Prison Break

Season 4 Episode 20

Cowboys and Indians

Aired Tuesday 9:00 PM May 08, 2009 on FOX

Episode Fan Reviews (19)

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out of 10
407 votes
  • Overall, a good setup episode, with good distractions, moving the plot for the final position.

    This episode already began with the main complication, Lincoln is in the same situation, he is guilt from a crime he didn´t commit, we all already saw that, this is not a new, but trying to escape from the building and Michael has to improvise is something that only Prison Break can do and this is what is interesting.

    While Michael and Lincoln are in a bad situation, the writers used the rest of the time to make the last setups for the next two episodes that will end Prison Break. This is why Michael gets his hands on Scylla, but now both the General and Christina have leverage against Michael, this is why Lincoln is caught and this is why Sara was dump, to be caught.

    Presentation Phase - » (7/10) Presenting the main complication, fine by me,
    Complication Phase - » (8/10) Escaping from the building, interesting,
    Climax Phase - » (8/10) Getting Scylla, seemed like someone would die there, Ending - » (9/10) the ultimate ending, very interesting,
    Details/Progress (To point A to B) -» (10/10) very satisfactory,
    Time and Scene Management - » (8/10) less filler and more relevant material, nice,
    Plot Details/Holes- » (10/10) fine,
    Suspense/Tension - » (7/10)*2 good material but nothing great,
    Drama - » (7/10) light emotions in play,

    Overall, a good setup episode, with good distractions, moving the plot for the final position.
  • what a situation Micheal were put in!!!

    Oh my god now lets see Micheal is going to do, i mean is he going to pick the girl he loves Sara !! or his brother or now we can say his brother from adaption !!!
    and Christina is really something i mean she shot her own "son" sweeeet
    nice way of getting Sella from Micheal and the guys.
    i really felt sorry for Self they shot his wife come on . but now i think he is going to play a role to help Micheal now he want to revenge for his wife .. can't wait to see the next episode to see what Micheal is going to do about the picking thing
  • Setting up the final ride.

    Cowboys and Indians is the episode to set up the final ride for prison break cause next is the Series Finale (well sort of). This is quite confusing as there is also some dvd coming out soon.
    Anyway, this episode was fantastic. Had everything I love about this show.
    Everything lead to Michael having to make his toughest choice yet. He have made many in the past but this time it just a situation where he might just loose, no matter what. Whatever happens in the final episode, the writers have managed to set things up nicely for an explosive exit for this continuously metamorphosing series. It's a story that's nearing its end and I`m hoping it'll be a conclusion worthy of the years of buildup. These are some excellent characters and next week will be our chance to say goodbye to a memorable cast.
  • Pretty intense!!

    Wow, Prison Breal is coming to an end but it couldn't be at a more fast paced and intense manner.

    Full of twists, screams and deaths, Michael's mom is playing a very good job at being the vilan, even more than the General and his gooms.

    Hmm.. whatever happened to Sucre and that blue eyed brunette? I know Sucre took off but Amaury Nolasco's names still features in the openning scream.. So does Jody Leen O'Keefe.. well, I think she got arrested but we don't know for sure..

    Anyways, first, Michael's mom set him and Lincoln up for murdering the indian guy. Wow.. who would've thought about that??
    Bagwell is really a worthless but you couldn't expect much from that guy.. double-crosser douchebag!! lol

    Now for the last part.. hmm.. I was on the edge of my sofa when I saw the ending there.. pretty intense.. wonder who Michael will choose to save..

  • All about leverage.

    All about leverage.
    Prison break just took yet another dramatic turn in cowboys and Indians. After literally a reboot in last week`s episode with Micheal and Linc being on the run (once again), it was clear we were in for some good ole tension filled prison break episode.
    The whole was really entertaining. Starting from the situation at the hotel, the dramatic death of Self`s wife to Mike/Linc stealing Scylla from the mum.
    It came down to leverage. Mike have Scylla, thinking he was in the driving seat. But the general and T-Bag (who is back to his evil awesome ways) had another thing planned. Now they captured Sara. But meanwhile, Christina had a leverage on her own, the man with whom it all began: Lincoln Burrows. Tough decision for Michael. Add to that the recent revelation of Linc`s adoption which might be a factor. How would that influence Michael and what if he learns Sara is pregnant! Finale is going to be mental.
  • What will Michael choose?

