Friday, May 11, 2007

Unofficial 24 Page Programming Announcement

If you're a loyal reader, then you know that I've been writing these (hopefully unique) reviews for about five years now. When I began doing it, starting with Season Two, I was simply hoping to continue to polish my writing skills and to share my thoughts and whimsy about what I felt was the best show on television. I wasn't sure how things were going to go at first and I found myself analyzing episodes in painstaking detail, pointing out nerdy things I would notice and trying to figure out how things fit into the overall plot and development of the show and/or the characters. Then the reviews kind of began to evolve to where they ended up -- wise-ass ramblings on a guilty pleasure kind of TV show.

Season Three, D came on board and instantly made things better around here. He took some of the pressure off of me to come up with insight and wit every week and he only further improved the situation by taking on 50% of the reviewing for Seasons Four and Five. There's absolutely no way that the reviews here would have been nearly as good (or as possible) without his dedication and brilliant writing (paid only in compliments from you). I know many, if not all, of you agree with this assessment but I just wanted to say it again here.

I began
Season Six all lone wolf again, which made me more like Jack Bauer than I had been in several years. And while I do still enjoy the writing and the show, I feel like maybe the usefulness of this site has run its course. I can't help but feel I don't have as much funny left in me or as much insight as I used to. Perhaps this has something to do with the fact that the writing staff for the actual show is lacking insight as well. Hard to be sure.

Over the course of these past five years, by my rough count I've written 86 reviews of this show, with another three to come to finish out this season. That rounds out to (very roughly) a quarter of a million words written about 24 by me. That's a lot. And I think I've used almost all of the words available to me. Except for "ukulele." And now I've used that one.

The point of my latest ramble is that I think The Unofficial 24 Page is going to be put to rest at the conclusion of Season Six. New programming, in all likelihood, will not be produced here.

I just think that, while I still enjoy 24 every week, it's not nearly as gripping as it once was. Maybe it's because of the writing laziness, as many of us claim, or maybe it's got more to do with the fact that this kind of format and urgency can only be maintained for so long, no matter how hard you try. Regardless, I do believe I'm done after this season.

I cannot even begin to tell you how much I appreciate the feedback I've gotten from readers. The mere fact that people read this site (as well as the old one) is amazing to me and indescribably flattering. I am so glad that I was able to entertain a select group of people who were willing to wade through the wordiness and lengthy babble of a writer who operates without an editor. So thank you, thank you, thank you. You're the best.

If for some reason you want to continue reading what I write down, I'll be glad to send you my high school term papers. No, just kidding. In reality, I write for two other blogsites: My personal one, known as the
NotTheRock Musings, as well as a sports wise-ass site called Boiled Sports. I've also been known to show up on sites like Ranger Fan Central or Four Magazine. My personal blog should always be able to keep you up to date on that sort of thing.

However, this is not goodbye. This is merely to let you know that you should enjoy the final three reviews in a very extra-special way -- kind of like the way we all enjoy Kim Bauer in her underwear. Only I don't want you looking at me that way. So maybe that's a bad metaphor.

I've got it! Enjoy these swan song reviews the way that Jack enjoys smack. Yeah, that's it.

Thanks again for reading,


Anonymous Phoenician said...

Oh J . . . that's one of the saddest things I've heard this year (well, not THE saddest, but at least in the world of 24-fandom-ny).

But I can't blame you for closing shop when the show's no longer motivating you. I think we can all relate to that.

I've seriously been wondering about the future of 24 as well. IS Day VII a guarentee? Do we even want to TRY and rectify Day VI?

(though some parts have been great -- Graem being tortured by Jack couldn't come sooner)

But thank you J for all that you have done for the obsessive fans like us who can even REMEMBER all the nitpicks you bring up and even CHALLENGE them too!

You will be missed. Hope to see you around.

(and nothing's final, right? If, by some crazy miracle Day VI's finale blows us ALL out of the water, MAYBE you'll reconsider? No? Maybe? Hey, I'm TALKING to you!!)

(and D, THANKS AGAIN for your occaisional comments here this year AS WELL AS your great Day III-V Reviews!)

But hey, if you ever need me, you know where to find me!

Loyal reader since Day II (Hour four-ish),


7:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon #2:

J, I have to diddo all that phoenician just said. Your site has been the only enjoyable 24 site I've found over these past 5 years. Sorry for giving you a hard time sometimes. You've been great.

