Thursday, March 23, 2006

The Following Took Place Between 8PM and 9PM the Week After I Broke Up With 24, but then Gave It Another Shot Because It Cried

What the hell is going on??? The show started with a "Welp, I guess Tony's dead, moving on" and ended with a "Jack sure knows how to pick em" ending. Why do I keep getting the feeling that they're trying out that "Monkeys writing Hamlet" theory and having 20 chimps typing furiously away until something vaguely resembling a 24 episode emerges?

The episode starts out with Jack leaving Tony's warm corpse to go track down a terrorist who is so diabolical that she gives customs the ACTUAL name of the hotel she's staying at. There's a logical plot gap for ya. He rushes off to meet Curtis without even saying a single goodbye to the daughter he was just reunited with and might lose again in the next 15 minutes if things go badly. Fact remains: Even Jack hates Kim. Remember, Jack chose to climb into air vents possibly filled with deadly gas rather than spend half an hour in a room with Kim last week. So he rushes out of CTU while Barry's laying some pipe in the CTU Murder Room (not to be confused with the CTU Morgue which is more commonly known as CTU Medical Room).

Next we get some luscious Droopy Dog footage as he follows the VP's advice and alerts the media that a curfew is being put into effect for LA County. He, does, however deliver the best acted line of his career, saying, "Are you crazy?" to his wife, who hours before he accused of actually being crazy.

Jump ahead to the homeland security folks arriving at CTU. Thanks guys, I can't get enough of your "Asshole superiors inexplicably treating a well-established government organization like shit" plotlines. I can only describe the new "annoying/bad guy" from homeland security as a Goober. Chloe starts to talk back to him before realizing that her character will probably be dead in the next hour or so, so she hands over her ID card to a guy who says, "Egdah's dead, so I guess I can take his seat," showing his full sensitive side by adding, "Holy crap, this seat is so short and wide, was this Edgar a fat sack of fat or what?? I'm serious Chloe, I am from Homeland Security, answer me!"

Mrs. Droops tells Aaron she doesn't trust the VP followed by Wayne's World Palmer calling up A-Train and telling him he needs to see him in person. Meanwhile the VP says, "Don't worry, we're aware of the legal situation, our people are working on it right now" with such menace that I had to laugh. I mean, c'mon, 24 just tried to make, "Are you aware of the subtleties of the constitutional law process" scary and imposing.

Next, Me-so Mischa Barton and the soon to be found out undercover German agent aka German Jesus, part ways, leading to the inevitable Mischa Barton: Part Deux being a terrorist who will get taken down by Jack. Do we even have to see this plot play out? Hot Terrorist Women are the equivalent of the Spanish Announcer's Table in wrestling. They do their usual routine on the sideline until all of a sudden they're slammed into by Jack Bauer (and that's in a confusingly sexual-inuendo free way. I mean, c'mon, Jack did heroine, but he can't hook up with a single terrorist chick? Apparently terrorist women are the single hottest demographic in the world besides "Deal or No Deal Girls". Even Nicholas Cage banged the drug dealer's wife in Face-Off!) and left wondering how this could happen.

On to the terrorists whose script sounds like it was written by Flowers For Algernon. "Do' she' ha' da schematics an' access codes?" "Ye." Could they write the plot exposition any more obviously? They might as well say, "Ok, let's recap." And ramble off everything that's happened so far and what will happen next. They DO however show us schematics and say, "Here is where the bomb will go off" pointing to a vague area on a map. Unfortunately, they're foreign and out of touch, so they selected The Staples Center during an LA Kings game. 40 people will die while wondering why nachos taste so good when they're dipped in that spicy nacho cheese. I can't help going back to them saying that 200,000 people die, which is still the worst act of 24 terrorism around. Why did they lower the bar? Remember when EVERY NUCLEAR POWER PLANT IN AMERICA was supposed to melt-down? Now the terrorists are trying to wipe out the audience at an Eminem concert. I wouldn't put it past Fox to have them bombing the American Idol Finale. I also wouldn't fault the terrorists.

WHAT MOVIE WAS THE HOMELAND SECURITY WOMAN FROM? The Bourne Identity? Man, that's gonna bother me. J-Kow, you're on it.

I'm about to Buch-anon all over the place. Another ousting of the CTU head plot. 24 needs a "Hawaiian Vacation" episode so badly right now. Can someone please get Dustin Diamond on the phone? Maybe Zak Morris' cell phone that the terrorists always use has him on speed dial.

There is an inverse proportion of 24 show quality and 24 music quality. The soundtrack is owning this season.

