This week on 24: the USS Plot Movement sailed into port and all the thirsty sailors (a.k.a. me) rejoiced by tossing our empty bottles at Dana. Sadly, the bottles were empty, hic, so the projectiles didn’t kill her or her stupidity. Sadness. Unsurprisingly, the USS Plot Movement had dangerous cargo on board: a young Muslim extremist with the world’s worst suicide bomb strapped to his torso. “My goodness,” you must be thinking, “The world’s worst suicide bomb? That’s terrible! How will Jack Bauer save us from complete and utter destruction this time?” Worry not, dear reader, for this is the world’s worst suicide bomb not in terms of damage, but in terms of quality. I understand that the black market for explosive devices isn’t always flush with high-end triggers. I’m sure this particular bomb was hastily assembled. I’m willing to make some allowances. However, I don’t know much about explosives, but somewhere in my blurry recollection of high school physics, I recall that if you want to set something like this off, all you have to do is complete the circuit, yes? And yet, poor Mr. Marcos Zacar had his Big Bad Bomb Trigger hacked remotely by the bumbling idiots at CTU and is now in the sticky situation of having to, um, you know, set it off himself. Heaven forbid! Were I in 24-land, I would be sleeping safely tonight knowing that there is absolutely zero danger of a dirty bomb going off in New York because this terrorist cell probably has trouble figuring out which side of the microwavable popcorn bag goes up.
Stupidity of certain suicide bombers and/or writers aside, this episode managed to bring a few of the subplots back into the main arc. Before we get there, though, I just have to vent that the Dana/Cole business is getting more annoying by the moment and I found it hilarious that NOW Dana wants to fall on her sword and turn herself in. Where was that spirit six hours ago? Those two are so screwed if the gang from CSI: New York shows up because that crime scene at the World’s Cleanest Swamp was a mess. Oh — and apparently no one at CTU is particularly concerned that Cole is missing. Gah. What a waste of Freddie.
However, Hassan’s storyline became less of a political backdrop and more of an action-instigator this episode. Farhad’s idiotic death (really, dude — you couldn’t have stayed put for five more seconds?) seems to have pulled Hassan’s head out of his ass. Or perhaps it was Madame President’s awesome threat of military force if Hassan didn’t give her his top secret files RIGHT NOW. I really love the interaction between those two. Either way, I’ve got the sneaking suspicion that Hassan’s mole hunt wasn’t entirely off-base. I was convinced that Tarin was innocent, but after the breakout and consequent nookie with Kayla, he just might be working with the enemy. Screwing Hassan over in more than one way, you know? I’d be curious to find out what other viewers think — Tarin: good or bad?
Hastings redeemed himself in my mind by standing up to the Chief of Staff. Took him long enough. I’m still not sure what the big deal is with Vlad dying. Intelligence loses leads all the time and you’re choosing here and now to hang someone for it? As far as I know, the operation wasn’t in the public eye. So something’s fishy there. I also enjoyed the “rookie time” standoff between Owen the Sweaty CTU Agent and Marcos the Unsuccessful Suicide Bomber. It was ridiculous, but I feel like it was probably a more accurate portrayal of what actually happens to intelligence officers in these types of situations. Still not sure I buy the, “Farhad’s actually alive and being treated at this hospital!” on Fox News. You’d think that’d be just a leeeetle fishy to Samir and his gang. But then again, they apparently have trouble assembling simple triggers as well, so I don’t know why I’m surprised.
How badass is Jack? It’s barely a couple hours after he was stuck in the stomach with a salami knife and tortured mercilessly, and now he manages to jump out of a window and not catch a stumbling terrorist on his way to a hyperbaric chamber! Let’s just blame the stomach wound on that one. I thought his little booty call to Renee was cute (because, yes, it was a booty call), but I feel let down that Renee has been demoted to the Recovering Damsel in Distress. She was much more interesting in the field.
So Farhad’s dead, New York’s going to be attacked with a dirty bomb, Dana and Cole are off playing in the swamp, and Jack’s stuck wondering how the hell Marcos is getting cell phone reception in that hyperbaric chamber. Looks like next week could be a nail-biter — here’s hoping!