Person of Interest Review: Prison Break

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Leave it to Person of Interest to turn a prison break into an all-out chess match complete with multiple players, power shifts and unexpected last second moves.

While we didn't get to see locked and loaded Finch storming Rikers (can you imagine?), the mental battle to reach Reese's eventual, yet short-lived freedom, was just as intriguing for "Prisoner's Dilemma."

Interestingly enough, the actual prisoner, Reese, was in less of a dilemma than Carter, who was stuck playing both sides while trying to reveal/not reveal which one of the four suspects was the "Man in the Suit," all while preventing everyone else from getting to Reese.

Reese in Prison

I was unsure how Carter would handle her questioning and if I would find it believable, but she seemed to handle her own. And, sure, she didn't have to pull some Zero Dark Thirty interrogation tactics, but Carter was able to turn one suspect and work her way to pointing the finger at another.

But rather then see her pull out all her crazy tricks, it was far more interesting listening to Carter and Reese touch on some of the personal moments that impacted them.

It certainly made me wonder what was real and wasn't real as Reese revealed information, but as soon as he began talking about his love and the steps he had taken and one's he hadn't, Carter had the chance to see a whole different side.

Similarly, hearing Carter divulge that she had killed someone was an aspect that we haven't seen before. In a way, it connected her to Reese and added an extra layer of trust between them. I really do enjoy when we get to learn more about the characters.

And as an added layer, Reese became caught up with Bear's former neo-Nazi owner from the Person of Interest Season 2 premiere, the newly friendly (but is he actually reformed?) Elias, and the assassin trying to finish Reese off. I'm surprised there weren't more criminals Reese had put away itching to get at him.

I was curious as to when Elias would drop in, but it was a unique twist turning the former enemy into an ally. I still don't trust the spectacled villain, though. He's bound to rear his evil head again.

It was really no surprise when Reese was finally freed and back in his slick suits, but I didn't see it coming when Donnelly confronted both Reese and Carter. I was sure Reese would make a clean getaway. Which really made me wonder what the outcome of Donnelly's discovery would be, especially with regards to the flashbacks of Reese's dilemma about killing people.

Would Reese be forced to kill Donnelly to keep the secret? Or would Donnelly be convinced that Reese was actually a good guy?

But it was the last second turn that threw in a great final shock with Donnelly's number popping up and Reese's former CIA partner Kara taking him out.

I knew Kara had to come back, as she was in the flashbacks as well, and we hadn't seen her back since "Matsya Nyaya" and the more recent "Masquerade." But what is her real agenda?

I thought she was just out for revenge, so was killing Donnelly necessary to her motives? Either way, she has something up her sleeve and Reese is going to be caught up in her big scheme.

Just when we thought everything was going to be okay for the team.

And while the focus was mainly on Reese, the episode was sure to remind us that the Machine never stops giving Finch numbers, allowing Fusco to take one all by himself. In hilarious fashion, Fusco got caught up saving a supermodel hottie. Starting off with a blinding macing before becoming a hero - wielding duel guns - to getting a kiss and a "call me," definitely gave Fusco the best day out of all of them.

I guess I can see fans of the regular saving the person of interest fare being disappointed, but I love that Person of Interest can keep viewers guessing on what it's going to do. It keeps everything fresh, brings in those past characters and continues to move forward with the larger story. Striking at the heart of Carter and Reese, all while wrapped up in a major battle for the "Man in the Suit," kept the pacing quick and the hour engrossing.

Really, just when you think you have the show pegged, it throws you for a great turn and coming back for more. Hopefully, Fusco can get the supermodel to do the same.


Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.9 / 5.0 (295 Votes)

Sean McKenna is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.


Fusco's "gag" POI (for those who watch 4 the POI of the week)LOL!!!! But he still helped the team about the inmate. The Carter/Reese interview.. er interrogation masterful. Carter wants to know if Reese can love and Reese wants to know has Carter tasted blood(killed anyone). Reese needs a Kara when the situation warrants it and who better than Carter. I liked the way Finch showed Carter his skills in creating Reese's back story, just letting her know he has her back if/when she goes undercover for him. Elias very understated what a great asset. This episode touched on most of the fans concerns. Even Bear got a shout out. Henson take a bow for being the scene/show stealer! Five Stars.


Absolutely LOVE this show, and for me it just gets better and better! Even though I knew Donnelly had his doubts as John was walking out of prison, I did not see him showing up at the meet between John and Carter. It was a shocking ending, and I can't stand the thought of having to wait 2 weeks at least for what's going to happen next. I cannot wait for John, Finch, and Bear to be reunited!


The name of the song was Eminence Front by The Who.


What a roller coaster ride! Unlike some fans, I wasn't expecting it when Donnelly showed up at the Reese/Carter romantic meeting by the water side. After that, while on the way to the safe house, I figured Reese and Finch would find some way to get Donnelly on the team's side. But when Donnelly's number came up, Reese's way out seemed a obvious...until we got the closed up of those high heels stepping through the wreckage, and then I knew. A great episode with a great nail-biting finish. No teaser for next week at the end, so I wonder if it will be a bye week. Anybody know?


@Lisa: "The Who - Eminence front"


Wow amazing episode, I am with Sean, I did not see it either and I was shocked too, everything was Perfect, and thanks to Sean for the great recap as usual, voted 5 stars.


As soon as Donnelly captured Reese and Carter, he was a dead man. The flashbacks throughout the episode made it fairly obvious who was going to pull the trigger. So, what's Stanton up to, and why does she need to kidnap Reese? I mean, what's the point? A good bet is that this has something to do with the Machine. The Ordos mission, remember, had to do with the Machine, too. Interestingly, Reese's "tracking" box, even as far back as 2009, was yellow, which apparently indicates knowledge of the Machine. Unless the Machine is retroactively applying the yellow box in the flashbacks, he knew about its existence even then. Hmmmm....


this episode ended. POI usually manages to avoid being predictable, and up until now the writers had also avoided making the characters do incredibly idiotic things completely out of character just to be able to make the plot work. I liked this episode overall, but I hope it's ending is just a hiccip in POI's plot quality, rather than setting a trend the show will follow.


"I didn't see it coming when Donnelly confronted both Reese and Carter." Sean, you're probably one of the few people on the entire planet who didn't see this coming when Carter and John met up after John's release. It was obvious that Donnelly was going at least going to have them monitored, if not follow them, and it was RIDICULOUSLY stupid of John and Carter to meet after the whole ordeal because of that, the two of them might as well paint a sign on their backs that says "WE WERE WORKING TOGETHER!!!" It was also incredibly out of character for John, he at least if not Carter would have been a lot more careful than that if the writers hadn't decided to turn John into an idiot in order to advance the plot. After that, we all knew Kara was going show up in the episode eventually and having her kill Donnelly was even more predictable, even how she ended up doing it wasn't difficult to guess. I was greatly enjoying this episode up until the end, I'm disappointed with how this episode ended. POI usually avoids being predictable, and until this episode avoided making the main characters act like complete morons when it's out of character for them to be just to allow the plot to work. I hope this isn't setting a trend.


Wjhat was the name of the song playing whnile Reese and Carter were talking on the bridge before Donnelly showed up?

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