I’ve just finished watching ’24 Live Another Day’ on DVD. I think that the reduction to 12 episodes worked well because the key plot kept moving along without it feeling padded out. In the 24 episode format, there were always secondary plots that were included that were just dull of irritating, and I’m glad to report that there are no whiney Kim Bauer moments anywhere to be seen in this season.
As with previous seasons of 24, you have to let go of reality to fully enjoy it. The whole season takes place in London, but the key characters involved are almost all Americans. Can armed CIA agents really run around London shooting people?
What makes 24 great TV is the clever plot twists and whilst this season was enjoyable I spotted everything coming apart from the twist during the first episode which was pure genius. I wasn’t sure if the scriptwriters just weren’t as creative as they used to be or whether I have become accustomed to the way they think. Despite there being a lack of surprises, this season still has some of the best TV that I have seen for a long time.
In Jack Bauer we see the best and worst of humanity. Despite being hunted by the American government, he is willing to give his all and to make sacrifices to protect the American president. You can’t help but admire Jack’s commitment and dedication to the cause, but then when he has a terrorist cornered he throws them out of a window (from several stories up). Jack is heroic, but he is also flawed and in this sense he is an extreme version of all of us because we can all do good but we are also capable of causing harm. With this tension inside of all of us, it is important that we decide who we want to be and that we choose to live our lives trying to be the person who God made us to be.
One of the problems with 24 (and most TV) is that it only shows the edited highlights of life. Jack Bauer never sits down for a meal or calls his mum and I’ve never seen him cut the grass or give real time to console a friend. In fact as Chloe confides in Jack about a trauma from her past, Jack comforts her and is genuinely interested for about 30 seconds before they set off chasing the bad guys again. 24 could leave us thinking that only the exciting and adrenaline filled parts of life are important, but I believe that all of life is worth living well.
Next time that life feels dull or ordinary, instead of feeling sad about the lack of excitement, why not focus on how you can be the best person you can be in that moment? Why not focus on the ways you can do good? As I care for my children it is usually not very exciting and it can definitely be hard work but as I focus on being who I am and doing good, I shape their lives for the better. Lets focus on living life well, ‘what ifs’ and ‘if onlys’ rob us of our joy and meaning in life.
Jesus promised that if we followed him and obeyed his teaching that he would lead us into life in all it’s fullness (John 10.10). As we live our ordinary lives, may we call on Jesus and let him lead us.
As we live our ordinary lives, may we work on being the best person we can be and doing good where we can.
Picture source http://www.ccec.com.au/author/glyn/