Monday, May 30, 2005

Conclusion: I'll Never Get Those 24 Hours Back

In a very lackluster season, you can color me very impressed with 24's final two hours. I didn't have very high expectations at all going in. In fact, I watched the final three episodes back-to-back-to-back, and the third to last hour was crap, just like the rest of the season. I'm not entirely sold on how this season ended, but I wished they would've "killed off" Jack a lot sooner. I have no doubts that he'll be back next season, this show doesn't work without him, but you off him in the middle of a season, then you have a good void to fill and things could become exciting.

This season's biggest disappointment was the level of writing. That's the easiest way to kill your show. The acting was pretty rank, too, but you don't go see blockbuster movies to have good acting. You don't normally go to see the storyline, either, but the more believable the story and the less holes there are, then the poor acting becomes an afterthought.

I think the story this time around was entirely way too complex. This year was 24's biggest year in terms of ratings, but Fox tried way too hard to make this story great. You can't continue to cram things into a story to improve it, take some core ideas and develop them deeper. That's why seasons one and two were good, err, rather they were better.

So until I can actually go into more details about season five, I'll leave you with my final thoughts on season four:


  • Not one mention of Kim for the entire season
  • Certain plot twists
  • The entire Mandy story line... notice she's a free lady now
  • The final two hours (aside from SOME cheesy acting here and there)


  • The many cliffhangers that weren't cliffhangers
  • Acting for 90% of the season
  • Marwan's ability to always escape
  • Two love triangles
  • There's a mole in CTU
  • Inconsistant use of how many agents to take on a field operation
  • People walking around CTU pushing papers when they should be at their computers solving stuff
  • Plot twists up until hour 24


  • For the fourth year in a row, no one is going insane from working 24+ hours
  • Everything I Know About Being President, I Learned From Palmer... but choose to be an idiot instead (the VP story line)
  • Waiting through 22 episodes for the final two hours
  • The LA time warp
  • HORRIBLE use and education about technology (EMP bombs, stealth, satellites, unlocking hard drives, cell phones and helicopters, etc)
  • Jack coming back to life, AGAIN (see season two)
  • Secretary of Defense Heller
  • The numerous interrogations and torturing
  • Minute-by-minute foreshadowing


  • Product placements (Alienware, Motorola, Cisco, etc)
  • The Erin Driscoll story line
  • Chloe
  • Chloe shooting a gun
  • The CTU ER

I'm sure there are more, so please feel free to post your own. I'll keep the site updated when/if I hear news about the upcoming season five. If I hear nothing... I'll see you next January. Toodles.

T-Minus Three Hours

Last time we left the small village of 24, a missile had just been launched and Marwan was finally in custody. Where did everyone go radically wrong this week? How lame was this episode?

Missile Command
The missile has been launched. I repeat, the missile has been launched. But it's not a regular missile. No, no. It's a stealth missile. No one can find it. It's just flying around. Invisible. Uh-huh. Doesn't it have a heat registry from the fuel its using? CTU knows where it was launched from, so I'm thinking you could scan that area for a heat signature somewhere. You've tried everything, you've even been running MILITARY PROTOCOL, and still can't find it? Is it time to re-think CTU's involvement here? And Marwan, why in the hell would you launch a missile that would take forever to hit? That's almost as bad as keeping the person you're trying to kill around just a bit longer so that you can divulge your master plan. JUST BLOW SOME SHIT UP ALREADY. Be done with it.

What The Heller

  • Good Lord, why must the entire Heller family be brought back into the fold? I thought after Paul died, we'd see less of them. Guess not. On a good note, Audrey seems to be doing much better just two hours after Paul died. She's got a job to do.
  • Can we get through one episode without the threat of having to torture someone in an interrogation? Oh yeah, good idea... let's have Audrey do the questioning. Wait one second... That would NEVER EVER EVER happen. What's this? CTU is only now using a machine that monitors heart rate to tell if someone is lying or not? Why in the hell didn't you use this earlier in the season? You know, instead of using that high-pitched torture crap! (Future writers of 24, please be consistent and constantly check continuity.)
  • Bad plot twist: Heller's son is gay? THAT's what he was hiding. Just freaking tell them that. And when Heller told his son, "you should've told us everything," just how far does he need to go? Anyone else having a "Goonies" flash back? And how does him being gay help you solve the terrorist problem? That's just silly.

