Tuesday, May 18, 2010
24 - THE END OF DAYS
"24" is nearing the end of its eighth and last day. Game. Set. And M... well, not quite "match." Not the end of the end. There's a movie in development, but the TV Series has been cancelled.
Monday May 24 is the final, two hour episode of "24" on TV. (8 - 10 PM Fox)
"24" ends on the 24th. (Coincidence?)
This season has been up and down...
On the upside, 24 is without any doubt the most interesting, exciting, tension filled show on TV. Each hour segment is more exciting than almost any 2 hour film.
But more than usual, the storylines this season did not hold up to scrutiny...
The Dana Walsh storyline was not particularly credible; in fact, her whole story arc and her personality too, were at best off-putting. And there are three bodies left lying around and possibly forgotten: her old pal and the pal's partner in crime underwater someplace, and a parole officer (or something) crammed into a wall space at CTU headquarters.
After lots of media criticism about his ability to torture people into confessing in a half-hour or less, Jack has lost his touch with torture. While "Do you know who I am???" seems to work well in getting bad guys to open up, actual torture this year has not been too effective.
(Despite the torture, I've never felt 24 was an especially conservative show. In fact, many of the bad guys have been traitors who seemed to have neo-con domestic terrorist motivations.)
Jack, CTU and others' ability to go downstairs, get a car, drive several blocks around town in NY in less time than (admittedly eternal) commercial breaks, has been inspiring to traffic challenged New Yorkers. But the "real time" premise of the show has been stretched beyond the breaking point.
Somehow, the Justice department and the Attorney General have not gotten involved in one of the worst crime waves New York has ever seen.
There is no sign of any media coverage of the overnight terror threat, nor of all the dead bodies around town: it's afternoon now, and there has been chaos all night and all morning. Maybe in LA nobody would notice, but here in NY it would be all over the newspapers and TV.
Not to mention YouTube. Aside from all the uploaded videos by citizens of the carnage around town, with video evidence of the Russian involvement, and now an audio of the President of Russia admitting to ordering the hit on Jack's girlfriend, Jack could simply upload it to YouTube. Getting the story into a newspaper or onto TV is so last century.
The US President is trying to cover up the involvement of the Russians until the treaty is signed. But why bother working so hard? In the real world it takes more than a few hours for any story to come out and prove itself. Some things need to be done within the 24 hours of the premise, creating a (ridiculous, doomed) cover-up is not one of them.
And finally, the last of the unbelievable plot points: the Russian President, who does not want the treaty anyway, got off the plane and is coming to the UN. Why? His ambassador to the UN was just killed. A really-really-highly-skilled-very-very-angry-assassin (Jack) is coming for him. This seems like it would be a pretty good time for the Russian President to get back on his plane and just go home, fast, thereby killing the peace treaty and remaining safe, a win-win for him. The only reason for him to continue in his limousine to the UN is because the script writer wants him to be there.
So where are we now, heading into the final 2 hours:...
The US President is trying to shore up a nuclear arms peace treaty with the Middle East & Russia, but knows that some Russians were behind the murder of the Middle Eastern leader, and is trying to cover that up.
The President of Russia is coming to the UN to sign the treaty.
Jack is trying to expose the coverup and take revenge on the death of Renee Walker. He knows the President of Russia ordered the hit. Jack may be trying to get the Russian President.
Here are some of the questions going into the finale...
Will the peace treaty get signed, and then hold?
Will the Russian coverup be exposed?
Will the US President fall victim to crimes in covering up the Russian involvement?
Will Jack be able to get to the Russian President? What will he do then? Will Jack assassinate the Russian President in revenge for the killing of Renee Walker?
Will Chloe survive?
Will the bodies Dana Walsh left behind be discovered?
Will Jack's daughter & grandchild show up on the finale?
Will Jack find... peace? love? revenge? justice?
Will Jack survive?
Note: 24 in the past has been quite ruthless about killing supporting characters. Jack's wife was killed in the climax of the first season; nuclear bombs have been detonated; Jack himself killed his boss to temporarily appease a terrorist; Renee Walker was shot; Presidents have been killed. So... Anything can happen!
If Jack were killed, would he be killed so dead he could not rise from the dead (or awake from a "dream") to appear in a new movie?
Here are some possible resolutions...
The standard TV resolution could be...
- Evidence of the Russian involvement is revealed to the media.
- The peace treaty dies
- Jack gets to the Russian President, but the President dies of a heart attack or some other non-Jack cause, rather than being killed by Jack
- Jack is severely wounded, but not too dead to come back in a movie
- He's either captured or disappears -- either way defining the opening scenes of the new movie
- Some new character (or some old, forgotten, but not terribly dead character from earlier in the series) comes to light as being the brains/money behind the Russian operations. This character will also then be featured in the new movie.
Deviations from a "standard" resolution provide the interest in the finale.
As for the movie...
The movie, "24," is "in development" so it may or may not happen. The current screenwriter is Billy Ray (who seems to have as many as seven other pictures currently in development) and whose writing credits include: State of Play, Suspect Zero, The Shooter, and Color of Night.
BILLY RAY - http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0712753/
Here are some "24" sites...
TV SHOW ON IMDB -- http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0285331/
OFFICIAL 24 SITE -- http://www.fox.com/24/
24 THE MOVIE (2012) -- http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1598754/
and links to some articles on both "24's," the film & TV show: