Monday, May 7, 2007

Counting the Hours


The following TV Eve blurb is reprinted from Providence Monthly Online



With few exceptions (Gunsmoke, The Simpsons, Mary Tyler Moore Show) long lasting television shows neither sustain their creative highs or are deft enough to get outta Dodge before a creative malaise sucks the show dry. The much vaunted and highly popular 24 is currently plodding tepidly through its sixth season (or in 24 parlance, Day 6), and it’s rapidly losing viewership and the all-important Internet buzz. From the show’s inception it’s carried with it a built-in deathtrap, albeit one that has also functioned as the drama’s calling card—the unwavering focus on it’s scrappy, mad dog protagonist Jack Bauer. Neatly embodied by former brat packer Keifer Sutherland, Jack is a so-called CTU Security Agent, a seemingly indestructible one, the Nietzschean Ubermensch Americanized as a kinda MacGyver with rabies. How many times can an audience be expected to watch Jack go wack, grim-faced and tightly coiled, bite his way through jugulars, Houdini himself out of yet another Mexican stand-off, plunge a makeshift sharp object deep into a baddie’s innards, and rejigger the high tech terrorist world with the simple use of GPS, cell phones, computer diagrams, and Chloe, Chloe, Chloe. The season appears to be a mere mirror of what’s gone down before, spending time on another doomsday scenario, a rescue, ruined family ties, and the usual overdose of backroom whispers and salient glances subbing for plot progression among the government types. As 24 woodenly barrels down this year’s all too familiar road one hopes it rights itself next year, perhaps by returning boldly with new supporting cast, new surroundings, a freshly torqued save-the-nation plot, and and a truly twisted, damaged, and whacked-out Jack.

4 comments:

mdoggie said...

Hey what the fuck! That's my column dude! You know, I've tried to watch 24 several times but I can't sustain any interest beyond curiosity at what the hell everyone is raving about.
After hearing interrogators at Abu Gharaib and Guantanamo actually were getting ideas for tormenting prisoners from the show, I felt a shiver or recognition. Everytime I tried to watch it that's exactly the vibe I got; like I fell asleep and woke up in a Fascist America Star Trek episode. Stylistically, I'll give it it's due, it probably prevents most of America from pissing for most of the hour, even with digital remote magic.

Bruce Lee Jr said...

Every episode I've seen revolves around a split screen between some bigwig and Jack trying to get a signal on his cell-phone. Give the bastard a Nextel and the series would grind to a halt.

Bruce Lee Jr said...

Oh, and The Simpsons has not seen a creative high for about 6 years now.

The truly creative shows (arrested development, always sunny in philadelphia) never seem to last.
Maybe thats a good thing. I mean season seven of the ricky gervais Office would have been pretty bad.

skylolo99 said...

If I hear, "Bring out the interrogation kit" one more time...
24 sucks- it's a neocon's wet dream.
We live in a bizzaro world where the heroes torture on a weekly basis. But hey, it's cool cuz there's a ticking time bomb that's planted up the President's ass.
Fairy tales can come true, it could happen to you...