How Many CTU Agents Does It Take To Screw In A Light Bulb?
This season's biggest WTF: Why was there only five guys there to take Marwan into custody? There were six to steal that chinese dude, there were about 44 to get Marwan when he was in the club and at the end of the episode, there were at least 10 men besides the CTU contingency. This time, they had Marwan pinpointed to a specific location, yet only send five people to get him. It's no wonder Marwan escaped. AGAIN. How many times can CTU be this incompetent and still have government funding, not to mention the same personnel? Luckily, they brought three vehicles so they could get back to CTU.

This Land Is Your Land
Once again, this whole VP story is absurd. A power struggle on this kind of day, at this time in the show, is ridiculous. The whole way that this supposed government handles days like this is asinine. Six people at CTU won't be counted on to stop everything and three people in the white house won't either.

Bet You Didn't See THAT Coming
In a show that continually gives the audience all the tools necessary to guess what's going to happen next, why can't we actually fool some people or give them worthwhile plot twists? Michelle agrees to quit her job (yes, the only thing she knows and has done for the past 12 years) to move on with Tony. Then, Curtis HAS to stay at CTU this time, even though he's been on every other field op in the day. Hmmmm, I wonder what's going to happen.


  • Again with the kick ass noise-blocking cell phones. Case in point, Jack had to put on the headset to talk to the guy sitting right next to him. Why? If he can talk clear as day on a cell phone, then there's no need for the headsets. To complicate things further, when Jack calls Curtis, why is he yelling? Maybe the helicopter gets louder as it moves closer to the ground.
  • YES! Mandy, the sexy assassin is back! This is a nice nod for fan-boys from the writers.
  • Almost as bad as the overused "with all due respect" line, Jack's entering of a room and doing the two finger pointing thing from his eyes is just awful.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

24 Renewed for Two More Seasons on Fox!

Oh boy, oh boy! Good news came today in the realm of bad writing and even worser acting... that's right, 24 has been renewed for another two seasons at Fox!!! What does that mean??? That means that this site will live on, stronger and much more sarcastic than ever! Oh yeah, can't wait for next year. Update from Monday's episode coming later this week.

Monday, May 09, 2005

This IS A Marathon

CTU Remodeled?
Over the past few seasons, whenever someone was critically injured they were taken to hospitals for treatment. CTU must've gotten sick of that because over the past two years (from season three to season four) they've added their own full-fledged medical unit. This thing is basically a functioning emergency room. It also has two to three beds for patients to stay in for observation.

I'd say that this was a waste of time to do that, but they've gotten quite a bit of use out of it this season. First with Driscoll's looney daughter, then with Paul and now the chinese guy. I bet anything that they also have a day care, deli and dry cleaner on location. If not, be looking for it soon all you CTUers.

Closer Screening Needed
At an agency such as CTU, which I would think is similar to the FBI and the CIA in terms of type of people they hire, wouldn't personalities like Chloe's get nixed from the start? Not only is she Captain Obvious (which is actually one of the funnier parts of the show), she's just a straight out nosey, bitchy idiot. Granted, she's good at her job and can shoot a gun (bonus), but I doubt that she'd even get a call-back at the Counter Terrorism Unit.

Like a Glove
One of 24's biggest issues this year is the fact that everything is either foreshadowed or is completely obvious that whatever happens will factor into the plot somehow. It's good writing in terms of making stories complex, but let's make it all a little less obvious. Here are some examples from this week:

  • We leave last week while Audrey was FREAKING OUT (bless that freak's heart, Paul just died). This week, only five minutes later, she's pretty coherent. Sad and upset, sure, but coherent. And just when you think, "Driscoll left when her daughter died, Audrey will probably go home, too." No, she doesn't. Why not? Because only family members of those who commit suicide can go home? No, because the writers thought that making Audrey cover for Jack would be a neat thing to do. Here's a better idea, let her go home and have her called back in without knowing what's going on. She'd be freaked out still and probably incoherent.
  • The Chief of Security, Chang, sees the name Edgar Styles on the hours report (who in the hell is keeping track of time on a day like this ... and wouldn't each entry say "looking for Marwan" or "tracking nuclear warhead"?). So when Chang is being escorted from the building, he just happens to run into Edgar.
  • The (Vice) President, calls Palmer in to be his proxy and do anything he needs to get this all fixed. So Palmer does and now the (Vice) President is pissed. Didn't see that one coming a MILE away.

