|Dr. Diego Soto (Jorge Garcia), Det. Rebecca Madsen (Sarah Jones) and Agent Emerson Hauser (Sam Neill) investigate the mystery of ALCATRAZ. Images: FOX.|
One thing's for sure about modern film and TV creative mastermind J.J. Abrams, he certainly knows all about islands, in particular the one he critically help shape for the iconic fantasy/adventure series LOST in its first three seasons. Now, he and his BAD ROBOT production company, in association with FOX, have got their creative guns aimed firmly at the real life ex-prison island of Alcatraz in their new series of the same name. And yes sir, as always with Abrams, this isn't going to be a simple drama about the facilities incredible and indomitable legacy as in inescapable jail for the majority of its hardened and dangerous criminals. The sci-fi/supernatural elements of storytelling that have become a firm trademark of his producership over the last eight years keenly return to latch themselves to the new shows format, devised by another LOST writing alumni Elizabeth Sarnoff- as a team of investigators, headed by gutsy Detective Rebecca Madsen (Sarah Jones), who already has family links to the island via her father (Robert Forster), alongside Alcatraz expert Dr. Diego Soto (Jorge Garcia, getting a well deserved lead role after his fine work on LOST as the always amiable, numbers beleaguered Hugo Reyes (aka Hurley), our window, and emotional barometer, to the characters of that series) and the enigmatic, secrets keeping government agent Emerson Hauser (Sam Neill, in another recent foray into the world of television since the TWIN PEAKS-esque HAPPY TOWN) prepare to solve the inexplicable mystery concerning 300 plus prisoners and guards once ensconced within its creepy interior who suddenly make an inexplicable return from their disappeared past back to the present day. Just how and why this has happened-and what its ramifications will bring to both America and the quirky investigative team- will surely be revealed in a deliberately suspenseful and audience teasing way by the shows writer/producers for the duration of its first season (and hopefully beyond).
Trailer: ALCATRAZ - First Look Trailer - YouTube
With a storytelling mix surely echoing facets of THE 4400, LOST, PRISON BREAK, FRINGE and THE GREEN MILE, let's hope ALCATRAZ, premiering in the US from the 16th January with a double episode launch, gets the new viewing season off to a great start and escapes the shackles of its TV ratings requirements, satisfying viewers with a strong, but hopefully not too confusing, storyline, alongside interesting characters capable of lifting it beyond other similar styled fantasy fare.