Prison Break is the first show that springs to mind when you think of prison on TV, but it isn’t the only cinematic undertaking to deal with the trope. There’s The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile, Jailbreak, Snitch, The Irishman, Goodfellas, and a ton more.
But how accurate are these on-screen prisons? Do they hold a candle to real-life prison? Or do they get things wrong?
Most importantly, should you base your understanding of prisons on what you see on TV?
Trope 1: All Prisoners are Bullies
As soon as a new prisoner is inducted into prison in a show, they’re surrounded by violent wiseguys who bully them to no end. While, of course, there will always be bullies everywhere, no prison is chock full of bullies who’re waiting—like some high school jock—to pounce on you. Besides, in real life, prison guards are far more diligent in responding to instances of bullying.
Trope 2: Riots Break Out All the Time
Humans populate prisons, after all—there’s bound to be a riot at some point or another. However, unlike what they show on screen, they’re never as prevalent. In fact, prison riots are on the decline, even as prison populations soar.
Trope 3: Everyone is Either Released or Manages to Escape
Orange is the New Black is a great cinematic show, but if you think real-life prisons are just as lenient, you’d be wrong. Most prisoners are destined to spend many years in prison before they’re released or before they even get to their trial. And prisons aren’t so easy to break out of, no matter what shows tell you.
Trope 4: Rampant Insomnia
Most movies with prisons will tell you that prisoners find it difficult to fall asleep inside jail cells. This is one of the things that Hollywood does get right. How could it not be hard to sleep in a small, damp, dark cell, away from your family and awaiting your trial and/or sentencing?
Trope 5: Prisons are Fun
If there’s one trope that Hollywood gets wrong and should be sinned for, it’s this one. Movies and TV shows make life in prison look fun and exciting—which is nothing but misleading. As many people have expressed several times, it’s one of the worst experiences you can have.
If you’re disillusioned and understand now that Hollywood gets prisons supremely wrong, it’s time to help your loved one get out. If there’s bail that needs to be posted, get in touch with us at Lee Calhoun Bail Bonds in Gainesville, Florida as soon as possible.
We have clients from all over Florida and provide a free consultation to anyone who calls us. Don’t wait for Florida Redemption—call us today at (352) 379-9100.