‘Alcatraz’ Season 1, Episode 3: ‘Kit Nelson’ Recap

Published 2 years ago by

Sam Neill Sarah Jones Alcatraz Kit Nelson FOX Alcatraz Season 1, Episode 3: Kit Nelson Recap

In this ‘Doc’ Soto-centric episode, we learn about an unpleasant time in the life of Dr. Diego Soto (Jorge Garcia), as he reacts strongly to the Alcatraz time-jumping psychopath-of-the-week: the titular ‘Kit Nelson’.

Arguably the creepiest former inmate the Alcatraz task force has had to chase down, Kit Nelson (Michael Eklund), has the repugnant habit of kidnapping 11 year-old boys and returning to their homes 48 hours later, to deliver his victim’s bodies. The episode begins in the present with Nelson entering a house and silently stealing away with a young child named Dylan – leaving his signature chrysanthemum in the boy’s bed.

Soto overhears the disappearance of the boy via his police scanner – taking note of the chrysanthemum – and immediately comes to the conclusion that Nelson is behind the abduction. Soto brings his findings to Emerson Hauser (Sam Neill) and Rebecca Madsen (Sarah Jones), who are discussing the near fatal injuries Lucy Banjeree (Parminder Nagra) suffered at the hands of sharp shooting escapee Ernest Cobb.

As is the format on Alcatraz, the episode jumps back and forth in time, giving viewers a glimpse at the inmate’s life on the island prison. Being a child killer, and therefore on the lowest rung in the prison pecking order, Nelson had a pretty tough go of it, as we see from a brutal beating delivered to him in the yard, while the guards and Deputy Warden E.B. Tiller (Jason Butler Harner) casually look on.

Throughout the episode’s flashbacks, we learn that Nelson is unanimously hated – inside the prison and out – after his father pays him a visit in search of a long overdue confession regarding the suspicious death of Nelson’s younger brother. The scene only half works; on one hand it gives the audience more fuel to root for Nelson’s eventual apprehension, but fails in how it ridiculously spells out the connections Soto has made regarding Nelson’s whereabouts with his young captive.

Of course Nelson’s younger brother had a lust for life, which, apparently, included a love for cherry pie. As luck would have it, Soto has been checking out all the local diners that serve cherry pie when who should walk into the very establishment readying Doc’s second slice? Why Kit Nelson and Dylan, of course.

Jorge Garcia as Diego Soto Alcatraz Kit Nelson FOX Alcatraz Season 1, Episode 3: Kit Nelson Recap

After informing Madsen of his whereabouts, Soto unwisely confronts Nelson, leading to a brief standoff that results in Soto and Madsen handcuffed to a dumpster while the former inmate flees with the boy in a reasonably priced sedan. The incident leaves Soto despondent, believing he’s sent the boy to his doom. However, a quick check of Nelson’s prison belongings lead Soto and Madsen to the kidnapper’s former employer: a construction company that specializes in bomb shelters.

We jump back one final time as Chief Warden Edwin James (Jonny Coyne) coaxes a confession out of Nelson for the murder of his brother, after threatening him with the prospect of spending the remainder of his life sentence in solitary confinement. Nelson relents, and owns up to the murder that engaged his bloodlust, for which the warden rewards him by reneging on the deal and leaving Nelson in his new, windowless cell.

Back in the present, Dylan escapes the bomb shelter after a well-placed shoe toss takes out the bunker’s single light source. Soto and Madsen arrive as Nelson grabs Dylan, but before the killer can make good on his threat to kill the boy, Hauser emerges from the foliage and shoots him in the head.

Save for some much-needed backstory on Dr. Soto – which, it turns out, is that he, too, was kidnapped at the age of 11 – ‘Kit Nelson’ offers little insight into the overall mystery of Alcatraz, but does create more questions. With Nelson being offered up to the still living, former prison doc, Dr. Beauregard (Leon Rippy), as what looks to be a donor for Lucy, perhaps the apprehension and re-incarceration of the out-of-time inmates is not the only endgame for Emerson Hauser.

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Alcatraz airs Monday nights @9pm on FOX.

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  1. I have a couple of thoughts about the show in general instead of this specific episode.