    With the series racing towards a conclusion, it makes sense that Michael would find himself in a situation where he would have a nearly impossible choice. The entire series has been about Michael making difficult choices since day one, so why should the big finale be any different? It's par for the course on "Prison Break".

    Of course, it's usually not too hard to predict what Michael will choose to do in most situations. Not so in this case. Forcing him to choose between saving Sara or Lincoln strikes at the heart of the series as a whole. Lincoln represents Michael's past; Sara represents the future. Which one is more important to him? The answer is not as straightforward as one might think.

    After all, the series started with Michael's plan to break Lincoln out of Fox River, to save him from Death Row. As Christina pointed out, Michael has sacrificed quite a bit for Lincoln's sake. One might even argue that saving Lincoln's life has forced Michael to sacrifice his own in all but the most literal manner. It's a vast extension of that psychological condition that Michael has always had, the one that drives him to save others (which hasn't been mentioned or referenced in a really long time).

    On the other hand, there's Sara. She represents the chance for a life, if they can just manage to get out of this mess with the Company. She's also the mother of his unborn child, which I assume he'll learn about before much longer, just to make the decision that much harder. And considering that he's really in a situation where he can't be sure that either one of them will survive, it's surprising that Michael is even functional.

    But if nothing else, the past year or so of Michael's life has taught him how to overcome his internal shortcomings. He's gotten much better at improvising and applying his genius to new situations, and he has become a bit colder when dealing with the enemy. He's not quite so naïve as he was. So something tells me that his solution to this little problem is going to be far enough outside the box to save both Lincoln and Sara, while positioning him to take control of the Company.

    One thing seems certain: Mahone is going to be a big part of this finale, and that makes me very happy. I thought it was a great character touch that he gave Michael the briefcase when he heard that the General had Sara. For all that has passed between Alex and the brothers, they have come to an understanding. Unfortunately, I see him making the ultimate sacrifice before it's all over.

    Beyond that, I'm not sure the episode had much to offer. Getting out of the hotel was fun, and Self's situation was a lot more tense than I would have anticipated, but some moments didn't quite work. The General's exposition scene about India and China, for example, was one of the worst scenes I've seen in a long time. But to be fair, such scenes are very tough to pull off, and if that's the worst that I can say about an episode, it's a fair victory!
  • Michael must make a choice as chaos reigns at the energy conference.

    Michael must make a choice as chaos reigns at the energy conference. Very good episode with an ending too powerful for words to describe. Michael has finally after all this time gotten his hands onto Scylla, but now must make the choice of what side he is going to land on. He can give it to the General and save his love or he can give it to his mother and save his brother. Thats going to be the big question of the finale as Michael struggles to figure out what to do.

    Loved the scene inside of the hotel where Michael and Lincoln get to spend some quality time with one another just to set up the end even better. T-Bag has gone stone cold bad again, leaving no doubt where is fits into all of this. With only two hours of show to go Prison Break has us set in store for an emotional, action-packed final two hours. I have only witnessed a handful of series finale in my life. I hope that four seasons of Prison Break comes to a fitting conclusion.
  • The end is near for prison break.

    The end is near for prison break and it looks great. What a great episode. So much suspense and intensity as well as drama and such a sense of urgency.
    Sacrifice would seem to be the key word for the last episode of the show. The ending of this episode is crazy! What the hell will Michael do? If he can`t save both, he will have to choose. I cannot wait. Good thing he is with Mahone, hope they work a solid plan together. The whole thing is dramatic and yet so exciting.
    4 years of prison breaking, running, re-prison breaking, headquarters breaking, mice and cat games: it all comes down to this. Next episode couldn`t come soon enough.
  • This is what we've been waiting for

