on July 15, 2003
I can't think of anything to say now that hasn't already been said. If you like suspense, action, and drama even to the slightest degee, buy this set and prepare to be glued to the TV.
The first season of '24' was something different and new. There had never been anything like it on television before, and the season was as much about experimentation as it was entertainment. How to keep the action up hour to hour, how to make it all 'real time', what should happen when, how to resolve it all in 24 hours...
At the end of the year, it proved to be a learning experience. Some things worked, some didn't. But the idea of another season was tricky from the get go. How can you rework the magic without falling in the same traps? How can you make the storyline more suspenseful (the first is hard to beat)? How do you explain what happened in the break from season 1 to 2 in an hour of real time? Fans had a lot to worry about that long summer. But November finally rolled around and old and new fans switched their sets on for what would be the first episode of an incredible year of TV.
But the second time around, the creators were all set and ready to go. Gone was the write-as-you-go style, the odd pacing, and the impossible scenarios. Everything was planned...hour by hour the pieces of the puzzle slowly fit into another...the plot growing larger. The intricacy of it all was amazing. The shocks were all inserted perfectly and at the right time, the action was well-paced, and the acting was better.
Season two learned from season one's mistakes, and proved to be a defining year in TV.
New fans were coming everyday to the Fox forum for the show. Spoilers were popping up everywhere. Ratings climbed.
Placing the show after "American Idol" certainly helped the ratings.
In the end, by the time the finale was aired in May, fans had become addicts to this adrenaline-pumping show.
When waiting 3 weeks for the new episode was hard, waiting months on end for the new season seemed harder.
We're still waiting. But for those of you wondering if this is all hype or if you should just save a few bucks...don't. You can hardly consider buying this set a waste of money. In fact, if you like suspense and action, it's as essential as food.
Pop in the disc and see what fans have been raving about, and remember we had to wait a week or sometimes 3 between those episodes!
Turn on and enjoy.
The only thing you have to lose is sleep because you won't be able to turn the damn thing off.
on May 6, 2004
A nuclear bomb is going to be detonated in Los Angeles. A former Counter Terrorist Unit agent is reactivated to eliminate the threat -- and the chase is on. It's puzzling, though, how the viewer reviews for this story overwhelmingly support the protagonist, who obviously understands terrorists and does not hesitate to employ lethal force against them in the pursuit of victory. Everyone backs the striving hero who is trying to save people from a horrible catastrophe, even when (perhaps especially when) he acts unilaterally and pre-emptively. This agent is not asking himself why the terrorists hate us. He is not being compassionate, tolerant, understanding or inclusive with the terrorists. He is not enlisting the United Nations to form a coalition and pass resolutions. No, he is merely hunting down the terrorists and wiping them out -- which is the only sort of action in the world that terrorists comprehend or respect. The viewers who cheer for this agent all know that is the proper way to confront terrorism... both on television, and most certainly in the real world.
on July 8, 2004
Season 2 is probably the best of the three. This one is much more gripping and does not include farfetched moments such as sudden amnesia in Season One. Everything in season 2 is suspenseful; from finding the nuclear bomb to the 24th Amendment on President Palmer and the aftermath of the nuclear bomb. "24" is so ingenious in making everything so fresh and original in each episode despite following one guideline throughout the year which is to stop the bomb. The finale is much more exciting with a cliffhanger ending that makes you wish this show would be called "48." I can't wait until season 4 for more suspense that only "24" can deliver.
on May 5, 2004
Executive-produced by its star, Kiefer Sutherland (who has made one of the most remarkable comebacks for an actor in recent history), "24" took a unique and innovative idea---film an entire day, hour by hour, over an entire season---and, instead of using it as a gimmick, let it be the starting pad for one of the most suspenseful, interesting, exciting, disturbing, engrossing and best dramatic series in TV history. This show has never let up from the beginning, and has only become more riveting ever since. In Counter Terrorist Unit (CTU) Agent Jack Bauer, Kiefer Sutherland has created a truly complex hero, and has deservingly revived his once-promising career that had been sagging for over a decade.
