VOD TV recap: 24 Live Another Day Episode 10
James R | On 09, Jul 2014
Warning: This contains spoilers.
Never trust a man in a cravat. That’s what 24: Live Another Day seemed to tell us in Episode 9, when it revealed that Adrian Cross was the bad guy all along.
Yes, Adrian Cross, everyone’s favourite Julian Assange clone, who has spent of the season fighting for liberty, fraternity and equality. No wait, that’s the French – although he might as well be from France, given how right wing 24’s writers have revealed themselves to be.
Hackers are topical and edgy and potentially good-intentioned, they say. But, more importantly than that, they decide – revealing the show’s true colours – hackers are the villains. After all, they stand against The System. And if anyone’s going to go rogue against The System, it’s Jack Bauer – and even then, it’s only to protect The System. Could 24 be any more conservative?
It turns out yes.
The penulti-penultimate hour in Jack Bauer’s day sees Kiefer Sutherland’s perpetually angry man chase Navarro through Borough Market, Liverpool Street and other trendy locations – another reminder of how effective this change of scenery has been in countering the series’ familiarity. Taking him into custody (after Navarro has given the device to Cross), we discover that it is capable of controlling the military networks of almost every country on the planet. Cross’ plan? To share it publicly so anyone can control them – in his mind, creating a stalemate of peace.
Chloe, bless her, tries once more to become an independent agent in the plot, nicking the device and pegging it from Adrian’s car – but he shoots her getaway driver, once again relegating her to a supporting role like the woman she is.
Thank goodness, then, for Kate (aka. Bauer 2.0), who discovers that Navarro framed her husband and promptly goes renegade on his ass in the interrogation room – only to reveal that it was a ploy all along, concocted with Bauer. Morgan positioning herself as the psychotic interviewer rather than Jack? It’s a move that reminds us just how much potential there is for 24 to exist without hi,.
But back to Jack. With Navarro surrendering all of his information as quickly as possible (confirmation that he’s the worst mole in the history of CIA moles), he runs with Kate to the hackers’ hideout, but Chloe and Adrian get their first… only to find them all killed. By whom? The Chinese, of course! You remember the Chinese and how evil they are.
Appearing from Jack’s past like an angry foreign stereotype, Cheng Zhi reveals himself as the real bad guy all along. He hired Cross to develop the device, which was stolen by Margot to control drones for her own ends. Who can reconfigure the device? Chloe, of course! You remember Chloe and how subservient she is to all men in need of a plot function.
Jack and Kate, meanwhile, are driving as fast as they can… only to be hit by another car. Who would hit Bauer with a car? The Russians, of course! You remember the Russians and how evil they are. Betrayed by Mark, who has been blackmailed over his forging of the President’s signature – remember, kids: don’t forge the President’s signature – the Russians are eager to get their hands on their nemesis.
It’s a right old reunion for 24: Live Another Day, but amid all the old, nasty faces, there’s still time for Cross to reveal that Chloe’s husband wasn’t killed by the government at all and that he lied to her to recruit her as part of his gang – a reminder that hackers are still Bad People. But not as bad as the Russians. Or the Chinese.
Could 24 be any more conservative? Yes. In its desperation to find a storyline, the show simply brings back all the skeletons from its cupboard. Which, in Jack Bauer’s case, means pretty much anyone who isn’t American. Even us English are portrayed as semi-trustworthy types. It’s a twist that takes us right back to the days of Kimberley and the cougar. It’s hilariously, stupidly entertaining, but for the first time, also faintly stale – not because we’re back to having the same old enemies, but because politically, 24 hasn’t moved on since 2001. Unless you count the cravats.
There’s no time to ponder that, though: in the final seconds of Episode 10, Cheng orders a US nuclear sub to fire upon a Chinese aircraft carrier. The System is in peril once again.
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