TV Review: 24 - SEASON EIGHT - '8 am to 9 am'
Really? Did they have to do that thing to that person? Really?
Once again, Jack gets hosed, but the ramifications are
going to be huge as the series heads into its final episodesGrade: B+
Writer(s): David Fury
Director: Milan Cheylov
Release Date: April 12, 2010
By CARL CORTEZ, Contributing Editor
With all the crap Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland) has had to endure over eight seasons on 24 – it’s his personal life that’s taken the biggest beating.
His wife was killed by his former lover Nina Myers, his daughter became cougar bait time and again, he fell in love and had a great relationship with Audrey Raines, only to see that crumble.
STOP READING IF YOU HAVEN’T SEEN THIS EPISODE YET
And now, NOW, he finally finds a sympatico partner in Renee Walker (Annie Wersching), someone who gets the torture, pain and conflicted moral dilemma he’s had to go through, and then, once again, it’s all taken away from him.
Yes, last night gave Jack and Renee a quiet moment to have wild sex. And it’s the kind of sex Jack no doubt needed, since he hasn’t gotten any intimate action in quite some time.
So while the two of them are hoppin' around in the sack like teenage bunnies, there’s this Russian guy who wants her dead. It seems Renee recognized him briefly sneaking around the crime scene of where President Hassan was brutally murdered last week. The man was around when Renee went undercover with the Russians six years ago. She would likely figure out the connection sooner or later, so, she has to go.
And Jack Bauer too.
But, that’s Jack’s curse. After they’re done humpin’ and grindin’, Jack goes to the kitchen, and Renee picks up Jack’s phone. It’s Chloe (Mary Lynn Rajskub). Chloe says their only remaining alive suspect from the Hassan crime scene died at CTU – someone had slipped him something so he couldn’t talk.
Renee gets up to tell Jack and – BLAM!
It’s all over for Renee. But there’s tons of tension as Jack rushes her to the hospital. We hope, for once, someone Jack loves can get out of being with him sane and alive, but it’s not to be.
Renee is dead.
Damn! That really does blow, but in terms of emotional resonance, it really brings the series full circle now that it’s coming to an end. The last woman Jack truly loved was his wife Teri and now the one woman he was allowing himself to love again has died in a horrible, work-related death.
Now it comes to down to how he handles the death of Renee. Will he go on a Dirty Harry vendetta throughout the rest of the season, or does he realize, in the end, he’s destined to be unloved and alone.
Big surprise and, as much as I hate to see Renee go, it was a necessary twist to goose the show into the home stretch.
That big moment aside, this was essentially one of those cleaning house episodes of 24 where all the unnecessary characters and subplots are wrapped up and the next, final wave of the story is set into motion.
That means, CTU Chief Brian Hastings (Mykelti Williamson) is out as the head of CTU for all the screw-ups in the last 17 or so hours. In his place, temporarily, is Chloe, who takes charge like no one’s business. No more of this “you’re wrong Chloe, if we do this, it will do this, this and this.” Now it’s Chloe saying “do this, because I know that I’m right” and of course, she is.
I’m lovin’ it. After six seasons of being told she doesn’t know what she’s doing, she’s finally given the confidence that she does know what she’s doing, and she’s going to be one of those kick ass and take names later kind of chiefs.
Finally a competent head of CTU!!!
Meanwhile, there is potential for President Taylor (Cherry Jones) to save the peace treaty started with Hassan. She, along with representatives from Hassan’s country, convince Hassan's wife to take the mantle, sign the treaty and save the talks.
She reluctantly agrees.
Is this a female empowerment episode or what?
Of course, the Peace Treaty hits a snag when the Russians, who have wanted to pull out of the talks for some time, have concerns about this new wrinkle. We also discover, they’re really the one’s behind all the madness that has happened on this day.
The only person who can save the day, is disgraced (but pardoned) President Logan (Gregory Itzin). He has a great one-on-one with Taylor, where he comes off as slimy as ever. He has ties to the Russians – they love him, and he might be able to keep the Peace Treaty from falling apart.
But, come on, we know the drill. The villain this season has to be Logan. And it’s only a matter of time before Jack finds out and lands a can of whoop ass on him.
So tons of things are happening, as always. The episode was a bit slow in spots, but the pay-off was huge.
Now that the show has adjusted and retooled for the forthcoming final six episodes, this is definitely shaping up to be one of 24’s most pivotal day’s yet. Because however they end this, it’s not going to be about who Jack was, it’s about who Jack will become and what that will mean for the movie franchise in the offing.
And frankly, as sad as I am to see the show go, I can’t wait to see what the writers have in store for us next.
R.I.P. Renee. You will be missed.