As many of you know, I blog summaries of “24” for Dave Barry’s blog, and host them here on my own blog as well. I post over there as “Steve (The 24 Guy)”.
Here’s a summary of “24: Redemption”, which aired tonight. Hope you like it.
Previously on 24, we found out: Jack Bauer was relieved when he was able to get out of Audrey’s room without waking her out of her coma; Jack’s brother and father were pretty much worse guys than he previously thought, which would explain why they didn’t stage an intervention when Jack started dating Audrey; Chloe told Morris she was pregnant, and despite all odds, Morris might have something to do with it; and most of all, people were willing to hang around for more than a year to watch Jack Bauer get back into action!
It’s four years after Jack escaped from Audrey. Sangala, Africa is staging it’s own Indiana Jones warehouse from the looks of it. They have VERY strict school bus laws there, because a guy with a machine gun is going through town with a bunch of boys. He takes a phone call from another guy who’s teaching a lot of little kids how to survive downtown Miami by giving them shooting lessons.
That night, around a campfire sing-a-long that only Jason Vorhees would love, the man at the training camp gives a boy a machete. They drag in a guy who is bloody and crying; he must have seen Audrey recently, but it turns out that he’s just someone who was working with the current government in that country. The guy in charge tells the kid to “kill the cockroach”, and the kid mistakenly kills the government worker instead. First Audrey, now death. That guy had a very bad day.
The “24” logo comes up! They remembered how to use it! They’re doing this real-time, which is how long we’ve waited for the show to start.
3:00 pm – Driving in the country, a guy complains about the air conditioning, but appears to be worried about the federal subpoena he’s holding.
Two kids argue in a school yard as a big truck arrives. It is a box shipment, from The Exciting Box Truck, and these kids look like they REALLY like boxes.
One of the boys goes into a bedroom and starts taking things from…. JACK BAUER! The kid looks like he knows what Jack might do, but it turns out that Jack doesn’t mind. Jack says the scarf the kid is looking at is for his daughter, Kim, if she hasn’t been attacked by a wild animal since he’s been gone. The kid starts interrogating Jack about which places he’s lived, which can only mean that Jack is being a mentor for a future agent! The kid really has to work on his snooping skills though, since Jack did after all catch him in the act.
The kid wants to know when Jack is going back home, and Jack says he’s not! The kid realizes this would make it tough to give Kim the scarf. Jack gives the kid, “Willy”, the scarf.
The head of the school comes back with a guy named Frank from the embassy. Frank wants Jack to come back with him, and tries to serve him a subpoena! Foolish Frank! Well, needless to say, Jack warms up for the rest of the show by grabbing Frank’s wrist and show Frank his own palm, which looks like it hurts. I’m guessing that will be the least painful thing Jack will do for the next two hours. Jack doesn’t take the subpoena and goes off the unload The Exciting Box truck.
Frank threatens Carl with a lack of funding, which is a pretty typical way that Washington types threaten people. Jack’s been moving all over the world, ducking that subpoena.
Back at the truck, the driver starts to harass Jack about the things Jack has done before, saying he’s only there to do penance, not knowing that even being associated with Audrey has been penance enough for Jack.
3:10 – At Camp Scary, where they let little kids have big knives, they’re unloading a truck with a lot of weapons. The head guy, Colonel Dubaku, seems to have a problem: More guns than soldiers. If they’d only realized that last night when they killed that guy.
A guy named Hodges from Washington calls Dubaku on either a state of the art satellite phone, or one of those big numbered cell phones for people that don’t know how to use them. It has a big antenna though, which makes me think that Hodges also has a really fancy sports car in the parking lot, if you know what I mean.
Hodges says that he’s heard Dubaku’s recruiting numbers are coming up short. Dubaku tells him, “Of course they’re short! These are little kids!” Hodges says that’s not what he meant. Hodges wants to send in some much taller soldiers, but Dubaku doesn’t want them. Hodges does want a phone call from someone named “Juma”.
