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'24: Live Another Day' premiere recap, The return of Jack Bauer

Central Intelligence AgencyTheftJustice SystemBenjamin BrattParliamentFox Broadcasting Company

In a dark, ominous, very “24” way, we open to see a new set of fresh operatives targeting an unidentified, but highly sought after suspect. Using new school tricks and gizmos, the team is able to capture the infamous “traitor” Jack Bauer ... albeit, a little too easily.

We soon learn, unsurprisingly, Jack has freakish EKG stats -- so obviously Steve Navarro with his Benjamin Bratt hair won’t be able to get anything out of him in interrogation. Instead, he tries to charm him, trying to convince him that telling the truth will be what’s best for everybody. Jack doesn’t talk.

We’ve all waited this long, and we get no dialogue from the greatest hero in network television? And why would the greatest special agent in CTU history allow himself to be captured so easily? There has to be something more to this.

And wait ... what? CHLOE?!?!?

11:24:26

JB Kill Count: 0

Total words spoken:0

We’re running out of time: 0

You’re going to have to trust me: 0

Again, in a very “24” manner, we see the decision makers -- the President, his chief of staff, etc. -- beginning to get the details so they can begin to make ignorant decisions as they sit on high. The nerve of these people, to really think they can contain Jack Bauer and continue to live their quiet, terrorist-free lives? Sheep.

Of course, the agents nobody trust (Agent Kate Morgan) figures out what really happened. Jack must have allowed himself to get caught. When the truth is brought up in interrogation, all of a sudden Bauer has a pulse. Hooray, a clue! Now it’s time to sit in our thinking chair and think, think, think, right?

Wrong. We’re going to ignore the only agent who knows what she’s talking about and stick to protocol. And of course, ignoring this will put everybody in danger. Stupid bureaucrats.

11:36:35

JB Kill Count: 0

Total words spoken:0

Hearbeats: 1 that we know of

Jack gets handcuffed and everybody’s safe, right? Wrong. Remember the now-dismissed Agent Morgan? She “Jack Bauer-ed” the security guard escorting her out and tries to hunt Bauer down again.

Agent Erik Ritter, played by Gbenga Akinnagbe of “Save the Last Dance” fame, is a fan of Bauer’s. But I don’t think Sutherland liked his rendition of Othello, so Ritter’s compliments turn backhanded, reminding Jack that he was good, “back in his day.”

So it seems Jack may have made a deal with the devil, or at least a band of eastern europeans, to try and get Chloe out. He presses some secret button his sleeve and manages to get away, beating up everybody in the frame. As much as we’re excited that Jack is back in fighting shape, remember these secret buttons.

Jack finds his former colleague and friend hooked up to an IV full of something unimaginable and the struggle is oh so real. This is the part where they usually pull out a big adrenaline needle, in 3 ... 2 ... 1 … 

Agent Morgan soon pieces the puzzle together, finds Jack’s trail of beaten victims and issues a Level 5 lockdown -- I’m not sure what that is but it sounds impressive.

Jack busts open a gas line, and with a few pulls of the trigger sets off our first explosion of the season. Still no casualties, but we’re finally getting some action. Agent Mrogan gets to Jack just in the nick of time ... or does she? Jack’s endless supply of special buttons triggers his accomplices to blow a hole through the roof, literally, as Jack & Co. escape in some random tradesman’s van. Typical Bauer.

11:48:53

JB Kill Count: 0

Explosions: 2

Lives saved: At least 1

So the president is losing his memory in the middle of very important diplomatic affairs. So what if it’s progressing more rapidly than his doctors expected? It’s OK, Jed Bartlet had MS but was still the greatest fictional president of ALL TIME. (With David Palmer as a close second.)

We now know Agent Morgan is the passionate one and Agent Ritter is the proud one. Despite her estranged husband’s treasonous acts, Morgan is to be reinstated to the CIA for being the only agent to remain within a step or two of Jack. Just think about how bad this will look for Benjamin Bratt if this incident doesn’t get contained. It looks like we have an old fashioned “Put me in coach, I’m ready to play.” 

Jack gives Chloe a set of very complex instructions and ultimately tells her to go somewhere she feels safe, but she’s totally stoned from whatever was in the IV. She’s going to be OK, right? We hope so. But it doesn’t seem like Jack and Chloe are on the best terms. 

Cut to a drone operator in Afghanistan. Wait, the use of drones? On Fox? News Corp will not like this!

Of course something goes wrong. Of course the technology has a mind of its own and targets friendly forces. (I imagine this will happen in real life when Skynet becomes self-aware.) 

But when the drone operator calls in his warning, commanding officers would rather argue with him than get to safety. Another explosion and we lead to our tri-frame of foreshadowing. Angry crowds gather in London, the President is alone with his thoughts in his motorcade and a shared frame by Katie Morgan and Benjamin Bratt. 

Some bad guy notifies another bad “it’s done.” What’s done?

12:00:00 P.M. 

There’s fallout from the previous hour. Agent Morgan is tracking down Chloe, but Agent Rittler is mad because his promotion is pretty much down the drain as long as Morgan is doing her job.