Say What?
"They were all masked?"
"Wait, his mask was lifted."
"Use the image processing filters."

Answer this question. Why aren't they using night-vision cameras outside at night? And isn't this the oldest "computer trick" in the book? They've got this image, but it's hard to tell what, or who, it is. So they enhance the hell out of it and then it's just fine to run through a database of information?

One More Thing
Are you kidding me? Curtis' last name is Man? As in, "hello Mr. Man?"

Monday, May 02, 2005

The Act is Up, Err, Down.

If you watched this week's episode of 24, then you witnessed one of this season's worst acted hours.

Here's some reasons why:

  • "I wasn't prepared to have all this thrust upon me so suddenly." God forbid something happen to a President and YOU have to step in Mr. VICE President. That IS what you signed up for, right?
  • "Do we take that literally? That he'll set off the warhead before dawn?"
    "We have to look at the worst case scenario. What time is sunrise on the East Coast?"
    "7:02. Less than two hours from now."
    Actually, you have to look at ALL scenarios... and yes, you should take him literally.
  • "Mr. Lee expected suspicion to fall on him. He says there's been a mistake, he has no connections to terrorists."
    WHAT? Either this guy is a huge paranoid freak or, hmmm, he's guilty. This goes right along with last week's "I have nothing to hide" quote. Great writing.
  • "I'm calling for Tony Almeda. Who's this?"
    "This is Michelle Dessler, a colleague of his. May I ask who's calling?"
    "The woman who he happens to be living with. Is he there?"
    Give the girl a break about being rude, she was looking for Tony allllll day. How about trying his cell phone next time? Besides, it's 2:30 am, and just how did you get a direct line to someone inside CTU?
  • "I hope I'm not some kind of psychopath." Too late, Chloe.
  • "Mr. President, we've just seen a tape recorded by Habib Marwan. On it, he says, quote, 'we'll be waking up to a different world.' We can't be sure what that means, but it may indicate that the warhead will be detonated before dawn on the East Coast."
    He's got a freakin' nuke! What else could it meam!?!
  • "For them that's moving pretty fast. For us, that's not moving fast enough."
    "*sigh, What do we do?"
    I don't know for sure... but you're the damn government, I'd stop slouching on a couch all Charlie Brown-like. Thirty minutes ago you were all about knowing what to do in getting Palmer in there. Did you just become stupid when he walked in the door?

Jack's Secret Mission Position:

  • More satellite zaniness... real-time infrared imaging... inside a building... with multiple stories... and the ability to color-code bad guys (Chinese, who were red, how coy) and good guys. But, you still can't track a damn nuclear weapon in some of America's smallest mountains on its way to "Jefferson City, Iowa," can you?
  • If no one at CTU is supposed to know about what Jack is doing, then why is Tony yelling everything to Jack? It's dead silent in CTU, one might think to be a little more quiet on such a secret mission.
  • Why in the hell were the Chinese soldiers shooting at Jack? Oh, that's right, if they "accidentally" shoot Lee, this gets even more interesting.
  • Stop being pissed at Tony and Jack. Haven't you noticed for the past three years that it's Jack's way or America explodes?
  • I've figured out how the time-warp of Los Angeles works. If the camera is in the car with them, it takes forever. When the camera is somewhere else, they can teleport.
  • Jack, his lungs are filling up with fluid, don't give him CPR, you're just going to break his ribs. Wait! That's a great idea! Break a rib and puncture the lung to allow the fluid to drain out. You ARE a genius!


  • This is how the communication chain works at CTU. Doctors who need to get a hold of Jack call his cell phone. Directors of CTU, or whatever the hell he is, must track him down wherever he is in the building.
  • Good continuity from last season where Palmer is still wearing that weird bracelet thing. Though, they never told us what it does for him.
  • I'm not quite sure I'm believing the "messed up tape" deal. First off, the camera didn't bust while the tape was filming, they recovered the tape by itself. Secondly, an explosion is either going to blow the whole damn thing up OR blast in in half. This tape they had was in one piece. Third, the explosion would've had to have been able gotten inside the tape to do that kind of damage to the film... and if the explosion would've gotten inside the film, I think it would be one giant clump of tape goo by now. So, what you watched was an After Effects filter and some keen editing. And if they only recovered SOME of the recording... what in the hell was on that tape? We saw everything Marwan said when he recorded it. My bet, porn.
  • Homeland Security still uses fax machines to communicate with CTU. Why?