So I promise not to start this review of the latest episode of 24 by imploring readers to watch the show, but I think since I already mentioned I wasn’t going to do it, it sort of is a mention. Whatever. There is too much in the show to worry about the semantics of an intro. Not when Jack Bauer is trying to save the United States from a Chernobyl-ish disaster. Especially when that disaster might happen six times in one day. And how is he going to do all of this when the great folks in CTU human resources managed to let yet another mole inside to stir shit up?It is now pretty much a foregone conclusion that CTU is not going to be able to deactivate any of the remaining vulnerable nuclear facilities through the magic of Edgar Stiles. Some of you may wonder why the DOD simply orders up another override device to get back into control. As it turns out, the terrorists stole the only prototype. In order to save the lives of as many people as possible, somebody was going to have to find the device that was currently in existence, and put a stop to whoever was in control. Oh Jack, how we do love thee.
When Jack was ambushed, he realized that there must be somebody on the inside that was leaking information on their operations. Thefore, Jack must call the second person that he trusts, and the only person currently inside of CTU that fits that description is his Secretary Heller. Good thing Jack is having sex with his daughter, or else he might be ignored. He fills Secretary Heller in on the details of what happened, and tells him that they are going to lay low for awhile until the heat is off of them. Luckily, Tony Almeida is in the car, and he has no problem with Jack crashing at his house.
Knowing that there is only a remote chance that there won’t be any problems at the nuclear plants, the president decides that he must evacuate all of the cities. There is no George Mason around this time to suicide our way out of a nuclear holocaust, so this seems like a good move.
What the president doesn’t know is that things aren’t going so well for the terrorists. They almost had the greatest webcast ever, and while any nuclear disaster is a victory for them, six is much less than the hundred or so plants that might have melted down. The terrorists have their own sort of distraction, namely free thinking women and children running around, totally disrespectful as to what their proper role in a plot to murder millions of people should be. Navi says that his wife and son will be dead before the day is over.
At CTU, Marianne is starting to get a little nervous. She could easily fool the idiots in CTU for a long time, but all of these DOD jokers are starting to hang around close, maybe a little too close. She makes a phone call from the bathroom to talk to her “handler” so to speak. Marianne basically says that she did her part relaying Jack’s location, and it was time for her to get out. Her boss lets her know that she will be taken care of in due time. Notice that he didn’t say “we will get you out”, only “you will be taken care of”. Before Marianne gets a clarification, Sarah walks in and makes it known she is being missed.
Heller wasted no time in smoking out the mole. He had his own guys set up surveillance while he planted a fake story about Jack moving to another CTU location in Culver City. It’s probably right next to the bunker the government runs to keep an eye on the MTV Movie Awards. Like any good mole, Marianne took the bait, and relayed the message. Not soon afterwards, the mole is discovered. Driscoll decides that there is no time to wait, and that she must use any means necessary to get the information out of her. She orders Sarah to an interrogation room right away.
Yes, you heard me. Sarah. Obviously Marianne was smart enough to spoof somebody else’s account so it would look like she had nothing to do with it. Marianne picked to blame Sarah, and it seemed to work with no fuss. Edgar was asking a few two many questions, but if she hasn’t had enough time to poison the Krispy Kremes in Edgar’s desk up until that point, you know that Edgar is going to be around for the long haul
We have seen torture being used early on a terrorists. Jack shot his leg and got the information he needed. They tried to torture Richard Heller, but it turned out he probably was nervous because he didn’t wipe his ass, not because he is some criminal mastermind. Two out of three ain’t bad, right? Driscoll decides to handle this interrogation herself, and Sarah’s motivation is in the form of a stun gun being used on her neck. Sarah insists that she has done nothing wrong, and we know she is right, but Driscoll didn’t want to underinterrogate anybody. That would have been a real crime. It turns out Driscoll might have been a little apprehensive. She leaves the room, asks Heller how sure he is of the data, and indicates that she doesn’t believe that Sarah fits the profile.
Imagine that, somebody at CTU is thinking about what the profile for the mole might be. Let us sit back and speculate for a little bit. The mole is probably fairly new to his/her position, or at least hasn’t established very man credentials, is deceptive with their relationships with others, is often missing from their desk, and probably isn’t very friendly with the rest of the staff. In other words, how in the hell can your ivestigation of the mole not start with all of the consultants and contractors they have been using to get the work done? That is the wacky world of CTU.
While the moles were being smoked out at the office, Jack and Audrey arrive at Tony’s house to use his computer. Tony has had a tough time since we left him last year. We all remember that he went to jail in order to save his wife Michelle. Jack and President Palmer were able to get him out of jail, but Michelle left him anyway. He is now a drunk slob who spends the better parts of his day drinking beer out of a Chicago Cubs mug watching soccer, er, futból, on Telemundo. He does, however, find time to keep his soul patch trimmed perfectly.
When they arrive at Tony’s house (in one of the finest subdivisions North Hollywood has to offer), Jack is checking the place out. Although he trusts Tony, I guess he just has this thing about doing a SWAT team style sweep of every residence he enters. It must have been all of those times he has been ambushed over the years. That’s why there was no surprise when he pulled his gun on the random girl walking out of Tony’s bedroom. The girl’s name is Jen, and she looks sort of like a hooker. Then we remember that we are in the Valley and she works at a bar, so her skankiness is explained on two different levels. She kind of freaks out, but then decides she’ll just go to work. This apparently is no good, because she might talk. With all of the drinking these devout Muslims do, they can’t take any chances on a bartender accidentally saying he met the kidnapped daughter of the Secretary of Defense after her crazy boyfriend brought them back to his place. Jen is not so happy, because she’ll lose her job. Uhh, it’s 2:30, you work at a bar, I am sure you can come up with some sort of story that will placate your boss. Just in case that is not the case, Audrey says that she will help her out. Why should Jen trust Audrey? “Because I can have him killed”. Come on, isn’t that a little extreme? It’s not like she and Tony have any real future together.
