Saturday, April 01, 2006

Chasing the Dragon: Real Time, Rampant ‘Roids, Smash Hits, and How 24 Got Big

The following attempts to explain the illicit pattern of substance abuse on "the Show formerly known as 24."

Events occur in real time.

“Just for a second, just to see how it feels” (Season 1)
Surnow and Cochran took a huge gamble with 24. The show was so loosely thrown together that that Sarah Clarke (Nina) had to wear her own clothing during the entire season. (Imdb that one. I dare ya.). Anywho, during Season 1, the creators were like the flying dog from Half Baked. Except that they weren’t on Sampson’s stuff. These stoners were high on “doing the completely unexpected.”
And we loved it.
Some prime examples of Season 1’s glory: Gaines caps Rick’s buddy. Jack in the limo. Rick helps Terri and Kim escape from Gaines. Dennis Hopper’s Victor Drazen. And finally, Nina kills Terri.

“We need two big pizzas, man, everything on 'em, with water, whole lotta water, and Funyons” (Season 2)
At this point, S & C were rolling. Literally.
Choice cuts: Marie Warner (of Nickelodeon’s “Fifteen”-fame), not the Middle-Easterner Reza, is the terrorist. Mason flies his Cessna to glory. CTU fakes murdering the one terrorist’s wife and kids.
However, Season 2 also had some notable “questionable” calls.
Examples: Lynn takes a fall (and reappears in Prison Break). Nina’s back?!? And obviously, Kim and the cougar.

“I don’t even know what’s goin’ on” (Season 3)
Season 3: the worst season… before this one, of course. As cool as the Russian Roulette scene was, S & C have a siri-ous problem here. We, the viewers, should have seen the signs (Jack and H??) and intervened.
Chasing the Dragon: Kim works for CTU. Nina’s back… AGAIN?!? Nina attacks CTU with a computer virus. Gael’s wife kills Saunders in CTU. And the precursor to the debauchery of this season: Jack kills Nina. Yikes!

“Back in the Saddle” (but what color was the horse?...Season 4)
At the beginning of this season, it seemed that S & C may have recovered from the atrocious S3. We got a revamped CTU (Curtis, Edgah, head of CTU from La Femme Nikita, etc) and a new president (what was his name again?). It was almost as though they were distancing themselves from the previous season and saying, “Hey, everyone! We’re in rehab!”
Was all forgiven?
Ah, no. After they roll out Tony (and his Cubs mug), Michelle, Mike “The Skeeze” Novick, and “Oh, wait, is that? It’s Pres. Palmer’s music!” we quickly find out that that S & C’s buddy/brother/mother was smuggling them junk into rehab. (What’s movie reference here?) BTW: how did Kim not make an appearance this season? Was Elisha Cuthbert busy or something?

“Back to the Future” (current season)
In retrospect, we should have seen it coming… the signs were all there. It was only last season that the ghosts of seasons past began their steady march back from hanging out with Mike Tyson in Bolivion. After S4, it was a natural progression to bring back the likes of AARONningstart, Wayne “Choke a Bitch” Palmer, and “Even Jack Hates” Kim. If S & C hadn’t randomly killed her in S3, Nina would probably be back. Quick Question: Where’s Chase and his MegaMan arm?
Alas, fellow bloggers, 24 is no more. We are unfortunately stuck with “The show formerly known as 24,” a shadow of its old self. And, like many of our favorite addicts in the creative arts, 24 will end up: choking on its own vomit (numerous), blowing its head off with a shotgun (obvious), attempting to drink 40 shots of vodka (John Bonham), decaying for days before anyone notices (Layne Staley), dying for a few minutes in a hotel (Slash), or doing whatever Scott Weiland ultimately does to kill himself.

As I have masterfully proven, we are stuck in the back of a mid-80’s Camaro with a drunk “Show” at the wheel. (“I recommend you stop being such a faggot. You’re in the backseat.”) And we can’t get out.
But that fact won’t stop us from hoping: hoping that S & C can put down the pipe, check into rehab, and go out on top… without unretiring and playing for the Wizards.

-Anyone for a hit of Season 6: Operation Nightfall? I’ll warm up the spoon.



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