    Lincoln is back to where it started, well sort of. Linc gets framed for killing the son of the Indian Prime Minister, Lincoln and Michael stood on the balcony in full view of everyone, watching the carnage? Yeah, that wasn't terribly bright. They're spotted, of course, and have to run. Looks they've been trapped as the hotel gets swamped with agent. Michael needs Self's help; the loading dock near the laundry room is the most lightly guarded exit. They just have to get there which means running up to the top floor and looking for ventilation shafts. The cops lock down all the rooms and start gassing the place floor-by-floor, so Michael needs to improvise; he uses a mini fridge, cleaning supplies and toilet paper and turns it in a concussion bomb, knocking out the SWAT cops who came after them. Michael and Lincoln slip out. But the head cop realizes it's them and tries to take them in until the General henchmen stops by.

    Mahone goes over to the condo to interrogate Christina, who Michael thinks is still tied up. He discovers Sarah instead. She refuses to run away, but agrees to stay at the condo and wait for Michael to come for her. The General is still not very satisfied man, Why? Scylla. He picks out Self's name from a bowl and has her wife killed, he then jumps out the balcony and into the water. Michael figures out where Christina could be. Linc, Mahone and Michael storm into the back wearing ski-masks, seriously guys! They retrieve Scylla, which triggers a shoot-out with all of Christina's goons Linc stays behind to shoot it out while Michael and Mahone take off. The General decides he wants leverage. T-Bag knows where Sara is, he checks the last address in Mahone's GPS to find her address. The General wants Scylla or Sara dies, Christina on the other has Lincoln she shoots him in the chest If Michael doesn't hand over Scylla and retrieve his brother within five hours, Linc will be dead. Now he has to choose who will he save?
  • Excellent set up for the finale.

    PB has failed to impress me for a while. The return was underwhelming. Episode 18 was really mediocre too. Episode 19 while better, still wasn't very exciting. But finally things are back on track with episode 20, as the ridicolous "Michael vs Linc" plot line is ended.

    The escape from the hotel reminded me of the glory days of season 1. Michael being smart, and escaping just in the last moment - you knew it would happen, but still, it was very suspensful.

    Self was extremely enjoyable too. He's finally likable again - I felt really sad for him when his wife got shot. I wonder what's he got to contribute in the finale, seeing that he's seriously injured...

    Another thing this episode done well was giving us some sense of accomplishment. One major issue I had with the previous episodes is that they literally led nowhere, as the main characters always failed their objectives. Now finally, as they retrieve scylla(in a cool way, may I add) there's some sense of progress and a certain level of success that just makes the whole episode feel a lot more energetic and exciting.

    But of course, it's PB, so there's always a step back - Christina caught Linc and the General caught Sara, oh Michael's gotta choose.. Great cliffhanger. Obviously, neither of them will die, but, I'm looking forward to see how Mahone and Michael will solve this situation. Maybe he'll need some good old friends to help him? Wink, wink.... Bring on the finale.
  • As the end of the show approaches, we are left with quite possible the most intense and dramatic situation of the show.

    As the end of the show approaches, we are left with quite possible the most intense and dramatic situation yet.
    This was a great episode and the ending was crazy. Cannot wait to see how it will conclude. I think this was the best episode since Selfless. Good to see Self have a good side and Mahone admitting he owes Michael. Great to see T-Bag and Sara together too. Too late for any redemption now of Teddy bear, he is bad! I really wonder how he ends. Dead would be disappointing really, the man is a survivor.
    Can`t wait to know who Michael will choose. I know he will probably try to save both but can he?
  • Prison Break somehow redeems itself before the Series Finale.

