Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Regrets, I've Had a Few

Review/Recap of 24: Live Another Day, Episode 11: 9:00 pm-10:00 pm - SPOILERS!

We're down to the last two hours... and still no time-jump to make this 12-episode mini-series cover a full 24 hour period. Well... maybe some things just aren't meant to be.

Last time, Cheng Zhi made his grand reappearance in 24-land to remind us all how malodorous the Chinese are (at least, where Jack Bauer is concerned). At the same time - in a seeming random chance - the Russians suddenly decided that Jack is on the menu. While Jack is in the middle of a covert op to get to the Chinese.

All this because Mark Boudreau is a jealous husband and is threatened by Jack and he needs to assert his male dominance by committing treason to get Jack hauled away by the Russians. For many episodes now, I've been predicting that Mark is thisclose to getting popped by the Russians - or at the very least losing his job as Chief of Staff and being locked away in some dark federal penitentiary.

But before we can get to "What Did Mark Regret Doing Today?", there is some Important Stuff to clear up. First off - Chloe is an ingenious little IT hacker and finds a way to prove that Cheng is the one orchestrating the whole Doomsday Device thing. With a simple cell phone recorder trick, she alerts Jack to this vital piece of information and Jack has a momentary Heroic Blue Screen of Death (which, Jack's Heroic BSODs would never be experienced by a normal person. Because a normal person would be vaporized before they got that far). Jack shakes it off and finds out that the Russians were tracking him using the CIA code thingy in his cell phone that only the CIA and Mark Boudreau would have known. Now, the CIA has been cleared of all Rotten Mole People, so who does that leave to face Jack's wrath?

I was praying for Jack to punch Mark in the face - simply as a cathartic experience. But what I got instead was GOLD (I had to watch it twice AND get screengrabs simply because it was THAT GOOD)

Jack gets to the US Embassy and gets Mark and the President in an impromptu meeting where Jack promptly points a gun at Mark's head (I'LL TAKE IT!) Jack reveals that Mark's been working with the Russians, Mark insists that he's not really, but he did forge President Heller's signature on a rendition order to turn Jack over to Russia WHILE JACK WAS HELPING SOLVE THE TERRORIST PROBLEM, IT MUST BE NOTED in order to keep Heller's political credit in good standing. His excuse? The President needs to stay squeaky clean, but the Chief of Staff can afford to do bad things.

It would have been a believable excuse (if still a very poor one) - except the scene before Jack gets to the embassy, he calls Audrey. Unbeknownst to Jack, Audrey was in the room when Jack was on speakerphone with the President telling him that Cheng was still alive and behind the latest crisis. And the reason Audrey paid a visit to the Land of Catatonia was because she once went looking for Jack when he was imprisoned in China, but she got caught by the same gang of thugs that held Jack - the same gang that Cheng was working with. So... it's not so much the name "Jack Bauer" that affects Audrey, but the name "Cheng Zhi." With this information in mind, we return to Jack and Audrey's phone call. Before Jack can say much, Audrey says "Kill him" (referring to Cheng). And, by damn, that is probably the most romantic thing Audrey could have said in that moment.

Back to Jack, Mark, and the President. Because there are some WONDERFUL facial expression in this. Some of which I was able to screencap and I will now share with you all.

First off - Heller doesn't have to say ANYTHING - 

I quite enjoyed Jack's line of "He's a covert intelligence operative, you idiot!"

And then there's Mark's realization that Jack's been living under bridges and probably dumpster diving for his meals in the past four years, but he knows more about foreign policy than the freaking Chief of Staff does (with bonus added Internal Dialogue Subtitles because you know that was there)

And then - the most glorious moment of all - Jack says "If we go to war with China, who do you think benefits?" To which Mark mumbles his reply as if he's a ten-year-old competing in the Hayville County School District's Geography Bee: "Russia." (and if I knew how to make my own animated .gifs, I would have giffed that entire exchange, because it deserved Epic Giffage. As it is, you're just going to have watch the scene on Hulu or whatever you preferred method of rewatch is).

And all this time, this is me:

BUT IT GETS BETTER! Because Jack insists on using Jack to get to Epic Russian Mustache Guy. On the way to ERMG's house, Jack tells mark what he wants to have happen. After the exchange, Mark asks "What happens when bullets start to fly?" Jack doesn't respond right away, but gives us another expression for the scrapbook -

Which I translate as: "You're gonna get hit with one."

But Jack is a (generally) nice guy and he and Audrey are about to sail off into the Mediterranean sunset here in a few hours after Mark either gets shot or arrested, so he offers the erstwhile Chief of Staff some words of encouragement: "You're gonna want to try and stay low."

Always the cheery sort, our Jack Bauer.

MEANWHILE - Ms. Audrey Boudreau (probably gonna wanna change that last name soon, I'm sure) is not just sitting back and letting the grass grow beneath her feet. OH HEAVENS NO! Because Audrey has contacts with the Chinese office. And they have contacts with the Chinese Office of Misinformation (whatever they call that crap these days). So Audrey takes it upon herself to reach out and use her influence as best she can to convince those peeps that it wasn't an official order to fire on a Chinese aircraft carrier in the Mediterranean (which begs the question - what in the hell were the Chinese doing clear over there???) Audrey may not carry a gun or hack into SOOPER SEKRIT government agencies, but she is just as talented and useful in these situations as Kate or Chloe (we oughta start calling these ladies "Bauer's Angels.")

Jack, Kate, and Mark make it to Little Moscow and Mark goes in as the bait. Epic Russian Mustache Guy bites and Jack and Kate sneak in, taking out the Comrades as they go. Unfortunately, ERMG gets sprayed with super-sharp glass and starts bleeding out on the carpet. Jack tries to stop the inevitable, but no amount of "DAMMIT!" will help in this instance (but Jack's iteration of "DAMMIT!" has been known to cure certain cancers, so there's that). So... one hour left - no leads on Cheng, no proof to the Chinese that the US hasn't suddenly started firing missiles at random aircraft carriers in the Mediterranean (again - WHY??), oh, and Chloe's sort of unconscious on the side of the road (having beaten the shit out of her Chinese captors with a lead pipe. Which is something Jack Bauer can't say). But she did give the most heartbreaking sadface while she was in captivity - 

Chloe, honey, you're killin' me.
Oh, and Audrey's Chinese contact that's going to buy some extra time? Yeah, she got sniper-shot right after Audrey gave her the thing. Along with Audrey's security detail. Along with Audrey's White House issued hacker-free phone that Cheng suddenly knows the number to - WHAT THE CRAP IS THIS SHIT??

Whatever. I'm still planning on booking a romantic vacation for two for Jack and Audrey. I hear Venice is nice this time of year.

No comments:

Post a Comment