24 Day 5 5:00 AM - 7:00 AM
The recaps remind us that this show was written by dropping a ball through a Pachinko machine. Each peg was labeled with a different possible plot development, and each peg the ball hit on the way down, that plot point was tossed into the script. At least the ball never hit the "Jack has a talking dog" peg.
And so, it is time to deploy the Rantennae one last time. If I were a vampire, I'd live in Rantsylvania. My fellow reviewers and I form a Rant colony. Ok, stopping now.
A sign tells us we are at a Private Marine Overhaul Facility. Why the sam hill this sub pulled up to a civilian dock, and not a military one, who knows. Why would this civilian port have the facilities to service a sub? Why didn't this thing sail down to San Diego? I know, never mind. The writers were making things up at the last minute, it's the best they could come up with to kill the last two hours.
Jack is dead! Oh, it's some guard on the pavement. So, on a day of multiple terrorist attacks, an attack on the Russian president, terror attacks at an airport known to have involved Russian separatists, there was one person guarding this Russian sub?
Hurrah! The baddies have flushed the Sentox nerve gas from the sub! *a hand is raised in the back* Um, where did it go? Did they just vent it into the outside air, killing whoever else happened to be in the port?
Bierko says to start the countdown. C'mon. Do military subs really do "countdowns" when firing missiles? Then Bierko gives an inspirational speech to his newly formed band of baddies. He says "You can soar like an eagle, and be anything you want to be." No, wait, he says "We are close to finishing what we started today." Uh, come again? How's that? What you started today, Sgt. Bierko, was an attempt to ship a whole bunch of gas canisters back to Central Asia, and then attack Russia. Blowing up a lot of Los Angelananianiters is not quite the same thing.
Bierko says he has identified 12 high-value targets. Oh, so that's what Bierko was doing while he was shacked up in CTU Medical? When he had no idea he was about to be freed? Cuz I don't when else Bierko would've cooked up these targets. Or, maybe he is like Marwan. Marwan was going to melt down a hundred reactors, and not content with that, was going to make the rubble bounce with a missile fired from Iowa. Bierko, not content to lay waste to most of LA with nerve gas, perhaps planned to hold back one canister cuz he planned all along to take the sub? Oy, he thinks big.
Bierko's stitches make him look like one of Dr. Frankenstein's early experiments.
Audrey hops on her IM and rings up Admiral Kirk.
audreySnoogumms: u thr?
Admiral Kirk: Say, r u another lonely space babe? Can I see yr pic?
audreySnoogumms: shove it, creep. A Commie sub has been hibierkoed. Can u send f18s?
Admiral Kirk: no can do. take 2 long.
And, darn the luck, ground teams won't get there in time either. Convenient, that. Ya know, that F-18 got in the air and after the plane Jack hibauered within minutes. But here, it would take 22-25 minutes. What are the odds.
Jack has visual contact with the sub. And he's not even using visual protection.
Henderson wants a gun, and Jack is understandably reluctant. But, remind me again why Henderson is going in with Jack?
Oh, look, someone on the sub is hoisting a petard and sending radio distress signals. Why, it's Petty Officer Tim Rooney! He's sending a Code 7 SOS, whatever that is.
And why is he still alive? Says he was in a sealed compartment, which he closed off when the atmosphere warning thingies warned him. Of something. First, how does he know how to read Russian atmosphere warning thingies? And second, are these warning sensors designed to look for nerve gas? I can understand CO and CO2, but who would put a sensor on a sub to test for nerve gas?
Back at CTU, Chloe has instantly figured out how to read sub schematics.
Jack has a job for Rooney. He needs Rooney to open the forward hatch. Oh, and kill the guard standing by it.
Rooney says "Danggit, Jim. I'm an engineer, not an engineer."
Jack relents and gives Henderson a .45 pistol.
Back at the retreat, Logan is wetting himself over the sub crisis. Martha talks to Aaron. She's still trying to catch Mike's attention.
At CTU, just how does Chloe have a timer up for the missiles? How does she know when they'll fire? Anyone? Is she tapped into the Russkie sub's telemetry? And if so, how?
Jack tries to coax Rooney into killing the guard. And has some very specific medical instructions. He says "Slit his throat. Cut deep to sever the vocal chords and carotid artery." Eek. Do not try this at home, kids.
Jack says "You need to focus on the objective", but the krazy kaptions have him saying "I want you to visualize the hostile on the ground, dead." And Jack keeps calling Rooney "son."
