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TV Junkie: The '24' Finale

Au revoir Jack, until the big screen - the series finale of "24" airs at 8pm on Fox.
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Tonight we will stagger from last night's series finale of "Lost" to tonight's series finale of "24". In the 8 1/2 years since the premiere of "24" the show has gone from being an avant-garde, in-your-face morality play about terrorism, torture, and politics, to something formulaic and predictable. "24"'s combination of raw action and comical xenophobia was an entertaining circus to most of us but (disturbingly) taken as "truth" by the Bush II regime, the military, and "patriotic" pundits like Rush Limbaugh and his ilk. The series was at its strongest when it was about Kiefer Sutherland's Jack Bauer and at its weakest when it became plot-focused.The series also served as a vehicle to give a broader audience to some great performances by Mary Lynn Rajskub, Sarah Clarke, and dozens of other "new" actors along with old school heavy hitters like Dennis Hopper and William Devane making up a cast of over 500 named players in during its production. We had high hopes for it's most recent and final season once we heard that the setting was to be New York City, but we were quickly disappointed with endlessly looped shots of downtown Los Angeles, complete with innumerable palm trees sneaking themselves into footage over the past several months. Some handheld, closeup grittiness on the streets of NYC could have saved the series but it was not to be - instead we played the familiar game of "who's the mole?" and the shuffle of the cardboard chess pieces of nuclear/bio-bomb and/or assassination and/or Arabs/some-ethnic-Muslim-country/Russians.

Thankfully, the last few weeks have brought it all back to the man that started it all for us: Jack Bauer. It's the world vs. Jack Bauer and we want him to win, no matter his transgressions. We'll miss you Jack, your "dammit" and CTU ringtone will echo in our dreams for years to come.
FYI: Penn Jillette's new web series starts today.
Hey kids, what show has the most Emmys of any other show in TV history? Look for the answer at the end of our post.
The TV Junkie Plan: "24", "Chelsea Lately", Letterman (Jake Gyllenhaal), Fallon (Ben Kingsley)