Can't wait for the final 3. Maybe we can all get together and give you a silent clock at the end of the season :)

10:16 PM  
Anonymous david h said...

I'm sorry to see you go J, but I completely understand. I'm sure your reviewing has been like many of us fans watching, mainly out of habit than enjoyment. The writing this season really hasn't been that great. And who says you can't come out of retirement someday...I mean Roger Clemens just did it for what, the 4th season in a row? It's very Mark Martin-esque. Or Michael Jordan-ish. I mean those are three great athletes you could be compared to should you change your mind. Then again you aren't making millions to blog about 24. But I digress.

It's been a pleasure reading your reviews over the last many years. I remember how thrilled I was to come across the original site all those years ago. I was at school at the time and made sure to save the link so I could check it again once I got home. Good luck with all of your future blogging and thanks for all of the effort over the years!

2:24 AM  
Anonymous Phoenician said...

Just to let everyone know . . . 24's been greenlighted for TWO more Seasons (I was kinda hoping it would end with a Day VII, but I guess we got till Day VIII)

So J . . . you COULD have been reviewing till May 2009 if you didn't retire this year.

Man . . . I don't know if they could do two more years . . . .

10:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's always better to leave the roulette table when you are still winning, that's what they say. Good choice J, nobody here wants to see 24 and its site going downhill further in the next two season. Damn, I didn't want to see them blew it this season either, it made me grow a dislike in even reading the whole review in here. D must have had a sixth sense good enough to foresee the show's befall, what a devil he is. If you are going to write the next review after all, take your time and have D shoot a sneaky comment in the end as well, if you can. If you are not going to, that is really the same, since the less is told about this season, the better. I am interested in following your and D's next works in the reviewing territory, altough not 24's, if there is any in your future. Just feed me the links. It would have been sadder to say goodbye after Day 5, since so much appeared to be left in the show: now that I am so cold to it, I can get over this with no regrets and a wish of good luck for you all.

11:21 AM  
Blogger Dave T said...

Well, J, I will miss your ramblings immensely though I can certainly understand your decision. Your site has provided quite a valuable service, I think, providing insightful and intelligent commentary on a truly ground-breaking TV show. Your attention to detail and skills of critical analysis have always been impressive to me and you always supplied ample quality observations without the somewhat mind-numbing detail of some commentary sites (e.g., televisionwithoutpity, etc.). And probably most impressive – and the reason I started reading and kept on doing so throughout your tenure – is your consistent good humor. I always chuckled through a reading of one of your pieces, often laughing out loud multiple times and often to my embarrassment. It was this that I aspired to – imagining goading other cubefarm workers and 24-geeks into laughter across the country – when you allowed me on board a couple of years ago and I was honored and delighted to play along for a while. I will miss your words and your perspective.

I have many thoughts about this latest season. But foremost (and I wonder whether this played any part in your decision) is how slack the writing has often been. Details have often been wrong, characters appear and disappear, dialogue is clumsy, stuff just doesn’t make sense. While all of these could be said about previous seasons, much of the worst came together on Day 6. While we never saw anything as silly as a cougar, there was plenty that was lackluster or repetitious. If Day 5 was a perfect storm of good writing, excellent acting, a dynamic synergy between old characters and new, and a strong central plot supported by compelling side stories, Day 6 was the sloppy aftermath of that storm, with pieces strewn all over the place and not much seeming to come together. For me, the saddest part is a sense of missed opportunity; there were so many interesting and epic places the producers could have gone this season, between Jack’s China problems and the introduction of his extended family. While it’s a little early to close the book conclusively, I’d say they generally fumbled the ball. I was chomping at the bit at the prospect of a ‘24’ movie after last season; now I’d be more intrigued by a big screen “Heroes” and I’m frankly so-so about Day 7 on ’24.’

As a writer, I am disappointed with ’24.’ But at least I can say that you, J, have never let me down. Thanks for the fun ride!


11:38 AM  
Blogger Dave T said...

P.S.: I had no premonitions about the nature of this season though I figured we hadn't seen the last of Kim Raver's Audrey. Do producers think she has some kind of burgeoning fan base or something? She's already cast in a show with Brooke Shields next season. I'm thinking the body count will be lower on that show...

11:45 AM  

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