I watched "3:00am - 4:00am," I took notes like always, and I can remember most of it. But I just wasn't feeling it tonight. There was potential here, from Kayla's kidnapping to the reveal that Hassan had a file with all of the US's super secret nuclear codes, but given that we haven't met any new threat in the last few hours, it looks like we're stuck with Samir as the head bad guy for the duration, and there's nothing all that exciting to him. I want super crazy, I want Renee cutting off people's thumbs or stabbing bad guys in the eye, I want Jack throwing knives and taking out hordes of bad guys. Instead, I get no Renee, and Jack relegated to driving around in a car or hanging out in Hassan's living room. If the threat was at all potent, this could've been nail-biting, but the "dirty bomb" scare is far too theoretical right now. 24 works when the choices Jack and others make seem like frying pan or fire, over and over and over again. So far this season, it's been mostly sizzle.
All right, recap: Kayla has just learned that her boyfriend, Tarin, is a bad guy, and while she tries (ineffectually) to escape out of the bathroom window, he becomes suspicious after hearing from Samir that Marcos might've spilled the beans. Jack and Cole are on their way to the hotel where Tarin has Kayla, but there's a team of cops ahead of them, lead by Sgt. Amis, who I swear to god I thought was named Sgt. "Anus." Given how he behaves, directly going against Jack's orders to wait till CTU arrives, I guess the second name would be more appropriate. Tarin kidnaps Kayla, brings her to Samir's super-villain style bank vault lair where there's the usual scary flag-and-video-camera situation, while Jack and Cole head to Hassan's. There's some tense talk, then Samir contacts Hassan, demands "File 33," or bye bye, Kayla, and Hassan pretends ignorance. Samir gives Hassan fifteen minutes to turn over the file, Hassan explains what the file is to Jack and Hastings (favorite bit: Hastings asking Jack what "File 33" is. Because, y'know, the guy who's been out of active field duty for months and months is definitely the best person to ask that one), and obviously, we can't let the bad guys have those all important codes!
So, the deadline passes, and Tarin goes to murder Kayla. Only he chickens out, and tries to escape with her, getting himself shot in the process. Or... does he? Spoiler: No, he's not shot, it's all a clever ruse. Samir knew that Hassan would never turn over the file, so instead he came up with this crazy scheme to fake Tarin's death, get Kayla in a car with an EMP device in the back seat, and then have her drive that car to CTU, where the explosion would take out all those precious radiological detectors we've been hearing about for the past couple episodes. It's utterly ridiculous, but it at least has the benefit of being a little exciting.
I haven't mentioned the resurgence of "Dana Is In A Big Ole Mess" subplot, because I really don't want to, but, well, not much choice. I love Stephen Root, and I'm always happy to see him in just about anything, and the one thing I'll give the current iteration of this idiocy is that Root at least looks like he's having fun as Prady. I only wish he had a mustache to twirl and train-tracks to tie our suffering heroine to. Gah, apart from the possibility that Dana might finally make good on all those "I'm gonna kill me hicks" expressions she's been wearing, there is nothing I care about less on this show than her pointless efforts to cover up her crimes. Unless there is some real clever writing in the final hours of this season, none of this is ever going to be really relevant, and Dana will lose her job and get taken to jail (or else sacrifice herself heroically while Cole says "Noooooooooo!"). If I'm going to have to watch a subplot that has nothing to do with the main story, it should at least be fun, or goofy, or whatever. This is just agonizing, and worst of all, it's wasting actors I enjoy.
To sum up, the EMP was cute, everything else draagggged. Where the hell is Renee?
- Also, remember when Cherry Jones was President? And on this show?
- Why did the EMP device have a timer on it?