The first season, which I got on DVD last year, concerned a double-whammy threat: An assassination plot against Presidential candidate Senator David Palmer (played nobly by veteran African-American actor Dennis Haysbert) and the kidnapping of Jack Bauer's daughter Kim (Elisha Cuthbert) and, eventually his wife Teri (Leslie Hope). Along the way, subplots are interwoven cleanly into the proceedings, such as Sen. Palmer's ambitious, scheming Lady MacBeth of a wife Sherry (Penny Johnson Jerald) and Jack Bauer's enigmatic colleague, and former lover, Agent Nina Myers (Sarah Clarke). The entire first season was a high-caliber rollercoaster ride all the way to its shocking and completely unpredictable conclusion.
Season Two promised a no-less-intense rollercoaster ride as it concerned the threat of a nuclear bomb about to be set off in Los Angeles. Beginning 18 months after the events of the previous season's day, a much-embittered Jack Bauer is called upon by President David Palmer to help save the day. At the same time, Jack is highly concerned about keeping Kim out of the potential blast area. Unfortunately, it won't be easy for her as she is a live-in nanny to the young daughter of an abusive father. Also at the same time, a rich business owner named Bob Warner is about to marry off his younger daughter Marie to his trusted employee, a young British-raised Arab-American man named Reza, whom is suspected of being involved with terrorists by Bob's elder daughter, Kate Warner (Sarah Wynter). All of these plot threads come together, in ways that are completely surprising, exciting, suspenseful and spellbinding.
Bottom line: If you loved Season One of "24" then you're gonna LOVE Season Two. It rocks!!
on March 5, 2004
I must admit that I did not expect the second season of 24 to be as exciting and thrilling as the first, and I had my doubts especially since it was using the same formula of real time events unfolding over the course of one day,and hence the originality factor that made the first season such a success is not there.
Moreover, many friends have advised me that indeed Jack Bauer's second adventure was weaker.
Yet two things I have learned after years of a passionate appreciation of cinema and good TV:
Never let other opinions or reviews influence your own judgment, and
Not being quite original does not mean a bad thing a all, if the writing, acting and direction are good enough to pull it off.
So, watching the second season of 24, I was totally captivated from the very first hour till the very last..Indeed I found the second series of 24 to be far better in many ways, and this is why..
First of all the familiarity with most of the characters ensured that the viewer sympathizes/connects with them from the very start, as opposed to taking maybe few 'hours' to be totally involved as with the original.
Secondly, the writing was superb:
While the first, despite the nail biting tension, twists and suspense, had a very simple and straightforward plot, an eye for an eye personal revenge, the second expands the possibilities much more, and delves into very dark and dangerous grounds, both on a international terrorism and domestic conspiracies levels. The writing is so good in fact that you will be excused in believing even for mere seconds, that you are watching more than the entertaining fiction that it really is.
All actors involved are excellent, but I am surprised no one has mentioned one particular actor who was instrumental in lifting this second series up, and infusing a lot of humanity albeit tragic, and that is Xander Berkeley.He, in my opinion, gives the performance of his career , as does Berkeley's real life missus the lovely Sarah Clarke, who makes a comeback, and is chillingly transformed into this cold blooded assassin and traitor that we only saw few glimpses of in the closing minutes of the first season.
Dennis Haysbert aka David Palmer now president,is not only a very able actor who added a lot of dignity and class to his role, but I must admit he makes one helluva president too!!!
The twists and suspense in the second season never lapse for one second, up until the very last minute, which leaves the door open for lots of possibilities for the third season.
I liked the fact that the plot in the second season was evenly divided into two sections, connected smoothly over these crucial 24 hours.. The hunt, against the clock for the nuke and the conspiracy inside Washington, and the shadowy men behind it all.
