You know all that foreshadowing I talked about last week? Well, it never saw this week coming. Oh Margot, this mother of three thinks you need some parenting classes. But I’m jumping ahead again.
This week finds Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland) wearing a Diplomatic Security Services jacket after putting its previous occupant down for a siesta. And rather un-Jack like, he finds himself in Lt. Chris Tanner’s (John Boyega) interrogation room, surprised by the military dude standing right behind him in the room. When his lie doesn’t hold up, Jack becomes “the Sandman” again and convinces Lt. Tanner that he’s the only one who believes him, before running off with the flight key that can prove Tanner’s innocence and Jack’s purpose for resurfacing.
But with Jack’s secret identity as security revealed, the embassy gets locked down and Chloe O’Brian (Mary Lynn Rajskub) has to break the news that there’s no way out. Does she even realize who she’s talking to? I mean, this is JACK BAUER! And stranger still, Jack believes Chloe and abandons all hope of escaping in favor of finding a secure terminal to upload the flight key information instead.
In London somewhere, Margot Al-Harazi (Michelle Fairley) learns her terror delivery system will be operational in an hour. It’s too bad that Navid (Sacha Dhawan) reveals to his wife that he’s planning to escape before being forced to pilot the armed drones into crowds of innocents. When he reveals his plan to Simone(Emily Berrington), and gives her an ultimatum of “your mother or me,” one can’t deny the feeling that there’s some serious pig’s blood in a bucket coming soon. After all, if Margot watched everything on the video monitor last week, how will she not know this is coming?
With a secure room, three hostages, and a USB port, Jack begins the failed upload and Adrian Cross (Michael Wincott) comes to the rescue with a program that can save the day, read the encrypted data and get it uploaded. As Agent Kate Morgan (Yvonne Strahovski), Agent Erik Ritter (Gbenga Akinnagbe) and the Marines close in, one can’t help but wonder how helpful Adrian Cross is actually going to be. To secure more time, Jack places two shots direct centered on the Marine’s body armor and slams closed the door, before revealing to the hostages his soft side. They can relax as they are not facing imminent death.
Meanwhile, Simone and Margot embark on an awkward conversation about whether Navid lives or dies. If only poor Simone knew what was coming, that car parked down the road and a 30 minute escape window would sound pretty good.
Across town, President James Heller (William Devane) rallies Parliament to his side; and Steve Navarro (Benjamin Bratt) checks in with a disappointed Chief of Staff who learns that Jack’s presence is now going to have to be revealed to Audrey Boudreau (Kim Raver). Let the love triangle begin.
Back in the interrogation room, Lt. Tanner reveals to Agent Morgan and Agent Erik more information that proves Jack’s not the terrorist everyone thinks he is, and Kate’s starting to believe the common theme that just keeps coming up. Now if only someone would believe her! Audrey (Kim Raver) learns that Jack’s back in town and an Audrey v. Mark battle ensues after President Heller’s phone conversation with Jack. If you missed it, “He’s a terrorist.” “No he’s not,” is the general feel of it, with Mark winning out and President Heller sentencing Jack to certain death with the approval of the Marines going in to take him out. I’m guessing it was the reminder from Jack that President Heller declared him a terrorist and “enemy of the state” that sways him to go the way of the Marines.
As Navid prepares their bags to leave, Margot and Simone enter the room with their henchmen. It’s clear that Simone suspects Navid will be killed. She has no idea how much worse it’s going to get. As Margot accuses him of cowardice over conscience and he refuses to fly the drones, she makes him an offer he can’t possibly refuse. You see, she’ll just have her men chop off her daughter’s finger tips, one by one until he agrees. Thankfully, it only takes one; but one is quite enough. I’ll never eat tater tots again.
Back in the hacker village, Chloe begs Adrian for help to get the info from Jack and he states that there’s nothing he can really do. This just proves that you simply can NOT trust a man who has a lit up, headphone-wearing half-mannequin in his office. What? You missed this? It’s worth a re-watch. It’s just bizarre.
As the Marines close in on Jack and form their plans for entry into his fortress, Agent Kate Morgan takes to the air ducts to get to Jack first. And get there first she does, announcing her approach with body heat and noise that sends a shot fired in her direction. As the cameras go black, Chloe realizes Agent Morgan is Jack’s only hope to get out alive. She pleads with him to listen to her, and it’s a good thing he does. It’s rare that Jack Bauer needs the protection of anyone, but Agent Morgan believes him, protects him, kicks back a Marine or two, and declares Jack her prisoner. The stand down order is given. She sends a clear message: back off Marines; the blonde got here first.
While Agent Morgan borrows Agent Ritter’s handcuffs to take Jack into CIA custody, Chloe grows more and more suspicious and realizes there’s only one fellow hacker she can trust. There may be several entities working against her. A falling out is forthcoming.
As the minutes tick down, the 10 most heavily armed drones are identified and Navid sits in a determined trance, agreeing to pilot them at Margot’s command. Next week’s going to get ugly fast.
Jessica Bauer (yes, that’s her real name) is a married mom of three, who lives in the suburbs, runs a non-profit USA Swim Club, and answers “like ‘Jack Bauer’” whenever asked how to spell her last name. She credits Kiefer Sutherland for the extra push she needed to obtain her black belt in Okinawan Kenpo and Kobudo, and dreams of writing the perfect memoir someday. In the meantime, you can read more of what she writes on her blog, Black Belt Mama (www.blackbeltmama.com) or follow her on Twitter @blackbeltmama.