Monday, August 09, 2010

24 Season 1: 8AM-9AM Retro Review

And we're back!

Last time on 24, Ira Gaines won the booby-prize on the new hit FOX series "So You Think You Can Assassinate?" Aaron Pierce does not allow this sort of nonsense- not in his house!

Meanwhile, Jack Bauer is hauled before the heretofore legendary Frank Simes, liaison between the Secret Service and CTU. We heard his name only once so far this season, when Jack called him, asking to be placed on the guest list for the Palmer breakfast, but all signs point to Simes being a cool dude.  When he first sees Jack, he sasses Bauer with some truly cynical retorts. I half expect Simes to pinch Bauer's cheek and say "What do you think this like the Army where you can shoot 'em from a mile away? No you gotta get up like this and, badda-bing, you blow their brains all over your nice Ivy League suit. C'mere."

Bauer explains to Simes that he's working double-triple deep cover and that nobody knows what he does, so please take off these damn cuffs and let me return to my loose-cannon ways.  Simes is almost persuaded, which is amazing unto itself. But then he makes Bauer sit as he puts a call into Agent Pierce. Pierce never answers his cell... (sigh) why does he even bother owning the damn thing?!?

Back at CTU, Almeida is back to interrogating Jamey through her 3 feet deep bangs. When did Cousin It get security clearance to work at CTU? Sheesh! Well, under Tony's direction, Jamey calls a very upset Gaines to tell him that "all your base are belong to us" or some other nonsense- I honestly wasn't paying attention-- Nina Meyers was stripping down and putting on fresh clothes... yeah.

Speaking of fresh, we return to Jack, still cuffed to a standpipe, now yelling at a disinterested Simes that he can help the Secret Service find the REAL assassin! In a moment of spastic hilarity, no-named Secret Service Henchman 21 (I believe) throws himself on Bauer from behind and tells him to shut his yapper. Bauer flips out and tries to hit the guy back, and this finally causes Simes to say "You're not helping yourself here, Jack"-- as to imply that if Jack used a different tact, he might convince this Vic Damone  look-alike to take the cuffs off of Bauer. Oh, Simes- you're breaking my heart! I love it.

Jack tells Simes the truth, about his wife and daughter being hostage, etc. Simes feels for Jack, but he doesn't want to stick out his neck for Bauer- and if he ever met Teri at a previous social event, you can bet he's absolutely going to let Gaines kill her, to benefit the entire 213 area-code. So, Henchman 21 and two other agents take Bauer through an elaborate maze of steam pipes and construction workers, in order to escort him back to CTU Division. Yeah, this was a good idea. Jack learns what steam valves can do when let open, and he proceeds to set off a Secret Service Clam Bake on his captors. Ah, no one needs to send in their dry cleaning this week!

As Jack evades pursuit, he jumps over a fence and rolls down a hill to a very conveniently placed road. Jack unfortunately carjacks the only vehicle being driven by a Margot Kidder look-alike. Oy, this is gonna get annoying. Just shoot her, man!  Well, Jack doesn't shoot this waitress with a heart of gold, but instead they drive into a construction site and break into the office to make a phone call. Yeah, this is practical thinking.

Meanwhile, Tony Almeida is reading from the "Interrogating For Dummies" handbook, asking Jamey how could she betray her country, etc. Dude, she did it for money, what else is there to ask her? She's got a sick mommy, all you got is a really expensive hair product addiction. Lay off of it, bud. Jack calls Nina's cell, just on a lark in case she's alive, and sure enough she picks up the phone! A pretty funny conversation ensues where Jack says "Holy shit, I'm so happy I didn't kill you when I shot you." And the waitress sits in the room looking at Jack like he's the world's worst boyfriend. Lady, you don't know the half of it.  Jack then talks to Jamey and states the obvious "You know I don't always follow protocol but I'm a man of my word." That's Jack in a nutshell- it's reassuring to be able to summarize a hero in 15 words or less. That's what we call an archetype. No need to complicate things, writers-- much appreciated!

