Thursday, June 26, 2014

The RETURN of 24

I'm not talking just about 24 returning to TV. I'm talking about 24 returning to being a BADASS show! And it hasn't just been these last two episodes, although they have been outstanding. The whole season of Live Another Day has been stellar. 24 has managed to seem fresh, new, and exciting while traveling down some very familiar roads.

The Presidential Revolving Door

Being President on 24 carries with it inherent risks. You're the leader of the free world so you're a huge target, but oddly enough only two former Presidents on 24 are dead, and they're brothers. David Palmer was probably the best, Charles Logan was the most evil, Wayne Palmer was the dumbest, Allison Taylor was the most shortchanged (her seasons were bad), and James Heller has now become the most sympathetic. Dude has Alzheimer's and was willing to give his life to save thousands if not millions of lives. And thanks to Jack and Chloe tinkering with the drone's camera feed, he gets to live.

Chloe Can Work Magic

Speaking of that camera feed, armed with only a laptop in a bar, Chloe managed to hack into a drone, record some footage and loop it to fool the terrorists into thinking they were killing the President. It's a good thing Jack and Chloe have seen Speed. But she's been working that kind of magic for years. Here's what she's done this season alone:
  • hacked into a building complex's CCTV system to provide support for Jack as he tried to locate Derek Yates 
  • identified Sansa 2.0 escaping to the subway by hacking into more CCTV cameras
  • confirmed Sansa 2.0's identity as the daughter of a known terrorist through Interpol records
  • helped forge an ID for Jack to get him into the US Embassy which would have worked had Adrian Cross not double crossed him
  • provided more CCTV support for Jack while he was inside the US Embassy trying to locate the drone pilot
  • discovered the planted IP address in Evil Cat Stark's video which led the CIA into a trap
  • helped set the decoy bank account trap for Rask
  • traced a mobile phone number to Sansa 2.0 and identified which hospital she went to after her bus accident
  • helped track the drone video feed to the terrorists' new location
Geez, it's a good thing they're in London where there are tons of CCTV surveillance cameras around.

There's Always a Bigger Bad Guy

We started with Derek Yates, but he was murdered early by Sansa 2.0. It was fortunate that Evil Cat Stark stuck around for so long because she developed into one of 24's best baddies whom I think is up there with Habib Marwan and President Charles Logan. Seriously, chopping off your daughter's finger, killing your son-in-law, ordering your daughter to kill her sister-in-law and daughter, and then sending a missile to kill your daughter is some outrageously deranged behavior. But now, thanks to Jack sending her and her son by air mail, we're left with a new bad guy in the form of Adrian Cross, the leader of Open Cell and Chloe's love interest. Is it fair to say Chloe's going to have to make a very difficult choice by the end of the season?

There's Always a Mole

If there's one thing I've learned from 24, it's that they should really run better background checks on their government personnel. Moles have been on 24 since day 1 with the shockingly improbable turn of Nina Meyers, and most recently the abhorrently loathed Dana Walsh. And now we have Steve Navarro who's not technically a mole working with the bad guys, but he's definitely dirty. He had one of his techs killed, and now he has the override device and is on the run from Jack.

Where Are We Now?

Navarro's on the run, Jack's in pursuit, Chloe's sleeping with the enemy, and with 3 episodes left, it looks like the last episode of the season will feature some kind of time jumping as it will cover the remaining 13 hours of the day. This abbreviated season has worked so well so far. The 4-year hiatus was a welcome break because it feels like everything is new again even though it isn't. The action has been intense, and I would say the 24 mojo is back.

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