Of course, the second series has its minor flaws: the sub plots involving the gorgeous Elisha Cuthbert were somehow weak in comparison to everything that was going on ..(a psycho abusive father, the loner nut case in the woods, the over the top deranged Latino father-to-be in the store..).
All credit should go to all people involved in this wonderful series for the collective effort that has been put to produce quality television that is guaranteed to keep you glued to your screen, for 24 hours and more! Can't wait for yet another day!
on February 17, 2004
I seldom watch TV. It's even rarer that I watch TV with a purpose. Very few items interest me nowadays. But this is different.
'24' is simply the most gripping, jaw-dropping and exciting series I have ever seen. I hadn't seen the first season but got introduced to it by relatives. And after one hour, I just wanted much more. This series simply glued me to the TV set in a way that I had never been before. Since last year's September, when the series started in Holland, my weekly algorithm depended largely on Sunday, 22.00-23.00, when it was broadcast. Every weekday just brought me a little closer to the next hour. Does that sound obsessed? Maybe. But it's totally due to the series.
What's going on? Now that David Palmer has been established as President of the USA, all seems to go well for a while. But then, suddenly rumours start about a nuclear bomb placed in LA. Special agent Jack Bauer, who already saved Palmer from a complot in the first season, is ordered to discover what the bomb threat is about. What makes it extra difficult, is that he has less than one day to accomplish this... Meanwhile, his daughter Kim gets into trouble too. She nannies a little girl who has a cruel father, and tries to keep the girl out of her father's hands. The President himself doesn't have an easy time either: there's a lot of mess going on in his staff and he continually has to solve problems, while he still has to manage the upcoming crisis about the nuclear bomb. The fourth storyline is that of the Warner family: one of the family members is suspected of having links with a terrorist organization and this gets the whole family (father Bob, daughters Kate and Marie and near-son-in-law Reza) into great problems. And finally, we get a look into the situation at the anti-terrorist command centre CTU that tries to support Jack Bauer wherever they can.
Most of these storylines are very strong, especially the one of Jack Bauer of course because he's the story's main character. The whole burden of finding this bomb effectively rests on him. And though I wonder what kind of stuff Jack uses to remain so incredibly active during one day (normal human beings need at least a month for all this), his character is extremely impressing. He's not always a nice guy, and definitely has a neurotic side. But his strongest aspect is that he puts his mission before anything else, even in the most peculiar situations. He's the ultimate portrait of a man with a mission at that. President David Palmer is a very sensible, almost human statesman who would have been very credible as a real president. He's a person full of warmth and authority. And I could just go on about all other great actors: the roles of CTU agent Tony Almeida, Kate Warner, presidential adviser Mike Novick and many others are splendid as well. Actually all storylines are very exciting an interesting - except the one of Jack's daughter Kim. She's stumbling around from here to there, meets all kinds of weird people, but actually doesn't contribute anything to the greater story - while all other characters do.
Of course it *is* possible to write a lot about the evolution of the series' story, like many other reviewers have done. But I don't think it's good to spoil anything too much: this series is meant to overwhelm you, every minute again. Uncovering details that happen in all those 24 hours would only lessen the experience. What I can say though, is that this is no James Bond story. '24' is certainly a thriller, and you shouldn't think of it as just some pretty entertainment. It's about suspense, everywhere at anytime. I even heard about someone who simply couldn't stand the large number of plot twists and suspense anymore. For me it just let me reach for the next broadcast. And I doubt how many will think otherwise. Go and see it, more I cannot say. This series has a really unprecedented effect.
on October 13, 2003
I always wanted to watch the first series, but am normally too busy to sit down and watch a show that consistently. When I finally did, I enjoyed it, but it rang a bit hollow to me. This second season is much better, especially Keifer Sutherland. The dark and disturbed edge of Jack Bauer this season brings much more depth to his character and is never overblown. While I originally thought offing his wife in the first season was a mistake, it led to a great change in his character. Xander Berkley as George Mason is also a very well done tragic character.
