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24 Fodder

24: Gripe City: What's Wrong with Day 5

Jack BauerLook -- I'm not defecting from the show. I would (probably) never do that, since I really do enjoy the show, the acting is always top-notch, and the people behind 24 have done some things that no other show would ever do, which is pretty ballsy.

Nevertheless, I've got to list some of my gripes with this season, so bear with me. But I want to hear what you are griping about too...

  • Shock for the sake of shock. Tony's dead! Audrey is behind it! No, it's Logan! The problem that has happened is that the writers, I assume, think viewers won't be happy without major "surprises" and twists and turns. Sure, we love twists ... but there's no reason to do things that just don't make sense or leave gaping plot holes just for the sake of doing them. Which leads to the next gripe...
  • Ending every hour with a "surprise" moment. Jack's dead? Tony gets stabbed! Logan's the real bad guy! They have to find that medium ground between the episodes where all the action happens and the filler eps. And it's unnecessary to have 40 minutes of build up and 4 minutes of action.
  • Curtis. What the hell does this guy do besides take orders from Jack? In the past few hours, he's had about 4 lines. ("Sure thing, Jack." "Sounds good, Jack.") Give him something to do, or at least a skeezy sister who dates guys who sell keycards to terrorists.
  • Jack works for CTU, but he doesn't work for CTU. He can give authority for Audrey to be taken into custody, but he can do whatever the hell he wants outside of the boundaries of CTU, like give up the NSA Wet list. Best example of this comes from last season (day 4) when he "resigns" from CTU to go beat up Marwan's buddy on the boat Joe Prado, then comes back to work for CTU ... despite never actually working for CTU (being with the Dept. of Defense).
  • Real-time stretches. In the past, when the stretches weren't totally ridiculous -- such as driving through LA on empty roads, at any time of day -- I've been willing to let them go, but come on. The worst offender here is the time between an episode ending and the next one starting. Tony dies, two minutes later the medical crew (which, remember, was not on site because of the nerve gas attack) is wheeling his body away. The gas tanks explode, two minutes later all the fire engines are there. Jack gets from the airport back to CTU in 5 minutes.
  • Endless exposition. Mostly at the beginning of the hours recapping everything that has happened for those viewers who don't watch every week. Read the recaps, folks!
  • Story-of-the-hour. There haven't been as many of them this year, but just to name a few: Rossler. The mall. The hospital.
  • Tony. Honestly, the most pointless plotline of the season. May as well have just killed him with Michelle. It's not like he did anything else this season, beside get two starring credits in episodes where he did nothing. Love the character, can't believed that's how they treated him.
  • The nerve gas plotline. I never quite understood the urgency in this plotline. Sure, it makes sense that CTU etc. would want to try and get the gas and the baddies before too long, but if the original plan wasn't to use the nerve gas in LA, then why rush to use it ASAP? Wouldn't it make more sense to go into hiding and plan out some massive attack later? Not that I'm advocating it, but these guys aren't supposed to be that stupid. I guess the baddies could be trying to catch everyone off guard, but ... I don't buy it.

There are quite a few things I'm happy with this season, such as...

  • Edgar's death. Loved the character, hated to see him go, but it was done amazingly.
  • Bill Buchanan. Great character, great acting and development.
  • Wayne Palmer. Awesome to have him back.
  • Aaron. Finally giving him some sort of story and some real kick-ass situations.
  • The Logans. Martha is a great character, and Jean Smart portrays her beautifully. I've always liked Pres. Logan, even if we're not supposed to like him.
  • Shout-outs to previous years. Kim came back, and Jack and Henderson talk about Nina and George Mason.
  • Jack. No explanation necessary.

Am I right? Am I wrong? What are you guys griping about? -- Jason Unger


Posted by Jason on April 4, 2006 1:38 PM
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Your right on most of them, especcially shock for shocks sake, although some have been more worthy than others, and it's hard to tell which ones are worthy and which ones aren't until the day's over.

I'd be all for beefing up Curtis' character, but he's already had his skeleton in his closet storyline last year, do we really want him chasing a cougar?

The endless exposition for the people who can't keep up has been a problem since day three.

They did treat Tony badly, but I still think that was better than having him die at the beginning of the series, though obviously it would have been better if he'd been given more time.

I think that the reason for urgency on the part of the terrorists to use the nerve gas was that they knew CTU and the other authorities were on to them, and they wouldn't be able to get out of the country, so it was use it soon, or be caught before they could. I think.

Everything else i'm with you on.

-- Posted by: Daniel Hardy at April 4, 2006 4:02 PM

So what's the plot line now since there is currently no immediate danger? For the rest of the day are we just going to watch them try to prove it was Logan behind it all? It'll be interesting to see how they play out the rest of the season.

I wish Kim had stayed longer. And I think Audrey and Henderson recovered from their torture sessions way too quickly and easily. One more gripe... how many times can they use the 'Jack is working behind CTU's back with secret help from Chloe' storyline?

Oh well, still love and am addicted to the show. Even if Jack is Mr. Invincible.

-- Posted by: JoePike at April 5, 2006 9:03 AM

I totally agree about the shock for the sake of shock, especially with Tony's death. I am still angry about how they just pushed him aside and bungled his storyline. I don't mind that they killed him off but he should have died a hero at the end of the season after playing a role in helping to stop the terrorists.

I disagree about the Audrey twist...I actually thought that was pretty well done, because while I was pretty sure it was a tease I wasn't sure. She's pretty much my favorite character at this point, since most of my other favorite characters have been killed, and I found myself really nervous about what was going to happen with her.

I think that whatever the medical interrogation is, it's designed to inflict short term pain to get someone to talk, not to inflict lasting damage. Maybe how quickly they recovered was unrealistic but Henderson had to escape and Audrey probably wanted to get back to work as fast as possible.

This is a little shameless and I hope you don't consider it comment spam, but I wrote a fanfiction with a much better end for Tony...I wrote most of it before they killed him off but decided to keep going afterwards because I thought he deserved better. If you feel like reading it it's called "A Life Worth Living" and it's posted at my new fanfic site at http://www.24fanfiction.com/stories/life
(click my name for the link). I hope you don't mind me posting that here...just thought you might enjoy reading what a lot of people have said was how Tony should have died.

-- Posted by: AgentRez at April 16, 2006 11:50 PM

I definetly agree with you on the Jack works for CTU part. The only seasons where he actually was an agent at CTU were in seasons 1 and 3. In the other seasons, he just kinda walked in the place for 5 minutes and the next thing you know he's going out in the field. In season 5, everybody thought he was dead and then 3 hours after they found out he was alive, he was working with them at the airport. that just makes no sense.

-- Posted by: a person at September 11, 2006 5:07 PM

Man, finally I find criticism in season 5. It's sad that many people respect this season so much simply because they started watching it here. A lot of problems do crep into the show like the loss of real time.

-- Posted by: Agent Bauer at September 29, 2012 10:37 PM

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