Warning: This contains spoilers for Episode 9. Catch up with our spoiler-free review of Episode 1 here.
Another hour ticks by and another villain is introduced, as 24: Legacy continues to stick to its tried and tested method of changing story as quickly as possible before anyone gets bored. After last episode’s mini-climax, which saw Jadalla and Carter face off, this hour whisks us on to the next confrontation – and it does so at such a quick pace that it’s hard not to be swept along.
Following the warehouse shootout (and explosion), Jadalla is busy being taken to CTU for debriefing, while Mullins is busy reinstating Andy. Nicole, meanwhile, is all ready to go home with her husband, but – wouldn’t you know it? – Carter declares that he still has one more thing to sort out before calling it a day. (For those playing the I’ve-Got-One-More-Thing-To-Do drinking game, we recommend calling emergency services.) Carter, though, doesn’t even tell Nicole himself: he tells Isaac, and leaves Isaac to tell her, offering to give her a lift back home.
The one-more-thing that workaholic Carter just has to do? Follow Naseri, whom he discovered in the warehouse firefight. Naseri, we discover, is Bin-Khalid’s lieutenant, a man as nasty and ruthless as Jadalla. That becomes evident by the fact that the first thing he does is kidnap Jessica, the girlfriend of CTU’s Head of Security, Steven, and threatens him with her death, if he doesn’t set Jadalla free. Naseri, wherever he is, hasn’t really left the building.
Carter uses a mobile signal to track Naseri to a nearby residential neighbourhood, which, conveniently, is where Jennifer is being held hostage. Before he can deal with that, though, he has to deal with the female operative watching over her, who is as good at playing the part of the scared housewife as she is kicking butt; after last episode’s thrilling action, director Bronwen Hughes once again impresses at the helm with a superb bout of domestic fisticuffs.
Once the female operative’s down, we’re into classic 24 territory, as Carter is fed instructions over the phone on how to diffuse the bomb on Jessica’s vest. Corey Hawkins has done a top job in the lead so far, shouting, getting angry, apologising to his wife and pointing a gun with cool charisma, but this is the most important test of his ability to date: can he diffuse a bomb while convincingly breaking into a sweat? The answer is yes. Yes, he can.
While all that drama’s going down, John Donovan is planning to give up on his campaign altogether so he can look after his father, Henry, who’s badly shaken up, after his advanced interrogation last episode. (Speaking of which, we get to bid farewell to Tony Almeida, who wishes Ingram well. Bless.) But Henry isn’t too shaken up to stop being evil: he reassures his son that he covered his tracks so nothing can be traced back to John, which means he can still be president and all this can be forgotten about. Good old Henry, as delusional and morally bankrupt as ever. Before he can get too Manchurian Candidate on us, John at least has the sense to register his disapproval.
But before you can sigh with relief that Henry has hopefully been phased out for good, 24 is already running into its next explosive situation. Yes, back at CTU, poor old Steven must really love Jessica, because he doesn’t hesitate to break Jadalla out from his cell – and, as Carter feeds back to Ingram and co. about Jessica’s hostage situation, the hunt begins to find him. Inevitably, they find him – and inevitably, there’s a scuffle. Naseri and his men, though, succeed in extracting Jadalla, with pool old Steven getting bumped off in the process. Naseri then finds John, who’s on his way to reconcile with Ingram, and promptly takes his prisoner. Another hostage situation following a second hostage situation? 24: Legacy may not be original with its ideas, but it certainly makes up for quality with quantity.
In Emotional Stakes Land, Isaac returns Nicole to her home, where she finds a string of letters between Ingram and Carter talking about him becoming a full-time CTU agent. She’s annoyed that he hasn’t told her – and Isaac is there to offer shoulder to cry on – but as a final explosion leaves CTU in disarray (in case a hostage situation isn’t dramatic enough anymore), Eric joining the force is probably a good thing.
24: Legacy is available to buy and download as a box set on pay-per-view VOD.
Photo: Guy D’Alema/FOX