Saturday, July 19, 2014

24: Live Another Day - some issues I had with it.

SPOILERS: If you haven't seen the season yet, DO NOT read this.

So anyway, even though I did like 24: Live Another Day: There were certain problems I had with this new mini-season. In my opinion most of these problems could probably have been avoided had the writing been slightly better.

The first big problem I had - and many others had a problem with it too - was when President Heller survived the attack that he was supposed to have died in. This really didn't make much sense. It felt gimmicky and convoluted. 

Before that the audience had seen stuff that was totally entertaining. Jack and co. being chased by drones in the middle of London was easily the the best thing that we saw on tv this season. It wasn't even close in my opinion - this was gold.

I really liked the drone strikes storyline this season. There was a clear moral dilemma. If the terrorists can hijack a drone, don't they have every right to use them as well? After all, there's no honor in using drones as weapons.

Why President Heller surviving didn't work was because everything leading up to this moment had not only been entertaining but also - if not completely believable - at least relatively plausible.  The subject matter was relevant and the character development was pretty good too.

Margot Al-Harazi was a pretty interesting villain and her terms for stopping the attacks were pretty fair too. Just give the president of the United States who ordered the killing of her husband and she would let go off the drones. 

I found it very disappointing when the audience didn't get what it "wanted". Since it was revealed that President Heller suffered from Alzheimer's disease, sacrificing himself in order to save thousands didn't seem like a bad idea. Too bad this cathartic moment never happened.  

Nevertheless, things got worse this season when Mark Boudreau,  the White House Chief of Staff decided to sell out Bauer for the Russians - again. I didn't like this turn of events at all. Even though he started as the token bad guy, the audience started to like him as the episodes went on.

That he acted like a total coward didn't really make sense.  It's as if the writers forgot his character arc and decided to cop out. Clearly there were other options available that would have served the story better than how things eventually went.

There were some other obvious problems too. Benjamin Bratt's character turning out to be the villain didn't seem right. The token 'mole' in the headquarters had been played out so the writers probably shouldn't have taken that route.

I also didn't like how everything was so connected. That Michael Wincott's 'resistance' character was connected to the Chinese and how the Russians were connected to everyone - including being able to get information about that forged signature in the White House.

Of course probably the worst part of this season was Audrey's death. Not that I really cared about her character - or anyone else did for that matter - but her death was pretty much straight out of a Monty Python comedy. How can you fail at securing that place - twice in a row?

Other than that I am not someone who necessarily wishes to see happy endings all the time. Nevertheless, the ending of Live Another Day was just too depressing even for me. It wasn't really derived from what had happened during this season.

A lot more than that it was a compilation of what had already happened during the earlier seasons - awful things happening to everyone. In all honesty they should have given at least Boudreau some kind of a happy ending. After all, he did lose his wife too.

Since it turned out that Jack turned himself over to the Russians, the story obviously isn't finished yet. This of course means that we're almost certainly going to get another season of 24 at some point in the future.

In the end, this season had a lot of great things going for it. Unfortunately the last third of the series turned out to be pretty disappointing. Hopefully the final upcoming season will set things right for Jack. That might not happen, but I guess you never know. 

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