If you're interested, let's add bi-polar disorder to Jack's psychiatric profile.  At first, he tries to sweet-talk Jamey into cooperating with him to save his wife and daughter. This doesn't work. So, Jack says to Nina "Bring me her boy!" Then, as he gets off the phone, the waitress and Jack share a moment where Jack tells her about his problems (all waitresses are amateur head-shrinks) and he even says "I'm not gonna shoot you." In a moment of defiant awesomeness, the waitress stands up, walks to the door of the office and says "You're not the only one who's got problems, I gotta get to court to be convicted of DUI!" You figure they've bonded, right? Wrong. Jack pulls out his gun (which he said he wouldn't use) and tells the waitress "I've killed two people today!" Woah, woah, woah!!!

And we also witness the first time Senator Palmer hears the name "Jack Bauer"- as Mike Novick (fresh off his ridiculous overacting from a couple of episodes) briefs Palmer on what exactly went down at the breakfast. Speaking of breakfast, Palmer throws down a scotch. That's the breakfast of champions. And then Palmer mumbles something about Bauer, saying maybe this isn't the first time he's heard the name. Like a mix of equal parts corn starch and water, this plot just got a little thicker.

It's at this point that the episode that the show goes off the rails. One of Gaines' guys wants to rape Kim, but Teri jumps in and says "Rape me instead." I don't have much to say about this plot point except that it's pretty horrendous. I'll just move on...

What else is happening? Oh yeah, the Palmer marriage is disintegrating before my eyes! Every time these two formerly happy people talk, you see the anger, distrust and resentment boil to a higher level. And then Keith shows up and tells his dad to take a screw for not obstructing justice like the rest of the family. Damn, I really want someone to shoot that fat moron in the face. Sorry. It was a long day at the office.

And then the most incredible thing happens. We see Jack Bauer sleep! Talking to the waitress, Jack just nods off, recounting his days doing fieldwork for the CIA, about how he's scared out of his mind. This all makes Jack kinda sleepy!  I got a confession to make right now- I cannot go to sleep without watching the Military History Channel. I've been watching it almost daily now for the last year. It's the same stuff every night- World War II documentaries. R. Lee Ermey screaming about mail.  I don't know why, but I find great comfort in this stuff. War. What is it good for? A good night's sleep, that's what. And Jack, reminiscing about his days knocking over third-world dictators makes him nod off peacefully too. Strange, I know!

Anyway-- we arrive at the moment of truth- the culmination of all the trust-building exercises Jack and the waitress have gone through (remember "I'm not going to shoot you" and "I'm going to shoot you!"). Jack needs the waitress to walk outside and bring the car to him so he can escape, even as the Secret Service arrive (Henchman 21 in the lead!). The waitress agrees to help and no less than a minute later she's outside, pointing to Jack and telling the Secret Service "That guy you're looking for is in there!" DAMMIT!  Jack has to do another one of his jumping/running things and he gets to the car himself (no help needed!). Yet again, the Secret Service are left in the dust!

At CTU, Nina and Tony talk to Jamey about her lack of options moving forward. They also tell her "we're bringing your son in to see you in handcuffs." Nice move, guys. Jamey asks for a few minutes alone to slash her wrists and Tony and Nina leave her unattended. A few minutes later they come back to see how she's doing and sure enough. she slashed her wrists! Ooops, that's how you close off your best lead in an investigation. And just then, Ira Gaines calls. Jamey can't answer your call at this time, please try back again when she has blood in her veins.

Wow.  The Teri Bauer rape thing aside, this was a really strong episode. I liked a lot of the plot development and I think Jack's own deep-seeded problems as a human being begin to show up. It's one thing to be a man on the run, but Jack is a downright crazy person. I also got a kick out of Simes- all business, Old Spice and pressed shirts. This is the kind of guy you hire to take care of things. Tony got rehabilitated as a character too-- it's funny how you adopt the attitude of your hero when it comes to surrounding characters. When Jack hates Tony, I hate Tony. When Jack doesn't hate Tony, I don't mind the guy either. But nothing will top the nuttiness of the waitress. That may not count as a Bauer romance, but it had all the peaks and valleys of a relationship with Jack-- and it ended pretty much like one too. Jack, always jumping and running... I love it.

