We start off this week's episode with last week's previouslies. No lie, it's exactly the same "previously on" footage we got last week, but with one miniscule "meet your new cellie" clip introducing Haywire. It even cliffhangers at the point where Abruzzi is about to have Michael's toes cut off. Will he?1 Well, yeah, he will. And did. Last week. Look for Brett Ratner to bring just this kind of expert attention to detail to X-Men 3 (stinking up theatres in 2006!).
We open the episode in earnest with Lincoln lying in his artfully lit cell on death row. (But the toes! What happened with the toes?! Don't leave me hanging!) Lincoln's restful sleep, where he's only marginally less animated than normal, is interrupted by Bellick and his gang of nameless COs. We know Bellick has a name because Linc keeps yelling it over and over. The guards haul Linc out of his cell and drag him down the hall into yet another starkly lit room. Man, when Michael designed this place, he did not fuck around with the mood lighting. Very fourth-season West Wing. This room features an electric chair, which understandably freaks Lincoln out a bit.
In what is so clearly not a dream sequence, Linc struggles and argues in vain that he's got a month left. The guards strap him down, do that sponge on the head thing so Linc won't go all Bad Death of Eduard Delacroix on us, blindfold the poor bastard, and get ready to pull the switch. Before they do, Not Dream Bellick leans over his hyperventilating captive: "Make your peace, Lincoln." The switch is pulled, the electricity goes bzzz, aaaaaaand dream. Unexpected! So it seems that Linc's not as enthused about dying as we might have expected. That's some penetrating insight right there.
Back at the No-Tell Prison Cell, Michael is hard at work, digging at the grout around the cinderblocks behind the sink. His head's on a swivel, but he's working pretty brazenly for a guy with a cellmate who never sleeps. Ah, but we soon find out why that is, as Michael quickly puts the fixtures back into place just in time for the guards to return Haywire to the cell. And...can I ask what's up with half the characters on this show having G.I. Joe names? Haywire, Maytag, C-Note...I keep waiting for them to join Alpine and Bazooka on a mission to capture the Baroness.
Michael splashes some water on the chiseled face for which Eric Roberts was no match and tests the can-I-trust-the-crazy waters: "Haywire, you ever thought of breaking out?" Haywire scoffs, "What the hell would I do out there?" He runs down a laundry list of hassles, including halfway houses, psych visits, and parole officers. None of which, I might add, he'd really have to worry about if he, you know, broke out and became a fugitive from justice. He'd like to know why Michael's so curious, though. "This guy was talking about it in the yard yesterday," Michael untruthitudes, "I didn't know what to say." Haywire suggests Michael rat the guy out to Bellick in exchange for preferential treatment. Michael mentally checks his cellmate off the list of people he can safely spill his plans to, disappointed that he won't be able to wear the "I'm Planning An Escape, Ask Me How" sandwich board he just acquired.