24: Live Another Day: “Day 9: 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.” Review

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It was boring for 55 minutes… and then it was the most awesome, depressing thing I’ve watched since Liv Tyler cried over Bruce Willis blowing himself up on an asteroid. But before we touch on the big, literally explosive, moment of 24: Live Another Day’s latest episode, let’s do a quick recap of everything that got us to those harsh, last five minutes.

Simone was brought to CIA HQ, a move I’m sure everyone is questioning, given the recent development of Navarro’s duplicity. But so far, Navarro’s operating under the radar and Jack and Morgan are none-the-wiser. So Morgan does her best – i.e. demands a doctor to wake Simone up, even though doing so will likely kill her. The doctor does so and Simone is surprisingly honest, though her bitterness is obvious, and understandable. Simone reveals the location of her mother’s house, but that Margot won’t be there, however Naveed’s disk, containing access to Margot’s drone system, is still at the house. Within minutes a team is dispatched and the disk retrieved. Morgan transfers the data to Chloe, and Chloe begins the task of breaking through firewalls within firewalls.  Go team go!

Meanwhile, Jack has to deal with the consequences of Heller speaking to Margot on his own, and he’s not too happy. No one is happy with Heller’s decision to surrender himself to Margot. As Jack kindly asks the President, is it not US policy that they don’t negotiate with terrorists? Plain and simple, this has bad idea written all over it, but Jack is an honorable man through and through, and he will do what the President asks of him. Turns out, so will Mark Boudreau, Chief of Staff and Husband to the First Daughter. In a rare turn of events, Mark and Jack team up to sneak Heller out of the Embassy and to Wembley Stadium, where he is to meet Margot, which is basically code for “Get executed by Margot.” Honestly, why else would the woman send him out into the middle of an empty stadium if not to blow him up with one of her drones? We all see where this is going to end.

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What we also see is Audrey getting very upset with her husband for not telling her about her father’s plans. Naturally there are tears and the slapping of Mark’s face. However, I was rather surprised and impressed when Mark yelled that he believed he did the right thing, following Heller’s requests, and that he’d do it again. With everything else Mark has done it’s difficult to remember that he is a man of integrity, this was a reminder of such, and it was a reminder well executed.

Meanwhile, Jordan, the techie with a heart of gold, is running from the hit-man Navarro sent after him, and quickly realizing that Navarro is not on “Team Good.” There’s a brief shining moment where Jordan tricks his assailant, gets the brute on his knees, and disarms him, but then Jordan’s lack of field experience turns on him and he ends up getting stabbed before he can shoot down the hit-man. It’s a well-choreographed scene, I’m particularly a fan of the choice to not make Jordan a gun totting bad ass given that those characters are few and far between in a show like 24. What I’m not pleased about is Jordan passing out before he can call Morgan. So now he’s half dead and bleeding out somewhere in the middle of London. I don’t like it when this happens to my favorite characters.

That’s the first fifty minutes of the episode – entertaining but far from the most exciting things to have happened this season. Now let me paint you a picture: I’m huddled up on my couch in my Seattle, Seahawks blanket, thinking that Jack’s going to pull a miracle out of the pocket of his black leather jacket, because that’s what Jack Bauer does, and the sad, ominous music starts. Really, I don’t think the soundtrack to this episode could have gotten more melodramatic, but it was a great addition to a beautiful execution scene. And that’s exactly what this was.

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Heller walked out into the middle of Wembley Stadium alone, ready to face Margot Al-Harazi, and by so doing, save the lives of thousands of Londoners. My heart and gut wrenched as I watched Margot, for the first time, take control of the drone herself – finally the woman is getting some dirt and blood on her hands. She locked on target, pulled the trigger, and BAM, Heller went down in an explosion of dirt and astro-turph. It was poetic, brutal, and incredibly depressing. Here’s hoping the rules of Anime will suddenly apply to an American TV Action Drama, and even though we saw him explode, Heller will return, bigger and badder than ever, after two episodes of everyone thinking he died.  …Something tells me that hope might be in vain.

Character death leaves a bitter, unhappy taste in my mouth.