24: Legacy Season 1 Episode 1 Review: “12:00 Noon — 1:00 PM”

24: Legacy Season 1 Episode 1 Review: “12:00 Noon — 1:00 PM”

As a kid, I missed out on the initial popular run of 24 and got hooked on it well after an amazing Season 5 and into a dreadful Season 6 which critics claimed was “unoriginal, pandering and uninspired”. I watched the last two seasons and they were good but despite their attempts, they couldn’t continue the former juggernaut that was 24.

We’ve had “Live Another Day” that was better than Seasons 7 & 8 but after that miniseries; people wondered if “24” could continue without Jack Bauer.

The answer is yes, yes it can…

24: Legacy does not contain Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland) which may seem like a disappointment considering that people love the guy for being both an action hero and a flawed human being but consider this. His story has already been told, there’s nothing more that can be done with the character. Enter Eric Carter (Corey Hawkins), the new Jack Bauer who is the first diverse main character in the franchise and arguably, a more flawed human being.

His backstory is also interesting; instead of being an existing member of CTU, he was a part of an Army group that highly resembles the team that took down “Osama Bin Laden”, if you had a Gear VR system then you were able to experience the whole “prequel” in which they took down the fictional terrorist leader “Bin-Khalid” which is quite frankly an amazing experience mostly due to the fact that you became immersed in the action and it’s a deviation from the norm in which prequels are usually videos.

That backstory gives him a sense of realism as there are very few characters in the 24 universe that have been through traumatizing situations. In 24, much of the people were pristine and perfect but thanks to a seismic shift in the way television is perceived and written; we now have multifaceted characters like Eric Carter and his character is shown to be skilled but mostly vulnerable in this episode. There’s no daughter or wife that he has to protect; instead we have the only other survivor of the Army Rangers who I have to say, is quite skilled and is even more flawed than the main character which leads to some interesting parallels.

Season Openers in 24 have known to been explosive but this goes all out by introducing high stakes in the beginning including the lead director going rogue and helping out Eric in the first few minutes of the episode. Normally they’d be trying to help out using all official channels but due to Eric not being a CTU agent, this leads to some pretty intense stakes. Twist after twist is incorporated in the storyline and suspense is at an all time high to a point where I might say that this is better than the original 24. If you enjoy the political thrillers with gunfights and unexpected twists then you’ll love 24: Legacy as it has those elements, just set to a different tune.

In addition to that, there’s a storyline set in a high-school which to my memory (may or may not be right) is one of the first in 24 in that it’s related to the plot of “Bin-Khalid” but doesn’t involve the main character in any way. This is unique in that it shows that it’s willing to expand it’s reach beyond the main character showing that not everything in the world has to center around Eric Carter. Plus the cinematography and lighting is tight and cinematic, either feeling equal to the original 24 or better than it. The cinematography really captures both the real time feel and the emotional states of the characters and the situation which is essential for the series to work.

Thanks to the tighter episode count (this one’s only 10 episodes), there’s no doubt in my mind that 24: Legacy will disappoint. It may not be the same as before and it may even pale in comparison to Westworld but it provides you with the same rush and the same feeling as before and if there’s any doubt about this series. Fans of 24 may cry foul over the lack of “Jack Bauer” and familiar characters or the lack of certain traditions but despite the same format being used (there’s no 24 without a real-time element), it’s the same 24 you’ve come to expect better.

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