Hodges gets off the phone and tells his subordinate that he’s paying for Dubaku’s country, which must mean this guy has either won several state lotteries, or works for the federal government. Hodges throws the guy the mutant cell phone and tells him he doesn’t want the “transactions” traceable. NOW he tells him. So much easier to do this sort of thing if you know beforehand that you don’t want things traceable.
At a stock broker’s office, a guy named Chris gets called into his boss’ office as Hodge’s is leaving. Chris is told to take some accounts, “burn the records, and bury the ashes”. Chris looks sad as he leaves to light fire to his collection of 45s and LPs.
Back in Africa, Carl (the head of the school) comes to see Jack and asks for a word. Jack almost says, “DAMMIT!” but stops himself when he realizes that’s not what Carl meant. Carl wants Jack to look at the subpoena, and Jack says he’s NOT going back. Carl says he hoped that when Jack called after ten years, he hoped it was for more than what Jack ultimately wanted. They look at each other for an uncomfortable moment, cough into their hands and say, “Hey! Want about that football game last Sunday?” and the moment passes.
Carl says that he stopped running, and found himself. Carl REALLY wants Jack to stay, but Jack says he’s going to move on because it would be better for everyone. Jack has thighs to shoot, and there doesn’t seem to be much thigh shooting around.
A guy on the truck is arguing with that pleasant man from the truck, saying that Juma is taking kids to make them soldiers, and not the “dress up for the school play” kind. The truck guy says that Juma doesn’t have any guns or weapons, but this talk really worries the kids.
3:18 – A bunch of kids are playing what they call “football”, because they play it with their feet. We in the US call that “soccer” because the name “football” was previously taken, even though in that game we sock people all the time. The other difference in their game, they have goats, chickens, logs and old cars on the field. The other hazards are grown men with machine guns that drive up in Jeeps They play a MUCH different game of soccer than we do.
After the game, a guy jumps out of the truck and tells them they’re now soldiers. Two of the kids take off running, and the soldiers chase after them, shooting them dead.
3:21 – Commercial
3:26 – A man and woman get dressed while watching the news on a extremely small HD TV, when the man, Roger, gets a phone call from Chris (that guy from the broker’s office who just burned all his 45s). Chris is really freaked out, because he might have burned the wrong records. Chris wants to meet Roger in 45 minutes, and the woman’s pretty upset. Turns out that Roger is the son of the next President of the United States! What a surprise! A 24 show with a tie-in with the President.
Well, soon to be President. She’s the President-Elect. Tom Lennox shows up and tells President-Elect Allison they just got word of an imminent coop in Sangala. She asks “how imminent”, and Tom tells her that on the scale of imminent coops, “one” meaning “I was just messing with you” and “ten” meaning “Houston, we have a problem”, this was at least a “9”. She stops her foot and says that this is exactly the sort of thing Joe Biden warned people about.
President Noah has got a MUCH better television system than Roger does, but right now he’s using it for a conference call to talk about those crazy Sangalan school buses with machine guns with the Prime Minister of Sangala. The PM wants Noah to help, but since this is January 20th, Noah really can’t do much except put the PM on hold and give Cisco a nice product placement ad while he talks to Tom, who just walked in and says President-elect Allison is outside.
They go to the Oval office, and Allison is SHOCKED that UN hasn’t been keeping an eye on things. Noah doesn’t think they should have a show of force, and Alliance does. The President-elect Allison says, “The last time Juma made a power grab, he ignited a tribal war”, and President Noah says that he didn’t know that tribal wars are extremely flammable. Allison says that’s not what she meant. Noah is none too keen on going into Sangala, because he’s pretty sure it’s going to be tough to get McDonald’s and Starbucks takeout there, what with the shooting and all.
Allison and Noah argue about her idealism, his cynicism, and other –isms. Noah says, “Let’s talk when you’ve been sitting in my chair for a while”, and sits down behind the President’s desk. Allison ignores this obvious come-on, and they start going over transition plans.
3:33 pm – Back in Africa, Carl arrives at the Soccer Field of terror to find vultures at the body of one of the kids. Just one. Carl starts yelling for “Desmond”, who he finds by the water. Desmond’s been shot, and Carl tells him not to go to sleep.
