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MATT ZOLLER SEITZ: ALCATRAZ should never have been freed

What if the prisoners of Alcatraz all mysteriously disappeared when the prison closed in 1963 and then started reappearing in the year 2012? And what if they hadn't aged a day and were set on finishing unfinished business, settling old grudges and the like? If that sounds fascinating to you, then you’ll probably give the new J.J. Abrams–produced series Alcatraz (Fox, Mondays 8 p.m.) more of the benefit of the doubt than I did. I found tonight’s two-hour premiere so listless that I’m having a hard time mustering the energy to pan it. And the second episode is only a slight improvement. My fascination with the real prison probably has at least something to do with my resistance. The place has such a rich history — one that has already been alluded to in such films asBirdman of Alcatraz and Escape From Alcatraz — that I’m not yet convinced that it should be reduced to a mere backdrop for sci-fi mythologizing by remnants of the Lost writers room and cast. But we’ll see.
  • By Matt Zoller Seitz
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  • January 16, 2012 8:24 PM
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  • 0 Comments

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