    To be honest, Prison Break has probably never been so unpopular like these recent weeks. Season 4 as a whole is great one IMO but the fall final brought a a controversial twist to the story: the mum is alive and all. It fair to say, a large majority of people rejects the idea. I`m not a fan myself. Some didn`t like the revelation that Mike and Linc are not blood brothers. Well I thought this one was good. In addition, Fox moved the show to death bed on Fridays with very little promotion. Ratings are beyond bad. Sad last days for PB.
    Now, the thing with the last couple of episodes is that they are not as bad as some people make it. They are OK but I get the feeling it keeps building up towards a bigger picture that ain`t coming. However the ending of the previous episode definitely meant business was about to pick up.
    It`s a relief to see that it is indeed the case. Indians and cowboys had all the ingredients (minus a prison) that I like in a PB prison. The action was pretty good. Liked the hotel thing...taken from Leon but it was cool. Of course it gets over the head sometimes. Like the masked attack but it`s ok, I`ve overlooked worst for the sake on entertainment on the show.
    Also, we had some developments on Self. Now till now, I thought his presence was totally unnecessarily at this stage. But here, he was actually efficiently used. First we were revealed his true motivations behind the betrayal in selfless. It was a nice addition..didn`t expect it and it add some depth to a 2-D character. More importantly, his wife was killed. It was cold blooded and re-affirmed the General as a credible villain and injected even more intensity and tension.
    I never wanted this whole company stuff to be an international thing. But it`s still ok tho. Christina is a good villain. The actress is ok. I`m not a fan of the character but she`s ok.
    In addition, Sara became important. OK, the most important thing she did this season is being pregnant. Since the return, her scenes with Michael were pretty dull. So this was most welcomed. Besides we saw the first T-Bag-Sara scene (well i think it is). 4 years in the making.
    Some funny moments too like the "Hi mum" or "kill ghandi" lines.
    The cliffhanger was awesome!! A perfect set-up! Michael having to choose between Sara and Linc. It`s a huge dilemma. Wentworth actually does a good job does the ever good William Fitchner. Mahone is still doing great.
    That was more like it. Best episode since the return. The show might well finished on a high note. Now here `s two things I hope they don`t do:
    1)too much of a happy ending. I`m hoping they keep some drama in here.
    2)Mahone dying in an heroic way. It`s pretty much how everybody expects him to end...I hope not.
  • About time.

    Well, it was about time prison break gets back on track with this last episode before the finale. Last couple of episodes were disappointing.
    But here, everything was great. We had some great action scenes, suspense, intensity and also some funny moments. That`s the good old prison break. The one we love so much and I hope the final episode ever will be in this line.
    The ending of one of the best on the show; ever. What a situation! It is depressing, intense, heart breaking and yet so great.
    Looks like the writers have managed to get the show back on track before the end. Great!
  • This plot twist has got to be one of the most insane,intence and more fascinating turns Prison Break has ever taken in all four seasons awesome

    Mahone finds Sara (Sarah Wayne Callies) and sets her free; however she is soon captured by T-Bag (Robert Knepper) who hands her over to The General to use as leverage against Scofield. Therefore, Scofield is left with both sides threatening someone he loves, and he has to choose to either give Scylla to Christina and save his brother, or to give it to The General and save Sara. Christina's (Kathleen Quinlan) plan is revealed further in this episode -- she manages to make it look like a Chinese operative wired money into Lincoln and Scofield's accounts as payment to kill the Indian Prime Minister's son, in order to start a war between the two nations. This piece of news brings the Indian Prime Minister to Christina asking to buy her Scylla technology in order to avenge the Chinese for his son's death. However after receiving payment from the Prime Minister, Christina starts to negotiate with the Chinese too for the very same Scylla technology awesome twist in the end
  • Thankfully, Prison Break appears to be finding its feet again after a decidedly lacklustre start to its final run.

    Thankfully, Prison Break appears to be finding its feet again after a decidedly lacklustre start to its final run. 'Cowboys and Indians' returns some of the nail-biting tension of old by actually integrating a semblance of structure into its narrative. Where the past three weeks have essentially consisted of pointless runarounds, chasing one party interested in Scylla, then the next, then starting all over again, here, Nick Santora actually takes time out to construct a solid conflict for our central characters. Linc and Michael's struggle to escape from the hotel is just the kind of interesting scenario that has kept the show going for the past four years. Throwing a seemingly impossible problem at the brothers and watching as they unpack it and hopefully outwit the bad guys is a major part of the programme's appeal; in fact, it's what season one and earlier elements of this season were predicated upon. Sure, the dilemmas were ultimately part of a much larger sequence of problems that needed to be resolved in order to obtain an ultimate goal (escaping from Fox River in year one, obtaining Scylla prior to #413), and that's arguably what these last few episodes could do with in order to elevate them beyond mediocrity, but it is pleasing to see the strategy reintroduced in at least some small way nevertheless. It binds the viewer to the characters, investing us in their plight, and makes it seem like there is some sense of purpose to the whole thing.

