The first 2 hours of 24 Season 8 are behind us and, while we’re pumped that the show is back, tonight was a little slow and had the strong odor of ‘been there, done that’ to it.
It’s a new day and what looks like a year or so after the events of Day 7. We find Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland) living in New York City with daughter Kim and his granddaughter Teri. Jack decides that he wants to move back to Los Angeles with his family and is ready to hop on a plane with them. But before he can go, a former informant shows up critically wounded at his door with information on a plot to assassinate the visiting President of Kamistan (a fictitious country in the Middle East). And just like that, Jack goes from watching cartoons with his granddaughter to axing a bad guy (yes, an axe to the chest) in a stairwell.
The first hour beats the second, but overall tonight was on the sluggish side, with the focus on laying the groundwork for the story ahead. That said, we saw a whole slew of new characters, and the writers started to peel back some of their layers. An equally important new ‘character’ is the brand spanking new CTU, which is indeed very slick and stylish and will no doubt be the home of many interrogations and heated arguments between Jack Bauer and others.
The initial plot of this season feels a little like that of Day 1, when President David Palmer (then a senator) was the target of assassins. And again, it’s CTU that becomes Jack’s biggest opponent, with Director Brian Hastings (Mykelti Williamson) following in the long line of CTU Directors that will resist whatever he wants to do. Hopefully, the writers are cleverly luring us into this predictability trap only to redirect the story into something we haven’t seen before. But right now, it’s looking like the only things fresh to the show are the characters and the location. If you can just accept the recycling for what it is, I’m sure that Day 8 won’t disappoint.
When the 2 night premiere continues tomorrow night, the pace picks up and we’ll get more explosions and more Bauer. We also get to see another familiar face, Renee Walker, who needs to be lured back into working with Jack and CTU.
Check out the preview and tune in at 8/7c Monday night.