After last week’s blood-pumping, action filled season premiere, this week FOX still delivered another classic episode of 24: Live Another Day, albeit not quite so fast-paced as last week’s opener.
The episode begins with our dynamic duo hot on Simone Al-Harazi’s (Emily Berrington) trail after the femme fatale kills Derrick Yates (Joseph Millison). Our quick-thinking techie Chloe O’Brian (Mary Lynn Rajskub) immediately picks up the trail as she heads to the underground train, drone device in hand.
Jack (Kiefer Sutherland) spots Simone, and in a scene reminiscent of the French
Connection, the dodging game begins! Of course Simone seems none too concerned as she cuts her leg, then smears blood on her face while crying “victim!” Unfortunately she slips through Jack’s fingers and Chloe’s radar after, in a rare moment, Chloe is taken completely taken off-guard after seeing a man with his son leaving the station.
Losing a suspect just doesn’t happen to Chloe. In a heartbreaking moment, Chloe finally gives us an idea w
hy she has so drastically changed from her usual snarky, by-the-book self. Her husband Morris (Carlo Rota) and son Prescott (Capp Gordon) had been killed in a car accident! Jack is devastated to hear this news, and Chloe breaks down as she relays that she was targeted because of her association with him. One could literally feel the weight bearing down on Jack’s shoulders with this revelation.
Rajskub’s performance was spot-on as she allows the audience not only to understand Chloe’s pain, which is outwardly exposed with her new look, but feel it as well. Jack’s reaction is stellar, and it is clear that another piece of his soul was shattered. I loved how Sutherland is able to show Jack’s pain through his eyes. No words needed.
Jack and Chloe embrace as the sheer magnitude their grief hangs in the air. However, the drone device is still in enemy hands, so Jack redirects focus and encourages her to continue their mission.
Enter our villain! If the first glimpse is any indication, President Heller (William Devane) and company are in for a horrifying day! This week our villain is identified as infamous terrorist Margot Al-Harazi (Michelle Fairley) whose equally vicious, sadistic husband Al-queda Commander
Mohammed Al-Harazi, was killed in Yemen three years earlier after a U.S. drone strike. But why is she targeting President Heller? Apparently Heller had approved the air strike! Never underestimate a woman scorned!
But, if that doesn’t make her scary enough for you, the icy homecoming she gives her daughter Simone might be! Mommy Dearest has nothing on Margot, who refuses to welcome her daughter back until she’s assured that no one has followed her! To add insult to injury, Simone’s husband, disgusted by his wife’s infidelity, is literally ordered by Margot to let it go! I have a feeling that not only will he sing like a canary should Jack get a hold of him, but there might well be a bullet with his name on it in his near future!
It’s a thrill to see the Game of Thrones alum Michelle Fairly playing the cut-throat, cold-blooded, ruthless bitch who doesn’t let anyone deter her plans, even her own daughter! I think Margot wouldn’t hesitate to kill Simone should she get out of line. Fairley’s performance is chilling as she stitches up Simone’s leg, deliberately causing her pain just to get her point across! I also found it interesting that Margot clearly controls her daughter’s marriage. One can only imagine what treachery she has in store for President Heller!
Last week, 24 fans were Tweeting about Chief of Staff Mark Boudreau (Tate Donovan), and many dubbed him a baddie. As predicted, Boudreau’s shady side emerges when he forges the President’s signature on rendition documents for Jack! Makes me wonder what else has been forged? He’s already keeping Jack’s presence in London under wraps, so what else is he hiding?
In addition to witnessing this, we also get a peek into his relationship with Audrey (Kim Raver). Seems like she’s not happy with the way he’s manipulating the situation with her father and I found it interesting that Audrey is feeling a bit controlled.
Obviously when Mark meets Audrey she is in a very fragile state, emotionally scarred by the heinous torture she’d suffered at the hands of the Chinese. Now that she’s recovered, he still treats her with kid gloves. How much longer can this go on? Audrey has always been a very strong woman, and is definitely the woman behind the President, which is why I feel Mark has his position in the first place. Question is, can they truly trust him? Is he really looking out for the President’s best interests or orchestrating his own agenda? I’m hoping that Audrey will see his true colors sooner, rather than later.
Unable to talk President Heller out of addressing Parliament, Mark faces angry politicians and their tough questioning about the drone program the U.S. is so determined to continue. Though initially a little thrown at the negative response coming at him, Heller manages to muddle through as he tries to spin what happened to a positive.
This brings us to the tail end of the episode. Jack and Chloe return to Adrian Cross’s brood hoping to find evidence that First Lieutenant Chris Tanner (John Boyega), charged with killing four soldiers using his drone, is being set up. After securing the evidence, Jack decides he needs to break into the embassy so he can talk to the accused, as well as present the evidence directly to President Heller. How? By creating a fake ID to get past security.
When I saw Jack approaching security with his signature aviation sunglasses on I thought, “really?” Doesn’t Jack know by now how recognizable he is with those on? Of course thanks to a red flag Cross planted, the fake ID Chloe crafted doesn’t work. What is Jack’s Plan B? To start shooting at civilian protesters, cause a riot and push his way into the Embassy! Although CIA Agent Morgan (Yvonne Strahvoski) initially catches up with him, she loses Jack in the crowd as he disappears into the building!
Although I love how Jack always seems to come up with a new plan on the fly, I have to say I was a little disturbed to see him randomly shoot at civilians. I think they could have figured out another scenario to divert attention and break in.
Ultimately, I think this was another great episode. For me, the hour flew by and I kept wishing we had another 2-hour block! I feel we have a better understanding of each character, their back-stories and motivations. I’m impressed by the way they are layering each character, yet in a way that keeps the plot moving quickly. As there are slower-paced moments, it doesn’t hinder the storyline but enhances it because of the depth of the scenes.
So what’s in store for next week? Breaking into the Embassy was the easy part, getting out is another story! After Jack is identified, Boudreau finally alerts the President and Audrey of his presence. Although Jack reaches Lt. Tanner, he’s cornered! Does he escape or will he allow himself to be arrested yet again in an effort to have a chat directly with President Heller? How will Audrey react hearing Jack is on the premises? You’ll have tune in next week to find out!
Monday nights are definitely, as fans say on Twitter, the “Bauer Power Hour”! I think we have an incredible nine more episodes headed our way, so don’t miss a second of 24 Live Another Day, at 9:00 pm on FOX!