“Sit Back & Enjoy The Ride”

January 18th, 2009

I’ve been sitting, watching a blinking cursor for half an hour, trying to figure out how best to describe my thoughts on the first four episodes. To coherently present thoughts I’m sure many of you have been having about the episodes we’ve seen so far, that moves beyond “That was awesome!”

But in truth i’ve run out of time, so this review isn’t going to be as comphrensive as I’d like, more simply an overview of why it was so good, using as few cliches as possible.

I’ve already written up my thoughts on the first 17 minutes, but in brief when I saw the first 17 minutes on the 24: Redemption DVD I loved them, I couldn’t imagine how they could have been any better. And so in the manner of those first minutes episode 1 and 2 continued, solid, subtle, with slowly building tension creeping up on you, all created by masterfully crafted dialogue.

The first two episodes have so much to love, Jack’s testimony to the Senate, and in general how the episodes very slightly changed the shows position on torture. They’ve received a fair amount of criticism for the shows use of torture in the past, and rightly so in my view, but whatever your opinion on torture you couldn’t have failed to notice how the writing had grown lazy in using torture as a way out of every corner. This left them with a bit of a condundrum, continue as before and it sends a clear message to a legion of fans who are tired of the repetition that the writers aren’t listening – do a complete u-turn on torture, and it would be seen as a cynical move. But they managed to negiogate the minefield well by being slightly more open about it, not being as defensive, and airing various different sides of the argument. All this added up to some interesting and dramatic moments, how far would Jack have gone after Agent Walker appear to give him the green light?, and how far was Walker prepared to let Jack go?

The most intelligent writing the series has had in a long time means the episode 1 and 2 are extremely entertaining and engergetic, but in reality are just a good solid foundation for the rollercoaster ride that was to come in 3 and 4.

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“Everything We Wanted” – An Addict Reviews The Premiere

January 16th, 2009

So, you’ve watched the first four episodes of the new season and you’re still shaking with excitement? I promise you, you’re not the only one! Everywhere I look, the general opinion seems to be “WOW! I can’t believe they’ve pulled this off!”

As someone who has been hurt in her heart by Almeida’s disgraceful exit in 5×13, who hasn’t cared about Season 6 at all, and certainly didn’t expect 24 to pull her back in at any point in the future, I am admitting it right now: I am an addict again. I didn’t think it was possible for the show to return from the abyss that was season 6 and climb to a greatness that I haven’t seen since Season 3, but it has. It’s back, it’s strong and it’s alive.

And I’m loving it.

Let me get this out of the way first: these first four episodes have given us EVERYTHING we wanted, everything we screamed for – in forums, chats, on websites, and I bet on conferences, meets and greets and in the streets, when bumping into anyone involved with the show. I am convinced that the writers have been reading and listening to us this time around, and this is their way of apologizing, trying to make amends – quite clearly, they’re seeking redemption. And boy, have they done a great job!

From an Almeidaist point of view, this is pretty much Paradise. Tony is back in play and getting as much screen time as Jack, and each and every scene between them is picture perfect! Not only that – the Brotherhood between them is spelled with a capital B this season as the show lives and thrives on it. Their chemistry is what is carrying the story, with tension so strong it’s palpable, dialogue that makes my blood run hot and then freeze, and an energy like we haven’t seen it in years. The writers have done a very good job of keeping both Jack and Tony in character and I am grateful for that.
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24 Is Back, I Can’t Wait & You?

January 10th, 2009

If you’ve visited this site in the past, you’ve noticed me around, but with the slight shift that we’re taking away from news and toward opinion and commentary regarding series 7, I felt like I should reintroduce myself:

I’m Daniel Hardy, Liverpool fan, Web designer and TV addict.

I couldn’t tell you exactly what my tastes in TV are – they change and evolve, and I often have a hard time describing them beyond “I like good TV.” Just what is good? It’s simply too subjective a word.

Well, in 2001 I was given a helping hand: a new show started airing and I could point to it and say “That’s what I like”: 24.

Perhaps it’s a bit tedious to list the reasons I liked it. It’s been done by so many other people so many times before. But I will try anyway, in the off chance I might mention something new: it was fresh, it was cool, it made you think and it did truly break the mould for TV at the time, something which is very hard to do.

You mulled every episode over for a full week. Some people thought of that week as a curse; it was in fact a blessing. You needed seven days to recover and to fully play back all the key points in your head and analyse and plot possible future developments. When the new episode finally arrived you compared your projections against the actual happenings as the plot thickened. That was the ritual.