Back at Jack’s room, one of the kids wants to follow Jack. Jack says he wants to be alone. The kid tells Jack that his grandfather says people that want to be alone are witches! Jack says he doesn’t weigh the same as a duck, so there’s no way he’s a witch, and if he was, the kid shouldn’t come with him. The kid insists on wanting to go to America, land of Elvis. Jack says he isn’t going to America. The kids comes out and starts talking about the ghosts of his family, and tells Jack that he’s a “Pumea”, which is apparently the word for “Muggle”. Jack tells the kid (who we find out is Willy), that he has to stay and help Carl teach everyone about magic until Dumbledore can arrive.
Jack, despite his previous promise to leave at night, starts to leave during the day. Thomas runs up with a phone and tells him Carl has something urgent to tell him. Jack looks reluctant based on their previous uncomfortable moment, but takes the call anyway.
Carl says he’s keeping everything Jack needs under the sink in his room, because Juma men are on their way. Jack gets Thomas to make all the kids believe their going on a field trip to a shelter and starts to gather them up. Jack runs to the truck driver, who has a UN helmet and explains the situation. The truck driver STILL doesn’t believe him, and says he’s going to “talk” to Juma’s men, and believes it’ll work because they’re “neutral”. That lasts for five seconds when Mr. UN sees a cloud of smoke on the road and gets scared. Jack does get in one last zinger with “why don’t you go into the shelter with the other children”.
Jack finds the weapons cache, the kids go to hide under the floor in one of the buildings, and Jack heads for the woods. The UN guy makes it into the hiding place just in time.
Juma’s men arrive and start looking for the boys. Jack decides to be the Welcome Wagon and throws a stick of dynamite at them, giving us our first Jack Explosion in quite a long time. It’s not a nuclear weapon, but at this point, we should be satisfied with anything. And Jack does some shooting too! They try and shoot Jack dead, which only proves they don’t know who has top billing in this show. In all the confusion, Jack hides behind an Exploding Building, realizes his mistake and jumps away from it just before it explodes.
The leader of Juma’s men goes to look for the kids, and happens to walk, in ALL of the buildings he could have checked, in exactly the right one.
Meanwhile, Jack cleans off his dirty knife by sticking it in the chest of one of the soldier’s trying to find him. This works just great, because now not only does Jack have a clean knife, but he also has a machine gun. He immediately tests it by shooting someone.
They’re after Jack now, and even though a couple of them hide behind propane gas canisters, Jack inexplicably doesn’t shoot at the canisters! He does however teach one of the soldiers that hiding behind a pile of wood doesn’t stop dynamite from being lobbed at you.
Jack runs into the woods, and two of the soldiers foolishly follow him. In that short time, they lose Jack even though he’s in plain sight in a very small tree. Jack jumps down, knocks their heads together cartoon-style and takes turns kicking their butts… until they get two more people involved. Jack gets knocked out, and they take him prisoner. Jack’s WAY out of practice.
Carl arrives with Desmond, who’s still alive. He brings out some binoculars and sees that the soldiers are stringing up Jack in a cage, which Carl and the boys were going to use to recreate some scenes from their favorite show “Lost”. The polar bears appear to be missing.
3:44 – Commercial
3:49 – Outside the American embassy, Frank is acting like a bouncer, telling a woman she isn’t on the list to get in. Carl calls Frank to let him know that Juma’s making a move, and Frank is SHOCKED that they didn’t see this coming AT ALL. Apparently he hasn’t been paying attention to the sudden disappearances of all the young boys in the country. Frank tells Carl that all the American nationals are leaving the country because nothing like this EVER happened on Survivor: Africa.
Meanwhile, Jack has the bad guys just where he wants them: Jack’s tied up, getting beaten up, and not answering questions about where the kids are. The lead guy takes a red-hot machete and burns the side of Jack’s face with it. Despite the pain, Jack notices Carl in the woods flashing a mirror using Morse Code to say, “Hurry and do something, they might bring Audrey back”. The torturer mistakes Jack’s cries of “NO!” for Jack being afraid of the machete, and backs off. Jack tells them a lie about where the kids are, and it sounds to them like he’s sobbing, but I think he’s really just laughing about what’s going to happen.
