Why I love 24.
Friday, July 8, 2005

I've been wanting to write this for some time, but after reading a post here comparing Jack Bauer to rectal pubic hair, I figured it would be as good of time as any to proclaim my undying admiration for the series.

The reasons I love 24 are numerous and varied. I started watching it when it first came on a year before FIREFLY debued. It really grabbed my attention from the first get-go when in the pilot ep, you found out that it wasn't the foreign photographer that was going to blow up the plane but the slutty, drunk chick who turned out to be the person hired to blow up the plane. As the show progressed, I saw how it just built and built. How it just piled on one tense moment after another, and even when it was resolved, you found out quickly that it was just another piece in a gigantic convoluted puzzle that showed you stuff that you honestly had no idea you were looking at. The whole first day seemed like a gigantic Hitchcock film that even after 23 hours, still had you on pins and needles and eagerly had you chomping at the bit to see what would happen next. And amazingly enough, it still has managed to keep it going. Even through an admittedly weak third day and whenever something happens that was way out there even for 24, there was still that "I gotta know what happens next" element to it that made you come back.

I said in an earlier post that Jack Bauer could kick Mal Reynold's ass. I didn't mean that in a "fight to the death" kind of way. What I meant is that, if I was in a perilous situation, where I'm being hunted down or in deep trouble and had to resort to one of these two for help, I know that I can trust Mal. I know that he'd definitly be there to get my back. But as for Jack, I know that he's on the right side, but his methods and how he gets his results scares me. I mean, one minute, I'm being offered protection. The next, I could end up being used as bait or an incentive to get vital information, like in Day 3, when Jack nearly had to put a terrorist's daughter into a biohazardous hotel in order to get the terrorist to crack. Mal would never go as far as to nearly sacrifice the person he was protecting to do the right thing. So to me, Jack has that edge that Mal doesn't. Plus, the way that Keifer Sutherland portrays him, you know that this is not someone you can joke around with or get on your good side like with Mal.

There is also the whole "what's at stake" thing that separates the two. Even though Mal lost his faith in Serenity Valley and everything else, he still has SERENITY and his crew. He has those people around him to restore all the things he has lost, and so e fights every day just so that he doesn't lose them. But Jack? Jack on the other hand has nothing to lose. By the end of each day, despite his best efforts, he still can't save the people he's determined to protect. By the end of the 4th day, he can't even protect himself. He's saved the world yet again, but he has to fake his death in order to keep an international crisis from erupting. He has no crew to go home to, or an ideology to live by. He has nothing to lose. And someone who has nothing to lose is the msot dangerous person imaginable.

I'll continue this in another post.



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