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Prisoner Of

Season 1, Episode 10

Episode Details

Plot Summary | Ongoing Story and Character Developments
Unanswered Questions | Memorable Lines | Glitches
Trivia, Inside Jokes and References | NotePAD

Plot Summary

Inside the Satellite Prison Luff in space, Warden Opus is making his rounds. A prisoner claims that she doesn't belong there. But the narrow-minded warden (or is he a robot? I could never figure that one out) insists that there are never any mistakes. As Warden Opus moves away, we see that the prisoner is Catalina.

Catalina is panicking in her cell. In a flashback, we learn how she came to be in the prison. The Christa was passing by the prison, a life sentence facility, when there was a power spike. She was sent to check it out, and was knocked out by an escaped prisoner (Sofiana). Cat was sent back to the prison in the Sofiana's place.

Cat is trying to blast her way out of the cell. She's panicking and talking to Suzee, who, for a change, doesn't know what to do.

Meanwhile, Sofiana hijacks the Christa. First, she threatens Thelma with a "neural scrambler" that turns out to be nothing but a finger, then she claims she has an explosive. Although they question whether she's bluffing again, they reluctantly take her where she wants to go.

Back in prison, Catalina is still arguing with the warden, who quite logically argues that there is someone in the cell, and if someone's in the cell, then no one has escaped. He also reveals that Catalina is scheduled for a mindwipe.

Sofiana eventually reveals her plan: she is the daughter of a brilliant scientist who came up with a computer virus to end a war. He was discredited, jailed and killed by one of the warring factions. She is trying to retrieve his work, which is hidden in a document cell in an asteroid field. She put Cat in her place so the guards would not notice that someone was missing.

Thelma retrieves the document cell, but Harlan gets it, and decides to trade the cell for Catalina. We also learn that Sofiana's bomb was a fake – it just spat up some confetti.

Catalina escapes from her cell and runs loose in the prison, chased by guards. The warden announces that her collar will be blown up to deal with the problem. Catalina tries, but fails to remove the collar.

The crew compels Sofiana to help them get into the prison. They try unsuccessfully to negotiate with the warden. Harlan finds Catalina, tries unsuccessfully to get the collar off her, then brings her to Radu, who rips it right off in the nick of time. Harlan throws the document cell onto the explosion, destroying it as well.

Sofiana is free. The crew understands that she was doing the wrong thing for the right reasons, and has no hard feelings. Harlan reveals that the document cell he blew up was a fake; he has the real one, and gives it to Sofiana.

Ongoing Story and Character Developments

  • None identified.

Memorable Lines

Davenport: Just think about all of those frighteningly dangerous criminals.
Bova: They're locked up. Usually, its the ones that are free you have to worry about.

Cat: I wonder what they did. You know, to be locked up forever.
Bova: Probably broke the law.

Sofiana: Don't move or I'll blow your entire neural net. Now take me to your leader. [long pause] Why aren't we going anywhere?
Thelma: Because to take you to the command post, I would have to move, and you asked me not to.


  • Thelma retrieves a "bomb" that was intended to blow a hole in the ship's hull, and Goddard tells her to throw it. How is that going to help if it's really a bomb that could blow a hole in the ship's hull?
  • The crew seems convinced that they need Sofiana's help to get into the prison. But why would anyone need help getting into a prison? Getting out is the hard part.

Trivia, Inside Jokes and References

  • The story idea for this episode comes from Ted Jessup (a producer of the show, who played Rosie's father), Peter David and Bill Mumy. It was written by Magda Liolis, who also wrote Truth Hurts.
  • The episode title is a play on a classic song performed by many people.
  • Catalina's prisoner number is the same as JeanValjean's in "Les Miserables"
  • The prison is frequently referred to as the Satellite Prison Luff, presumably a reference to the Satellite of Love that Joel and later Mike were imprisoned on in MST3K.
  • When Sofiana sends Catalina to take her place, she says, "You can go directly to jail..." a reference to the game Monopoly.

Unanswered Questions

  1. How does Goddard know so much about prisons?
  2. How did Sofiana get out of the prison and get a ship?
  3. How did she get Catalina back into her cell?
  4. What was the cause of the Luff Conflicts?
  5. How far out is Earth's sphere of influence?
  6. Did Ms. Davenport know about the Luff Conflicts and Julian Mrtz before she saw the video from the historical databases?
  7. What is the nature and purpose of the Mrtz virus? Does it pose any risk to the Christa or Thelma?

(Notes from co-creator Peter A. David)

  • None available at this time.

Episode Details provided by Tracey Rich.
This page was last updated on September 29, 1997.