Women couldn’t do anything right on tonight’s episode of 24. They were bitchy, hard-headed, slutty, dangerous, and even, perhaps, traitorous. I guess that’s the way it always goes down in the world of 24, where the only thing worse than being a woman is, well, being dead (or on the receiving end of a mean cup of coffee). Nevertheless, the action calmed down a bit this week as the show focused more on deal-brokering and negotiations instead of the typical gunfire and casualties. That’s not to say there weren’t any bullets whizzing through the air — there were — but just not as many. In fact, I’m not sure if anyone even died this week. Crazy, right? Does that count as jumping the shark?The show opened up with the sad image of Tony’s face being cover in a cloth. Poor Tony. Poor, stupid Tony. Even the bad guy from The Incredibles knows that you don’t rant before you kill someone. You just do it. Alas, last week, Tony waited too long to kill Christopher Henderson, and as a result, he was unceremoniously slain. To be honest, I really thought that he wasn’t dead. It wasn’t until the New York Times revealed that yes, Mr. Almeida’s time had truly come to pass. You’d think with his ability to recover from bullet wounds to the neck and wife-shrapnel to the head that a little shot of torture juice would cause only some minor agita, but the big guy was dead as a doorknob, survived only by a lonely Chicago Cubs mug. The curse continues.
Before we could really soak in the momentous sight of Tony’s dead body, we then learned that somehow, Robocop had gotten away. Yes, Christopher — despite being in a coma only, I don’t know, three minutes prior had slipped out of the building and back into society. Mad props to the CTU perimeter for that one. But who cares about Christopher. We have other leads, like that hottie woman in the hotel room that we saw for two seconds last week. Her name was Colette Stenger, and her name was found on Robocop’s computer. Turns out she was staying at a hotel in town; so you know what that means. Everyone get into the CTUmobile. We’re going on a raid!
Meanwhile, over at the Oval Office West, President Pussy’s sassy redheaded press secretary was back and readying the media for Logan’s big announcement. For those of you who may have forgotten, the evil Vice President had persuaded Charles that the best plan would be to call martial law for Los Angeles. Martha, however, was not for this plan at all. It was just a ploy, she believed, to make the President look awful so that next year, the party’s nomination would go to Hal instead. Well, who the hell’s gonna listen to a crazy old bat like Martha? So what if she’s been right at every impasse? Send that bitch back to Vermont!
Charles gave his wife the “Don’t question me. I might just cry” look and headed out to his press conference where, for just one moment, it seemed like he might go off script. The cameras cut to a teleprompter, and we all know directors only show us teleprompters when someone’s about to ignore what’s actually on the teleprompter. Well, no such luck this time. Logan indeed called for a curfew that would be enforced by the military. Man, this sucks! Why does it always have to come to martial law? Martial! Martial! Martial!
Over at CTU, Bill Buchanan had his Very Concerned face on. It had been a terrible day, and it was only going to get worse. The DOD wanted a list of all CTU casualties, but Bill wasn’t going to hand the names over until all the next-of-kin had been notified. Poor Edgar. His next-of-kin died in a nuclear meltdown 18 months ago. What a family legacy. Meltdown, nerve gas — he probably has a cousin who died of Ebola while getting eaten by a crocodile. Sadly, we didn’t get to see Edgar’s lifeless corpse one last time. Perhaps the SeaWorld crane already hauled him out of the building. Somewhere a donut is weeping.
As cadavers rolled out of the building, fresh blood came in — specifically, Karen Hayes and her main gay, Miles. They were both from Homeland Security, and I’m happy to report that Miles was carrying Edgar’s lisping torch proudly. His lisp wasn’t as severe as Edgar’s, but it was there, and I welcomed it.
Anyway, Karen quickly made herself at home in Bill’s office while Miles took up that most hallowed tradition: gettin’ into it with Chloe.
“Who are you?” she asked angrily (she HATES takevoers!)
“Homeland Security,” Miles responded.
“I asked your name, not who you work for,” Chloe lashed back. Ah, classic O’Brien. Well, after a few more angry interactions, Miles stated what he was really there for: “We’re here on a priority admin directive!” Wow! A priority admin directive! That’s almost as important as a socket… or even a perimeter! This guy means business, folks.
Meanwhile, out on the road, Wayne Palmer was driving around, all shifty-eyed and nervous. He was even wearing a trench coat, and if there’s anything we know about the Palmers, it’s that bad things happen when they wear trench coats (Sherry Palmer, anyone?). Well, Wayne called up Secret Service Agent Aaron to say that he needed to give him something. Something important! Something that could only be discussed in person! Great. So I guess this means Wayne will be dying too. Or he’ll get stuck in a curfew bureaucracy. Or both.
