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24: 8:00AM - 9:00AM (season premiere)

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Jan 11th 2009 9:03PM

Kiefer Sutherland as Jack Bauer in '24.'
(S07E01) "Just came along for the ride." - Jack

This never gets old to say: Jack is back. When I first watched tonight's opening hour last week, I felt as though I'd already seen a lot of it. Much of the general plot has been leaked for months now, and FOX has been airing promos that probably gave a little too much away. That doesn't mean that it wasn't one hell of an hour full of life lessons. The most important one? Jack Bauer can kick your ass while wearing a suit and tie too.

Following the events of Redemption, Jack is back in the good ol' US of A, getting grilled by a Senate sub-committee led by Senator Blaine Mayer (an extra slimy Kurtwood Smith). But as I mentioned in my Early Look review last week, the FBI swoops in and that's when the day really began. Why? Because they give Jack a gun and some (sort of) shocking news - Tony Almeida didn't die in his arms way back during season five. Remember - the clock wasn't silent.

As we've come to expect from this show, the plots always move quickly as one thread gets dropped in favor of another. Before Jack even has time to process what exactly is happening, he's back in action (although, not "activated") with a defacto partner in FBI Special Agent Renee Walker. While Walker seems like a by-the-book type of gal, it became apparent pretty quickly that she saw the value in The Jack Bauer Method of Getting What You Want.

Once the two of them tracked down Gabe, the ID forger that Jack and Tony used to go to, you knew Jack was going to resort back to his old ways, and it wasn't much of a surprise when Renee seemed OK with it. Honestly, I don't see it working the other way had Renee been against Jack's methods - it wouldn't be 24 if Jack isn't allowed to threaten people with Bic pens.

With Tony playing the bad guy on one side of the story, the other side focused on newly elected President Allison Taylor. The Sangala conflict led by General Juma is the news of the moment, as Juma continues to murder innocent women and children. It certainly has a "ripped from the headlines" feel, but it was easy to figure out how it will all tie together once we found out that Roger, the first son (introduced in Redemption), is now dead - an apparent suicide.

As you may recall, Roger inadvertently had some info (from his friend Chris, who got murdered) on Jonas Hodges (Jon Voight, whom we won't see until later in the season), and Hodges had ties to Juma. Presumably, whatever Roger did with that info is what got him killed. Only the First Gentleman seems to know something ain't right, and I like how he's been working rogue, behind his wife's back, to uncover the truth. I doubt very much that Samantha, Roger's old girlfriend, got that $400K because she was good at her job.

More thoughts on Jack's return...

  • Even though I know the answer, I'm curious - what does everyone think Tony's endgame is? With the potential for him to mess with the nation's energy, utilities, and transportation (thanks to Latham's device), it doesn't feel quite like he's just getting revenge for Michelle's wrongful death. There's clearly something bigger at stake. Thoughts?
  • Just because CTU is gone, it wouldn't be 24 without a mole. How else would Tony have known that Jack and Renee went to see Gabe? Any guesses? It could be an FBI agent or one of the select few in Taylor's cabinet that knew about the op. The President's Chief of Staff Ethan Kanin seems a little off...
  • Renee can certainly hold her own in a fight. She destroyed Gabe's huge bodyguard without breaking a sweat!
  • I know you've seen it in all those promos more times that you can count, but I still got goosebumps when Jack dropped this doosie during the Senate hearing: "But please, do not sit there with that smug look on your face and expect me to regret the decisions that I have made, because sir, the truth is - I don't." Badass!

Plenty of questions, but we've got 60 more minutes of Jack Bauer tonight. Check back here in an hour for my review of tonight's second episode!

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thepassenger

Maybe next season, President Taylor will appoint Jack head of Homeland Security?

January 13 2009 at 2:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
MERVE-THE-PERVE

I kept waiting for Senator Red Foreman to call jack dumbass and ask him if he would like to wear his ass for a hat.

January 13 2009 at 1:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
fluetla66

I don't know if it was in the 8:00 to 9:00 episode or 9:00 to 10:00, but I am wondering if anyone else noticed this. Larry said to Janice that there was some action trying to get the source that Jack said could lead them to Tony and that there were 3 dead bodies. I only noticed 2. "Gabe " and his "associate". Did I miss something or will this come into play later.

January 12 2009 at 11:01 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
The Bagman

You guys out there have to ease up a little.This is supposed to be entertaining,which it is.Relax and enjoy the show.Even I must say that I enjoyed the scene when Jack explained to the moronic Senator (a Democrat for sure)the necessity for the use of torture.For the faint of heart,worry not,your idiotic reality shows are just around the corner

January 12 2009 at 5:35 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
The Bagman

Ease up,guys.This is supposed to entertainment,which it is .I,ll take one hour a week of pure "escapism"and leave all those moronic reality shows to the rest of you.By the way,I do hope some of my beloved"lefties"were significantly disturbed by Jack so clearly justifying the use of torture.Great stuff!!

January 12 2009 at 5:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Michael

Did anyone else here catch when Jack was leaving the Senate hearing that he was expected back "tomorrow morning" to finish the inquiry? Right then, they totally set up the end of episode 24 - Jack walks back in after saving the USA one more time, unrested, unshaven, clothes a mess and pretty much says "OK, tell me again just why I need to apologize for what I've done???"

January 12 2009 at 7:52 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
3 replies to Michael's comment
RT

I knew the show was in trouble when I saw Brannon Braga's name in the credits. (The king of recycled plots from the Start Trek universe who ruined Enterprise.) So let's just combine the plots of Die Hard 2 (taking over air traffic control) and Die Hard 4 (shutting down electronics and killing the infrastructure.) The actress playing the President is weak, and seriously.... Jeneane Garafolo? Bring back Chloe and Bill Buchanan.

January 12 2009 at 7:15 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to RT's comment
Michael

Dude, relax... they've got 23 more episodes to go. As mentioned in this post, 24 always throws a few red herring plot lines into the mix before they get down to brass tacks.

January 12 2009 at 7:49 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Edward

I agree, I cringed when I saw Brannon Braga as co-executive producer. I hope he is just "along for the ride."

January 12 2009 at 11:41 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Pasha

That was Uncle Marty from "Home Improvement" working at the air traffic control place thing!

January 12 2009 at 2:55 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
GerryofNorVA

Wow, I'm impressed with the 8am ep. I didn't have to throw one BS card, though the opening kidnap scene was a little over the top. I liked how the producers of "24" are showing what an agent should tell an investigating panel instead of hiding behind legal procedure. Of course, we'll never see that happen in real life but it's at least refreshing to see in simulation.

I like how all the characters are drawn so far but I'm a little skeptical about J Garofalo, does that cry miscast to you like it does me ? Anyway, I'm anxious to see if 9am can cash the check 8am has written ...

January 12 2009 at 12:09 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Will

I was pretty spoiler-free going into tonight's premier-although I did know Tony was back & on the bad side-so I really enjoyed the show. I have no idea what his motive is, I just can't see revenge being it. But I could be wrong. Anyone know when his agenda will be revealed?

January 12 2009 at 12:06 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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