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24: Live Another Day S09E11: "9:00 PM-10:00 PM"


Although I'm disappointed that 24: Live Another Day hasn't taken advantage of its 12-episode order by jumping around in time, the great thing about working with a lower number of episodes is that the show hasn't gotten too bogged down in plot churn and unnecessary twists. This isn't a franchise that thrives on building complex character arcs, but the shorter run has at least allowed Live Another Day to create very solid stories in an efficient manner without losing sight of the people who exist within those stories. It's weird, then, that the season's penultimate episode allowed the plot to swallow some of the character moments that Live Another Day—and in certain cases, multiple seasons of 24—have been leading up to. 

Admittedly, "9:00 PM-10:00 PM" had quite a bit of ground to cover. With only two hours remaining in the story, this one needed to bring several disparate threads together, clarify some allegiances, and generally raise the stakes as much as possible. Even for a show that has produced more than 200 episodes, that's not always an easy task. Moreover, it's not even as if the developments themselves were bad or stupid; in fact, there were a number of really solid moments in this episode. Nope, the issue is that this was the first hour of the season where it felt like the the writers were zooming through the story just because they needed to. Travel seemed a smidgen easier, scenes were more exposition-heavy, and there was at least one instance of very, very needless drama (the one with President Heller dropping his pills while wedged between his advisors, who told him that the Chinese hadn't attacked and then immediately said that they had). While these individual elements didn't ruin the episode, they certainly disrupted what could've been an extremely strong hour. 


With that in mind, I'm wondering if maybe this episode was actually hampered by the shorter season. Historically, 24 has almost always moved through a number of different villains in a given season, and Live Another Day is no different. However, Margot was still just dispatched a few hours ago. The show did a fine job of letting some storylines—like Mark's involvement with the Russians—develop very slowly, but suddenly we're dealing with Russians and Mark and Cheng and what the Chinese might do all at once. While that's pretty cool because it's merged the good stuff from this season with some of 24's long-gestating history, it did require too many scenes of people talking about said history. It also placed too much of the focus on the BIG stakes that won't necessarily be resolved in next week's finale. Does it matter that the Chinese have decided to take the sub attack as a sign of U.S. muscle-flexing? Of course. But it's probably better for Live Another Day to keep the spotlight on what Cheng could do to the characters we know and care about—especially Chloe, his current hostage. Maybe another hour or two would've helped, or maybe the writers' room (which is a mix of veteran and rookie talent) ran into some trouble plotting the season.

But I don't want to dwell too much on what bothered me because when "9:00 PM-10:00 PM" wasn't mired in sloppy exposition or repetitive statements, it worked well. Frankly, for an episode that began with the continuation of Jack and Kate's shootout with the Russians and ended with the duo busting up the home of Mark's Russian contact and Cheng's men sniping down a group of people surrounding Audrey, the quieter moments were much more effective. 


Specifically, the split-screen cell phone conversation between Jack and Audrey was one of the season's best moments, and a much better scene between those two characters than their initial reunion a few weeks back. Kiefer Sutherland gets a lot of mileage out yelling and growling most of the time and then dialing it back to be really quiet when Jack is emotional, but this hour contained some of his better work in that realm. Both he and Kim Raver mustered up the history between these two characters without any histrionics and the extreme close-ups and the split screen proved to be a fine framing device for the interaction.

That was also a moment where the past meant everything. Cheng is a dude who tried to ruin Jack's life and Audrey's life, so her "kill him" and "do what has to be done" didn't ring false, not in the slightest. He tortured her within an inch of her life, after all. On Jack's end, he needed to make that call because he knows that Cheng's re-emergence and these issues with the Russians are going to force him to go FULL BAUER, which is never a pretty sight. Live Another Day hasn't bothered too much with saddling Jack with guilt and sadness, but there's been enough of those feelings along the way for us to understand that he didn't want to let a certain part of himself out again, especially if things got personal. Unfortunately, THINGS JUST GOT PERSONAL.