67 comments:

Spencer said...

Great review! And while I agree that the rape of Teri was unneccesary, I think it just supports the fact that she's willing to do anything for her daughter, even if she's not a killing machine like Jack.

(Exiting Retro-verse)

I view Renee as the one for Jack, but am I the only Claudia fan around here?

(Re-entering Retro-verse)

Wow, I'm really starting to have some respect for Teri. I hope she and Jack make it out of this and have a happy ending.

Brittany said...

Teri Bauer is awesome. She is noble and self-sacrificing and I'm sorry if I'm the only one who sees this, but it makes up for any annoying whining. She is a GOOD PERSON.

(Although the way 24 abuses the horrendous subject of rape is another conversation in itself that we're not going to have...)

Don't worry Adam (wow, do I sound egotistical or what? ;) ), I'll be back some time with more constructive comments. Welcome back. :)

Spencer said...

@Brittany- I liked Teri. She was never one of my favorites, but I don't have to love someone to have much respect for them getting raped to save their daughter.

Oh, I'm saying the R word again.

Brittany said...

Hey, say it all you want, as long as you respect the severity of it and don't try to make a joke out of it. You wouldn't do that, though.
P.S. have a good day at school tomorrow! (Lol at the absurd combination of topics in this post.)
PEACE.

BauerLuver said...

YES! I'm SO happy that the retro-reviews are back on! The rain has come after the long desert drought! Yes, I know I have a problem. Marvelous episode analying, Adam (I feel like a broken record saying "great review" again). This was a good episode, and other than that other thing, really had a well-based plot. This IS personal. I pretty much agree with everything that's been said!

Spencer said...

@Brittany- God help me. Day 6 is coming, and I feel like I'm trying too hard to be nice and funny. Wish I could just be normal. No, no I don't. I want to stand out. But I don't want her to be with me because she has a husband. Wait, I do want her to be with me. What if her husband sucks. Wait, why should I assume that? God dammit why does she act so sweet and innocent?

Wait, what were we disscussing again?

Dietcoke said...

So glad you are back Adam. I missed your reviews. I loved this episode. The waitress scene was a classic, one of my favorite one-shot characters.

I loved that Jack fell asleep. We haven't seen that since.

@Spencer, I enjoyed Claudia but didn't see her and Jack together as a couple. That said, I think she was a better love interest for Jack than Renee, but heck, I think George would be a better love interest for Jack than Renee. ;-)

BauerLuver said...

I completely agree with the Renee thing, Dietcoke! Another thing I liked about this episode is that Tony seems more of a good guy then a coffee-drinking, Cubs-supporting, suspicious moley mole.

Brittany said...

Hah - Spencer, I totally thought you were talking about Day 6 of the show. I'll email you later.

P.S. *exiting retroverse* Man, I don't know what you guys are smoking. Renee rocks hardcore. She + Jack = BAMFy awesomeness. You crazy kooks. *re-entering retroverse* :)

And oh, Tony, with his Cubs mug. *nostalgia*

P.S. Does anybody else imagine hearing a *pop* sound when people exit and re-enter the retroverse? It sounds like pop-up video in my brain.

Alex Getts said...

@Brittany - Ha, ha, ha! I've not seen "Pop-Up Video" in years!

But that would be a GREAT way to keep 24 going! "24: Pop-Up Video" edition! There could be little facts, references to the times, and running Jack/overall kill counts! We all need to pitch this to FOX, and reap the millions together. :)

Brittany said...

And these are some reasons I liked (or questions I had about) your most recent review:

so please take off these damn cuffs and let me return to my loose-cannon ways. Heee. I just really like this sentence. :)

I honestly wasn't paying attention-- Nina Meyers was stripping down and putting on fresh clothes... yeah. -- So seriously: you boys think Nina is hot? A few weeks ago one of y’all called her a “babe.” Is this really what guys think? Because I always thought she was skinny and had boy hair. *is confused*

Jack calls Nina's cell, just on a lark in case she's alive, and sure enough she picks up the phone! A pretty funny conversation ensues where Jack says "Holy shit, I'm so happy I didn't kill you when I shot you." This makes me very happy and amused. :) :) :)

"You know I don't always follow protocol but I'm a man of my word." That's Jack in a nutshell- it's reassuring to be able to summarize a hero in 15 words or less. Yeah, maybe so, but have you stopped to consider all the times he BREAKS his word when he promises people their safety and they wind up dead?

