“Alcatraz,” Season 1, Episode 3, “Kit Nelson” concerns a child murderer of the same name who was condemned to Alcatraz in the late 1950s and who is now in the present day setting about his grisly work.
Spoilers surely follow.
Diego takes a somewhat personal interest in the case after Nelson takes a child in the current day. Nelson likes to use the child on some kind of ritual that involves miniature golf, fishing, and cherry pie that replicates the murder by Nelson of his brother over 50 years ago. Diego’s personal interest has to do with some unspecified trauma he suffered at age 11 that makes him identify with the victim.
Nelson’s presence in the 21st Century does not seem to have any mysterious purpose aside from spreading fear, mayhem, and death. He does those things with alacrity, taking a young boy on a weekend that he plans to end with murder.
The most interesting part of the series takes place in the past. The psychology of serial killers was not well understood in the early 1960s. However it was understood that people who kill children are the worse of the worse, proved by the thumping Nelson gets in the prison yard at the behest of the Warden.
The Warden is interested in why Nelson killed his brother. Nelson had claimed that scarlet fever, then a serious disease, had taken his brother. Nelson’s parents, his dead mom and his very much alive and very angry dad, were pretty sure that Nelson had killed him.
So, in fact, was the Warden. In order to motivate Nelson, the Warden has him thrown in the Hole, an isolation cell that is kept in total darkness. The Warden invites Nelson to explain why he killed his brother, taking the time it takes to burn four safety matches.
Finally Nelson relents, and tells the Warden how much he liked it. The Warden, sadly, does not have the detached view of the thing that a member of the BYU on “Criminal Minds” would have. After hearing Nelson’s story of horror and madness, he leaves him to suffer in the isolation cell.
Source: Alcatraz, Kit Nelson, TVRage.Com