Alas, Rooney doesn't make the old man proud. The whole throat slitting thing doesn't go so well. It's more like a throat stabbing. But, in the end, Rooney says "My status is...he's dead."
And splash one bad guy as someone goes into the drink. Did they bother dragging the body up and out of the hatch? Why not just stuff him in a cabin somewhere?
While up top though, the missile hatches open. Somehow, Chloe magically knows the missiles are about to fire. She says "You have less than seven minutes." But, the krazy kaptions have her saying "You have less than four minutes." Perhaps the writers figured out later they needed the extra three minutes so all this would seem plausible.
Team Bauer is going to storm the control room. Jack tells Rooney, aka BulletCatcher, "You go first." Thanks. Rooney is to create a diversion to draw the baddies out of the control room. Perhaps he'll stage a midget wrestling event.
Wha...? Bierko is talking about sending a missile to San Francisco! Apparently he's not content to hit LA?
Jack has yet another visual. Then, Crawly Jack goes slithering down the floor. Again, Chloe the Sorceress knows the missiles are armed.
Jack hides behind a console, and when the baddie is near, Jack leaps up and knifes the baddies. Eew. Too bad Junior, I mean, Rooney isn't around to see how it should be done.
Now, Jack goes Bierko hunting. Rooney's diversion was to tip a tool cart over. Bierko takes two others to investigate. There is a fight. Jack wings Bierko. He shoots a steam pipe. (Are there really hot steam pipes like this on modern subs?) Jack steams one baddie to death, and then break's Bierko's neck with his thighs, taking his inspiration from Famke Janssen as Xenia Onatopp.
All this time, Henderson has been busy trying to disarm the missiles. And he succeeds. Oh, so that was why Buckaroo was along. But just how does Henderson know how to do this?
Anyway, by the time Jack is done with Bierko, he realizes Henderson is gone. He goes up top, and Henderson gets the drop on him. Jack admits he wasn't really going to let Henderson go. Henderson fires at Jack, but... *click click*. Clever Jack. No bullets in the gun.
Then, Jack executes Henderson. That really is just wrong. Isn't that murder, really? Jack is not judge and jury. Junior, I mean, Rooney just stands there with his mouth open catching flies, shocked at what his pappy just did.
Whew. And finally we get to the first commercial break! Clocks are at :21 to :21. But, coming back, the clocks are at :27 to :25. Suddenly, everyone around me is wearing white jumpsuits with no zippers and they're listening to a bald headed man spout slogans on a TV screen.
Oh, now naval security shows up. Jack talks to Bill, and he lies, saying Henderson fired on him, and he didn't have a choice. I'm losing some respect for Jack here.
Jack wants to talk to Chloe on the QT. He isn't going back to CTU, he's going after Logan. He needs some help modifying field comm equipment. Surely that will void the warranty.
Chloes asks "Field comm equipment? What is it?" Jack says "Technology that allows us to communicate in a wireless fashion, but that's not important right now."
Mike tells Logan that all known associates of Bierko are dead or in custody. Given Bierko's multiple teams he's put together, I think the safe thing would be to assume they have no idea how many more "associates" are out there. Of course, between the two of them, Bierko and Henderson might have cleaned out the supply of evil henchmen in LA.
Logan wants to say some words by David Palmer's casket, which is going back to DC. This is the very definition of chutzpah.
Martha finally gets Mike's attention, and no, not by flashing her girls, as she did earlier in the season. Mike asks a logical question, he asks "Mrs. Logan, have you been...?"
Logan calls Graham and tells him the happy news about the sub, but apparently Graham already knows. And how? We have no idea. But, he apparently doesn't know Henderson is dead. So, not clear how Graham is getting his information. I'm sure the writers have no idea either.
Martha tells Mike everything. They go find Aaron. Mike knows the people at the Western Gate. Suddenly we're in Jerusalem? Martha and Aaron share a tender goodbye. No kissy, just a thank-you.
Clocks are at :41 to :37.
Mike and Aaron are out in the woods not so much burying Agent Adams as dumping him to be left as coyote food. Jack calls for Aaron. Mike says "This is a real mess, Jack." Stop talking to the writers, Mike, and just say your lines.
Jack wants to get a confession out of Logan. Ooh, goody, I sense torture! Jack is still 20 minutes away.
At CTU, Karen has been recalled to DC. Apparently the White House is unhappy with her job performance.
