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on January 5, 2018
I really like the story and found the series to be quite good. Sadly there was only one season, as the series was cancelled for a second season. The reason I mention this is there was never closure on the mystery behind the series plot. This was quite a bummer and I traded/sold the dvd back to Amazon for a significant loss compared to what I paid. This is no ones fault but my own as I should have done more research on this series before I ordered it. Hopefully this will help some one interested in buying the DVD.
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on July 20, 2012
"Alcatraz" COULD have worked and worked well...I think its only major flaw was that some of the episodes, particularly midseason, felt more like a crime procedural ("hey, another inmate appeared, let's go get 'im") than a surreal mystery. If only EACH ep had given us a bit of the plot points! It seemed like several went by with little more than a tease into the three keys, the '63s, and the sleazy Warden's master plan...and then in the season finale we had major points all dumped at once!

Still and all...this could have been MAGNIFICENT in a second season. I detest Fox for pulling it.

My question is, WHY can this story not continue in graphic novel form?? Hey you producers and writers, if you're reading this, FINISH THE STORY! I want more Senator BadA-- (aka Hauser -- as Sarah Jones so perfectly called him), more Doc, more Becca, more Warden! I wanna know how it ENDS! Bring in Joss Whedon, bring in any of the supremely talented writers and artists working in comics today, and let this continue the same way "Firefly/Serenity" has! At least let us find out what the heck happened!

Kudos to all who worked on this show. It did not deserve the treatment Fox gave it.
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on February 18, 2012
JJ Abrahms, the creator of the long-running suspense serial Lost starts a new series with elements of mystery, magic and police procedural, however, those looking for realistic procedural should look elsewhere but those looking for serial mysterious suspense should be right at home.

Alcatraz, arguably America's most famous prison was closed in 1963 with all inmates transferred, but that isn't what happened the opening voiceover informs us. Instead, the prisoners and guards disappeared into the ether and were never seen again. Until 50 years later when the criminals start reappearing, unaged and unchanged and committing the horrendous crimes they were incarcerated for.

A young detective with a family connection to Alcatraz catches the first homicide connected with the mysteriously reappearing prisoners. Of course no one else knows this and she figures it out fairly quickly with the help of an Alcatraz historian, Dr. Soto. The detective and Dr. Soto stumble on a mysterious organization tasked with catching the prisoners as the reappear and finding out what happened in the first place. The viewer is given hints that this organization is not all that it seems and that the prisoners may have been the subject of medical experiments that may or may not be related to the current predicament.

Perfect combination of weekly arcs for new viewers and longer arcs for those who like to follow a mystery. Mr. Abrahms excells at grab you by the throat openings but sometimes has trouble with middle and last acts. Viewers will have to see if Alcatraz follows this pattern or breaks it. Intriguing and worth a look.
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on March 14, 2012
Alcatraz is a great new Science Fiction series in the vein of Lost I'm told, although I never watched Lost. The population of inmates on Alactraz and guards the day it "closed" are slowly reappearing in modern day San Francisco, doing someone's bidding, and committing crimes. There are 302 people on the rock the day it closed, and a federal agent is working to locate them and take them and get them back into custody. He's joined by a San Francisco police officer who is related to an former inmate on the run and was brought up by a former guard. They are joined by a comic book writer/comic book store owner/Alcatraz expert to figure out the whereabouts of the so-called "63s".

This is a great science fiction show. There is an underlying mystery of the how and why the inmates are coming back that gets revealed bit by bit.

There are some important things to note:

1. This show in general is violent and graphic. There are a large number of violent acts, and many of them are shown with blood spray, gore, etc. Even deaths that aren't violent can be dramatic. So this is not a show to watch with kids around or if you are feint of heart. The civilian character, Doc Soto, does help bring humanity to the violence as he is clearly affected by it not being a hardened cop, however, it's still graphic much of the time.
2. This show is non-linear in time. Events start the day Alcatraz "closed" in 1963. It is then told with a combination of modern day events mixed with flashbacks to Alcatraz in 1960. If you have difficulty following that sort of show, this is not the show for you.
3. This show tends to have a pretty heavy tone because you're dealing with a prison and some of the worst criminals. If that sort of thing right before bed bothers you, don't watch this right before bed. We threw in an episode of a much lighter show after watching the Pilot/Ernest Cobb episode last night to cleanse our brains before bed.

Even with those notes, it is a good show, and I look forward to watching the rest of this season and hope that it's renewed for more seasons as it's another of this year's short season shows with something like 13 episodes and there's no way everything could be resolved in the remaining episodes.
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on August 14, 2015
The background story of each inmate and what they did when they escaped provided a huge variety of story lines. Some of the men were diabolically evil while others seemed more a victim of circumstances as bad as their crimes. As in real life, only a few reformed.

Having toured Alcatraz, I was familiar with the layout and history so the episodes made a lot of sense. I wish that they had more quickly revealed what happened to the prisoners and guards. However, the weekly stories focusing on a single person allowed for a variety of plots.
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on December 24, 2012
I loved every Episode ( 13 ) just Amazing TV but Im slightly upsett why AMAZON.COM.wrote " To See Why it was not Difficult to cancel the Show....???? " Yes its incomplete and the Show stops / Ending with an Cliffhanger....? So much potential for another Season or at least for two more Episodes to finish the Show in a good Way BUT they did not care about "the Big TV Bosses FOX" ?????? Shame again its only about money and Ratings to keep a show alive without leaving / giving the Director/Producer a chance to finish it up properly.....? Shame ....? Still I give the show 5 Big Stars even knowing there is no proper ending to it.....? Shame on FOX Television again a Show without proper ending cut short too soon...? Two Disc NOT three Disc.....?
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This show has such a great premise. What happens when the worst prisoners of the 50's start to come back in the current age? You create a crack team and seek them out as they return. I am so disappointed that this only survived for one season. I love the shows "specialist". I don't know the actors name but he is great and so atypical for a hero. The chemistry of the cast is fabulous. Well worth a watch.
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on August 26, 2015
I consider this to have been the best TV show I've ever seen. We watched it every week. Fox was foolish not to let it play out for a second season. Jorge Garcia is always a treat. Took a while to warm up to Sarah, which was part of the problem. Looking back I do think the casting was right. Still get the DVDs out and watch them.
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on December 30, 2012
I catched some episodes by chance on German TV and decided to buy the complete season. I like the character played by Jorge Garcia, plus the story itself was promising. But - due to whatever reason - the series should not get more than this one season with a handful of episodes. Therefore, the ending is not really satisfactory. Although they try to give some answers and explanations, but it feels like "we must end the story within one episode". What started with great expectations could not fulfil them in the end. Anyway, it is a good recommendation, the single episodes are thrilling!
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on August 24, 2014
This show had potential, and in my honest opinion, was cut short way too soon. It seems a lot of shows I like do that though, get me hooked and then get canceled. Like The Glades, Firefly, The Finder... To a lesser extent, the animated show Sit Down, Shut Up. Anyways, the whole premise of the prisoners of Alcatraz suddenly returning in the present day, the same as they looked in 1963, to me was just brilliant. Would have loved to see more of this show.
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