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DVD Talk Review-24 - Season Four

Old 12-02-05, 06:20 PM
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DVD Talk Review-24 - Season Four

I just read the DVD Talk review of Season 4 of ""24" by Shannon Nutt and I couldn't disagree more with it. Ironically, Mr. Nutt stated that he went into the season fearing that it may jump the shark, and that is exactly what I kept thinking while watching it.

As a bit of background, I loved the first three seasons, and I watched them on DVD as soon as they were released, usually finishing the box set over a weekend. In fact, I was so into seeing the latest installment that I picked up a Region 2 set a couple of months ago.

When I sat down to watch it, I was shocked at how bad it was. It was like a Saturday Night Live parody of what "24" use to be. While in the past, the show stretched the concept of realism, season 4 just throws it out the window. There was not one moment of the season that I ever thought that what I was watching could in any way connect with reality. It really felt like they were just making it up as the went along.

To list all of the events the are suppose to have taken place in a 24 hour period would take me 24 hours. We've got a terrorist who plans to set off a meltdown of every nuclear power plant in the US, and to do this he has a henchman derail a train, kidnap a top governemnt official and hold a mock trial for him on the internet. He does manage to destroy a few power plants. But that's not all. He also plans on shooting down the President's plane. And just because he is the type of guy who likes to live every day like its his last-he also send off a nuclear missle targeting a major US city.

Busy guy. And I have trouble squeezing in grocery shopping after work.

And that's part of the problem with the show. Its pure fantasy. At this point Jack Bauer might as well find a genie's lamp and rub it to get three wishes. What was interesting about previous seasons was the fact that you sort of can believe that what you were watching could actually happen. The characters felt real (or as real as the genre would allow). This time around, no matter what happens, people just dust off their shirts and go about their business

One of the characters loses his mother in the nuclear meltdown. Does he even take a personal day? No, he gets huffy once in awhile at CTU, but pretty much goes about his business as usual.

In fact, the whole nuclear meltdown is pretty much ignore a few episodes after it happened. Imagine if there was really was a nuclear meltdown 20 miles from LA, don't you think there might be some wripple effect? THAT would have been enough for the series, but the producers/writers didn't trust the audience so they kept having to throw more and more at them.

The Secretary of Defense gets kidnapped, tortured and almost killed. Less than an hour later, he's fine and goes on without so much as a scratch.

"Let's have Jack break into the Chinese Embassy". 30 minutes later he's running out the front door of the Embassy, mission accomplished. In fact, the Embassy looked like it was a left over set from some mansion in a 1960's spy movie. You know the kind, with a few guards whose only job is to stand around and get jumped from behind.

What made the original 24 so compelling and exciting was that there was a real sense of danger and the creators took the time to fashion a good, solid, logical (sort of) story, that kept your interest. I felt that this season pretty much threw out everything that made the original so good, and replaced it with loud explosions and ridiculous situations. In fact, it was so bad, that it was an actual chore for me to get through it. It took me about two months of watching just to finish it. Each time I sat down to watch a new episode, I would have this vague hope that maybe I was wrong to dismiss it before and maybe it was actually a good show. Sadly, it just kept getting worse and worse.

[Edited to add in spoiler tags]
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Old 12-02-05, 10:05 PM
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It WAS a little crazy, but it was also really really good.

I turned on one of the Season 4 episodes whenever they had the marathon (on Labor Day maybe?) and i got hooked all over again. Ended up watching it on and off for about 9-10 hours worth.

I've already ordered the new set for a friend for christmas and plan on picking one up myself after christmas probably! Highly recommended!
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Old 12-02-05, 10:25 PM
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Season 4 is easily the most absurd year(or day) yet for the show, but they've all been ridiculous when you examine the plots closely.

I basically look at 24 like the TV equivalent of Die Hard. It's a lot of fun as long as you don't think about it too much. And Season 4 is pretty much Die Hard 2 as far as plausibility.

BTW, I can't wait to see that Season 5 prequel. Sounds interesting.
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Old 12-03-05, 02:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Doughboy
Season 4 is easily the most absurd year(or day) yet for the show, but they've all been ridiculous when you examine the plots closely.
Heck, the sheer amount of "yeah, right" is why this show is fun. Never mind that one CTU agent is at the center of every potential world-changing disaster. How many times has Jack gotten across L.A. within 15 minutes, without hitting traffic? Insanity.

The episodes of Season 4 I saw were enjoyable, mostly because they didn't have Kim Bower in them. Please tell me she's absent from the entire season ... ... that would make the set a good blind buy for me.
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Old 12-03-05, 01:17 PM
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Please learn how to use spoiler tags properly. It will make your posts much easier to read.
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Old 12-03-05, 04:47 PM
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24 is a show that you never want to think about the little details like getting across in LA in 20 minutes ec. but i agree its like Die-hard somewhat, Still 24 is one of the best shows on tv and most intense on TV
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Old 12-03-05, 04:58 PM
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I thought that it was a great review myself. I really enjoyed this season, and I just got the set today and I can't wait to dive into those extras! The extras in the review sound super. The DVD sets for this one have come a long way since season one.
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