Perhaps unsurprisingly then, Jack's frustration turned into rage, which turned into impatience—so much so that he was willing to pull a gun on Mark right in front of the president. But here again, Live Another Day went to real lengths to at least explain Mark's actions without turning him into a pariah and villain. Not only did Mark immediately fess up, but he made a pretty solid, albeit flawed, case as to why he forged the signature to try to remove Jack from the equation nearly 12 hours ago. That doesn't necessarily handwave the fact that he basically ordered a hit squad to take Jack out like 90 minutes ago, but hey, in this world, what we saw was much better than the norm. To top it all off, Mark made a legitimate effort to help Jack and Kate take down his Russian contact Stolnavich, a move that led to a mostly well-paced little set piece at the end of the hour. I get it, Mark still sucks and we're not supposed to root for him. But the show and Tate Donovan deserve some credit for ensuring that we understood Mark. That's important.


I had my issues with the busy nature of all the looming threats baring down on Jack, the final scene, with Cheng taking out everyone around Audrey, was one heck of a cliffhanger. We know that Cheng isn't screwing around, but terrorizing Audrey is one of the things that he's the best at. While the less said about her as a helpless victim the better, at least she made a real effort to try to solve the stand-off with the Chinese before Cheng swooped in and probably created another decade of therapy for her. 

With only one hour to go, 24: Live Another Day still has a lot of story to cover. However, while this episode got a bit bogged down by trying to put characters and plot points in place for the finale, I don't suspect that will happen again next week. When your lead character can handle multiple terrorist cells on his own, things get done quickly when they need to. Now that the messy exposition is out of the way, the finale could be something special. Until then!



COMM & CLASSIFIED FILES

– Jack took care of at least four guys at Stolnavich's crib near the end of the episode, which brings the KILL TRACKER to approximately 15. Any additions to the DAMMIT TRACKER that you noticed this week?

– I don't know if the finale will have time for Kate's story on any major level, but she's a really strong sidekick for Jack. They seem to work well together. I wouldn't be opposed to more of her, should there be another season.

– Chloe rolled down a hill in a wooded area. I assume there are cougars nearby. 

– I love it when TV action scenes end with someone shooting a propane tank after ignoring it for seemingly minutes of gunfire. Not silly at all.


Let's hear your predictions for the finale! Who lives, who dies, and who might be a surprise return?


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a year later I'm here to comment on the fact that I think Jack called Audrey in the car to let her know he was about to brand her husband a traitor and was hoping she wouldn't hate him for it.
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#team24 for season 10 and 24 episodes for season 10.....
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I have actually been impressed with kate this season and I guess I shouldn't have been (I loved dexter so I seen her there as well) so I would like to see more of her as well with 24 as I have really enjoyed the series.

And chloe didn't just roll down a hill, It seemed she tumbled for a mile and a half.

And its like unwritten rule that you can not enter a gun fight and go straight for the propane tank, its just rude!!! Like not saying thank you after some one held the door for you rude!!!

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#team24 their should be season 10
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While not the best episode ever - I still loved it. Put me down for season 10 please! I know there probably won't be a season 10 - but after this season which has turned out much better than I thought it would - I'm all in for season 10!
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fantastic episode-enjoyed it way too much to look for petty "faults".Only regret-next wk. is the finale. Please bring it back next yr.!!![with the major great characters!]Jack is The Man!
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that would explain alot of what has transpired the last few episodes, and fit into the mold of mental trauma that has been set for jack bauer.

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the "shocking twist" stated in the finale promo will be that audrey is either working for the chinese and or cheng. mark it.
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This episode (as well as the previous one) proved to me beyond all doubt that 24:LAD had a bigger story to tell than what'd been compressed into these 12 episodes. I certainly didn't expect that we would move so far beyond Margot & The Drones, including the big worldwide politics with Chinese, Russians, plus the completely unexpected (and somewhat ridiculous) concept of war in the mix. And so I believe it to be a goodamn shame that there isn't at least a few more episodes to look forward to. There is so much that the finale will have to cover.