Radar O'Chloe comes in, needing Karen to sign for an authorization code. It's for someone named "Morris." Apparently he's currently selling womens shoes in Beverly Hills. Karen asks "Is this a joke?" Why yes, yes it is. Because, Bill says this "Morris" is Chloe's ex-husband.
What? I'm sure this seemed funny when the writers wrote it half-stoned at 3 in the morning, but what is the point of adding this wrinkle at this late date?
And! And! This Ba-bing Guy is Morris! He's there already? And he's dressed. Was he camping outside the door? How did he get there so fast?
And wait, there's more. He's a charming Brit who calls everyone "Love". OK, so the writers need to kill a couple of hours, so they steal the character of Daphne's brother from Frasier and hope nobody notices.
Chloe needs Morris to crank up a digital transfer rate to 6.8, as she can only manage a 6.5. Super Chloe, bested by her ex-husband in a technogeek task? That's gotta chafe her hide.
At the retreat, Mike tells Martha she has to find a way to keep Logan at the retreat, so Jack has time to get in place. I swear, as soon as I first heard this, my first thought was "Oh no, please not that." Yes, it's that.
Clocks are at :53 to :46.
Jack arrives and hooks up with Aaron. Well, meets him. It's nearly 6 in the morning, and it's still pitch dark. Jack needs to get in the chopper that will take Logan to the airport.
So, Martha puts into motion her grand scheme. Logan is packing. Say, why doesn't Martha wonder where Evelyn is? Wouldn't she want her flunky around to be packing up for her?
Martha and Logan have an extra slimy conversation. Martha acts like she's sorry and that she needs her little Chucky Wucky, and Logan is surprised that his gorgeous wife still apparently has the hots for him.
Martha really lays it on thick. There is some First Kissy Kissy. Logan gets a boyish grin, and suggests they stay for a bit. The helicopter will wait. A suit jacket comes off.
Oh my. Martha is really really praying Jack will hurry up.
This hour ends with the clocks way out of whack at :60 to :53.
ok, this is the last graphic violence warning. I mean it this time. And, for the ADD crowd, we recap what we just finished watching.
Martha is... putting on a French maid outfit? What? Oh, she's getting dressed. Already? You mean they... And he... Oh my. Logan is a real Minute Man. They did it while Martha was getting dressed? It's only been a few minutes. Please let us devote no more thought as to what Martha must have done. Sometimes this show is as messed up as Fibber McGee's closet.
Jack finds a flight suit. And then, goes through a long elaborate charade to print up false protocols and lure the real co-pilot in and put the sleeper hold on him, so Jack can walk out to the chopper and pretend to be the replacement co-pilot Ron Franklin.
Martha makes up an excuse of needing more drugs, so she won't get on the chopper with Logan. Except, I'm sure it's not an excuse. After what she had to do, she's probably about to throw up.
Logan gets in the chopper, gives a thumbs up, and off they go. Say, how did Jack know what the pre-flight routine is? Was he just flipping switches and turning dials and babbling nonsense, while the pilot just stared at him in disbelief? "Uh, yeah, the air gauge is all go, and, um, flaps are in the upright position, and our radio thing is sailing five by five, roger."
When they are in the air, Jack gives the pilot two choices. Live or Die. The pilot chooses the former. Jack goes in the back and tasers the two agents with Logan, and tosses some cuffs at Logan. Logan is a mite surprised to see Jack.
Jack yells up at the pilot. Can he hear over the sound of the helo? Lucky the pilot didn't misunderstand and think Jack said to fly them to the middle of a military base.
And this pilot is awfully willing to save his own neck and sacrifice the president. No noble deeds here.
Logan starts to babble at Jack, trying to save his skin, saying all manner of things. Say, is Jack recording this? This is pretty much a confession. Jack just stares, and it bothers Logan.
When they land, Jack tasers the pilot. Hasn't this helo been on radar? Don't folks keep pretty close tabs on the president? Does anyone know where the helo went? And where they are is some kind of abandoned printing press.
The krazy kaptions have Jack saying "Move inside, go." but we don't hear anything.
Logan offers Jack money, anything. Not so tough now, are we Chuckles? Jack cuffs him to a pole, as he did that baddie back in the mall.
Morris comes in and gives Jack his souped up equipment. Morris catches sight of Logan. Jack just tells Morris to beat it.
Ah, apparently folks do know where Logan is. Jack has 10 minutes before security forces get there. Chloe tells Jack all this, and then says "We'll all be arrested for treason." What's this "we" stuff? It's just Jack and Chloe breaking a whole truck load of laws.