The definition of “Shifty Eyes.”
A few scenes later, we cut to Colette Stenger getting dressed (zipping up her big boots, the preferred footwear for all 24 femme fatales). Surprisingly, she did not then kill her boyfriend (as is often the case when we see people getting dressed on 24). She let him hang out naked in bed and even said, “I’ll see you at the airport, okay? In 45 minutes.” Suuure. We’ll see how this goes awry.
Back at CTU, Bill began to sense that something was up with Karen. A little reading between the lines, and he realized that she was shutting down the place. Yup, that was the plan. Karen admitted that the plan was for “Homeland” to absorb CTU, something that truly pissed off Bill. He was so angry that I fully expected him to wipe everything off his desk and engage in Hate Sex right there. But it didn’t happen. Instead, he headed back out onto the floor where an upset Audrey said, “Bill, Homeland is being overly aggressive with their survey.” No shit, Sherlock. Another brilliant observation from Raines. Somebody should give her a cookie.
Meanwhile, Jack and Curtis had arrived at Colette’s hotel and were breaking into her room. One problem. No one was there! After gaping at an open window, the team deduced that she had headed up to the roof, and so everyone headed on up the staircase. As they neared the roof, Curtis split off to follow some hot trail. He was getting closer… and closer… and OH MY GOD! It’s CAT WOMAN!! Oh, no, never mind. It was just Colette’s boyfriend jumping down from a roof. Nevertheless, he stole Curtis’s gun, leaving the our man with nothing to do but adopt a karate stance. Like that was really going to do any good. Luckily, Jack was around to save the day. After some yelling and whatnot, we learned that the boyfriend wasn’t really a boyfriend but actually an agent with the German intelligence service. Ah, very interesting. An international twist. Unfortunately for the gang, this guy — Theo — didn’t want to reveal anything about Colette because she was too valuable to various German operations. Yeah, well, sucks for you, Theo. You’re in Jack’s domain now. Sure enough, Bauer hauled Theo back down to the hotel room for questioning… and just at that very moment, Colette arrived at Bierko’s in her stylish Lexus sports car. Just once, I’d like to see a terrorist drive a Honda.
While Colette was frisked by Bierko’s men, Audrey let Jack and Bill know that Germany was not willing to cooperate and compromise Theo’s own operation. Well, what else was Jack to do but shoo everyone out of the room and settle this man to man. Surely it was torture time! But no. Jack actually had a deal to make. In exchange for Colette, Jack would give Theo a list of every terrorist the U.S. government had been monitoring. A list they called “the wet list.” Here’s the problem with the wet list. It was highly confidential, and if Jack were to give it away, it would compromise all of CTU’s cases. But did Jack really care? Nope. Because he didn’t work for CTU anymore. This was enough for Theo, and he agreed to cooperate in exchange for some Wet-Naps. I’m sorry, I meant “wet list.”
Now all Jack needed was for Chloe to break into the NSA server and upload the list to his PDA. Unfortunately, Chloe didn’t have her key card anymore, thanks to jackass Miles who was not only totally getting in the way but was using Edgar’s work station! That’s like taking a crap on Lincoln’s grave! Well, Chloe’s keycard was located in a little box by Miles’ computer. There was no way she could get to it… unless she somehow created a diversion for Miles. Sure enough, a plucky assistant brought the jerk a cup of coffee, and Chloe suddenly saw her chance. She marched up to him and blatantly knocked the coffee onto his lap, causing him to huff, “What is wrong with you??” I thought he might bitch slap her and swivel his head, but instead, he merely walked off to the bathroom to attend to his new stains. With him out of the picture, Chloe hopped onto his computer and accessed the wet list, uploading it to Jack’s PDA in the process. She managed to hustle out of there before Miles returned, but when he got back, he somehow sensed that something was amiss. Don’t know how, but those bureaucrats can always sniff out trouble.
Well, Jack showed the list on his PDA to Theo, but then he kept the memory card for himself, saying he’d only give it over once he had Colette. And so the two as well as Curtis and his field teams headed to the Van Nuys airport where Theo was due to meet his “girlfriend.” As for Colette, she was now with Bierko, babbling on the phone. “When you receive the funds…” she said, but the way I heard it, she’d said “When you receive the fonts,” which had me thinking that maybe she was running some illicit operation involving Helvetica and Verdana. Anyway, I soon realized she was actually talking about funds, and after some money was exchanged, she gave Bierko a decryption key and some schematics. They then said adios, and Bierko ordered his cronies to torch the place. Damn, they’ll never find this dude!