Considering that this season rarely - if ever - made me bored, I don't feel ready to say my goodbyes. It's a funny thing to admit when it comes to a show this adrenaline-fueled, but this season of 24 could've benefitted from slowing down here and there to better explain or establish things - if only there'd been more time for that.

Aside from the more or less usual silly or weird elements (Cheng knowing what Audrey would be up to; Cheng's truck not being inspected for stopping where people are not supposed to stop and for acting strangely; Jack's prophetic abilities when it came to establishing a link between Cheng and the Russians, before even finding out how and why Mark Boudreau set him up), it was just another enjoyable romp. It's a weakness, but I'm always willing to forgive 24 a lot for the sake of sheer edge-of-the-seat entertainment value.

Kiefer and Kim managed to take me by surprise once again: I don't really expect deeply emotional moments from the show, but those scenes between Jack and Audrey just work on that special level. The kind of impact I don't brace myself for when watching, and it hits harder as a result.

Whatever the finale sets out to do, I know that I'm already going to miss Jack Bauer.
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Actually, despite of all the gun carnage, this episode kinda sucks. Some things doesn't sit well with me.

First the russian. I know that Jack said or rather thought that the russian are covering Cheng, but he doesnt know that the Russian are really on a Jack-napping mission. It was a surprise that they really were working together. I think that plot was forcibly crunched together due to the fewer episode format.

Second. Unless suddenly Cheng has super clairvoyant power, how in hell did he know Audrey will be on that park. DId he have one of his cronies to follow Audrey the moment he knows that Bauer is chasing him? this question better be answered in the final episode.

And so we have come to the classic thriller standoff. Where the main protagonist will be given the choice either to save the girl or save the world.
I hope that Jack really meant that he didn't resurface just to get back with Audrey. I like her... but quoting n'sync...bye bye bye.
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Well I am under the impression that after jack wacked the Russian delegate in season 8 for killing his best girl that he knows they are there for a Jack-napping session.
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I have no clue how they're going to wrap this up next week in just one hour. unless next week's episode wasn't in real time -- that, instead, it was a wrap up show spanning days with time splits between.
the real question is the final scene - jack weeping over audrey's body? Prez's body? out for a cuppa with Morgan? or my favorite option - With nowhere to go -- since Open Cell should now be called Open Wound -- Chloe returns to the platonic arms of her brother in vigilante justice, Jack Bauer. And they go after Cheng and the Russkies.
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Or a cliffhanger. :D
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FULL BAUER - Yeeeeesssss!!!
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It was unfair for president Heller to place Mark under arrest for treason on the spot. guys how was he even supposed to get out of that room may be here we also see the good side of Jack as He could have attacked the russian even without Marks help
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if jack is smart he would plant a chinese operative at the dead russians home this will give the russian government more incentive to come after jack they have to be enraged by now
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the scene where Heller drops his meds and the army guys see how disheveled he is are they setting up a coup. mark boudreau was correct in saying he keeps the president hands clean and he protects him and he is married to his daughter that is allegiance Now someone can exploit Heller
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I found it silly that Russia's intelligence operator would have a commercial security system and cheng killed the daughter of a man on the politburo WOW! what does he want with Audrey or was he just trying to keep china from being resonable why the hardliners can rise to power

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Philip Winchester of Strike Back was in this episode. I wonder if they hired him because they were filiming in London. He continues to cameo in some US shows even though he is the lead in Strike Back.

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Ahh, it was bugging me who that was. Actors out of context get you every time.

He may be the lead on SB, but that's stuck while Sullivan Stapleton recovers, and it's on the last season anyway. So work while you can, especially if they use him properly in next weeks finally.
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It was kind of funny as he was the kick ass guy in strike back and now he is in a suit/uniform.