Going into the first commercial break, clocks are at :14 to :14. And, coming out, clocks are at :18 to :18! They match! What's going on? Unprecedented! Forest animals are in a panic! The glaciers are melting! The desert is blooming! The lion lies down with the lamb! Bob Saget is funny!
Ah, there it is, sunrise!
Jack tries to get Logan to talk, but doesn't get anywhere. Logan makes a good point. He says if he's tortured, of course he'll say something, but it won't mean anything, and everyone will discount what he says.
Jack says to Logan "I will kill you." Then, he sits down in front of Logan and gives a history lesson. Jack says he has nothing to lose.
Logan keeps shrieking "Good of the country! Good of the country!" Jack says "If you think I'm scared to put a bullet in your brain, you don't know me." Aw, there was the perfect time to say "You don't know Jack."
Jack points the gun at Logan and is going to count to three. Not four, not two, except he immediately proceedeth to three. Logan, impressively, has enough composure to launch into a long discussion of previous presidential assassins.
Jack counts. One! Two! Five! But... Jack can't do it. He can't pull the trigger. Logan tenderly says "Jack, it's all right." Jack puts the gun down and assumes the position as security forces close in and arrest him. Logan thinks he should be put in solitary confinement.
In a fitting commercial, there is an ad for Pirates of the Caribbean, which also has a character named Jack.
Clocks are at :29 to :28. Ah, it was inevitable we would slide out of phase.
And, typical of 24, we're only 10 minutes after sunrise and it's broad daylight.
We're at the airport now. Mike tells Martha Jack is in custody. Some First Kissy and Photos for the press.
Palmer's casket is put on a bier. (Please, no jokes at a time like this about needing a beer.)
And then, Martha has another "episode." She freaks, yelling and screaming "You're a murderer! Don't you touch me! It's a sacrilege." etc... Martha is hustled away into a hangar. Logan will go see if she's "all right."
And oh dear! Logan just hauls off and slaps Martha! That is harsh. Then, he paws at her, wanting another go around. I mean, he checks her for listening devices. Logan realizes it was Martha's job to "delay" him. (Didn't delay him very long, did it.)
Martha is really having a conniption now. She shrieks "You're insane." Again Logan with the "good of the country" bit. Logan then threatens her with drugs and "Vermont" for the rest of her life.
Logan asks "Are we clear?" Ok, all together now. Crystal.
Clocks are at :39 to :38.
Martha is struggling to keep her stuff together. Logan salutes the casket and begins to speak. He says "This has been a terrible day." Ok, Itzen, you stop talking to the writers, too. Actually, wasn't yesterday the "terrible day"?
Now, we cut to CTU. The Attorney General is on the phone. Chloe arranged it without permission from Karen. Chloe is going to play a recording. What recording? We're as surprised as Karen.
Oh, I see. Apparently Jack planted a listening device on Logan. Clever boy. Rooney could learn a lot from his old man.
It's a recording of Logan and Martha in the hangar. Logan admits to everything.
So, the AG makes a call to US Marshall Holtzman on the tarmac. He'll do what the AG says. The agents go on stage. Which makes Logan nervous.
Holtzman quietly tells Logan he is under arrest. Martha is standing there with one of the all time great smirks. Enjoy your triumph, Martha. You earned it.
Mike tries to smirk as well, but mostly ends up looking like the Wise Old Man of the Mountain with a bit of gas.
In a strange parallel, Palmer's casket is loaded onto the plane, and Logan is put into a vehicle. Two presidents making their farewell.
Well, show's over now? We can go home? Nyoop, not yet.
Back at the printing press, Audrey shows up. A tender moment with Jack as the Hey Hey theme tinkles on the piano.
An agent wades hip deep into the mush and tells Jack there is a call from Kim. It's been patched to a land line inside the building.
Um, first, why not just give Jack a cell phone. Second, how did they know what number to patch the call to, and third, why are there working phone lines in this abandoned building?
Ah, but not all is as it seems. Jack goes inside, and two masked men jump him and drug him.
Clocks are at :53 to :51.
Karen tells Bill he'll be back running CTU again soon. Bill toes the floor in an aw shucks way and asks Karen out on a breakfast date. She has to run, but smiles and asks for a rain check. Bill and Karen sitting in a tree...
