'Alcatraz' recap: Do the Wrong Thing

alcatraz-1.jpgA young black chef named Clarence Montgomery is sent to Alcatraz after his white girlfriend is found murdered. He maintains his innocence but few believe him. When Warden James offers Clarence an opportunity to become the prison's first "colored" head cook, Clarence is more than a little reluctant. He predicts nothing but trouble to come of it. The Warden doesn't offer him much room to refuse, so Clarence eventually accepts. His first day on the job, he cooks up a delicious feast of smoked ribs and all the fixings, but the white inmates would rather riot than eat his food.

When he shows up in 2012, he goes to fancy country clubs and woos ladies who look like his old girlfriend. He kills them, but seems confused. It's like he's compelled to act out a scene over and over, without understanding why. He seeks refuge with a former inmate and friend named Emmitt, who thinks God must have given the still-young Clarence a second chance. When Rebecca and the rest of the team latch on to the case, they notice some things that don't quite match up with the original murder in 1958. They come to the conclusion that Clarence was innocent of killing his girlfriend, but guilty of the new crimes. They again wonder why the '63s are coming back deadlier than they used to be.

In flashbacks, we see Dr. Beauregard using Lucy's techniques on Clarence, except in reverse. Instead of taking away a traumatic memory, as Lucy wants, Beauregard implants Clarence with the memories of a killer. Both he and the Warden seem to believe that Clarence is actually innocent, which makes it all the more evil of them. But dramatically intriguing, at least.

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