We finished watching the second two hours of the new “24” (“the most critically acclaimed show on television”) last night. In my expert opinion, the show as written is simply too ludicrous to be saved. The appearance of one after another (after another after another) dumb soap-opera subplots simply overwhelms the alleged main story line and the action attendant thereto.
However, I have to admit some of the plot twists are so mind-bendingly idiotic that they’re entertaining in themselves, and they make you wonder whether the show’s creative geniuses have given up on action and suspense in favor of remaking “Dallas,” only with automatic weapons and mass casualties and bad guys with foreign accents. My favorite subplot so far involves the tight-assed Counterterrorism Unit boss, Erin Driscoll, who gets a call in the midst of a national emergency from her schizophrenic daughter Maya, who is wigging out and refusing to take her meds. She wants Erin to say she loves her, which Erin does with all the enthusiasm of a prisoner facing a firing squad. Minutes later, a neighbor calls to report that Maya has been terrorizing the neighborhood. Erin’s response is to bully a subordinate into waving off the Los Angeles police officers responding to the incident and sending a CTU medical team to deal with Maya instead. As bad as that sounds, it’s actually worse when you factor in the comic-book dialogue and very limited acting skills of all involved.
The question now is whether I’m really done with “24” for the season or whether I’ll respond the way my friend Endo did: “I’m burned out on ’24’ — UNTIL NEXT WEEK!!!”