In the Status Civilization, Sheckley has taken a fairly hoary sf trope, the prison planet and elevated it to a higher level. He fits a lot into a slender 127 page novel. There is a great deal of action but also a great deal of mystery adding to the suspense. The new prisoners have to deal not only with their own memory lost, but also the veiled nature of Omega society and their lack of agreement of the nature of the society and planet that has sentenced them to Omega in the first place.
The elevation on this novel over the normal prison planet novel occurs when Barrent escapes and Sheckley shifts the focus from Omega to Earth. By this point I had began to ask myself questions about the organization of Earth's judicial system and Earth society as a whole. It is a tribute to Sheckley's skill in plotting this novel that he avoids the all too common info-dump to answer these questions. Instead Barrent assumes the role of Opinioner (a type of government researcher or census taker) which allows him to delve into the layers of Earth society by interviewing citizens and then follow the various threads these interviews reveal. The novel's conclusion is satisfying in part because, like real life there are still questions and challenges ahead and Sheckley has avoided a tripe and predictable denouncement with everything neatly resolved.