Sullivan Stapleton was injured during filming? He seems to have more jobs in movies/TV shows. I seen him around recently too though I cannot remember where.
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I'm a fan of Strike Back. Season 1 was the best but I still enjoyed the other seasons. I think they have 1 more season…
I like both Stapleton and Winchester.
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Gangster Squad?
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Yes that's it ! Looks like you are a fan.
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300 part 2
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I have not watch that one.
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He was injured on a night off from filming strike back in Bangkok. He fell off a tuk-tuk and suffered a head injury. so is taking 6 months off to recover. So the final season is going to be delayed until next year.
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why do you guys think the road scene cheng/chloe wasnt filmed in the uk?
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How can the president of the united states chief of staff not be aware of a covert operative chief of staffs are very powerful,when the russian intelligence operator contacted him he should have known that this man was not legitimate it would have been the prime minister or something
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When I watched this, I completely forgotten next week will be the final episode. Looks like they will need a 13th episode or is next week's finale going to be 90 minutes. 1 Hour and a time jump? How to finish all the stories in 1 hour? It may not end satisfying for the viewers. There should be a pretty good chance of this coming back next summer.
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This is how I imagined the scene when I saw it.



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Jack: You bet on Brazil !! How dumb are you
Heller: Really Mark... did you not see Brazil vs Chile
Mark: Well..their Samba senoritas have bigger jugs than my wive
Mark: And I now you feel that your gun is getting heavy.... and you will lower it....lower...lower...lower....
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Jack: "Señoritas" is a Spanish word, and in Brazil they speak Portuguese. Portuguese! Don't you do anything right?
Heller: And if you knew anything about Brazilian women's anatomy, you'd know their biggest asset is not their jugs, Mark. Now, you're just embarrassing yourself.
mark: OK, I guess I'd better shut up...
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Erik uttered a "DAMMIT" when the tech guy couldn't get some information fast enough. Does that count for the tracker or does it have to be necessarily jack to say it?
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I'm usually all for the action but if this is the last of 24 then I want Jack & Audrey together in the final scene. If we would've gotten old & cool (& not the girl with the dragon tattoo bad impersonator) Chloe then she could've been in the end scene as well but I say let the cougars have her, maybe they are the family she's been longing for!?
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Maybe Kim Bauer will show up.
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Please, no more kim bauer!!!!! Jacks "family story" arcs were really boring and hard to get through, I want to blow up L.A. while watching those.
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Yes to Kim Bauer so A10sbum can become a terrorist for Jack Bauer to take down! ;)
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People the Time Jump will happen in the next episode its labled 10pm-11am
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Believe me. The series continues to be called 24 BECAUSE it will continue to happening in 24 hours. Either they continue the 13th hour immediately after the 12th, or they ended it with a cliffhanger and return before the year ends with the second half of this season. There's no way they solve this new "Cheng Third War" development in mere 40 minutes. FOX is hiding some information from us, up to the limit.
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If the title of the final episode is any indication, we will be getting our time jump then. It will cover the rest of the 24 hour period.
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Yeah, I think this will end as a cliffhanger for more 24 episodes (next year?).
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The Russian's security is beyond incompetent. He doesn't check enough to see that Mark is carrying two active radio transmitters and still claims that he is completely clean.

I'm glad they haven't done a time-jump. It would ruin the concept. It's the real-time aspect that makes the show, not that is corresponds with a complete rotation of the earth. 17 or 37 episodes would also work. That they still call it "24" is for continuity rather than a time-stamp.

This has to be a set-up for a second half-season. Surely they can't resolve all of this weeks cliff-hangers in one hour.
And that would be great. We want more Jack and Kate.

I really don't think that there are cougars in England. The biggest, non-human, threat she is likely to encounter, in the outskirts of London, is a badger.
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a badger .... a very grouchy badger. Or an innocent little white bunny rabbit .. 'it's just a rabbit!'
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How about an escaped cougar from a zoo? :P
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They (Jack and Kate) had switched positions around a building. That's when they saw the propane tanks.
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"I don't know if the finale will have time for Kate's story on any major level, but she's a really strong sidekick for Jack. They seem to work well together. I wouldn't be opposed to more of her, should there be another season."

