Prison Break flees to Sky One
Story by Jack Foley
THE third season of top US show Prison Break will be shown on Sky One instead of Channel 5, after it was poached from terrestrial TV by the satellite channel.
The show, which follows the fortunes of a group of prisoners on the run, continues to be one of Five’s biggest hits as it nears the end of its second season, attracting roughly two million viewers per episode.
But the channel has shrugged off the loss, stating that it was prudent to let it go in the face of falling viewer figures.
Prison Break subsequently joins 24 (formerly BBC2) and Lost (ex Channel 4) as programmes that were snapped up by Sky after they established a strong UK audience.
David Smyth, head of Sky One’s acquisitions, commented: “This edge-of-the-seat drama is the perfect addition to our must-see slate of US programming.”
But a Channel Five spokesman hit back, saying: “In light of Prison Break‘s declining ratings we didn’t think season three represented good value for money.”
In spite of this, fans of the show are sure to be disappointed given its high profile as part of Five’s weekly viewing schedule.
According to the Five spokesman, Prison Break‘s audience has fallen from 9.2% during the acclaimed first series to 8.5% during more recent episodes.
Prison Break stars Dominic Purcell and Wentworth Miller as two brothers attempting to prove their innocence for crimes they did not commit.
The first series was based around the prison break itself, while the second has followed their exploits on the run as they try to evade the authorities led by Hollywood star William Fichtner.
A third season is currently in production in America and is due to be shown on the Fox network later this year. Sky said it intends to show the third series in the autumn – much like it did when it acquired Lost.
It means that viewers with a Sky dish won’t have to wait as long to keep apace with US viewers – although those without will be left to wait for the release of the series on DVD.