Holy cow, what a ride! I watched this episode knowing that a certain blonde would finally meet her maker (read Michael Ausielloâs excellent interview with Katee Sackhoff here) but the way in which she departed was both poignant and satisfying. Why poignant, you ask? As a longtime member of the Jack Bauer fan club, I canât remember the last time our hero showed a combination of despair/resolve/regret/anger in one split-second, but he displayed it all before firing two bullets into the very deserving Dana. (Oh, and by the way? SPOILER ALERT for those of you who would even think of reading this recap before watching this high-octane episode. And you call yourself a 24 fanâ¦.) As for the satisfying part, itâs always more entertaining when Jack deals with villains like Dana quickly and definitively â just like he did with the blink-and-heâs-gone D.B Sweeney (dâoh!). But letâs not get ahead of ourselves.
I have to hand to Ms. Sackhoff; superb work looking like she was choking to death at the start of the episode. Iâm not sure how they filmed that faux water-boarding moment but it certainly had me gasping for air. Unfortunately for Sweeneyâs Bledsoe, Dana was willing to take what he was dishing (or pouring) out, yelling âbring it on, you son of a bitch!â I admit it, she had me for a moment, though. Her plaintive wails about not having any proof were pretty convincing â but then so were her desperate attempts to âget into Coleâs headâ about Jack wanting to seek revenge rather than truth and justice (hey, sheâs not entirely wrong there, kids; we know heâs beside himself over Reneeâs death). By episodeâs end, I didnât know what to believe about Dana anymore, which is testament to Sackhoffâs mad skillz as a villain.
But letâs get back to the clever use of âson of a bitchâ in the episode. Moments after Dana cursed out Bledsoe, Cole was uttering his own âson of a bitchâ after discovering how Jack slipped a sleeve of bullets out of his gun while Cole wasnât looking. âYeah, I know,â replied Jack â and thatâs when I whispered a well-deserved âniceâ to exec producer Howard Gordon and his band of 24 writers. This whole sequence was pretty legit â starting with how cool Kiefer looked while dashing down the alley to the way he killed Bledsoe before the dude could even utter 20 words. Good thing Sweeney wasnât paid by the line for the last two episodes because Iâm thinking he had six, maybe seven at most. If you want more of the D.B, however, Iâm pretty sure The Cutting Edge is repeating almost nightly on Encore Love these days.
Dana did have the proof that Jack was looking for; it was hidden on a memory card in a safe deposit box that she and Cole had rented while they were (supposedly!) in love. Again, Sackhoffâs bad girl had me giving her the benefit of the doubt here: I bought her pleas to Cole that Jackâs motives werenât pure, just like I believed she still harbored feelings for the guy whom she totally screwed over. But then the episode packed another punch I wasnât expecting: Dana hid a gun and a strange little flashing thingie in the box, so she overwhelmed Cole and pulled off a particularly clever exit from the bank (âThereâs a guy by the front doorâ¦I think he has a gun â¦ OMG heâs looking in my direction!â). What a conniving little bitch! Too bad she fell for Jackâs throw-the-jacket-up-the-stairwell-ruse-so-sheâll-use-up-all-her-bullets. Works every time! So goodbye, Katee; it was super fun hatinâ on your character!
Meanwhile, my predictions came true with regards to Reed Diamondâs Jason Pillar; the writers had much bigger plans for a guy who started out as Loganâs mere administrative assistant. After managing to finagle Taylor (sheesh, the olâ girl is digging herself one colossal hole), Logan installed Pillar at CTU as the new point person in charge of Bauerâs capture. Chloe can grimace all she wants but thereâs no denying she got majorly hosed by the President, so maybe now sheâll start to wonder if Jack is on the right side of the law. But she better think fast; Pillarâs got a magic phone that rings up Reneeâs assassin, and heâs âvaiting for the callâ to eliminate Jack.
Two other thoughts about tonightâs frst-rate episode: nice shot of Cherry Jonesâ Allison while Dalia was âexpressing gratitude to President Taylor, whose integrity and model courage .. have been unshakable.â Yeah, right; canât wait until she learns the real truth there. And I had no idea that short, shallow breaths could help one endure a painful bout of water boarding. Good tip, Bledsoe; Iâll keep that in mind! What did you think of Jackâs final expression? Were you sorry to say goodbye to Sackhoff and Sweeney? And how âbout when Taylor hung up the phone on Loganâs sorry ass?