When series one finished, I wasn’t sure at first if there would be a second. Then I heard that there would be but they might not use the same characters. People thought that was crazy – after all, we’d just spent so much time getting to know these rich three dimensional characters. Viewers wanted to know what happened to them. What would Jack do after the death of Teri?

Personally, I would have perfectly understood them not using the same characters. After all what I truly enjoyed was the unique format, and the characters were a product of that format, not the other way around. This feeling meant I’ve never quite fallen into one of the “Jack is 24” or “Almeida is God” camps.

It’s not that I don’t love Jack and Tony as characters – I do. When they lose a loved one in a terrorist plot, it hurts, when they get betrayed, I’m angry. Yet I don’t need these characters to be the centre of attention to enjoy the show, I’m much happier when the show as a whole is stronger.

This is why I enjoyed series five, why I could view it as something other than a betrayal of the faithful audience. It had a lot of similarities to the original, often going for silent menace over loud bangs. Gregory Itzin’s President Logan was a joy to behold, Jean Smart as Martha perfectly cast and plus a well written central arc to the series which slowly boiled up, right to the finish. It’s true that it required too much of a sacrifice to get there, and Tony’s exit was botched, but on the whole it was good, very good, and so with a lump in my throat I’d accepted his death as a penance that had to be paid. Continue Reading »

Season Seven – 24’s Road To Redemption?

January 1st, 2009

A few words from a post-rehab 24 addict, seventeen minutes into season seven

Hello, my name is J_A and I’m an addict. A 24 addict.

Or well, I used to be.

I have been addicted to 24 from the first second of season 1; actually, even before that. I saw a commercial for it and instantly knew that this was my show. Then, when the pilot actually aired, bang, I was hooked. Addicted. Going down a one-way street into a very cool habit.

I was indeed one of those fans who’d live, breathe and bleed 24, whose ­weeks would run from 24 to 24 instead of Monday to Sunday, who’d turn off their phones whenever watching the show, bore people to death with talking about how great the show was, I’d spend my spare time re-watching 24 episodes, eventually knowing all dialogue by heart; I missed 24 during the hiatus so much that I started my own chain of 24-like events by writing fanfictions, I would have applied for a job at CTU if it hadn’t been a fictional agency, and I most definitely would have elected David Palmer into the Office…

What was so addictive about it, apart from its complexity and the breakneck speed with which it raced through the season? When 24 first hit the screens in 2001, it was simply the most innovative, gripping and thrilling series to ever air on TV. The format was unique, the writing superb, the casting perfect, the acting motivated, the characters had depth and the storyline was one big arc, revealing itself little by little.

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Happy New Year

January 1st, 2009

A Happy New Year to everyone.

Also wanted to address a few emails i’ve been getting about site activity. Fresh posts have been sparse here lately to due various issues, but I wanted to reassure visitors that 24fans.com will be alive and kicking for Season Seven.

Having conducted a review of the site i’ve decided that I was simply trying to do too much, and spreading the available effort too thin. For Season Seven we’ll have a slight shift in focus, from covering as much of the small detail as possible to providing more thoughful opinion and commentary on the upcoming season (and beyond hopefully). We’ve got atleast one exciting new contributor (and more may follow) who will provide coverage of the season from an Almeidaiest point of view. Her first piece on the return of Tony and the first 17 minutes of Season Seven will be posted later today, and i’ll be following that up with my own thoughts on the new season.

Hope you all had a very good holiday season, but it’s time to get back to the serious business of 24!

New Season 7 Trailer

iF Magazine Reviews 24: Redemption

October 4th, 2008

Some how the lucky guys over at iF Magazine have been shown a finished cut of the upcoming S7 Prequel “24:Redemption” …

… And boy, what a ride. It’s nice to know Jack, after a year and half of television inactivity is back in action and ready to kick-ass in whole new package.

… Teamed with a former buddy turned missionary Carl Benton (Robert Carlyle), the two of them have been helping out children in Africa through education while a ruthless warlord (Tony Todd) is attempting to overthrow the government while abducting children into his militia …

… Suffice to say, the movie plays out in real-time over a two-hour period, it retains all the things 24 fans love … It also sets up a great group of new cast members that should provide an interesting, different season than we’ve seen before on 24.

I know it’s two months away, but man, after you see this movie, you’ll immediately want Season 7 to start. With the current economy a mess, and our own presidential race still on, not having Jack around to make things right in a fictional U.S. scenario has been solely missing …

… After the network run is over, it’s clear Jack Bauer as played by Kiefer Sutherland is a character that will be able to segue into a big budget film franchise with ease.

I’m not sure how much to trust a review from a someone who got an early preview, your always likely to be kinder when you’ve been given the VIP all access pass, read the full review at the link below.

source : ifmagazine.com

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