    It is also refreshing to see the scenario taking up a considerable proportion of the hour: not having Linc and Michael escape out of the back exit within two seconds of the opening credits is arguably akin to taking 'the road less travelled' these days and it is certainly far more believable than some of the great boulders of convenience that have come crashing down on all our heads in the past three weeks. Still, this particular plot element is not without its problems: while it is certainly good to see the cop realising that Michael and Linc aren't members of his squad, just how many times do we have to see people dressing up in the uniform of their hunters in order to 'beguile' the enemy and escape? For one, what are the odds that the clothes are going to fit AT ALL and for another, it takes quite a bit of time to undress a guy and slip his clothes on (assuming, of course, that you just put his gear on on top of yours and don't remove yours too). There certainly wasn't enough time between the realisation that an explosion had occurred and the movement of the remaining officers up to the 16th floor for the brothers to have achieved this. Oh and reverting back to a slightly earlier point in this strand, why oh why would you stand around in the spot that a gunman executed a leading politician from for what, five minutes, in full view of the masses of law enforcement? Get down! Get out of there! And I also have a hard time buying that there are no security cameras that could have caught the actual assailant in the act at any point, although I suppose it is arguable that this avenue simply wouldn't have been pursued yet in light of all the other evidence that points to the brothers' involvement.

    While the hotel escapades are highly suspenseful, the same cannot be said of certain other developments. Christina's interest in engaging both sides in the potential war that will ensue between China and India (anyone else think the General's exposition scene, when he tells the sorry tale of the events in 1962 to Bagwell, was a little ham-fisted?) is delightfully twisted, sure, but did she really have to meet with the Indian Prime Minister less than thirty minutes after his son was executed? I'll accept that perhaps he was in the country anyway to support his son's endeavour, fine, but the boy's body isn't even in the morgue yet, for crying out loud! You'd think he'd be a little bit more concerned with grieving than plotting complex revenge schemes that involve the manipulation of the technology that his son was interested in procuring. This really should have been held back until the later stages of the episode, perhaps even one of the final scenes, in order for it to seem less abrupt and forced. That way, the story that unfolds after Michael and Linc escape from the hotel could have been fleshed out a little more and hence, become more engaging. As it is, yet again, we are faced with the never-ending game of one-upmanship, in which a player makes a move and then another player immediately counters it, so the original player is forced to regroup and reclaim, and so on and on and on. In this case, Christina is about to check the money and lo and behold, a scene or two later, Michael figures out her entire plan and intercepts it, acquiring Scylla in the process! It's all far too sudden and as a result, it deprives the plot of any gravitas. The acquiring of Scylla is supposed to be the big end-game, the moment that will change the shape of everything forever, but the device is constantly exchanging hands, passing from interested party to interested party, so it's difficult to buy into the supposed severity of the situation.

    Mind, at episode's end, this problem is circumnavigated by the deliverance of one hell of a sucker-punch in Michael's choice of Sarah, Linc or Scylla: oh sure, it's completely artificial and thoroughly unbelievable, but what the hell, it's a superb cliffhanger. Let's just hope the writers don't take the easy way out and introduce a number of irritating deux et machinas to cleanly resolve everything; I'd like to see some difficult decisions being made and, heaven forfend, some palatable consequences. I'm not necessarily advocating Linc's death or anything, mind; in fact, I think his character has been done a great disservice in recent weeks as everyone and everything is preoccupied with demonstrating how supposedly knuckle headed he is. Christina actually remarks that he 'thinks like a cub' in this episode and without any sort of challenging retort from another character, it's just tiresome.

