I got into watching Alcatraz through Lovefilm after seeing the adverts on Sky but as it clashed with another series we were taping I didn’t watch it live. Perhaps I should have seeing as it got cancelled!
The first series was 13 episodes and I watched the last one today. I have to say I hate it when things end on a cliffhanger. According to IMDB the main reason it got cancelled was people didn’t click with the actress playing the main character Rebecca Madson. Whilst she wasn’t the best actress and I couldn’t tell you her name without googling it she wasn’t the worst I’ve ever seen either. I say this having just finished watching the latest series of Dallas and some of the acting in that was terrible; even so I believe they will make another series.
The thing I liked about Alcatraz was the idea that the inmates came back to be used by an unidentified source to play out a script that was written many years before. Each inmate proving to be a bit part in the grander scheme of things. A scheme we will never fully know as the show ended. All the clues pointed towards the prison warden being the linchpin behind all the goings on due to some hidden secret in his vault which was found in the last episode, although its secrets remain undiscovered.
From the comments I read the sci-fi fans didn’t like it as it wasn’t factually correct. I don’t like to over analyse what I’m watching as it takes away from the enjoyment, unless the errors are blindingly obvious then they annoy me. There have been films where people’s scars change cheeks!
A prison would be a hive of people from different backgrounds, each with their own story to tell. Inevitably some of those people would be innocent going inside; (although nowadays this must be more uncommon due to changes in law and the development of forensic sciences) I’m not sure all the inmates would come out innocent. People often committed crimes or learnt how to commit crimes in jail. Where else could you learn such a vast array of skills from forgery, burglary and arson to the ways you can kill a person using poisons and how it feels to live with the cost of your actions.
I don’t know if the characters portrayed in the TV show really were Alcatraz inmates when the prison closed but if they were it is a good use of the information. Many books have been written on the place and tourists visit it daily, a little island fortress containing some of the worst criminals the US had ever seen. Even Al Capone was a resident of Alcatraz.
It’s a shame that we won’t get to hear the end of the story, or meet anymore of the 63’s. I would have liked to know why they came back, where they had been for so long and who was pulling the strings. I’m sure they could have recast the actors/ actresses for more likable people if that was the problem Rebecca died at the end of episode 13 anyway.
Maybe I should search the internet for books on Alcatraz, it might give me some ideas of my own! I mean for writing stories in the future, not for planning a crime!