My main complaint is Kim. My friend called her "a walking Darwin award" and I couldn't agree more. There seems to be a problem in 24 with most of the women being either stupid or manipulative (which is another reason not to give this 5 stars), but she's by far the dumbest. Whenever they go to her subplot I cringe, and then laugh while they're playing out. I see the need for a tie to Jack's family, but the writers either need to get her better integrated into the story, stop her from running into every sleazy guy stereotype (the loner militia guy, the cartoonish wife beater), or just get rid of her altogether.
Otherwise, I really enjoy this show. I still can't bring myself to be tied to my TV every week, but as long as they bring out the seasons on DVD, I look forward to more Jack Bauer goodness.
on January 10, 2004
I don't watch TV except for sports and the occassional syndicated episode of the Simpsons or something else that's on at the bar. I am a 24 addict but still cannot bring myself to watch it week after week on FOX. I'd much rather buy the DVD package and watch the thing in a matter of a few days (this time it took me 6 days), sort of a Kiefer-binge I guess.
I was skeptical as hell about the second season because I didn't think anything could be better than the first season. I'm very glad I bought it now.
the only thing I really wanted to write this review for was to mention something I didn't care for on the DVD package. on each episode's submenu, there is a picture next to the menu. if you see the picture, you can pretty much figure out what happens in some of the episodes. I suggest looking away while playing with the submenus, like I did. or you could cover up the screen with your hand (there are actual benefits of having a 13" TV). the people who put this thing together should've played a little to us who didn't watch the show when it was on TV.
that is all
on October 26, 2003
Nice thriller, but over the top in some places.
Stuff that gets repeated over and over to the point that it gets hilarious:
1- Q: "Jack, what's your status with key witness X?"
Jack: "Key witness X is dead."
2- Jack: "I'm running out of time!" (shoots someone)
3- "What are you going to do now?"
4- President Palmer: "Whatever I decide now, I'll change my mind an hour from now! I wonder why they think I'm indecisive..."
5- "We must keep this bomb thing a secret." (Tells everybody)
6- "I'll tell you everything you want to know, provided I get
immunity/presidential pardon. In writing"
7- Working in close proximity to the President means you never have to shave/take a shower/eat
8- There's always a bigger/nastier villain than the one we met in the previous hour
9- When we are finally shown the big-bad-super-duper-villain at the end, I kept looking for the white cat with a diamond collar
10- Some of the female characters made the whole thing feel like an overgrown and violent afternoon soap.
on September 13, 2003
After such a surprisingly good first season (and one heckuva finale to boot), I had good expectations for the second season of "24". After the first episode of year two, I had my expectations raised considerably. Avoiding the "sophomore slump" most new TV shows tend to fall into, "24" managed to still be entertaining, and by no means boring. After the tragic finale of season one, Jack Bauer (played to award-winning perfection by Kiefer Sutherland) finds himself isolated and unwilling to go back to work for the Counter-Terrorist Unit. So it's with surprise that President David Palmer (played to award-deserving perfection by Dennis Haysbert), the man whose life he saved last season calls him for help to find a nuclear bomb which is believed to go off in Los Angeles before the end of the day. He takes the assignment, but before its over, he will face off against terrorists, an old ally turned traitor, and certain death (over and over again). This concept (24 hours=24 episodes) could easily fall flat on its face, but is held together by a solid ensemble cast and crew, incredible twists and turns, and unbeliveably relevant drama. The seven-disc set is a new bar for TV on DVD, boasting several commentaries, nearly an hour of deleted scenes, a great two-part documentary on the last episodes of the season, and a look the work it takes to make those slick split-screen sequences. All in all, a better than average collection for a solid season of great drama and action (And if you're not waiting for season three after this, I'd honestly recommend checking your pulse).