Season 1 Episode 10

Clarence Montgomery

Aired Friday 9:00 PM Mar 12, 2012 on FOX

Episode Fan Reviews (3)

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out of 10
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  • Oh well, what was that?

    Unfortunately, I found myself wandering off during the episode and I'm not completely sure I didn't miss anything important, but it was sooooo difficult to hang in there... Let's make a quick recap:

    Episode 8 which had been bumped due to some last minute schedule conflicts found inmate Clarence Montgomery returning. Montgomery, a superb chef, had been the first black man to be chef at a white men's country club until his white girlfriend ended up murdered and he convicted for the crime. Only, he didn't do it... However, back in the present, he suffered from blackouts and started killing young females, re-enacting his girlfriend's death.

    Then there was a little Alcatraz 101, Soto discovering the victim, making the connection to Montgomery, Soto and Rebecca looking through Montgomery's box, finding a connection to a small-time gangster who was indeed the one Montgomery had sought out after the first killing. However, Montgomery was already looking for another victim, so Soto and Rebecca were not done yet.

    There was also some flashback stuff. Montgomery going to Alcatraz, the warden making him the new chef of the kitchen, the inmates rioting because they didn't like the exquisite food? (Honestly, I'm not sure why...) Then the doctor performed some reverse experiment on him to make him the killer he hadn't been so far. I don't know, to prove Lucy was doing something right with her experiments about deleting memories that triggered bad behavior in the inmates? No, I honestly don't know. It was kind of a brainwashing experience though... After that "treatment" the associate warden paid Montgomery a visit and gave him a speech about criminals being criminals or whatever and as soon as the associate warden was gone, Montgomery killed the next inmate talking to him and praising his culinary skills (conveniently Montgomery had a knife somehow) by slitting the person's throat and then arranging the body to make it mimic his dead girlfriend's pose. Yeah, the brainwash had done its work...

    In the present, Soto somehow made a date with the medical examiner. Not that I care. Why should I? There is nothing to care about these characters... They just do nothing, they are just there...

    Soto, Rebecca and Hauser went back to Montgomery's friend for some reason I forgot. This time, Montgomery was there, so the friend shot a shotgun through the door before someone could enter. No, Montgomery doesn't go to prison because last time it made him a murderer? The logic was lost on me, because now he was obviously pretty murderous. Hauser looked for a back window to talk to Montgomery who then felt so bad about his killings in the present he then convinced his friend to kill him? Who knows, in the end, Montgomery was dead and his friend arrested while the others looked sad. Probably, because they didn't know what they were doing or why they were even there either.

    Hauser met a superior soon later (the superior had shown up just a little earlier in the episode and spoken out some concerns like everyone else of us) and Hauser shut him down by offering him a closure to a cold case. For some reason, Hauser could deliver the real killer of Montgomery's girlfriend. The real killer was arrested soon later and Montgomery exonerated of that crime, no words on the new ones. Soto and Rebecca did realize though that the whole thing was messed up. Congrats. We already knew that...

    There was one more jump to the past and Lucy asked Montgomery about the inmate he killed like the brainwashing suggested? She suggested, she could take that memory away, but Montgomery didn't think so... The warden and the doctor watched them, being proud they made Montgomery a killer? (I'm not sure) The doctor thought he could ask the warden now that he successfully brainwashed the black guy about the blood, but the only answer the warden would give was "I don't do anything to it, Milton. What kind of warden would I be if I kept secrets from my staff?" Yeah, right... and you know what Alcatraz, the way you're going it's probably an honest answer...

    Oh well, this episode was so many big question marks for me... Apart from not being mysterious or interesting at all it was also a big WTH and Why? There was a big elephant in the room that they could have painted to bring forward the underlying mystery. There is this thing with the blood and inmates, even guards, being so much more violent than they were back in their time. However, they did not, instead of just taking this opportunity, they laughed at us viewers by brainwashing Montgomery. An explanation for his behavior so we can just forget about this episode with a quiet conscience. Because it doesn't matter. Like everything else doesn't matter. Alcatraz disguises as a mystery show that just doesn't want to be mysterious. Or even interesting.

    Alcatraz, why oh why don't you even want to be a little interesting?
  • Creation Of A Killer: Reverse Shock Therapy

    The episode "Clarence Montgomery" centers around a man incarcerated wrongly for a murder he didn't commit. Clarence Montgomery was a black man who was convicted, wrongly, of murdering his white girlfriend and sent to Alcatraz. Warden James takes an interest in Montgomery putting him in charge of the kitchen where he cooks for everyone, both whites and blacks. Warden James knows that this will cause unrest, it seems as if he wants to build up Montgomery only to tear him down. Using Dr. Beauregard Warden James embarks on a quest to see if shock therapy can convince a man who isn't a killer to become one, it works. Fast forward to the present day...Montgomery is back and is now fully invested in being that killer, recreating the death of his deceased girlfriend and in the process killing two innocent girls.

    Well, this is not a particularly strong episode. The story itself is fair, but there really isn't too much revealed as for what the hell is actually bringing the inmates back to the present day. However, there is a glint of something tangible as to how it all may have started: the inmates who are reappearing in the present day all had blood taken and then re-introduced into their bodies. In the style of unwitting participants in such government experiments as the infamous MK Ultra type, there were sinister goings on among inmates in federal prisons. It is alluded that the blood taken at Alcatraz was "treated" before re-introducing into the unwilling participants. What was done to the blood? We are left to guess, but it is hinted at that it may involve radiation.

    So, this is the "diamond" hidden in the rough: The inmates blood was manipulated causing them to reappear 50-years into the future with no aging in the interim? It seems kinda lame, but I'll hang on for the duration of the season as this must be building toward something, surely, more interesting.
  • One of the least interesting ones so far, that's for sure, but still very good,

    I found this episode to be slightly less entertaining thatn the others. The storyline was definitely great - an inncent may turn guilty after all this time. Also, the fact that there is an innocent man in Alcatraz made this a very interesting storyline to follow.

    However, there really wasn't too much drama or suspense hthroughout the episode, and it was not as epic as most of the other episodes.

    Still loving this show, and I hope the next one is better! :)