J. J. Abrams' Alcatraz: First Look

Posted by Grey Friday, May 20, 2011

Dying for another J. J. Abrams mystery drama? Welcome to Alcatraz.

Hot off the heels of NBC's announcement on the slate of forthcoming new dramas and comedies set to debut next season (with Kyle Killen’s Awake seemingly the most intriguing of the lot), Fox has stepped up to announced their very own slew of new comedies and dramas to fill up their TV schedule for 2011-2012.

Among the new shows announced for Fox, it is instantly noticeable that there are two that seemed most promising: Steven Spielberg’s time-travelling sci-fi series, Terra Nova, and J. J. Abrams' time-travelling sci-fi series, Alcatraz. Apart from the fact that the mention of Spielberg and Abrams' big names are sufficient to attract interests in their respective new shows, it is noteworthy that both series sported some intriguing concept by their own despite sharing the same sci-fi roots.

For now, we will touch on J. J. Abrams' Alcatraz. Officially picked up by Fox earlier this month, Alcatraz featured heavily on the infamous prison and the untold phenomenon surrounding the mysterious disappearance of every inmate and some of its guards. With their subsequent reemergence fifty years later, the series kicked off its web of government conspiracy and deceit.

Yes, we did note the fact that the mystery is probably just enough for one season (unless they are making new ones up on the way), based on lessons learnt from FlashForward and The Event (THE EVƎNT). But this is J. J. Abrams at work, so I reckon this is quite a safe bet given his treatment of Lost and Fringe.

Hit the jump to check out the trailer, followed by the full synopsis of the series.

From executive producer J.J. Abrams (FRINGE, "Lost," "Star Trek" and the upcoming "Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol" and "Super 8") and writer and executive producer Elizabeth Sarnoff ("Lost," "Deadwood") comes ALCATRAZ, the chilling new thriller centered on America's most infamous prison and one-time home to the nation's most notorious murderers, rapists, kidnappers, thieves and arsonists. When San Francisco Police Department DET. REBECCA MADSEN (Sarah Jones, "Sons of Anarchy") is assigned to a grisly homicide case, a fingerprint leads her to a shocking suspect: JACK SYLVANE (guest star Jeffrey Pierce, "The Nine"), a former Alcatraz inmate who died decades ago. Given her family history – both her grandfather and surrogate uncle, RAY ARCHER (Robert Forster, "Jackie Brown"), were guards at the prison – Madsen's interest is immediately piqued, and once the enigmatic, knows-everything-but-tells-nothing government agent EMERSON HAUSER (Sam Neill, "Jurassic Park") tries to impede her investigation, she's doggedly committed. Madsen turns to Alcatraz expert and comic book enthusiast, DR. DIEGO "DOC" SOTO (Jorge Garcia, "Lost"), to piece together the inexplicable sequence of events. The twosome discovers that Sylvane is not only alive, but he's loose on the streets of San Francisco, leaving bodies in his wake. And strangely, he hasn't aged a day since he was in Alcatraz, when the prison was ruled by the iron-fisted WARDEN EDWIN JAMES (Jonny Coyne, "Undercovers") and the merciless ASSOCIATE WARDEN E.B. TILLER (Jason Butler Harner, "The Changeling"). Madsen and Soto reluctantly team with Agent Hauser and his technician, LUCY BANERJEE (Parminder Nagra, "ER"), to stop Sylvane's vengeful killing spree. By delving into Alcatraz history, government cover-ups and Rebecca's own heritage, the team will ultimately discover that Sylvane is only a small part of a much larger, more sinister present-day threat. For while he may be the first, it quickly becomes clear that Sylvane won't be the last prisoner to reappear from Alcatraz. Through the course of the investigation, Madsen and Soto will learn that Agent Hauser has known about the prison's secret history and has been awaiting the prisoners' return. Soto will witness his life's work – the history of Alcatraz – come alive. Madsen will be forced to keep her supportive San Francisco cop fiancé, JIMMY DICKENS (Santiago Cabrera, "Heroes"), at arm's length from the highly classified assignment as she sees everything she thought she knew about her family's past shattered, all while fighting to keep the country safe from history's most dangerous criminals.

And here are some of the set pictures released by Fox recently.


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