We still haven't skipped any hours yet, as producers promised, knowing that this "season" of 24 was going to only be 13 episodes. But it's probably a good thing since a lot goes down in this week's hour.
We get to learn quite a bit more about this year's villain (or villains), learn more about how similar Kate and Jack are and finally start to see Chloe back to being Jack's most reliable and trusted friend.
The episode dispenses quickly with the idea of Jack futilely trying to track down Derrick Yates as Jack discovers his body within the opening minutes. He even learns that Yates' girlfriend is likely responsible once he finds her tossed wig out in the dumpster.
Jack and Chloe try to catch up to her in a car as she travels in the subway. Jack manages to board the train, but I guess he's a bit rusty at this spy work as she quickly catches wind of him and slices open her leg so she'll have blood that she can smear all over her face. Yes, she goes with the trusty old "Jack attacked me" defense that many villains have employed.
Jack has to contend with would-be subway heroes while Simone, as we'll later learn is her name, escapes. She's also able to escape as Chloe is distracted by a family that looks very similar to Morris, her husband, and Prescott, her son.
Chloe confesses her screw-up to Jack and tells him what happened to Morris and Prescott. Apparently, Chloe was stuck at work and Morris had to pick Prescott up at soccer practice. They were hit by a truck and killed. With that vague explanation, we have to wonder if Morris and Prescott were murdered, no?
(Or could there be a 24-style twist and they're actually alive and have been held captive for years?)
"You can honor their lives by helping others," Jack tells her, thereby finally officially recruiting Chloe to his team of one. It's a great moment between the two of them and I'm glad to see producers wisely knew that their relationship should make up the backbone of this limited series.
Simone and Her Mother
After her escape from Jack and Chloe, we learn quite a bit about Simone and her mother, Margot.
Margot was radicalized when she married a man named Mohammed Al-Harazi. They orchestrated a bombing in a Cairo market, but Mohammed was eventually killed -- and Margot nearly killed -- in an operation ordered by Heller.
Simone also has a brother, who I don't think is given a name in this episode. He's responsible for getting Yates' machine working, which, in usual 24 fashion, will take a little more than an hour.
Simone also has a husband, named Navid, who is pretty unhappy for most of the episode. Is it because Simone was having sex with Yates? Nope. He's actually got a conscience and isn't too sure about this whole killing civilians thing.
Can't wait to see how he winds up teaming up with Jack and Chloe at some point.
Arriving at the Embassy
The rest of the episode is focused on driving all of our main characters -- except for the President and his team -- to the US embassy.
Jack convinces Chloe's team at Open Cell to fake some documents for him so he can get inside and talk directly with Heller.
Meanwhile, Kate interrogates one of Yates' friends, Bashir, and eventually threatens to hand him over to his enemies unless he shares information with her and her replacement quasi partner. All he's able to tell them is the fact that Yates was working with drones and he mentioned the name Tanner a lot. With that information, Kate and her partner head to the embassy where Tanner is just arriving.
Jack isn't going to have an easy go of it with security, however. Adrian Cross double-crosses him -- sorry, won't do that again -- and makes sure Jack's fake identity will be flagged by security. Chloe gives him the heads-up and Jack has to start shooting to create panic and commotion amongst the demonstrators there.
Kate chases after Jack just as he gets inside the security gate and starts to make his way to the embassy. The episode ends as she trails after him.
Other Odds and Ends
-- Quick note: I mistakenly called Yates' "girlfriend" last week Margot when that is her mother's name. Her name is Simone.
-- Mark fakes an executive order to have Jack handed over to the Russians (when caught, that is). So when is Heller and/or Audrey going to find out? Before or after a handover happens?
-- Other than that scene, I was fairly bored with the Heller/Mark/Audrey stuff. The idea that Heller would be stubborn enough to face an angry Parliament and then be able to even remotely handle them makes me think he's a weak person. And that's not somebody I want to root for.
24: Live Another Day
airs Mondays at 9pm on FOX.
(Image courtesy of FOX)