06 February, 2007

Someone get Jack a tissue... he'll need it to wipe up all the blood

Tonight’s show was…interesting. Another slow-ish episode action wise, although there is definitely the promise of much, much more to come, and shortly. I didn’t see Papa Bauer having double the kills of Jack ‘baby bear’ Bauer, but that’s how it transpired.

The big news is that there WAS a kill in the first place, after two straight weeks of ‘plot development.’ Jack gets one, but freaking Farmer Hogget gets the other. Dude’s wiry and tough from years of hard farm work, and I suppose he’s lost all sense of compassion since Babe died…

Moving on to a more in-depth sort of observation, I’ve noticed more in this season and in particular the most recent episode, that the previous demeanors and character traits have shifted a bit. The norms of the first 5 days are being challenged, and it’s somewhat disconcerting. I think after 5 days of stagnant character development, though, the writers had to start giving us something more to work with other than the one-sided lineup.

The normally unflappable Chloe (when it comes to doing her job at least) is visibly shaken by the day thus far, and when the news of Morris’ brother comes in, she insists on telling him immediately. Milo "Rico Suave" Pressman tries convincing her otherwise, but she resists. Maybe it’s that she’s with Morris, but I don’t know. She does convince him to stay on, showing she still has that dedication despite showing a bit of a softer side.

She’s been on both ends of similar situations before and has worked things out differently, so it was a change.

The stalwart Karen Hayes backs down seemingly without much hesitation when confronted by Tom Lennox. I don’t think that her relationship with Bill Buchanan is really the cause, since she’s been generally very job oriented.

Perhaps the biggest change in character is in Jack, who exhibits a genuine emotional side for the first time in the discussion with his father. He’s been shown as upset before (you know, when Teri Bauer died at the end of Day 1), but this feels much more genuine, much more like a break in the Jack we’ve come to understand. The scene when Jack has administered the Sodium Penathol was interesting, in that I wasn’t sure if he was hugging Graem or positioning himself to snap Graem’s neck. He’s more emotional and seemingly unstable than he’s ever been before, and hopefully that leads to him going all Jack Bauer on some folks.

Of all the characters, Buchanan is the only one who still maintains his former status as a no-nonsense business type. When Karen calls him to say she’s resigned from her position, he theorizes that it’s because of Lennox, but then tries to convince her to stay on. No “honey how are you, what are you feeling?” No, Buchanan is all business, and I appreciate that.

Next week things should go back to normal. Killings, fire, explosions and lots of Jack screaming his own name. You know the deal.


Now, notes from the episode:

- Kim Doppelganger is kind of ho-ish, fueled by money, but she seems ‘aight. I bet she has a hand in freeing Morris. McCarthy wouldn’t even let her go to the snack machine. Come on man, girl’s gotta eat.

- I find it amazing that in these (real) times of all news all the time, I can definitely see a reporter doing what the dude at the beginning is doing and standing on ‘the edge of the safe zone.’ As if that riot zone roadblock would do any good against toxic gasses.

- Wayne Palmer shows some balls for the first time ever about a minute in to the show; mark it down. Tom is such a sniveling, self-serving tool though and chases those newfound balls back into hiding though only moments later. Don’t fret; they drop again at the end.

- Buchanan to Morris: “Recovering this image may be the only way of stopping those nukes” Umm, yeah, how many times have we heard THAT before?

- Papa Bauer to Jack: “What are you going to do to him?” I smiled a toothy grin when he said his. Like, biggest grin since 9:30amish.

- Nice lovers quarrel between Marilyn and Jack. Damn man, she’s still hot for him and he knows it. That last look before she walks out is smoldering with wonton lust. Or, you know, anger. You pick. Not to be crass but hey Jack, she's single again...

- Apparently, interrogation works by asking the same question at an escalating volume and then applying force. Seems a bit silly to me, but I suppose that’s what happens when you only have 7 minutes of airtime to do the questioning. This time it was with 8 CC’s of Sodium Penathol instead of a plastic bag. Technology evolves fast.

- Sidenote, how the HELL did Jack get his voice to echo like that during the interrogation?

- Damnit, the Sandra Palmer obligatory soap opera moment. She really needs to go the hell away. I say it every week, but seriously. She’s freaking annoying. Shut up Sandra, just shut the hell up. The ONLY good thing that comes out of all her hemming and hawing is that Wayne decides Lennox is wrong after all. Didn’t see that coming. ::Yawn::

- Here is my exact note from before the final commercial break: Graem’s still holding back, and now I rather think his father is too. Something, I’m not sure what. When he says, “I need a few minutes,” it’s unclear whether that means alone or with Graem. If it’s with Graem maybe it is to discuss the revised game plan. Or, you know, to kill him for squealing.

- Morris is going to program the bomb to self-destruct or so something all feisty and European, like light up a cigarette and spit at Fayed’s feet.

More next week, after the two hour offering. The preview showed very little in the way of plot detail, so I'm hoping it's amazing. It looked like it from where I was sitting. I could swear I saw something explode, and Jack wave a gun. Nice!


Blogger PatrickH said...

The second McCarthy said that he had someone, but he wouldn't go willingly, I knew it had to be Morris. There's no way they could introduce a new character at this point, it had to be someone smart, and since Chloe's calmed down this season, it had to be Morris.

Seriously, that whole time he was watching the image crystallize (btw, is there a photoshop plug-in that lets photos load like that image with the missing bits flying in from off the screen), I was screaming at the screen, "Can you not detect from the high level of BALD that this is YOU?"

3:43 AM, February 06, 2007  
Blogger Adam said...

Kiefer's acting in this episode was stellar. When Graem tells of his involvement in last season's plot (and the deaths of David Palmer, and the Almeidas) it's as if someone sucked all of the air out of Jack's lungs in that one moment. Fantastic acting, I really appreciate the hard work Kiefer puts into the role.

Things I'm itching for in the very near future: Aaron Pierce, the return of the Logans, (former?) SecDef Heller and naughty, naked assassin Mandy. Can I get an Amen?

11:11 AM, February 07, 2007  

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