Meanwhile, Wayne Palmer had finally reached the outer environs of the Presidential retreat, but he’d been stopped by a roadblock. Not to worry. The VP ominously gave the order to let him through, which could only mean bad things. By the way, we here at the TVgasm offices were really amused that the roadblock consisted of a big HUM-V… and an orange traffic cone. As if that cone were going to stop something that the Hummer simply could not. Maybe they’ll throw down some banana peels too. Or a few mouse traps.
Back at CTU, Chloe was called into the Situation Room where Karen, Bill, and Miles told her they had, well, a situation. They knew that she had hacked into the system and uploaded something to Jack’s PDA. But what? Gosh, you’d think they’d be able to figure out it was the Wet List. Don’t they keep records as to who accesses it? Anyway, everyone was all pissed at Chloe, especially when she revealed, “Jack needed the wet list.”
“WHAT?!?!???!?!” Karen yelled, her eyeballs nearly popping out. Even Bill was majorly pissed off as he yelled, “NO! NO! IT’S NOT OKAY!!!” Be careful guys. Chloe’s liable to spill coffee on you, too.
Well, Karen immediately called up Jack, who apparently was not a fan of turning his cell on vibrate in the middle of his operation (he was presently hiding in Theo’s back seat at the airport). Anyway, Karen yelled at Jack and said there’d be repercussions and blah blah blah, she reluctantly let him continue his operation. A few seconds after the phone call ended, Colette pulled up, and as Theo went to greet her, the CTU field teams surrounded the area. I was really hoping that Colette would kill Theo and this whole wet-list issue would then go away, but we later found out that she really had feelings for him (as he did for her). That could only lead to bad things.
Anyway, Jack apprehended Colette, and as Theo drove away with his handy-dandy memory card, he called his peeps and basically said “One wet-list, coming right up!” He then loaded the memory card into his PDA and… uh oh! Sparks! Smoke! The darned chip self-destructed! Clever, Jack! Just about this time, Jack called up Theo to apologize for duping him and offered to help recover his operation in every possible way after the crisis passed. Theo wasn’t convinced, however, and I had a bad feeling that he might go back to save his undercover lover.
Meanwhile, Colette began babbling about how she really had feelings for Theo too (which all but solidified my beliefs that he would be returning). She then said how she didn’t know anything about what she gave Bierko. All she knew was that they were schematics. She would, however, offer up the contact from whom she bought those schematics — but only if she were granted immunity. That meant a signed document that would be transmitted to her lawyers in Europe and Tripoli. How exotic!
If Salma Hayek and Mischa Barton had a love child…
Well, Karen was not crazy about this. For all she knew, this Colette woman didn’t have any worthwhile information, and they were about to let her walk Scot free. But if it was any consolation, Jack told her that the Wet List was safe — he had programmed the memory chip to self-destruct (How? I don’t know. Just let accept it and move on). Well, now Karen was pissed AGAIN, this time wanting to know why Jack hadn’t said anything before. Because he was in front of the guy he was duping, you dumb bitch! Get it together!!
Bill, of course, took this as his chance to stick it to her by saying, “CTU was hit — we’re still doing our job.” Take that, KAREN! A little told-you-so action from the big man. You know that she and Miles are soo going to Starbucks and bitching over Caramel Machiatos.
Hey, remember Wayne Palmer? Well, he was still driving up apparently the world’s longest access road. It was totally dark and empty, and wouldn’t you know it? A dark van suddenly appeared behind him. This couldn’t be good. All signs point to “Time to get run off the road!” And yup, two seconds later, that’s exactly what happened. Wayne’s car wound up tumbling down a slope, and no sooner had he crawled out of his car than men with guns were already coming after him. Luckily, there conveniently was a random tunnel nearby, and so Wayne ran down it, hopefully away from death. Eh, he’ll probably be murdered, which I would not be a fan of. We don’t need to kill off every good character. I personally was hoping he’d get on his damn cell phone, call Aaron, and just TELL him what was so important.
As the hour wound down, Colette finally received her immunity, and it was time for her to spill the beans. Surely, I expected Theo to barge in, interrupt, and ruin everything, but no. She told us her contact. Boy, did she tell us. It was someone at the DOD. Someone named… Audrey Raines. WTF???? Jack was NOT happy about that! He did his standard hand-around-the-neck bit and banged Colette’s head against the wall. You best not be joking, bitch! But she wasn’t. Audrey was her contact, and with that, we got the ticking clock.
Could it be? Jack screwed over by a lover again? Was Audrey bought out? I don’t believe it. She comes from money. She’s got ethics. She wouldn’t do that. I think someone’s framing Audrey. I think someone’s pretending to be her. But who? What do you think?