Then make time, after all this and his new pardon, Jack will need him some sexy times and who better than his new smokin' hot, slightly damaged partner? It worked well with Rene...sorta, so why not go back to that well.

"Chloe rolled down a hill in a wooded area. I assume there are cougars nearby."

Ha! But this is London, maybe a fox or a weasle? I've heard they can be vicious ;)
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What bugs me most, and I can't believe it wasn't mentioned anywhere here, is how did they make the connection of the Russians to Cheng? Mark was only in contact with the Russians to hand Jack over, as far as he was aware, the Russians have absolutely nothing to do with Cheng, and no one had any proof whatsoever that they did, in fact once Mark explains why the Russians attacked Jack, there is absolutely zero evidence that links them but yet all of a sudden they all know that they are working together and they are willing to break in, torture and kill a Russian diplomat at his own home? I suppose they already have a war started with the Chinese, why not start one with the Russians too... Just felt like really really last writing (unless I missed a connection somewhere else)
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Jack said who is cheng working for then it occurred to him the Russians because cheng wants him out of they way because jack Bauer is his undoing.
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I don't completely disagree, I was thinking the same thing. But from what I can tell, the connection was a stretch for some people (Mark) but Jack saw it more clearly. It wasn't a coincidence the Russian's showed up so quickly to try to abduct Bauer as he was going after the override. Jack doesn't believe in coincidences, which is why if something goes wrong on a mission he always assumes there is a mole. Plus the fact that Cheng doesn't have an affiliation means he must be working with someone who wants something out of the war - and the russians not only made sense but had already gotten involved in the day's activities.
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the CIA tech nerd said Mark had requested Jack's cellie encryption - Mark confesses to Jack & Prez that he sold Jack to the Russkies - and Viola! ya got Russkies in bed with Cheng to start a proxy war between USA & PRC while the wily Russ sit back and tend their flower beds - flawed logic from a severely pared-down script.
But I still love it like I love Strahotsky.
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Just a quick cutaway shot of a mountain lion near Chloe. That WOULD be awesome!!
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She'd be well camouflaged at night with all her eye makeup. Then again, that could also make her the target of roving gangs of randy raccoons.
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Staff

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Grrrrr. you look kinda chewy.
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Bring back Kim, nice but dim!
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Good episode towards the finale at least the Mark story is resolved although I was expecting him to be killed off so we can have Jack and Audrey. How did Cheng know where Audrey was meeting the Chinese worker unless their is a mole in the presidential staff or she has a tracker on her from the abduction.

That scene along the road when chloe bailed in the woods was filmed in US no way was that filmed here. I can see Audrey getting killed in the finale because Jack always losing loved ones. Also wouldn't the russians be protected from diplomatic immunity when Jack stormed the house ?
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the Def Con level has been lowered and threat of nuclear weapons diplomatic immunity is not in play.
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Lol, when did Jack care about diplomatic immunity? And I think Cheng has someone in the Chinese consulate/embassy.
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Probably was a bit of a strange place to meet not many people around and the chinese worker was a bit too shifty Still waiting for heller to pick next stadium or his tour emirates, stamford bridge or white hart lane. They could all do with a makeover LOL
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Yeah, it was lame.. Not one person pulled out some automatic rifle/gun. Chinese aircraft carrier sunk and the US gov't sends-in 2 people, meh. ;-s
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All in all a solid episode that continues the solid run of the shows perhaps best season to date, but there are a couple of things i'm surprised didn't make it to the review:
- Jack to Mark: "He's a covert intelligence operator you idiot" (that made me audibly chuckle).
- That wonderfully comic (read sarcastically) moment when a British soldier questions Cheng and his merry band of henchmen, all dressed in blacks with flashlights, why they pulled over their truck in the middle of the road, and promptly sends them off with a warning.
British readers pray tell, is a Chinese group of paramilitaries a common spectacle at night on her majesty's highways?
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he thought they were delivering chow mein and egg rolls to the Officers in the barracks.
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- KILL TRACKER: There were probably a few during the melee with the Russians at the beginning. DAMMIT TRACKER: 0, but SONOFABITCH TRACKER: 4 (When Jack found the override device tracker, when Gavin told him about Boudreau, and twice with Stonavich at the end)