Some den of thieves receives Choloe back with open arms. These guys are straight out of CBGB’s. Turns out they were hacking the planet and Jack storms in ready to put an end to all of this. Chloe’s friends are some pretty hardcore dudes, Jack is finally yelling again.

Turns out one of Chloe’s hacker friends, Derek Yates, may be behind an assassination attempt on the president. Chloe agrees to help, but first Jack has to beat the crap out of their ring leader.

Chloe is awaken and springs back into her role as the most awkward defense analyst in the world...well, at least this world. She’s a bit upset at Jack’s lack of value in their friendship. A real friend would’ve asked if she was associated with a bunch of degenerates after breaking her out of a CIA compound.

I'm starting to suspect this mystery man may be our Derek Yates. And it seems he has a girlfriend, a very distracting girlfriend, who he’s trying to hide from his unknown employer. His boss seems concerned about his distraction level.

12:10:12

So you’re saying somebody else operated your drone and killed four soldiers, including your commanding officer? And somebody’s setting you up with inflammatory messages “you” wrote about said commanding officer? And somebody fabricated “your” keystrokes showing your unit ordered the drone strike? A likely story.

More diplomatic butt-kissing, that is until we’ve discovered the drone strike killed both American and Brits. It’s important that the prime minister hear this from the president ... until the British military gets to him first.

With the stakes raised, the CIA has two options. Catch Jack, or get fired.

Chloe questions Jack’s tattoos and associates. Jack asks her to get back to work. Chloe continues to pry, trying to figure out why Jack wants to help the same system that made them outcasts.

Chloe gives a “Down with establishment” rant about the the CIA and brushes off Jack’s desire to make good with the President after what his past actions did to the first family, namely Audrey Heller -- first daughter and the wife of Heller’s chief of staff Mark Boudreau.

Chloe’s band of misfit toys finds out about the drone strike, and figure out Yates is behind it all. They agree to help Jack find Yates if it means getting him off their backs.

12:24:01

What’s the best way to show British parliament you’re sorry? Violating your own diplomatic policy by handing over your own soldier to another country’s military. All I know is that I so badly want to see a scene in British Parliament. (RABBLE! Rable, Rable, Rable!) But it turns out the president’s inner circle is concerned about his recent mental slip ups.

Yates lays out his perfect retirement plan to his girlfriend: Blow up U.S. and British troops, blame it all on the Americans, and then escape to Greenland. Standard bad guy plans.

Meanwhile, at the CIA, the Justice Friends are finally pulling together to track down Chloe’s underground group of hackers. But Bauer and Chloe are already en route to take out Yates. Bauer heads into the building alone as Chloe gets in the back of the van. This is all coming together just as we remembered. The band is back! 

12:34:34

While preparing to handover Lieutenant Tanner, the president rehearses his speech in a mock trial of sorts with his inner circle giving him the business to prepare him for a hostile and hilarious house of wigs. And while he’s on a roll, he slips up forgetting that there were four soldiers involved in the incident — a mistake that does not go unpunished by Boudreau.

Jack is sneaking into a building, Chloe is covering his tail -- just like old times. He’s whispering in his scratchy tone, she’s taking out security cameras. #Nostalgia.

Jack makes it into the building, grabs a hostage and engages in heated negotiations with a large man named Basher. After explaining to Basher that he has a very impressive set of skills, a round of gunfire erupts. Bad guy kills hostage, and Jack kills our first bad guy of the season. USA, USA, USA.

After watching Bauer kill his entire security force (minus the hostage killed in friendly fired), Yates grabs his girlfriend and bolts. But he forgets his hard drive -- that was convenient. Stupid international cyberterrorists.

Chloe’s hacker friends alert her that the CIA is heading her way. She has to decide: Jack or Freedom. The CIA approaches the unmarked van with Chloe gone and the computer nearly destroyed. Yates walks right through the CIA search party unnoticed, even gives them a tip about Jack’s whereabouts, as Bauer rushes out the building to guns drawn.

“You’re going to have to trust me!” Stop that couple, they’re the bad guys! Nobody listens. Basher shoots Jack from afar and Yates gets away. Silly CIA

12:48:55

Jack tells Morgan she’s chasing the wrong guy, her innocent eyes eem to trust her, but she brought CIA friends. Jack headbutts her and gets away in a stolen car with Chloe. Yay, she got off the plane.

Yate’s hardrive shows a program that can control up to 10 drones, but before Chloe can work with it -- her hard drive gets scrambled. Windows 7 upgrade?

Tri-frame of forshadowing = Jack and Chloe. Agent Morgan. President Heller & Co.

Yates and ladyfriend wait in a pub. Yates spews conspiracy theories that his buyer is responsible for the bounty on his head. A quick trip to the men’s room and we discover Yate’s girlfriend has actually been sent by the buyer to kill him. She removes her wig and calls her employer -- Catelynn Stark? She’s pleased with her minion’s work.

1:00:00 P.M.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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Central Intelligence AgencyTheftJustice SystemBenjamin BrattParliamentFox Broadcasting Company
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