Digital Spy

Search Digital Spy
41

Cult News

Should '24' return for another day?

By
24 episodics S07E10
Recent reports suggest that the 24 clock is ticking down for the final time on television this year. The costs of producing the show coupled with mediocre ratings have been cited as the main reasons why Day 8 is likely to be the last season of the exhilarating real-time series. But should terrorist-thwarter Jack Bauer be given a reprieve for further adventures?

There is nothing worse on television (apart from Piers Morgan) than watching an ailing programme limping along, desperately trying to recapture its former glories but merely tarnishing a once-strong reputation. Fortunately, this tag applies to the likes of The X-Files and Heroes rather than 24 - although Day 6 came perilously close to catapulting Bauer and his duplicitous family over the proverbial shark. In its current eighth season, the show is still packed full of nailbiting tension, intrigue and torture. It's a remarkable achievement that the series remains such compelling viewing given that the content is anything but fresh.

Yet that is precisely why now is the right time for 24 to bow out with its head held high and before it becomes unequivocally stale. Certain over-familiar elements of the show are already bordering dangerously close to parody. The manner in which Bauer alternates between hushed whispers and spit-strewn shouts, the interrogations revolving around the question 'Where is the God-damn bomb?' the mandatory frustrating subplot with one of the female supporting characters, the arrogant CTU boss who conceals a good heart, the sarcastic scowls from Chloe, the 'damn its', the déjà-vu-style search for nuclear weapons and the Middle Eastern terrorist cells roaming an American city - they're all good value for a drinking game but highlight just how constrained 24 is by its premise and structure as an ongoing weekly series.

That's why the proposed movie franchise incarnation of 24 would help to preserve and boost its legacy instead of further seasons threatening to diminish it. The storyline reportedly revolves around Jack Bauer's heroic activities in Europe and would therefore provide a refreshingly new canvas for the warrior to give some bad guys the hairdryer treatment. The movie's length should also ensure the plot is firmly focused on the meat of the story and be a cougar-free zone. In addition, a healthy budget could enable action sequences that would easily eclipse anything we've witnessed on 24 before.

Many fans of Lost were stunned when the producers announced that the series would conclude at the end of its sixth season. However, this was a wise move that gave the show added focus and ramped up the dramatic tension ahead of its eagerly-awaited climax. Such a move by the 24 bosses would similarly heighten the stakes for Bauer and CTU as well as allow the writers to incorporate some bold twists that would pave the way for the big screen Jack.

To quote Tyrell from Blade Runner: "The light that burns twice as bright burns half as long." 24 has burned so brightly and for an impressively long period too, but a bold decision to extinguish that flame in its current form would be the right one. Crucially, it would allow the movie to finally enter production while there is still an appetite for one.

> Do you think 24 should continue on television? Share your views

You May Like

More: Cult, 24, Cult Spy

Comments

Loading...