24 reaches the endgame with Episode 12 and “The following takes place between 10.00pm and… 11.00am” Huh?!
Success! Audrey’s friend Jiao isn’t dead! …until Cheng gets wind of that and finishes her off anyway.
Somehow, Jack finds a hidden device which will decode all of Anatol Stolnavich’s emails which spill the beans about Cheng and will enable them to get everything sorted out by the end of the episode. However, it involves hanging Audrey out to dry, unless Kate can magically sort things out by herself, since Jack’s directive is to go after Cheng on his own.
Chloe, meanwhile, staggers onto the street and asks a passerby if she can use their phone, but how many people who have a mobile also know the numbers it contains? I know a couple of family numbers, but rely on the phone to memorise the rest, so without it, I’m stuffed. And Chloe even manages to remember Jack’s number which, clearly, she’s only been given less than 12 hours ago! Still, never mind that, because she calls him up and suggests they get the band back together!
Kate uses Audrey to move briefly so she can pinpoint where the sniper is, but Audrey’s such a fucking wet blanket that I so hoping for her to be dead by the end of the episode. And, Kate didn’t even need confirmation that she’d capped the sniper at the right time since he helpfully tried to throw himself out of the window. How convenient!
By the halfway point, Jack and Belcheck have easily made an assault on Cheng’s ship, partly because there are hardly any baddies defending it, and partly because they have Chloe giving an overview of it as if this is some sort of terrorist version of Knightmare!
Even more oddly, when Cheng gets wind of this and tries to communicate with his now-dead colleagues, their walkie talkies are all down and emitting static. Hang on… Jack and Belcheck killed the MEN not their communication devices.
And, eventually, I got my wish… Audrey snuffed it. And she certainly deserves it, too, since she’s hit in the belly and makes no attempt to stem the bleeding, just reveals to Kate that she’s been shot in some cross-fire and lets it continue to bleed out as she lies down on the park bench and closes her eyes. Come on, woman, if you want to live then you do something about it!
There’s a lot of kerfuffle for the President to deal with as to whether or not the Chinese are going to attack his fleet, to the point where I really couldn’t give a shit either way, as it served solely as filler.
Jack gets word about the love of his life being brown bread and this suddenly turns him into SuperJack! It’s like he’s taken a power pill in a videogame and can suddenly kill every baddie at a split-second notice, whether by bullet or meat cleaver!
And I was baffled as to why Jack suddenly departed from using his gun just because he’d kicked Cheng’s away, after making it to his lair. And why did an old fat fuck like Cheng think he could win in a fist fight against Bauer?
Still, it’s academic in the end, because Jack manages to top my favourite death in the episode so far – throwing Margot Al-Harazi out of a window after being sarcastic to her – by positioning a samurai sword at Cheng’s throat and then delivering through on his threat with “This is for Audrey.” Yes!
After that, President Heller tells President Wei that Cheng is still alive and in custody… so it’s a good job that Jack switched off the camera before he did the deed.
With just ten minutes to go in the episode, everything’s sorted out, right? Wrong. After he realises Chloe has disappeared and that there’s a drop of blood on the floor, Jack gets a call to which we’re not privy to the other end. Whoever he’s talking to, he tells them to just set it up… I don’t think he’s talking about his new VCR…
And after the final ad break, this is where we get closer to 11am than we were before, as it’s suddenly morning and it’s precisely 12 hours later… plus a few minutes to account for the time it took for some idiots to sell you some tat during the break.
In the final section, Heller explains the benefits of Alzheimers, being that he won’t remember he had a daughter who was bumped off, as he tells Prime Minister Fry. All the while, OTT music tries to raise the sympathy for Audrey, yet I don’t know of anyone who’ll care.
Meanwhile, Jack and Belcheck head just outside London where a new threat is looming. British heavyweight Kevin McNally – in an unnamed role – reveals he is the one behind Chloe’s kidnapping… and Jack trades his life for hers. When Jack warns McNally that any funny business against Chloe or his family will result in this new face having his life turned upside down and he won’t see it coming, he’s reassured – sort-of – with the words, “We just want you, Mr Bauer. That’s all we ever wanted… I would say you’re going to enjoy Moscow, but you’d know I was lying.”
Yes, McNally is sporting a cod-Russian accent. Gotta love the Brits for trying!
So, what’s next for The Adventures of Jack Bauer? Hopefully a new series, but at the moment nothing’s been commissioned so he’s off to Moscow by helicopter for the foreseeable. Surely a helicopter can’t get all that way on its own?
Yes, Fox haven’t confirmed anything yet, but one of the producers involved said he’d like to do a series in Italy… “So I can live in Italy for six months.” Sounds a great idea!
And, no “Dammit!”s in the last episode, but oh, Belcheck speaks again!
Dammit count: 0
Director: Jon Cassar
Producer: Iain Smith
Screenplay: Manny Coto and Evan Katz
Music: Sean Callery
Jack Bauer: Kiefer Sutherland
Chloe O’Brian: Mary Lynn Rajskub
Kate Morgan: Yvonne Strahovski
President James Heller: William Devane
Cheng Zhi: Tzi Ma
Chinese Tech: Dan Li
Belcheck: Branko Tomovic
Audrey Raines: Kim Raver
Admiral: Corey Johnson
Colonel Shaw: Philip Winchester
President Wei: David Yip
Ron Clark: Ross McCall
Gavin Leonard: Adam Sinclair
Mark Boudreau: Tate Donovan
Prime Minister Alastair Davies: Stephen Fry
Erik Ritter: Gbenga Akinnagbe
Jiao Sim: Tuyen Do
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.