Does anyone really know the difference between orange and blue andyellow on the Department of Homeland Security’s color advisory system? Of course not, but if Jack Bauer were running things, we’d all knowjust how scared we should be of terrorists.

If Jack Bauer ran Homeland Security, we wouldn’t have colors, we’d havefive levels of “Damnit,” Bauer’s favorite phrase to express just howmad he is at the terrorists.  Here are Jack Bauer’s five warning levels:

Low (Green) = damnit
The word “damnit” is in all lowercase letters to tell you that the situation is, at best, a minor inconvenience.  Perhaps Jack stubbed in toe on a container of Sarin gas or maybe he bruised his knuckles while punching out a terrorist.  It’s really no big deal, and you should just go about business as usual.

Guarded (Blue) = Damnit
The capitalized “D” means things are a little bit more difficult, but still easily within Jack Bauer’s control.  Maybe he found some blueprints for a bomb inside the United Nations, or maybe there’s intel on a damaged memory card with some random coordinates on it.  There’s definitely something suspicious going on, but Jack Bauer is on the case, so there’s still very little to worry about because he’ll probably stop the terrorists.

Elevated (Yellow) = Damnit!
The exclamation point means things are getting tense.  It means Jack Bauer has credible information that a terrorist attack is going to happen within the hour (there’s always something happening within the hour on 24).  It hasn’t happened, and there are still 58 minutes left to stop it, but you’re in for a very heightened sense of danger.

High (Orange) = DAMNIT
This is probably the most common of Jack Bauer’s “damnit”s, indicating frustration over something pretty bad that’s happened.  Maybe a co-worker died when terrorists leaked gas into CTU, or perhaps Jack himself was forced to shoot a colleague who was standing between him and the terrorist.  Something seriously awful had to happen to reach this level, and it’s going to take all of the items in Jack Bauer’s man bag to stop it.

Severe (Red) = DAMNIT!!!
All caps and three exclamation points can only mean one thing: a major terrorist attack has occurred.  Maybe a nuclear bomb was detonated on U.S. soil or Air Force One was shot down by a missile or maybe the terrorists have broken into the White House and are holding the president hostage.  Either way, if you hear a very loud “DAMNIT!!!” coming from Jack Bauer, you know it’s time to head to the panic room.

jackbauerthreatsystem.jpgThe Current Threat Level is: Damnit!


John Kubicek

Senior Writer, BuddyTV

John watches nearly every show on TV, but he specializes in sci-fi/fantasy like The Vampire DiariesSupernatural and True Blood. However, he can also be found writing about everything from Survivor and Glee to One Tree Hill and Smallville.