Jen stops freaking out, and Jack decides to go over the surveillance video that he managed to store on a flash drive before the gunmen shot up place. Well, Tony has a computer (what a geek, running KDE) and Jack has the video, but they will need some software. Luckily Tony says “Oh I’ve got some software”, and starts rummaging around in some shelves. Score another few points for the security measures of screening the CTU staff. Tony went to jail for crimes against the government, but somehow managed to sneak off with some CTU surveillance video programs? Did they hire the rejected baggage screeners from LAX and put them to work? I don’t get this.
Jack finally gets the video back, gets a picture of the person Audrey recognized, and decides to call into the home office. The problem is that Jen is on the phone line! What a bitch. They just offered to kill your boss, and you can’t be quiet for a like 30 minutes? Go paint your nails or something. Or Jack could just use his cell phone, like he does in every other minute of the show. But Tony must have a really secure line, since he is just *loved* by all of the government agencies around. Jack finally makes the call, sends the picture, and patiently waits for the results. While he’s got some time on his hands, you would think he might take a leak, maybe grab the left over Kung Pao in the fridge, splash a little water on his face. You know, things that people do when they have been up all day thwarting terrorism and all of a sudden have a few dead minutes on their hands. Hell, even Audrey grabbed a beer. Not Jack, he decides he is going to do a little bit of an intervention with Tony. Non confrontational, be his friend, tell him that he can help. Tony falls for none of this shit and tells Jack that he should just go about his business and get out.
Behrooz and his mother have spent some time looking for a hospital. Dina didn’t want to go, but her son insisted that they go. Turns out that Dina has quite the nasty gash on her arm. In order not to throw any suspicion on themselves, they say that she backed into a fence. She just needs some medicine and some stitches. The doctor is not buying it, of course, and has a nurse call the police while he prepares to suture her closed. Just as the novacaine is going in, Behrooz notices some police officers and tells his mom they must go. He grabs some medicine and bandages (conveniently left out on a table and not some annoying supply room where there would be trouble getting at it), and they leave, just before the cops are about to come in for questioning. Looks like Navi isn’t doing so good with that whole “I am going to kill all of my family” plan. But in all seriousness, haven’t Dina or Behrooz watched ANY movies? Don’t they know that if you have a gun shot and don’t want police involvement, you search out a shady veterinarian? That could have helped them a lot.
The word is finally out on who the mystery man is. Marcy in DC tells Jack that it is Henry Powell. Jack gets this information to Heller at CTU, who tells him they have found the mole and that he is going to send a Secret Service detail to pick him up. Powell was able to pull some strings and has a helicopter waiting for him in Van Nuys. As the Secret Service gets there, Jack sends Audrey back to CTU, and prepares to find Powell himself. Just when we thought Tony was devoid of all feeling, he says that Jack can’t do it alone, and he is going to help. Let’s be honest, it is probably the most fun he has had outside of his house in months, and he does get to shoot a lot of people with no questions asked.
Back at CTU, people are happy to be back to normal, but one person has faith that Sarah might not have done it. (With a name like Sarah, how could you be an evil traitor?) That person is our favorite fat man genius with a lisp – Edgar Styles. Edgar has always been kind of wary of Marianne and now he has a plan that might just clear Sarah’s name. He tells Marianne he is going to give her some more security clearance, but uses that as a way to open up a socket or pipeline, or whatever the CTU tech word of the day is, and gain access to her computer. He discovers the evidence that she did in fact spoof the data transmission.
Edgar’s not the smoothest guy, and so Marianne notices that he is looking over at her station all of the time. She says that if he doesn’t stop, she is going to go to Driscoll with the information. Marianne should know that she can’t cry wolf like that when threatening Edgar, because eventually he will get some balls and do something. That moment appeared, and Edgar asked Curtis to accompany him to Driscoll’s office. He laid out his evidence to the both of them, and they decided to take Marianne in. Oh yes, and they probably made another call to, you know, stop Sarah’s torture. That girl is going to have one hell of a worker’s comp claim to file; she had to be taken out in a wheelchair. I wonder if Driscoll would try some of that shock therapy on her own daughter?
Marianne is not going down easily, and makes a break for it. Every other year I have been watching 24, there is no way to easily leave CTU. You always have to leave through a bunch of security, then go through the garage. Not anymore, Marianne runs down a hallway, and then takes an emergency exit outside. She is just about to get into her car when Curtis apprehends her (I should also take this time to mention Aisha Tyler looks great in her business attire, and has a great rack). He cuffs her and then takes her in, telling some lackey to search her car for evidence. That was a bad move. I guess when Powell was telling Marianne she would be taken care of, he wasn’t kidding. One turn of the key, and a car bomb exploded, killing the random CTU lackey and knocking Aisha Tyler out. Now that her bosses tried to kill her, maybe they won’t have to torture her as much to get some answers.
Tony and Jack arrive at the helicopter pad in Van Nuys just before it is about to take off. Powell has a gun to the pilot’s head, telling him to take off, but Tony and Jack also have their guns out, and they eventually get Powell out of the chopper. Powell pleads with them to let him go, saying his bosses will pay them. Jack is uninterested and it surely didn’t help Powell’s cause that his bosses also kidnapped Audrey. Tony sort of things about it. He is still unemployed, but his buzz must be wearing off so he just puts Powell in the back seat. OR NOT! Following classic 24 style, a sniper kills the person that just might have been able to give CTU all of the information that they needed. And just like that, the episode ends.