- When Audrey left the residency to meet her contact, it was obvious she was going to get in trouble. She could have just called her contact (and Sprint HD phones apparently allow you to hear the caller loud and clear, so you don't have to be sorry about the noise, Jack). But a good way to up the stakes in the last hour (12 hours?).
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I don't know if it counts when said by another character say's it,but Ritter dropped a dammit during the episode.
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Interesting. What's the lowest defcon 24 has ever gone to?

So this episodes sets up a future for Jack with Audrey and Kate can now take over and be the hero.

Next season: Since Tony is still out there he will probably be the new villain then Kate will have to call Jack in as a consultant on him. And 24 have never shied away from killing people Jack and Audrey could die.
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That was awesome!
I am really glad Mark survived, but there's still one episode left.
So Jack and Audrey vs Cheng....bring it on!
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I just love opening my Tuesday mornings with the ticking clock of 24...

Come on FOX now bring back
FRINGE - Back to the future and the other side
Buffy - Save the World....Again

Fox 2015-2016 Monday lineup:
September - December:
8:00PM - Sleepy Hollow - Season 3
9:00PM - Buffy - Save the world... again

January - May:
8:00PM FRINGE - Back to the future and the other side
9:00PM 24 - Live Yet Another Day

One can only dream...
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And Firefly...don't forget Firefly!!
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What about X-Files.
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X-Files, as much as I loved it was too 20th century (and played-out, unfortunately - like we saw in the movies); would need a major overhaul, imo. (if even possible)
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A new short season of X-Files would be awesome. They can bring in some new material and concepts from the past. I am liking the 24 short season, though I could have used about 6 more shows. Sonofabitch!
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I think we should have had a 'son of a bitch' tracker. I think the only dammit came from one of the guys back at CIA HQ. Next week? Chloe activates a tracker she planted on Cheng, calls Jack with the intel. Audrey sits and snivels for most of the hour. Jack and Kate wipe out Cheng's henchman, and Jack deals Cheng a slow (for 24) gruesome death of 30 seconds. Mark goes to prison, Jack and Audrey walk off into the sunrise, and Kate stares at them wistfully. Ha!
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sorry but I've never been a fan of jack and Audrey. She's the damsel in distress whom jack has to save constantly. Kate on the other hand is someone who can take care of herself. They make a good team. Who knows if they do another show, just as Jack and Kate are getting close, her husband turns up alive. I would like to see Mark give up his life to save Audrey and she leaves to mourn and take care of he father.
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Staff
We really should have. Maybe I'll try to accumulate them for the finale.
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Calling this one because it's easy: Heller dropped his pills and Mark helped him pick them up. Mark planted some poison or something in there.
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Mark at the time was with Jack he was no where near Heller when he dropped his pills.
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What? That wasn't even Mark but his assistant. The scene portrayed the president's weakness towards his staff. That's all.
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It's a secret service agent.
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Thx, wasn't sure.
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That, and the Generals realized that he is sick.
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great episode all round i cant wait for the finale, that firefight in the embassy is one of the best gun fights i have seen on 24 yet.
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I thought the embassy rumble was not quite as much fun as the Russkie Rumble in the street - when the backup tac guy came up and Jack's first words were "we need ammo clips for the 320 (SIG320? - anyone got that on tape and can verify?) - Now THAT IS A WARRIOR.
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it wasn't the embassy, the residence at the end - when they're "jamming" the security signal (lmao)?.. they really jump the shark in each an every episode. xD
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also a Chinese ship is torpedoed and nothing to tell the rest of the story.
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