored its largest audience in three months Sunday with its first-ever live-action title sequence.


Courtesy Of: Yahoo! News

The information reported above is property of Yahoo! inc. and reprinted or modified with legitimate permission. We thank Yahoo! inc. for the kind cooperation with us and other shareholders.


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