Monday, 8 May 2017

TV Series Review: 24

Towards the end of last year one of my colleagues at work summoned me to his desk as soon as I'd walked through the door. Intrigued I headed over and was definitely not expecting him to ask me whether I'd ever seen the TV series 24. I've been passed a fair few book recommendations from him over the years, but normally this kind of conversation is reserved for asking me to pick up some emails or do a little handlettering, I definitely play to my strengths at work.

Instead, he had the box set of 24 and wanted to know if I wanted to borrow it. I did and that afternoon it was duly deposited on my desk.

We didn't get around to it until the start of this year seeing as we were entrenched in our annual Christmas film session at the time he brought the series to me. We'd originally planned to go on with watching Criminal Minds at the start of the year, until I decided that I really couldn't face it at the time we were doing the IVF treatment. I needed something a little softer which didn't have people being brutally murdered and sadistic serial killers at every turn.

It turns out that 24 fit that bill quite well. This is kind of funny considering there are nuclear bombs and shoot outs and poisonous gases and all sorts of other terrible things going on in every episode but perhaps because the original series started way back over a decade ago before these things became so commonplace in out TV viewing, it didn't feel as intense somehow.

24 is basically a cross between Die Hard and Spooks. Each series is told in real-time, following Jack Bauer, a CTU (Counter Terrorism Unit) Agent as well as his friends, family and coworkers. Every episode follows the events that take place within that hour and I have to admit, it's a nice gimmick.

When we first began watching the very first series I was a little worried. As with any series with an ensemble cast, it can be a little tricky to keep track of who everyone is and what they're doing. And it seemed like there was a lot happening right from the very first second of this series. Once I got into the swing of things though, I have to admit that I quite enjoyed it.

Mr Click and I had a bit of a bad habit of commenting on everything that was going on, mainly because of how there was never just one bad thing happening. All of the bad things, things that can go wrong, and inconvenient moments all happen at the worst possible moment. Sometimes you go kind of get the sense that they were dragging the storylines out just to make sure it stretched out to the full twenty-four episodes for the series. The tension of the last four of five episodes of each series really bugged Mr Click no end, it was kind of funny watching him almost reach breaking point with every series.

Obviously the hero of the series was Jack Bauer, though at times he doesn't really come across as the most likable of guys. So many of the issues he (and everyone else) encounters in the series could be avoided if occasionally he just told them what he was doing and why. Of course, he couldn't do that because there were enemies on every side who might sell him out or take him down.

My favourite character is probably Chloe O'Brian, mainly because she is the person I could relate to most of all. She doesn't get on with most people, she just wants to get on with her job and she finds it very frustrating when other people want to do things in an impractical or inefficient way. A lot of the comments that she makes about things are the sorts of things I would be thinking myself were I in her shoes, but just wouldn't actually say out loud, or at least while there were people around in earshot. She probably undergoes the most growth as a character over the course of the series so it seemed like she may have actually learned some things from her experiences at CTU and with Jack.

Mr Click's favourite series was the very last one, whereas I liked the third one. We also both quite enjoyed the prequel to series 7, Redemption, which was included in the box set.

On the whole, I quite enjoyed the series and I'm glad that I've seen it. There were lots of little things that bugged me while I watched it, the not least the fact that for all its security and protocols, it was easier to get into CTU than the call centre where I work. Each series had a mole who was feeding information to the bad guys; you think they'd improve their screening procedures.

Also, in the 24-verse, being the President is a lonely job since you're pretty much guaranteed to lose all your family members once you get the role, probably because they're needing to go to jail for murdering people!

It's a programme I could see myself getting on DVD some time and watching again, though Mr Click isn't too sure himself. Watching it a second time would probably lessen some of that tension, but I'm sure it would make those earlier episodes a little easier to follow as you'd already have a handle on who everyone was.


  1. And this year they did a reboot. With a new lead as the original Jack Bauer was busy on another series.

    1. I might look it out some time. My friend who was lending us the DVDs said we can keep them so I have a feeling we'll watch them again in the future. :-)

  2. I loved 24, my wife says I had a man-crush on Jack Bauer. I watched it when it first came out and I remember how much I couldn't wait for the next episode to come on and I would make sure I had no plans on that night.

    Chloe was definitely a favorite for me as well. The only time I see her now is as a comedian which you would never guess from her role on 24.

    Redemption was pretty good as well, I enjoyed it quite a bit but it's not quite the same without Jack.

    1. I think my husband probably would've quite liked a chance to be a bit Jack Bauer-ish, hehe. I'm glad that we binge-watched it with a couple of episodes each night otherwise the wait between some of them would've killed me.

      I had no idea the girl who played Chloe was a comedian. I'll have to look her up!

      Cait @ Click's Clan

  3. I'm a BIG 24 hour fan. But you're right. Sometimes, Jack's daughter in the earlier seasons, drove me nuts. Just so selfish. And that one President Charles Logan- gads, I wanted to shoot him. Now there is another season of 24, but not with Jack. It's OKAY.

    I'm presently watching Designated Survivor with Kiefer Sutherland as the president. He's no Jack Bauer.

    1. You could've heard me groan when Charles Logan cropped up again in a later series!

      I've seen the newer series mentioned online. Since my friend let me keep the DVDs I might get the newer ones at some point. I'll have to give Designated Survivor a go at some point, the premise behind it sounds interesting.

  4. I've never watched that show.

    1. It was very good, though some of the earlier episodes are already kind of dated!


Let me know what you think. :-)