THE 24 FANTASY LEAGUE ANALYSIS (Now with 2% more literary allusiveness!)
Before I get started on the analysis, I'll get to a reader letter first. (And by all means, feel free to email me!)
I'm being offered Martha Logan for McGill. Should I pull the trigger?
-Jacques Bower, Marseilles
Only if Chappelle's involved. The job of overseeing CTU has always been an unstable gig, especially if the guy (or gal, if you still remember Roberta Green) comes in from Division. So it's probably a good idea to deal the Hobbit sooner rather than later while his trade value is still high, though try to wait another episode or two to get as much production out of the him.
Jack Bauer - Jack owners had a field day with him in this episode. Not only did they reap his usual PI stats (Physical Intimidation) even while double- and triple-teamed by Diane, Derek and Audrey, but Jack also provided an unexpected bonus when he rocked his throwback Surrealist mojo. Solid!
Chloe O'Brian - Barely involved this week, plus getting one-upped by Edgar? No need to panic -- probably just a bump in the road.
Rudy Hobbit - Only marginally a starter now that Buchanan already talked down to him, sowing the seeds for a quarterback controversy. But even though he might not have the CTU staff's best stuff, McGill knows how to win, and you can't forget about that.
Ivan "Earwicker" Erwich - Mr. Yellow Tie Man started off slow, but he's building up his bodycount and evaded CTU's grasp -- all desirable qualities to look for in your medium- to long-term 24 villain.
Curtis Manning - There's always been one knock on Curtis -- he has a tendency to disappear sometimes.
Martha Logan - Now that it seems like her main part of the story is settled, a rumor is circulating that the notoriously streaky First Lady is asking to be traded to another administration. Martha being Martha?
Walt Cummings - He's fallen rapidly down the depth chart, but what should keep him from being a drop -- like Spenser -- is that 1) he's still alive, and 2) still has usefulness to Jack.
The Huxleys - End of the line for Family Aldous. They did very little but hamper Jack's free-wheeling, take-prisoners-only-to-torture-them style of play.
Aaron "Ambrose" Pierce - His most extensive action in... ever? And all he does is go along with more important characters? Leave him out on the wire.
Evelyn - Holding down Fort Hot-With-Ugly-Haircut till Kim reappears.
Next column: 1 p.m.
Previous column: 11 a.m.
Indie rating: Damon & Naomi, Tom Rapp - "I Shall Be Released"