Wednesday, January 24, 2007

24 Season 1 is sillier than I remember

I've been re-watching the first season of 24, which I first saw years ago. The second time around is not as entertaining, sadly. I will always maintain that 24 is one of the best made shows on TV - it's got great acting, directing, visuals, and production values and is easily the most tense and thrilling show I've seen. It's a shame that the plots are so utterly nonsensical. I loved watching all the seasons thus far on their initial run, but even the first time around it was clear that there were holes that make the big one in the ozone look insignificant.

Watching Season 1 a second time with the foreknowledge of what is to come is a somewhat painful experience, because the contradictions and the lack of what I like to call logic are laid bare. I get the feeling I'll be sticking to brand new 24 from now on, once I finish Season 1 (my thoughts on that at a later date). For now, some of my issues so far (major spoilers ahead):

  • Why is the kidnap plan to grab Bauer's wife and daughter so incredibly convoluted? Couldn't they have just busted into the place and chloroformed them? Luring them out of the house with theatrics and then spending hours driving around in circles, and for what? And why did Gaines hire two inept kids to do his dirty work for him, when he seems like such a professional?

  • The Alan York character who accompanies Teri Bauer is so obviously not a bad guy until he mysteriously turns into one half way. Seriously, not only is the guy over-earnest to the extreme, he does things no competent bad guy would do. He almost gets arrested after arguing with a cop - he's later depicted as a cool and competent bad guy, so why would he have risked blowing his cover like that? He asks to speak to his 'daughter' on the phone when Kim calls Terri, an unnecessary and risky proposition. He goes to the hospital where his 'daughter' is, with no idea what condition she's in beforehand - if she had been conscious, wouldn't she have pointed out to people that he wasn't her father? And why the hell does he drive around with Terri for so long, couldn't he have just conked her on the head?

  • Does stealing a key card from a photographer really warrant paying a shit load of money and blowing up a jet airliner? Seriously? Couldn't they have grabbed him after he landed and taken it? And why on earth was the key card shipped to the guy in Europe, when he could only use it in the US - surely they would be more likely to issue it to him after he arrives, especially since it's so valuable? Is it really that hard to fake one of these? Gaines gets some of his people into the secure complex in any case, like the guy who intervenes when Jack tries to pass off a message to someone, how'd he manage that? How many planes did he blow up to get them access? In season 5, a key card is obtained by mugging someone in a parking lot. In season 1, they do it by BLOWING UP A PLANE! Doing this also attracted the attention of CTU. How come Palmer's assistant didn't realize that the photographer should have been dead? She spoke to him while he was on the plane, and the explosion of the plane was big news, wouldn't she have noticed that the guys flight had been prematurely cancelled?

  • Nina Myers is meant to be an insider, yet time and time again we see her doing her absolute best, above and beyond the call of duty, to help Bauer. What kind of mole does that? Hmm, maybe she wasn't a mole till the writers decided to maker her one at the end.

  • CTU is a phony organization. I mean, in terms of being a realistic depiction of an organization. Why is it filled with so many moles and petty, small minded people? Doesn't this high security, specialist group screen the people they hire? And how come they always have time for petty bickering and politics in the middle of a crisis? From my personal experience, people in a team tend to pull together in crisis situations, especially if they're familiar with each other as CTU people surely must be. But no, these asshats screw around when lives are at stake.

  • Why does Tony Almeida have so much time to NOT WORK? Seriously, in the middle of a crisis he seems to have an inordinate amount of time to spy on Nina while pretending to read something out of a file.

Phew, nice to get that off my chest. Looking forward to seeing what craziness awaits me in Season 6!

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