’24: Live Another Day’: Claiming a Moral Victory

Published 11 months ago by

Michael Wincott and Mary Lynn Rajskub in 24LAD Ep 5 24: Live Another Day: Claiming a Moral Victory

[This is a review of 24: Live Another Day episode 5. There will be SPOILERS.] 


Not long after Margot Al-Harazi delivers her ultimatum to the world and, more specifically, President Heller and the citizens of London, Heller reacts to the provocation the only way he can: By realizing he’s caught between a rock and a hard place. As 24: Live Another Day has already established, Heller’s been in London attempting to drudge up support for a drone base. So far, his day has seen him repeatedly cleaning the egg from his face, after the drone Derrick Yates hijacked wound up killing several soldiers – and now, he’s dealing with Margot inciting moral outrage across the globe – at least with those who believe in the notion of an eye for an eye.

As Heller puts it, Margot can claim “a moral victory,” which, if her plans continue unabated, puts him in the unenviable position of not only failing to prevent an attack on London, but being the cause of it as well. In that regard, ’3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.’ is yet another hour of bad news, as shortly after Margot’s declaration goes viral, Navarro, Erik, and the rest of a task force – believing they’ve uncovered her location – wind up on the business end of a drone’s missile strike. Not only does this demonstrate Al-Harazi’s ability to control the drones, but it also proves her willingness to blow whatever she wants all to hell, just to prove a point.

And so, to a certain extent, the plot of another terrific, fast-paced episode is primarily split between Margot’s demonstrations of power – which she displays by releasing her demands, blowing up the estate, and finally killing Navid, once he proves expendable – and Heller’s rapidly diminishing options. Because of this, the episode is fairly light on Jack Bauer scenes, which actually works to the benefit of the other characters, as Tate Donovan and Benjamin Bratt wind up doing more than barking at people on the other end of a telephone. Sure, Navarro doesn’t actually do anything, or cause any real change with is actions, but getting him out of the CIA blacksite is the first step in the right direction. Meanwhile, Mark Boudreau gets a chance to apologize to Audrey and the president for his anti-Bauer behavior, but with Jack locked just a few feet away, Mark might as well be talking to the wall.

Yvonne Strahovski and Benjamin Bratt in 24LAD Episode 5 24: Live Another Day: Claiming a Moral Victory

The scene between Jack and Audrey, then, actually comes at the right time in the series. Live Another Day has largely been propelled by the lingering memory of Jack Bauer – both in terms of the narrative and the show’s viewership – and allowing the characters with an actual history to acknowledge that helps to ground the series on a more potent emotional level – one that goes deeper than remembering the time Jack shot that one guy. There is a great deal left unspoken between the two, but Jack’s acknowledgement of his past actions and the sentence they may yet see carried out against him, works to unify his arc with that of Heller and Al-Harazi’s. The notion of sins of the past coming back not simply to haunt characters, but to influence their present day actions resonates rather loudly here – and even spreads into the threads of Kate Morgan and Chloe, to a certain degree.

So far, Heller has been unable to respond; he’s only been afforded the opportunity to react to what’s being handed out to him by the likes of Margot, the British Prime Minister, and now Jack – who wants to track down an arms dealer to get a beat on Margot and her children. It stands to reason that this is just the beginning of worse things to come for the president. On the other hand, when and if his neurological condition comes into play, his refusal to disclose that information and/or react to it by withdrawing from the presidency, may well paint him as yet another in a long line of horrible leaders of the free world – the one that 24 has had in its version of the Oval Office.


24: Live Another Day will continue next Monday with ’4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.’ @9pm on FOX.

Photos: Daniel Smith/FOX

TAGS: 24
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  1. Well, maybe 24 CAN evolve slightly. The weasel white house adviser actually admitted he was wrong.

    Now they just need to work on ironing out the “convenience factor.” Jack Bauer is conveniently the only one who can contact the arms supplier. The head of CTU conveniently decides to head the operation himself, conveniently leading to the blonde being the only one left to run CTU. Etc.

    • the same weasel advisors who, when caught compromising national security, shout to all within earshot they did so because ” I’m a patriot! “.

    • Um…it’s the CIA and not CTU.

      • Typical female.

        • Typical female…always correcting you?

          • See? I didn’t even have to say it. You just knew. Guess there’s some truth to it.

        • Typical misogynist jerk

  2. 3 hours? That’s enough for Jack to kill you twice.

    • AMEN>while dismantling a bomb and diverting 5 other attacks,

  3. How long before we see a mole inside the unit? There hasn’t been much new that they’ve brought to the table. Breaking into the embassy, the muckity muck inside the white house that has it in for Jack, the sympathetic authority figure that comes around to believing Jack, Jack gets captured then escapes. And now we’re about to see them go from chasing jack to putting him back into service. It’s all the same stuff.

  4. Jack on the attack, Chloe is still the Uber Techie, So-called leaders (President, Prime Minister, White House Chief of Staff) still as clueless as ever; 24: don’t get no better than this!!!

  5. Very enjoyable episode ,surprised and happy to see Jack actually sit out an episode ,I think its the first time ,in the series where he spends the majority of his time in one place and doesn’t get into a shoot out, and other characters are allowed to carry the load.
    I wonder when, we will find out how jack originally got the info of the attack, and some back story on his assistant ,who is hanging out with Cloie.

  6. Bet we find out the CIA tech ,in love with Kate set her husband up.

  7. Did Navarro and Erik survive the blast? Will Kate take over as head of the CIA site?