Monday, May 24, 2010

Tick, Tock....End Game (24 says Goodbye)

I'm still in a daze surrounding the last two Bauer Hours. I had my predictions but they didn't come true. It's crazy that the show my Mondays revolved around is finally done and this finale meant a lot to me because 24 is probably the first show that I watched from its entirety.

I remember in high school when the series premiere was postponed because of 9/11. The masses weren't ready for a show centered around a terrorist plot and it was pushed back to January. But when it came on, I was blown away.

The show felt like a mini-movie. Fast-paced, complex, dense, and a different feel than shows around at the time. It was a show for the post 9/11 era and it defined the changing times where terrorism was real and the global world became something we all needed to be aware of. If the attacks shook us up as Americans, 24 was the show to deal with what came out of the blender.

It was a gamble to make essentially a mini-series into 1-hr drama episodes. If it flopped, it would be a huge failure but because it didn't, we now see it's offspring in shows like "Lost" and and "Flash Forward." It may not have been Top 10 popular, but 24 was undeniably influential.

For me, each episode was critical. If I couldn't see it, I recorded it on tape - I remember having a double tape of "7th Heaven" and "24" back in high school. When I went to college, everything shut down on Mondays. No AIM, no Internet, no work, no phone calls, just Jack Bauer and CTU's latest plot to save the country.

Season 5 ranks as one of the best TV seasons in recent memory. Not only did Jack rise to the occasion after being left for dead, the introduction of Pres. Charles Logan and his wife finally gave the show some great characters to match with Bauer. Plus the storyline was so intricate and twisting (a plot involving Logan himself) that it felt like the show was at its peak.

The last season for 24 had one of the worst starts ever for a great show. It literally was gonna be the Jack Bauer Hour because when he wasn't around, the show suffered. But then it had one of the greatest rebounds for a TV season in recent memory, climaxing with something happening to Jack that I didn't expect.

It's the end of an era. A show that told us about terrorism and eventually about ourselves and our thirst for the truth no matter what. One of the best TV shows of the new millennium and a big part of me growing up (not to mention introducing me to Elisha Cuthbert!)

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