    1. The acting is really bad, by all accounts.
    2. I’m not sure how long we’ll be able to follow a new bad guy each episode and wrap it up nicely without it getting old. Now, knowing who the writers are, it won’t be that simple, but this concept is gonna get old fast.
    3. The underground prison and infirmary along with who’s still alive (and looking the same as back in ’63) is intriguing.
    4. I think the warden will play a much larger role than his general interactions. I’m wondering if he’s not more involved with Sam’s character.

    As for last night’s ep, the thing that impressed me was how great a job Eklund did at “looking batsh*t crazy”. The dude’s creepy.

    that is all.

    • oh, and Sara’s gonna have to be more than a set of boobs for this show. (see #1)

    • Great assessment. I feel the same way, especially about your first 2 points. I think that the warden also has a way bigger role in all of this, and since it is a time travel vehicle (the show), I think maybe some sort of time travel was even going on back then (The whole matchbox from the civil war era he had made me feel this way…… of course how would they have had that kind of technology then?)

  2. I have to agree with the original assessment that, “bringing in the bad guy of the week”, is not a formula for success. I am already bored and really have no emotional attachment to ANY of the characters so I really don’t care. This is stark contrast to LOST where I was already interested and deeply involved with the characters by this time.

    If they were to just tell me who sucked up the populous of Alcatraz and why, I would be content and have no desire to continue with the show. Again a stark contrast to LOST where, even though the ending was a huge let down, the ride to get there was great. I would still have watched that show even if I knew the ultimate outcome at the beginning.

    I draw comparisons to LOST, not because I want or was expecting LOST 2.0, but because they were created by the same person and I’m sure he was hoping for similar success.

  3. In the end, they didn’t want it serialized like Lost or the eventuallity of Fringe and even decided to go back and reshoot scenes to make it more procedural than serialized. In the end, that might be the wrong direction for this show.

    I do find the whole new Alcatraz thing interesting but, like others have said, the whole lets hunt a criminal every week is going to get old quickly. Also, not ewveryone who disappeared were criminals. There were families, jailers, staff, etc. and we shall see if they start to include them.

    Fox as a network likes to shy away from serialization (this and Terra Nova) but wants to gain that audience, at the same time. Until it accepts that its audience is intelligent and can handle a good series and not just ratings fluff, sci fi will never succeed at Fox.

    Its a shame cuz I do like Alcatraz but see me turning away like i did with Terra Nova.

  4. I’m already bored. Eklund was compelling crazy/scary. The part where he tells the kid to hold him under water then comes up and says my turn… Creepy. Agree with everybody that the villain of the week i already getting too predictable and stale. I mean sure these guys are criminals but ud think one of them would stop and ask what the hell is going on (fish out of water type deal) I mean they dont ask about cell phones etc. frustrating. Anyways why follow orders when they hve no idea who is giving it to them? Why kill people at all? Unlike LOST they better spill the beans as to how they are time travelling and what the point the of it is. I’m not spending several season to not get any answers. Though I doubt it will last more than two (season)… If that.

    • Thanks and Amen to that !
      Totally agree on your points,and since it seems each episode has a name of a convict I doubt there will be another formula for this..just the bad guy of the week :(

      It’s such a waste !
      The general idea is really intriguing. But characters are unbelievable,
      nobody cares to ask about HOW they did end up here ?
      Time Travelers who as stated have no problems to jump in time,its’ normal to them like going to the WC !

      And seems not everybody gets asked to do something,as I do not think the kid that was victem here plays an important role.

      But then again..seems random to me,and nearly about to stop watching if there is no big change.
      Bad guy of the week..bye bye

  5. eh not a bad ep except the dude was creepy

  6. Eh..i dont want it to happen but it’s probably going to get cancelled. Two more weeks until it gets into main story arcs though so maybe it’ll turn around. I hope.

  7. They need to bring back some of the wonder of the first few minutes of the first episode, when the convict woke up in 2012 in the cell… I have liked all the villains. Sarah Jones is sexy, for me, and I don’t think she’s a bad actress… Jorge’s character is one dimensional, but has a few moments. I agree with everyone else, they do need to move the plot along.

  8. I guess there’s a lot of us who are finding this all hype and not much there there…..Unless there’s some major changes….I doubt we’ll see it much longer….

  9. Well I guess I will be one of the few that liked the episode. It reminds me a lot of the way Fringe started.

  10. The shoe must have been on a rubber-band. It was on the kids foot within seconds as he was running out of the shelter…