24: Live Another Day Review by John Keegan

24: Live Another Day 9.11: Day 9: 9PM - 10PM

24: Live Another Day 9.11: Day 9: 9PM - 10PM

Written By:
Robert Cochran and David Fury
Directed By:
Jon Cassar

One of the downsides of the current format is that there is about half the time for the writers to play with after the kind of late-season revelation that marked the previous episode.  Is two episodes enough to cover all the implications?  Probably not, and that means having to gloss over some of the subplots that have been percolating in the background.



 

It helps that some groundwork was done to establish a link between Cheng and the Russians, so the whole mess that Mark started earlier in the season with that fake extradition order isn’t becoming a total side mission.  But it’s also clear that Jack and his allies needed to be distracted with the job of eliminating the Russian threat (with extreme prejudice) so Audrey could have the opportunity to attempt a secret Plan B, which of course put her in Cheng’s crosshairs and thus brought several seasons worth of lingering plot threads to a head.

 

I’ve not been the biggest fan of bringing back Audrey and reliving the period when Jack was supposed to be seeing her as the love of his life.  Not necessarily because I don’t like Audrey (though I do find her less than captivating as a character), but more because it underscores yet again why Jack’s reaction to Renee Walker’s death was far out of proportion.  All that said, the conversation between Jack and Audrey worked very well to overcome some of my resistance, and all things being equal, for new viewers, it was probably more than effective enough.



 

A lot is going to be riding on the final episode, however.  The end of the eighth season (and the reminder of how out of control Jack was over Renee) demonstrated how far Jack could go if things got intensely personal.  That’s exactly what the current situation is presenting: the return of an old enemy, a threat to an old love (whose husband is basically out of the picture or will be soon), and very little time for a measured response.  If Jack wants to show that he’s truly atoning for the past, and trying to avoid a repeat performance, this is a series-defining crucible.

 

And that’s why I’m concerned.  Will the finale have enough time to wrap up all the plot and character arcs that the season started, while also giving Jack’s crisis the necessary depth?  I suppose if they are anticipating another series/season in the future, they may not bring Jack’s journey to a suitable conclusion and leave the audience hanging.  But I don’t think that would have been a reasonable assumption, so I’m hoping for something a little more definitive.  And rushing to that moment would be a weak conclusion.



 

I’ll also be disappointed if Chloe’s part in the entire story is effectively over, now that the truth about Cross has been told and he is no longer in the picture.  Who better to support Jack’s attempt to save Audrey and bring Cheng down once and for all?  Even if Chloe’s character arc has been a total mess this season, there’s opportunity to let her finish up on a high note.


Our Grade:
B+
The Good:
  • The crucible for Jack has been staged
  • Solid action sequences
The Bad:
  • Is there enough time to bring things to a satisfying conclusion?

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 - 7/9/2014 9:51 AM209 views

Your Responses

Flaco_Jones
Flaco_Jones
CONCURRING OPINION

Grade: B
While the attack on the Russians was well staged, this episode was a lot of setup for the finale. At the same time, they didn't leave many hints as to how Cheng will be stopped as both his Russian contact and Audrey's friend died. The only loose end Cheng didn't take care of was Chloe, and if she knew where they were headed, I'm surprised he didn't spend more time looking for her on the side of the road. Like you, I hope she plays a major role in the finale.

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