There are some surprising twists in this week’s Live Another Day… but of course they can’t be resolved yet because we have three more hours to go.
Well, as ever, 24: Live Another Day changed everything. Just when you think everything is about to be tied up, they go and flip the script (I can only imagine literally) on all of us loyal viewers. Last night’s episode reassured us that nothing is ever as it seems, even if it appears to explode right before our very eyes.
In this week’s episode, the major story line of Margot and her hot son Ian is wrapped up (we think) and the focus shifts to Navarro’s dealings with Adrian, who we discover has a very interesting love interest. No fear on any front though, for that beacon of light known as Jack Bauer is going to solve it all in the next three hours! At least, we hope he is. Who can we trust if we don’t have Jack?
So, turns out the president isn’t dead. Last week, they (and I) made quite the big deal of President Heller going to the middle of Wembley Stadium only be blown to smithereens. Well (tada!) he escaped. There was diversion, hacking and a whole bunch of audience manipulation involved to make the bait and switch happen. In the time it took to divert Margot and Ian, Chloe was able to discover their whereabouts. Long story short, Jack finds them and both of them fall to their death.
The whole Margot Al-Harazi plotline fascinated me. She was a terrorist, no doubt, but she was also an Englishwoman. In a show that is heavy on stereotypes, I find it very interesting that the bad guy, until now, was a white woman. In this episode, we find out that her late husband was stepfather to her children. The entire time we’d been lead to believe that these were his biological children. Why the distinction of having him be a stepfather? True, Mr. Al-Harazi was Middle-Eastern, and neither Simone nor Ian looked in any way, shape or form Middle-Eastern, but had they never made the specification I wouldn’t have questioned the patronage of the family line. And who exactly was her first husband, the children’s parents?
When it comes to a show like this, it wouldn’t surprise me if President Heller was her baby-daddy. And what happened to the first baby-daddy? Was he also from the Middle East? She claims that Mr. Al-Harazi gave she and her family something to believe in, so one has to wonder, what awful man did she father children for? There was no discussion as to Margot’s nationality or heritage by any character on the show. This is a good sign, especially when so many television portrayals of terrorists are still blindingly racist in their depictions.
Further to that point, 24, in an attempt to really differentiate the perceived line of terrorist nationality, made the Middle-Eastern conspirator in Margot’s band of baddies a dissenter who had a change of heart at the last minute. Look, the show says, the darker-toned man is actually a good guy! It’s the English rose from Westeros that married a terrorist, has a god complex, and wants to kill thousands of innocents. While being able to fool us on many plot points, on this intentional push to subvert the perceptions so much of us have, 24 doesn’t succeed.
The Middle-Eastern dissenter gets shot in the head, execution style. And for just a moment, it looked like Ian was going to ditch his mom, but she held him at gunpoint and he relented, wanting to honor his stepfather. After Ian decides stay with her, Margot plants a kiss on his cheek (I think) that was quite uncomfortable to watch. Throw in the way she was caressing the back of his neck and the fact that she was a terrorist is overshadowed in creepiness by the obvious hots she has for her son. I mean, I get it. His eyeliner is perfect, and he knows his way around a machine, but come on Margot, lock it up lady. That’s your son!
It was the perfect time for Margot and Ian to die. The discussions they were having about “honor” and “keeping one’s word” were becoming more tedious than sifting through CIA data to find a mole. It was definitely their time to fall, literally. They’d been duped by the president — Does he even have Alzheimer’s? Nothing makes sense anymore! — and were cooped up in a little room in an old building in East London. Nothing sounds more like the end of days. It was easy for Chloe to ask Adrian to find their location, and when they did, Jack was there lickity-split to make sure they weren’t going to bomb Waterloo station. (Which I thought was named after an Abba song. Then again, I’m just an American, what do I know?)
With them dead, it was time to focus our attention on another plotline. Remember Jordan, the CIA agent who was shot by an assassin, only to make it out alive and fight said assassin again? Yeah, well, this time the assassin actually killed him. With he and Ian dying in the same show, I’m not sure what man-candy we have left, besides Benjamin Bratt — not that I’m complaining. So, yes, Jordan is dead, and one of Kate’s informers tells her before Navarro can clean up the mess. The rest of the episode is really about watching Benjamin Bratt sweat. He thinks he’s got everything worked out, that he’s in the clear, but sadly, that’s just not the way it goes on 24. He should really be watching the show because then he’d realize that nothing is ever as it seems in 24-land. How’s that for meta?
Like I said, Navarro thinks he’s got everything under control. That is until Jack Bauer himself walks in with the override device he just took from Ian and Margot. Navarro needs that device to trade for safe passage and a new identity — provided by Adrian, of course, who is all sunken-cheeked and pining for Chloe — but Jack is in the way. So far, Navarro’s been in the tightest spot. How the hell is going to get out of the CIA headquarters with a highly confidential piece of computer equipment? Sure he’s the director, but even that has its limits.
It only takes Jack a few minutes to figure out Navarro’s the bad guy. Somehow Kate doesn’t put any of this together. I expected her to figure it out, but alas, I was the more deceived. There’s an awesome chase scene through the CIA building, but of course Navarro gets away because we still have three more hours of the series. This is when the biggest twist of the show is revealed. Chloe and Adrian are boning! Chloe tells Jack that she can’t help him anymore and she gets in the car with Adrian, whom she kisses!
What?! Didn’t see that coming! Also, Adrian implies that she’s giving him a second chance (which is par for the course), suggesting that while Jack was in personal exile Adrian and Chloe had something going on. The scandal! As they drive into the night, Adrian gets a call from Navarro, requesting pick up. They head to pick him up, Chloe having no idea she’s about to meet a director of the CIA.
Now, what’s interesting about this storyline is the fact that Adrian keeps saying he’s acting as a middleman — but who does he work for? I put my money on Belcheck, Jack’s Serbian confidante. He keeps showing up, and in tonight’s episode, as he’s transporting President Heller safely back to the secret service, the writers made it a point to repeat his name a few times. With President Heller safe, we see the camera hold on Belcheck for a few seconds. I think he’s behind the whole thing and is paying Adrian to get the override device. And now that I think about it, they did have a few steely glances together back at not-Wikileaks.
Then again, nothing is ever as it seems in this show, and for all I know, Audrey could be behind it all. Wouldn’t that be awesome?