3:53 – Carl has as a Welcome Wagon of his own planned. Jack and the torturer hear some shots, and when the bad guy turns around, Jack kills him only using his legs. Jack is SUCH a show-off. Carl arrives to free Jack, and Carl runs off to get the kids.
In the hatch, Thomas argues with the UN guy that the “UN” in “uncola” is not the same thing. The kids get on a REAL school bus, and the UN guy runs off to get into his UN truck which has been very UN effective.
3:56 – Commercial
4:00 – Chris is getting frisked at Roger’s place, which ordinarily he’d like, but right now he has bigger things on his mind. Chris and Roger argue about which one was a bigger partier.
Chris says that Nichols (his boss) wanted him to move some money in off shore accounts, and that the account holder is on the terrorist watch list. Chris wants to go to Roger’s mommy, Mrs. President. Roger doesn’t want to do this. Chris admits that he thought his 45s were valuable, so he cut some MP3s and sent the evidence to his hard drive at home, clearing any doubt that Chris isn’t at least a little computer savvy. Or, at least, the brokerage firm has really, really bad security procedures in place. Sam (the woman with Roger) reminds Roger that they have this little “inauguration” thing to go to. Chris tells Roger to check e-mail in about an hour, since the Internet’s tubes might get clogged with all the e-mail that gets sent and it won’t arrive before then. (Chris uses the Ted Steven’s e-mail service).
4:04 – Back in Africa, a bad guy version of CTU is in place, which General Juma comes to inspect. Everything is in place to start bombardment, and probably not the “bombardment” game you remember from school.
Dubaku gets a phone call, from some of his men in the field, and finds out that the really brave UN worker has completely spilled his guts about what happened at Carl’s school.
4:05 – The bus with the kids, Carl and Jack is headed for the city. Jack apologizes to Carl for all the explosions at the school, but Carl blows it off saying that they’ll use it for a “soccer field” later. Over the radio, we hear Juma’s men trying to figure out how they could possibly miss a stark-white school bus. Jack realizes that the reason the soldiers haven’t seen it yet is that they’re either blind as bats, or that they haven’t gotten to the soldiers’ checkpoint yet. Jack tells everyone to “hold on”, which is Jack code for “things are going to start happening”. They drive off the road just in time, and fortunately for Jack the soldiers were blind as bats because they drove right by. Jack and the kids decide to hike the rest of the way into the city.
4:07 – Commercial
4:12 – Noah gives Allison a gift of The Scary Nuclear Book, and invites her to have a drink. Just when it looks like Noah is going to be a nice guy, he turns around and makes Allison call him “Mr. President”. He wants to know whether Allison believes the press when it says “his heart wasn’t in this election”. Allison says, “If that were true, you’d be the Tin Man! Ha! Ha!” but then realizes Noah really MIGHT be the Tin Man after all. Noah ignores this and warns her that the job is a lot tougher than she thinks, but does end up calling her “Madam President”.
Allison walks out and starts ranting about Noah’s actions in Sangala to her husband, Henry, who it looks like is going to be co-President. Henry says he’s going to make some calls to dig something up, because we all know it’s pretty easy to dig secret things up on presidents.
Back in Africa, Dubaku is still yelling about finding Jack and Carl. He convinces Juma that he really doesn’t want to be in next season, so he wants to go after Jack now before the movie is over.
4:17 – Commercial
4:22 – Chris gets home and sees that the program he’s running on his Mac doesn’t adhere to the Apple user-interface guidelines at all. He hears a noise, and despite the eerie music, looks around to see what he can find. He comes back to his computer and finds a man with a gun at the computer, which definitely isn’t part of the user interface guidelines. Chris convinces the man that he’s never told anyone about the data he has. At this point, several other people show up, including one that can easily intimidate Chris with a rolled-up newspaper.