    Generally, this is the most satisfying episode that we've been treated to since Prison Break returned. There are a number of genuinely intense dramatic sequences, from Linc and Michael's attempts to escape from the hotel to the wonderful execution of Self's wheelchair-bound wife, kept out of view to amplify the horror of the situation. It also ends on the best cliffhanger we've seen in a long time; one that looks likely to test every fibre of Michael's being in the next instalment and hence produce some very palatable dramatic conflict, providing the writers grab the bull by the horns and don't squander all the opportunity they've generated. There are still problems: once the brothers escape from the hotel, the story becomes a frustrating game of one-upmanship again, and certain minutiae suffer from a distinct absence of believability, but on the whole, this is solid, entertaining stuff. Let's just hope they can keep it up.
  • Great way to lead into the grand finale

    Final stop before the ultimate showdown. Season 4 has been great for most of it; unfortunately not all of. First half of the season was superb, all paying great in Selfless. Then we had a couple of good episode until an very controversial twist: the introduction of Christina Scofield into the saga. Fall finale was disappointing followed by an OK return. Last couple of episodes has been slightly improving but that`s not satisfactory for this show. Enough for the recap.
    They badly needed something huge to lead into the series finale and yes we got it. Really great episode at last. Some nice action sequence that did not felt stretched. Some good twists and turns with a constant tension in the air. Also, we got a motive (other than Money) behind Self`s betrayal in selfless.
    The highlight of the episode was the cliffhanger for sure. Tough tough choice for Michael. That`s how you lead into a series finale. Cannot wait!!
  • Heavy on gun fights, some references to cult films and twisted cliffhanger of the death

    This episode really deserves its title because there were a lot of gun fights. I didn't mind them as action cooled off in the past episodes but I found one scene specially disturbing. In fact I prefer when a conflict is solved without violence. Anyway some of the scenes should remind you of films like The Professional (Léon), Point Break and even The Matrix. In one of them Lincoln dropped a line you won't resist because it was just too funny considering the context and the character he said it to. Also in the past episode the brothers were framed so they had to escape, again, and it was interesting to see if they would continue to work against each other or team up. I let you appreciate the path they chose. For once I was also glad that the story focused on Self because he's part of the team after all. Beside that T-Bag tried his best to convince the General that he's a worthy asset and not a psycho-clown. Last but not least the episode ended with a cliffhanger, again. However last time I thought the writers wouldn't be able to surpass it but believe me, they actually did.
  • Awesome!

    After a couple of disappointing episodes, i went into this one expecting very less. But boy was i wrong!

    This episode started of pretty well with Michael and Linc trapped in the hotel. It was great to see Michael outsmart the police with the whole explosion thing.

    This episode remained entertaining throughout the episode. The scenes with Self were very shocking, i wonder what his agenda would be now..

    But the last 5 minutes of this episode were probably some of the best of the whole season. Michael and co robbing the bank and taking Scylla, just wow. And even better was the cliffhanger. Michael has to decide between Linc and Sarah.

    Great episode, can't wait for the next one!
  • An amazing episode, was on the edge of my seat most of the time, something that hasn't happened since season 2.

    Loved it, set up a great plot for the finale which I am impatiently waiting for. I kind of thought Micheal wouldn't get away with it that easily, and the ending, was unexpected and dreadful. Gosh I know we all want a good finale, but if risking lives of favourite characters, that's Prison Break for you. If only Sara didn't come back, it might have been different. There is so much suspense. And Self jumping and surviving? Very lucky man. Lincoln being the not so smart one? Very unfortunate. Sara not moving out of the apartment, very risky. I know Micheal can't get them both out I just know it! I just hope he doesn't end up dead, he was the reason, Lincoln, Sara, Alex, T-Bag and everyone is out of prison. He is the reason that after this Scylla thing, everyone will be free. Killing him, I hope they don't have to, but if it is necessary, at least he will die as a hero. Can't wait, the suspense is killing me, I really hope the finale will be something special.