Friday, December 29, 2006

Season Six Prequel

Those of you who are die-hards have no doubt seen this already but I will post it here for your viewing pleasure (sorry about the subtitles). I had not yet seen it and my miscellaneous thoughts are below.

What can we take from this ten minute between-seasons clip? Well, a few things.

First, the head of security for the Chinese consulate is one mean son of a bitch. Previously, we were led to believe he was rather diplomatic and handled the consulate security within the United States. Evidently, he commutes in from Siberia since it appears he oversees each minute of Jack Bauer's torture. And why are they torturing him? Well, they want to learn which of two guys are actually betraying China and feeding info to the U.S. My question is this: If they're just going to kill the guy ruthlessly anyway, why not just cap both of the guys in question? They spent seven months torturing Bauer to figure out which guy is helping the U.S.? And then Cheng Zhi is the judge and jury and assassinates the guy (Hon) who Jack inadvertantly fingers. So I guess that makes Zhi the judge, jury and executioner. Oops, Jack, there goes seven months of resisting interrogation and tolerating torture. I guess they're still kind of pissed about their stupid consulate who ran in front of his firing troops and was hit.

We also learn that Jack is in no better shape at the end of the prequel than at the start. I feel like this would have been a good time to show the diplomatic negotiations that are ultimately going to be needed to free Jack from China. As we've seen in the promos for Season Six, China has agreed to turn Jack back over to the U.S. I don't know if President Wayne Palmer promised something or what (maybe he sold Chloe as a sex slave?) but we know Jack's getting back to the U.S. somehow. Why not explain it here? Unless, as per usual, the writing staff didn't know what direction they were going to take with enough advance notice to film something that actually moves the plot forward. Because make no mistake, people -- this was fluff. This Hon character is a nobody and it will mean nothing to the story.

We also learn that Toyota sponsored this prequel again. And even if we didn't see that in the opening credits, we would have been dumb not to see it when they pulled the camoflauge back on the escape vehicle and you half-expected Rod Roddy from the Price Is Right to shout "A new car!"

Yes, folks, that was a 2007 Toyota RAV4, which couldn't look more out of place in this prequel. The Toyota RAV4 -- for all your espionage needs.

So we're still back where Season Five ended in May. Hey, it's fine with me, I'm just surprised they didn't use this prequel to get Jack back to the United States somehow or at least lay the groundwork for that.

Two weeks to go, folks.


Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Shall We Make Jokes About Silver Spoons or NYPD Blue?

According to various reports, Rick Shroder will play CTU Agent Mike Doyle on the upcoming sixth season of 24, reportedly partnering "with Keifer Sutherland's character Jack Bauer." As in, his cell mate in China?

As you all already know, this is comedy gold. The number of Silver Spoons jokes are just limitless. I also wonder why there are so many 80s TV and movie stars popping up on 24 over the years. Last year was a windfall with Robocop, one of the Designing Women, a Goonies alum and others.

If you go to the E! Online article I linked above, you will also see some of the other folks slated to come on this season, including Powers Boothe as the VP and Chad Lowe as a political operative named "Reed." I already don't like him and not just because Chad Lowe as a political operative is about as believeable as Jack still being alive.

Another awesome and interesting casting is Kal Penn of Van Wilder and Harold and Kumar fame. Wouldn't you just give anything for him to be eating a White Castle burger during a scene? (Reason #251 why I should write an episode of 24.)

Anyway, I checked out Shroder's Wikipedia page and was particularly entertained by the info listed under "Personal Life":

"Schroder lives in Scottsdale, Arizona with his wife, Andrea, and their four children, but is planning to purchase more real estate in a secluded area north of Los Angeles, according to news reports. He may also open a chicken farm some time in 2006."

Dear lord, there are so many things to make fun of this upcoming season I can hardly wait. Oh, don't worry.... I still plan to analyze the show itself and look for more input from readers.

Speaking of which, I still have no co-pilot for the upcoming season so if you wish to partake and help out by writing some reviews, please say so in the comments or email me at, ideally with a sample of your writing prowess. It doesn't have to be anything specific -- just something that shows me you can write.