If you're interested, let's add bi-polar disorder to Jack's psychiatric profile. Why, yes I am. How’d you know? Thanks for filling us in.

Speaking of breakfast, Palmer throws down a scotch. That's the breakfast of champions. Why does this make me feel warm and sunshiny on the inside? Idk why, but I’m not even kidding. I’m literally picturing sunshine bouncing off a window ledge as a whole day full of possibility awaits.

and sure enough... -and- Jamey can't answer your call at this time, please try back again when she has blood in her veins. Omg. Holy cow. I can’t believe you just said this. Did you just say this? Oh my... Funny, but... Ouch. I didn’t realize the rape and the wrist-slitting were in the same episode. I feel like I need a teddy bear and a warm glass of milk to comfort me and make these scary plot developments go away.

Jack's own deep-seeded problems... Huh. That’s funny, I always thought it was “deep seated.”

but Jack is a downright crazy person *little red hearts*

it's funny how you adopt the attitude of your hero when it comes to surrounding characters. When Jack hates Tony, I hate Tony. When Jack doesn't hate Tony, I don't mind the guy either. This is a very poignant and insightful observation.

And @Alex – that would be fairly awesome! I’m especially curious about the running killcount total. Trying to track that’d be bound to blow some circuits. Okay, so...I put the “pop-up” idea out there, Alex devised the plan, now someone needs to call FOX.

;) :)

Spencer said...

@Brittany- How do you know I WASN'T talking about season 6?

@Alex, and, ah hell, everyone else;

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=08uJanZEeMo

BauerLuver said...

@Brittany- I get your point about Teri Bauer. She's not perfect, and can be a tad bit whiny and difficult, but she IS a good person. While I think that scene was a little over-the-top and unnessecary (you know which one) I do agree that it makes a point about her, and how much she loves Kim.

Adam said...

I stand corrected- it's DEEP-SEATED! Thank you, Brittany.

As for Nina- what can I say, she's a strong woman, smart and an interesting character. So, yeah, she's garnering male attention. I'm not the only one, am I? Am I?!?

@The Gang- thanks for your comments so far. I'm back on schedule, and maybe... just maybe, I'll have another retro review before Monday. Hmmm...

Adam said...

As for Jamey's suicide attempt, I didn't mean to make light of it, I was making fun of Tony and Nina walking away for several minutes, being completely incompetent in handling this key source of intelligence in Jamey. It's really absurd that they left her alone. The writers were being very lazy.

Brittany said...

@Spencer re: the link - Wow. Jack Bauer is so cool.

@BL - you're right - means to the end aside, the show has proven to us that Teri not only possesses fierce parental love and protective instincts, (and displays this through anxious hysterics), but is capable of taking action of her own volition to protect her daughter. The nerves and hysterics are nothing like Jack, but the taking action where necessary part is. For that she earns my respect.

@Adam - hah, I didn't realize I was correcting you. I assumed you were right. And thanks for the Nina explanation - I seriously was like "huh???" when you guys first started talking about her like that.
And 24 writers? Being lazy? No... ;) :) (It's alright; I probably shouldn't've said anything, but I appreciate this explanation too. Thank you.)

Spencer said...

@Brittany, the way I see it, the more that something is about a 24 woman (It can range from a youtube vid to an episode to a forum topic), the more people talk about how hot she is.

I think Nina's hot, so I don't have much of problem with Adam here pointing it out. It helps that her legs get more screentime than Jack Bauer in this season.

I still can't say that I'm attracted to Teri, which is sad because she's red....hehe.

Dietcoke said...

@Adam, I agree that Nina was a strong, smart interesting female character and as a woman, I liked her character too. Heck, before she went bad I wanted Teri to either leave Jack or die so he could hook up with Nina.

Brittany said...

