FOX’s police procedural series ‘Alert: Missing Persons Unit’ AKA ‘Alert’ follows the reappearance of Jason Grant and Nikki Batista’s son Keith, six years after his disappearance or supposed kidnapping. Nikki and Jason welcome their son wholeheartedly but his mere existence itself unsettles Sidney Grant, Keith’s sister. She claims that the boy who returned to her family as Keith is not her real brother, making Nikki suspect the new Keith. The crime series progresses through Sidney’s attempts to unravel the truth behind her brother while her parents are conflicted about believing their daughter or possible son. Naturally, the viewers must be intrigued to find out whether the boy is Keith himself. Well, let us share our thoughts regarding the same! SPOILERS AHEAD.
Who is the Boy? Is He Really Keith?
Ever since Keith returned to Jason and Nikki’s family, Sidney has raised suspicion about his real identity. Although the ex-couple doesn’t take it seriously at first, the boy’s behavior and skills astound them since they differ severely from their son’s. Jason seeks comfort in the belief that he must have changed while he was away. Nikki, however, considers Sidney’s suspicion and decides to find out the truth about her apparent son. Regardless of whether the boy is Keith, it is certain that he is hiding several things from Nikki and Jason. The new Keith convinced the ex-couple that he is their child by revealing several pieces of information concerning their son.
The boy reveals several trivial pieces of information that make Keith’s parents welcome him to their home and life. In the premiere episode of the show, it is revealed that the boy learned all about those pieces of information from newspaper reports that he thoroughly studied. He destroys those reports to make sure that Jason and Nikki will not suspect him. Since he needs to rely on newspaper reports to be aware of Keith’s life in detail, it is unlikely that the boy is who he claims to be. His attempts to gain the trust of Nikki and Jason using elaborate research indicate that he most likely is a con artist.
In addition, Sidney’s knowledge about the “truth” concerning Keith’s disappearance can be the key to solving the mystery behind his supposed reappearance. Sidney is certain that her real brother is dead since she had an unrevealed part to play in it. As far as she is concerned, her actions intentionally or unintentionally caused Keith’s death and since she doesn’t have any reason to lie about the same, Sidney is more trustworthy than the boy who claims to be Keith. Sidney has proven that she knows more than she has told her parents by leading the authorities to a boy’s body remains in the fourth episode of the series. If she can prove that it is her brother’s remains, the boy’s possible facade is expected to fall down.
What must be stopping the viewers from concluding that the boy is not Keith has to be the result of the DNA test Nikki conducts. Since the test concludes that the boy’s and Keith’s DNAs are matching, the MPU officer believes that the former is indeed her son. If the boy is really a con artist, he has to be a part of a con team that likely includes the woman who apparently kidnapped him. If that’s the case, the team must have anticipated Nikki’s DNA test, since it is the most obvious option to compare two identities, and made required arrangements for the progression of their deceit.
According to co-creator John Eisendrath, the answer to the mystery will not be revealed anytime soon. “[…] we will take the audience through all different types of stories and permutations that will, for a while, take us deeper down the rabbit hole of the is he [Keith] or isn’t he,” Eisendrath told Hollywood Life. I think in a story like this there are many different twists and turns when you think you know the answer, but then the answer isn’t what you think it’s going to be. And then you’re certain you know the answer and then, oh, wait, hang on. That’s not what I thought,” he added.