24: Live Another Day Review by John Keegan

24: Live Another Day 9.09: Day 9: 7PM - 8PM

24: Live Another Day 9.09: Day 9: 7PM - 8PM

Written By:
Tony Basgallop, Sang Kyu Kim, Evan Katz, and Manny Coto
Directed By:
Milan Cheylov

There seems little doubt that the season has launched into the resolution phase of the story, as major plot elements are brought to an end and the final conflicts are further prepared.  I’m not sure why this required the efforts of four members of the writing staff, between the story and the screenplay, but it might explain why a certain ruse didn’t quite add up, and why Jack’s characterization takes a drastic relapse into the worst possible territory.


The season, up to this point, appeared to be making the case that Jack was choosing to limit his actions for the purpose of atoning for his murderous rampage at the end of the eighth season.  In other words, he understood that he had crossed the line, that he might never be able to atone for it, and yet he was making an effort.  He even had a pardon from Heller in his pocket.  So what possible reason would he have, at this point, to kill Margot in cold blood?


Tossing Ian out of the window was problematic enough, but at least in that case, it was in the middle of the operation to stop the terrorist attack that would kill hundreds, if not thousands, at the transit hub.  The objective hadn’t been accomplished, and Jack was forced to eliminate Margot’s henchmen in the process.  All well and good.  And I’ll even grant that Margot wasn’t the result of pre-meditated murder, like Jack’s victims at the end of the eighth season.  Yet, it’s still questionable, and the complete lack of follow-up in the episode suggests it was justified and even to be celebrated.


It’s hardly the only sin of the episode.  Heller’s survival is a bit of a cheat, to say the least, even if it serves the purpose of driving both the elimination of most of the drones off the game board and the final gambit with the transit hub.  Was there really time for Chloe to pull off the miracle play?  I’m not so sure, but I’ll give the writers credit for running through the hand-waving quickly enough to make the matter a moot point.  Besides, Chloe’s relationship with Adrian Cross is still the bigger head-scratcher, since it continues to make no sense at all.


Not surprisingly, there is a bigger conspiracy behind it all.  Margot’s plot involved a device that allowed her to hack into heavily sensitive defense systems, and now it is revealed that the whole mess with Kate’s husband, Navarro, Cross, and this mysterious person behind Cross is connected as well.  It’s nice to see things coming together, but it does seem a little convenient.  That said, it underscores the immorality of Cross and those backing his Open Cell movement, and the all-too realistic notion that sincere revolutionaries are typically being manipulated by those with more sinister aims.


Despite my irritation with Jack’s characterization, or at the very least the lack of time taken to explore the implications of his decision, I have to give credit where it is due.  The plot threads that remain to be addressed circle right back to the beginning of the season with Jack’s issue with Chloe’s involvement with Open Cell and the constant references to Kate’s husband.  With Margot’s plot thread over and done, the writers can focus on wrapping the remaining threat up, while also resolving the issue of Jack’s status.  If nothing else, Heller’s survival will mean that Jack’s extradition vs. pardon will come to a head, with Heller’s mental condition and documented resignation no doubt a factor.

Our Grade:
The Good:
  • The season is coming full circle
  • The tighter pacing of the shorter season
The Bad:
  • Jack’s moral compass is seriously damaged
  • Heller’s survival is a bit convenient in execution
  • Chloe’s motives need better explanation

John Keegan aka "criticalmyth", is one of the hosts of the "Critical Myth" podcast heard here on VOG Network's radio feed Monday, Wednesday & Friday. You can follow him on twitter at @criticalmyth

24: Live Another Day by - 6/25/2014 7:03 AM193 views

Your Responses


Grade: B
Good but frustrating episode as 24 again doesn't have the guts to truly take out a sitting US president and live with the after effects. Did they even discuss the resignation that should have already gone through? The return of murdering Jack caught me a bit by surprise. He's had a much darker edge to him this season despite a few hints that he might be coming out of it. Nope, he's still the stone cold killer from Day 8. Not sure if the CIA knows he didn't kill Margot in self defense.

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