Hm. See, I knew all along what the outcome was going to be, so I think I went into the whole thing biased against Nina. I never had the joy/privilege/blank canvas of honestly believing her for a second. Meh.

Interesting how we can all have so many varying perspectives. I think so, anyway.

Dietcoke said...

@BauerLuver Tony is becoming more likeable at this point in the show. He's gone from being the probable mole to just maybe, an okay guy.

I really changed my mind about Tony when he was asked by Chappelle to give an assessment of Jack's actions. He could have trashed Jack (he admitted that he didn't like his management style and we know he was jealous of his relationship with Nina) but instead told Chappelle that Jack made the right decisions through out the day.

Dietcoke said...

@Brittnay How did you know the outcome with Nina? Did you start watching the show midseries?

Brittany said...

(@Dietcoke-) Yyyep. May 2, 2005. It was near the end of the 4th season. Then I backtracked.

BauerLuver said...

@Brittany- Wow, I didn't start watching till the sixth season. I'll never forget being on the computer and hearing my brother come down and say, "Come see this show! There's this really cool guys who fights these terrorists and the writing is all digital and there's a clock, and the ending to every episode is exciting, and a NUKE just went off!"

@Adam- I would be the happiest person on God's green earth if there was another review before Monday! But take your time, of course!

Alex Getts said...

"As for Jamey's suicide attempt, I didn't mean to make light of it, I was making fun of Tony and Nina walking away for several minutes, being completely incompetent in handling this key source of intelligence in Jamey. It's really absurd that they left her alone. The writers were being very lazy."

I think that this laziness doesn't compare to later laziness, though. Granted, laziness is laziness, but I'd prefer this brand.

BauerLuver said...

Wow I'm kinda surprised that Nina is actually considered attractive by you guys ( I will say that she looks nice in a few shots.) But do you guys think she's the hottest 24 chick?

Spencer said...

@BauerLuver- No, man! Maybe the hottest woman in this season, though. Of course, I'm just speaking for myself.

Dr. Alice said...

I thought this was a very strong episode. The bit about Teri sacrificing herself for her kid (so to speak), yes, I totally got that. Ick, but I agree with you, Adam, not much else to say. And the Jack/waitress scene, I LOVED that. Jack falling asleep, looking human! Who'd've thunk! And I love the idea of an ordinary citizen with their own problems caught up in the whirlwind of jack's existence. I have not seen that done nearly so well in seasons 5-8 (have not yet seen seasons 2-4).

Spencer said...

Dr.Alice- Wow, those are like, THE Michelle seasons.

That's something to look forward to.

Alex Getts said...

Ah, Micelle Dessler. Good times right there.

Adam said...

Spencer- let's try and do better, my friend.

Spencer said...

You DELETED MY COMMENT!? L-O-L.

Spencer said...

Wow, I can't believe she's actually 45. Not bad, for that age.

Spencer said...

People, the Jack Sack thinks he can take EVERYTHING AWAY FROM US! There's no way to stop him, but WHAT DID YOU ALL DO? YOU RAN AWAY! THAT'S RIGHT, YOU RAN AWAY!

Adam said...

Come on, you're not even close to being banned. I just deleted one comment because I found it unwelcome. You're welcome as always, but try and use discretion with certain subjects is all I ask. Thank you, sir.

Spencer said...

I'm going to create my own blog about how hot Janis is. One day, you won't be able to run away from the truth.

BauerLuver said...

Wait, what happened? Was somebody banned?

Spencer said...

No, but I'm begining to wonder if Adam's actually SERIOUS about this. Surely not.

BauerLuver said...

About what?

Adam said...

Spencer- I don't care that you find Janis hot- I just wasn't keen on the way you stated it. But by all means, continue to talk about Janis' appeal, without mentioning what you'd do to her corpse, deal?

Spencer said...

I said I'd...well, I don't know if I can say it now. But I keep hearing people talk about how ugly Janis is, so I said I'd screw her until she was dead, except I didn't say screw. Adam deleting that comment, and I figured that it was out of some sort of absolute hatred of her, so I was like, going mad and quoting Tony and all that.

BauerLuver said...

