Four years after the series’ belated cancellation, and following the abortion of an ill-advised feature film, 24 has somehow been given yet another lease of life. The good news? The marketing guys at Fox get to recycle those two puns on the name “Jack” they have used for every single series to date. The bad? Well, see for yourself:
The dilemma facing the writers is obvious. On the one hand they have to give at least a superficial nod to recent global events such as the controversy over drone killings and the Snowden leaks, which all paint the American government in a pretty bad light. On the other hand 24 at its core is essentially right-wing propaganda, promoting the same militant agenda Fox disseminates through its news outlets.
So they have had to dance around a little bit. Chloe, the nerdy hacker character, has been given an embarrassing make-over to replicate the look of Lisbeth from The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, and becomes a Snowden-esque freedom fighter. Jack is once again on the run, having gone rogue one too many times from a government riddled with bad apples. He even seems to be wearing a hoody, serving the dual purpose of disguising his appearance and indicating that he is down with the kids.
They needn’t have bothered really, as at this point it’s hard to imagine the show will be attracting any new viewers. Even die-hard fans must be experiencing severe fatigue by now. Personally I jumped ship around season 4, when the show’s ugly political mindset really started to dominate. I’ll happily watch propaganda if it’s artistically significant, but Leni Riefenstahl this ain’t.