Jack on the box

January 25th, 2005

“…These choices of theme and hero have always given 24 a sense of topicality, a feeling increased because, unusually for a through-plotted drama, many of the episodes are written while the series is on air… …Yet the series’ claim to contemporary realism is complex. While 24 depicts America under permanent attack from terrorists – the fabric of California taking the scale of pounding London suffered in the blitz – the fact is, since 9/11, there has been more terrorism on American TV than American territory…

…The White House may claim that the lack of attacks is proof that the real Kiefers are succeeding in their work but it gives 24 a rather uncomfortable air of impatient fantasy…

…To be really topical, 24 would deal with America as international aggressor rather than defender against terrorism and there are welcome suggestions that series four has at least been influenced by the events at Abu Ghraib jail…

…The problem, as throughout the four-year first term of 24, is the suspicion that Jack’s behaviour is being justified in the defence of America from Arabs. But, though now as far from the heart of American politics as John Kerry, 24 remains a sleek storytelling machine that risks stealing from us another six months of Sundays…”

source : media.guardian.co.uk

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