Wait, what did Spencer say?!? Oh wait, I have an idea. Let me wash it from my mind. Thank you Adam.

BauerLuver said...

That is really disgusting, and I am really trying not to picture it. Good move Adam.

Spencer said...

Aw, come on! It's just a way of saying it. I'm not a necrophile.

But, fair enough.

Adam said...

Spencer- let's try a new approach: Tell us what you'd do to woo Janis. Would you talk tech-shop with her? Would you buy her all things purple? Would you hold a boombox over your head outside her bedroom window? Get creative, man!

BauerLuver said...

Haha! Yeah that's better than saying stuff that would be considered by the majority of the population to be offensive. If I were trying to woo Janis, which I'm not, I would diss Chloe a lot!

Spencer said...

Offensive?! Let's calm down and consider what I had said and how obvious it was that I just meant that I thought she was hot, BEFORE calling the police, here. You guys are making me feel like I bombed a state.

But the first thing I'd do is cover my body with tatoos, cover my house with PICTURES of tatoos, and then make a movie about tatoos. That'd get her to want to get in bed with me.

Spencer said...

Hey Adam, seriously, I'm sorry, alright?

I'm one of those people who views almost everything as a harmless joke, but I should know better than to go this far, and I know the F word isn't everyone's favorite word on here.

Adam said...

Apology accepted, I never got pissed off at you, I deleted your post as to not allow anyone else to get offended. I'm happy to put this whole thing behind us.

Brittany said...

SOOO, what's next? A weekend full of down time, movies, and more 24? Or big plans and a 24 break? Anything notable going on in the sporting world lately? And how about that oil cap. You know, blueberry season's just about over....
:)

Brittany said...

And also. Back to the Seasons 2-4 being "THE Michelle seasons." Yes, she was a good character (*random tear for absolutely no spoilery reason whatsoever*). I want to say more about the journey through certain seasons, but alas, for avoidance of spoilery spoilers, I refrain. (I wish this site facilitated cuts within comments. That'd be sweet!) But let's get back together in 2 years, once TJS has caught up, and then we can chat! :)

Spencer said...

Two whole years? But we'll be old and have canes and all that!

Brittany said...

And liver spots. ;) But more importantly, by then we'd all be caught up and thus free to talk about all things 24 without worrying about spoilery spoilers.
:)

Brittany said...

P.S. @BauerLuver - If I were trying to woo Janis, which I'm not, I would diss Chloe a lot! Hehe. This makes me giggle a little. Great character insight. :) I think there was an entry in TJS's "Dear Chloe" advice column last year that expressed a similar sentiment. I'd recommend browsing through the past few years of TJS for its varied features such as the "Dear Chloe," motivational posters (I kid you not), story books (where pictures from the show are given totally different captions), and even a story where the 24 gang goes to the DMV. Fun stuff. :)

Spencer said...

Oh, I already have liver spots.

Alex Getts said...

@Brittany - Oh, yeah! The DMV one was GREAT!

BauerLuver said...

Yay! New episode tonight! I can't wait to finally see what happens...

Spencer said...

Tony's the bad guy.

BauerLuver said...

What? How can you say that after he helped Nina? I won't rule him out, but I don't suspect him half as much.

Spencer said...

Oh please, that doesn't mean much to me. A guy wants money....then he wants sex.

It's just like Who Shot Mr.Burns. I was the only person who thought it was Maggie.

BauerLuver said...

I don't really get that. What does money and sex have to do with anything?

Brittany said...

@BL - nothing. He's a teenage boy. Don't listen to him.
;) :)

BauerLuver said...

Thanks Brittany :)

Brittany said...

Any time. :)

Spencer said...

Oh great, now I'm being categoried because I'm a teenager.

First, it was a joke. Second, I was saying that he wanted money and sex because while he might be evil, he might still want to bang Nina.

BauerLuver said...

Ok, I get the point.

Spencer said...

lol, sorry. I know I should be more polite about these things. By tommorrow, I'll probably be posting links to porn.

Actually, I kinda feel sorry for girls. How many actors that tons of women like are there that do porn? Wait, here I go again.

BauerLuver said...

It's ok, but yeah , you are starting again!

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