Tuesday, April 05, 2005

24 - 4x16 "10:00 P.M.-11:00 P.M."

Interesting thing that Dead Prez said: "This is one of the most traumatic days in the history of this country." Not coincidentally, this is one of the most torture-filled days in the history of this series. Knowing now that the producers are tilting 24 towards the right, Keeler's comment might be intended as a justification for the torture. (For the record, I haven't been bothered by it, though I've heard of stories about people giving up on the season because Jack broke one too many lamps.)

Another ideologically uncomfortable moment came when Jack was trying to reason with Mitch Anderson right before the latter shot down Air Force 1. Compare this scene with the big shootout at Marwan's Haunted Warehouse, where CTU went in guns ablazing -- that is to say, Jack et al didn't give the (Iranian?) terrorists a chance to be reasoned with (i.e. if they kept them alive, then they could do some more of their favorite thing TORTURE! For to get intel on the Marwan!), although I recognize the different situations that the terrorists and Captain "Crunch" Anderson were in. And the other time (that I can recall) where CTU was about to put the pinch on a baddy was when they were closing in on Dina Araz. They were a lot more aggressive in dealing with her, though probably because, unlike Cap'n Crunch who had a missile lock on AF1, she only had a gun to her own head. (Nevertheless, if you can think of any more examples for or against my little thesis here, add it to the comments section.) The point remains, however, that the white guy got the opportunity for a second chance, brown guys didn't.

Brow-beating leftism done!

As far as 24's disaster episodes go, not nearly as good as the one from season 2. Kid Keeler was laughable, and there was a medium shot of Keeler just before AF1 was shot down that expresses the exponentially claustrophobic doom that he's facing -- all a cinematic and cool like, see? It's like they got Michael Mann to guest direct this episode, just look at how badass he is here (as opposed to his usual sack of boring) -- but then the camera pans to show Kid Keeler looking like he's waiting for his au pair to pick him up after school. The very presence of Junior was rushed and under-written that baldly served two purposes: to make us feel for Dead Prez before he bit it, and to give Prez an all but inert sounding board off of which to bounce trite and lukewarm sentiments about responsibility and whatnot.

And a great exchange between our former CTU lovebirds-cum-Power Whisperers, Tony and Michelle:
T: Did you sleep with him while we were married?
M: [flustered] No... I didn't.
T: But you are now.
M: Like I said, it's none of your business.
[stalks off to find someone with less backbone whom she can walk all over]
She's ostensibly in charge, but her authority has been undermined almost every episode so far. Aside from the normal "Jack disobeys direct orders to follow his own instincts" that every CTU head is subjected to, Michelle, who was brought in as the newly minted head of CTU, then has Sugar Daddy from Division come in and displace her as the new top bitchdog, and now she has Tony busting her figurative balls about when she was sleeping with whom. Which, come to think of it, is the return of ideology -- can't a girl catch a break?

Who cares about the chauvinistic construction of gender when we have Sexy Terrorist! But I swear she had a (British?) accent, which should've tipped off Jack. Perhaps he was like me, distracted by how much the sexiness it made for her. And speaking of lady G-men, Agent Drake looked a lot (from behind, anyway) Teri "I Didn't See An Exit Wound" Bauer. One way or another though, SHORTY HAIR!! Better foxiness content than lately!

And to end on an unambiguously happy note, Chloe appreciation!
Jack: Chloe?
Chloe: Yeah, it's me, Michelle brought me back in.
Jack: Good. That's the smartest thing she's done all day... Chloe, I'm glad to have you back.
Yay Chloe!

Indie rating: Explosions in the Sky - "Greet Death"
Oh I'm going to Hell for that one...

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