One guy tells Chris to open his shirt, which kinda freaks Chris out, and not in a good way. The man says, “You’re going to tell us everything you know”, and pulls out a strip of duct tape. Chris says “It’s silver! Sticky on one side! It has a thousand different uses!”. The man says, that’s not what he meant.
Roger and Sam argue in the back of the car about what happened with Chris, since Roger won’t tell Sam what happened. They get out of the car, and it appears that Allison only has had about 40 people show up for her inauguration, since that’s all that have shown up so far.
Roger’s driver gets a phone call, and it’s the guys doing weird things to Chris with duct tape! Must be some kind of Duct Tape cult. Anyway, the driver wants to know what Chris knows. They’ve tied Chris’ mouth shut which is going to make it a lot harder for him to answer questions.
4:27 – Commercial
4:32 – In Africa, Jack walks out of the woods in a very “Don’t mind me! I’m just going for a walk!” The coast is clear, so the kids move on. Carl tells Jack the way to the border, and they part ways as Jack heads for the border.
4:33 – Jack suddenly does his Radar O’Reilly impression, and realizes a chopper is coming. He tells everyone to head for the woods. Dubaku’s chopper makes a big mistake and starts to set down so they can follow on foot.
Willy turns back and goes for a scarf that he left. Carl looks back, and realizes that Willy is just about to step on a land mine trigger. Carl tackles him out of the way, mistakenly stepping on the trigger himself, which could definitely ruin his day.
Jack starts digging it out, and he and Carl start a trivia contest about who made the bomb, how many kilos it was, and how big a mistake it was to step on the thing in the first place. Jack wants to disarm the thing, but Carl tells him to get the kids to safety. Carl seems to have realized that he might accidentally meet Audrey, so he’s staying behind with a gun to ward off the soldiers. Carl is having a REALLY bad day.
4:38 – It’s getting even worse, since Dubaku and his men are on their way. They find Carl, and start shooting him and questioning him by alternating questioning and shooting. Impressively, Carl keeps standing on the land-mind while trying to lure Dubaku closer. It’s like some weird version of dance-dance-revolution, only it’s Boom-Boom revolution. Carl tells Dubau to go to hell, and lets off on the trigger. Jack hears it in the distance, and nearly cries. It’s a good thing he doesn’t because we all know from last season that Jack’s tears cause nuclear bombs to explode.
4:40 – Commercial
4:46 – Jack and the kids have made it to town. Willy finds out that Carl died, and freaks out. Jack runs after him and convinces him that they need to get to the embassy. Jack notices a man in a trench coat walking down the same street, going the opposite direction that everyone else is, and tells Thomas and the boys to find some place bullet proof. Jack shoots the guy in the trench coat, and suddenly bullets are flying everywhere. Jack, of course, is completely unharmed, turns a corner, and is confronted with the “kill the cockroach” kid from the beginning of the movie. Jack tries to convince the kid to come with them, because there are a LOT of cockroaches in the US, but as soon as a helicopter goes by, the kids takes off.
In Washington, Roger checks his e-mail and is perplexed by not having an e-mail from Chris. President Allison arrives. Due to budget cutbacks, the band they hired for her arrival can only play at a great distance, so we can barely hear it. Roger’s driver is there with Hodges, and lets him know that Chris told them everything, because one pull on that duct tape across his chest had him crying like a baby. Hodges is still worried, and tells him to keep an eye on Roger.
4:52 – Despite the HUGE crowd at the embassy gates, Jack is able to get right to the front, with all the kids. Jack drops his own name to the Marines, and Frank shows up. Jack tells him about the kids, and gives Frank the papers. Frank acts like a complete jerk, and tells Jack they need a legal guardian. Jack finally agrees, but has to go first. Jack is taken into custody. Just when it looks like Frank won’t let the kids in, he finally does.
As President Allison talks to stock footage of a huge crowd, Jack is loaded onto a chopper, Chris does a Jimmy Hoffa impression, and the gates open as the chopper lifts off.
Jack’s headed back to America!
5:00 – SEE YOU IN JANUARY!