Curtis is jumped by German Jesus and immediately takes a Black Chuck Norris pose while the guy is holding a gun. "Never bring Bear Claw Technique to a gun fight" Sean Connery says. This just proves that Curtis needs more to do so he stops wasting all his time on the internet looking at Top 30 Fact sites.

German Jesus says he can't give Jack the info because he can't risk German lives. Jack says they'll be risking 200,000 American lives. Which got me thinkin. Is there ever going to be a time when The Holocaust CAN'T be thrown back in the German faces as a rebuttal? It's the "Infiniti+1" of world politics.

Is "Unan1mous" really just Saw: The TV Series? On another note, I'm so much happier wanting to see Bones than actually ever sitting down to watch Bones.

Can we cut out the line between "Lemme have a minute with the terrorist/informant/etc. alone" and "Alright"? Is the "Jack, what are you doing?" really still necessary? We know what he's doing. He's either talking or torturing. There aren't any fruit roll-ups getting passed around that you're gonna miss out on by leaving the room.

Chloe spills coffee on Goober Agent who says, "What's wrong with you??" I guess the 24 writers still have a little power over me because I actually respond to the tv, "How about she just survived a nerve gas attack and 60% of CTU is dead!" I think this officially makes me a middle-aged black woman.

Me-so Mischa Barton gives the terrorists the pass key for the whatever, i don't know what's happening on the terrorists end, but I do know that nobody shoots her on the way out. What the hell is wrong with these terrorists? Nobody survives the post-giving information or services phase of the evil plan, especially hot contract terrorists!

The VP thanks "Governor" on the phone for enforcing the curfew. I can't help but laugh knowing that "Governor" is Ahnold. It's just a matter of time before he gets involved and takes out the conspiracy all by himself. Also, has anyone else noticed that the Vice President looks EXACTLY like Krang from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles? It's uncanny.

"Miss Hayes, that's not a threat, that's a FACT!" Sick quote. Fact: Even Jack Bauer Reads "Jack Bauer Facts". For a guy who "Doesn't work for CTU" Jack sure does work for CTU. "There will be repercussions!" Hayes tells Jack. "Fine!" Jack responds, adding, "besides killing my wife, making me shoot heroine, faking my death, killing all of my friends, and having my daughter get schtooped by a skeazy porn-star, what repercussions will I be facing?"

Who cut funding to these terrorists??? THERE IS NO WAY that Me-so Mischa Barton doesn't get sniped out in the open like that in seasons 1-4. NO WAY. Did Terrorist Sniper School hold students back this year? Did they recruit football players instead of capable riflemen? Is there a Jay Feely of snipers out there, firing so wide under pressure that nobody even knows he's shooting? This is totally unacceptable. The three things that make 24 what it is: Jack Bauer, Torture, and Snipers. Often a combination of the three. The torture is lacking, Jack Bauer is calming down, and Snipers are off the map.

Now the Wayne Palmer (Jeff Golfblum in Independence Day) getting owned by the "Oasis Shuttle." If this were the 24 game, somebody set the Terrorists to "Sporadically Dangerous." The van somehow chases down Wayne's sportscar and drives him off he road. Even OJ made it for a few hours on the freeway in a Ford Bronco. The terrorists (well, Krang's minions) shoulda shot him while he was driving though, because unless PreFontaine is in that van, nobody's gonna catch up to Palmer running through those woods.

I've been dreading getting to it, but finally, Jack interrogates Barton by saying, "We're running out of time" as non-chalantly as I've ever heard. He decides not to torture her because...well nobody knows why really, and decides to give her Immunity For Schematics-- the deal, not the future Indie band. NO DEAL! (it's always No Deal) She concludes by dropping the "fact" that Aubdrey sold her the information. Boy does Jack know how to pick em. Now there's obviously no way that Aubdrey is a terrorist. Not only would it be repetitive plot, but she hasn't even managed to be in the room where the cameras are for most of the season, so I'd be surprised if she could find her way to any useful information. However, if 24 tries to pull that she is a terrorist, I will be forced to turn this blog into the 60 Minutes blog (also in real time). Andy Rooney is the terrorist (definitely worse than Berserko), and Ed Bradley is Jack Bauer-- they even have that ticking clock! Anyway, next week is the real-time, real-time episode, so I expect a better episode, but who knows. This season has been the "Limbo" of television shows-- each week they lower the bar a little and see if they can still squeak by without completely falling on their ass. Until next week,

Keep It Jack,

PS. is the best ad campaign in years.


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