Bill has a tender moment with Chloe. He gives her something found in Edgar's possessions. It's a photo of Edgar and Chloe, Edgar is smiling like he just won a 10 minutes shopping spree in a grocery store. Chloe is burdened with memories, and it is a touching scene. Then, to ruin it all, Morris sticks his snout in and asks Chloe if she wants to talk about it. Surprisingly, she does.
Audrey goes looking for Jack, and realizes he is gone. She tells Agent Davis, who immediately asks for three people on the perimeter. Oh, sadly he doesn't know how utterly ineffective perimeters are.
We are somewhere else now. Some Chinese guys drop a sack of hamburger on the floor. Oh dear, it's Jack. He doesn't look so good. All beat up and bloody.
So, was this what Logan had in store for Jack? To give Jack back to the Chinese? But, how did the Chinese get to the printing press so quickly? Nobody knew that's where Jack would be? Did they fly in with the security team that rescued Logan? Sigh.
Hey, it's the Chinese Security Guy from the Consulate last year! The one that waltzed right into the heart of CTU, a sensitive intelligence location. But it was ok, CTU was just going to cover up the monitors.
Security Guy says "China has a long memory. Did you think we'd forget?" They're like elephants!
Then, we cut to the exterior of, I have to say it, a slow boat to China.
Fittingly, the season ends with clocks out of kilter. :60 to :57.
So, a unique ending. What does it mean for next year? Curtis flies to China to bust Jack out of prison? (Speaking of Curtis, he wasn't in the finale at all.) Jack in prison, meets an old man who tells him the location of a fabulous treasure and Jack returns to get vengeance? We shall see.
Now, as I did last year, I offer this in closing. This is in honor of all those who have made it this far with me. Thanks for coming along for the ride.
What's he that wishes so?
My cousin Wendell? No, my fair cousin;
If we are mark'd to die, we are now
To do this show loss; and if to live,
The fewer men, the greater share of honour.
God's will! I pray thee, wish not one man more watch this show.
By Jove, I am not covetous for internal logic,
Nor care I who doth feed upon my reviews;
It yearns me not if men my blog read;
Such outward things dwell not in my desires.
But if it be a sin to covet something that maketh sense,
I am the most offending soul alive.
No, faith, my coz, wish not another episode.
God's peace! I would not lose so great an honour
As one man more methinks would share from me
For the best hope I have. O, do not wish one more!
Rather proclaim it, through my internet host,
That he which hath no stomach to this viewing,
Let him depart; his passport shall be made,
And crowns for convoy put into his purse;
We would not die in that man's company
That fears his fellowship to die with us.
This day is call'd Season 5.
He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
Will stand a tip-toe when this day is nam'd,
And rouse him at the name of 24.
He that shall live this day, and see old age,
Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,
And say 'I have all the seasons on dvd.'
Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars,
And say 'These wounds I had on the fifth day.'
Old men forget; yet all shall be forgot,
But he'll remember, with advantages,
What feats he did that day. Then shall our names,
Familiar in his mouth as household words-
Jack the King, Bill and Chloe,
Curtis and Audrey, Aaron and Martha-
Be in their flowing cups freshly rememb'red.
This story shall the good man teach his son to avoid;
And 24 shall ne'er go by,
From this day to the ending of the world,
But we in it shall be remembered-
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that watches this show with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,
This day shall gentle his condition;
And gentlemen on their couches now-a-bed
Shall think themselves accurs'd they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That watched with us upon this fifth day.
Our intrepid guest critic, Paul Foth, was in Los Angeles when the finale aired. Surrounded by graphic violence, he used his discretion to poke his head above the table in his hotel room and look out the window. Amid the missile explosions, clouds of nerve gas, hails of bullets, gales of emotive outbursts, tornadoes of plot points, and tsunamis of continuity errors, he seemed to sense a dichotomy. The people in the streets--those who weren't terrorists or being killed by terrorists, anyway--seemed to be saying, "Jack Bauer, you fight your war. We'll go about our lives."
Paul was about to give me his review, but he ducked inside an abandoned warehouse to take a call from his Auntie Mildred. And, I haven't seen him since. Not sure where he went. Paul? Paul? I'll go check the perimeter...
Number of times Jack says "Now!": 38
Number of times Jack says "No!": 8
Number of times a "protocol" is mentioned: 46
Number of times someone says a variation of "Go!": 36
Number of moles: 5
Final Approximate Body Count: 109 (plus three rats, plus one human nerve gas guinea pig, plus 11 in the mall food court (and no, not from food poisoning), plus one security camera, plus 56 in CTU, plus whoever else was on the Russian sub)
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