Post Show Recaps

24 Season 4 Recap: A Rewatch of 24’s 4th Season


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Rob Cesternino and Josh Wigler look back at 24 Season 4.  As Rob and Josh prepare for the return of 24: Live Another Day this May, we take a look back at Day 4 for Jack Bauer.

In this Episode, Rob and Josh discuss:

  • Season four marks a new era of 24, and an end of the old era.
  • We meet the new blood in Jack’s life: Audrey and Heller. Josh discusses these two crucial characters to the 24 mythos, and both of them central in Live Another Day.
  • We meet several new staff members at CTU: Edgar Stiles, Curtis Manning, Bill Buchanan.
  • Chloe’s has an upgraded role at CTU as well, this is the season where the show starts making a big deal out of her.
  • This season, David Palmer is out at the White House: Charles Logan makes his debut. He’s about to become 24’s new Nina Myers.
  • Jack Bauer meets his toughest villain yet: Habib Marwan. He is ahead of Jack at basically every single turn. One of the all-time most successful villains on 24.
  • This is basically the last season for Michelle and Palmer, and one of the final appearances of Classic Tony. How do they fare in their farewell appearances? 
  • A huge part of why season four is excellent is no more Kim Bauer. Kim is gone, so the extraneous stories are gone. Even the stories that are classifiable as “excess baggage” are enjoyable; the season is never boring, even if it doesn’t always make sense.
  • The Bad Stuff: There’s another mole in CTU, but it’s handled quickly. The new CTU director, Erin Driscoll, has a stupid daughter plotline, but it’s handled quickly. Every time the show starts to veer off into “Mountain Lion territory,” it’s handled within a few episodes — and again, it’s rarely boring.
  • The Ending: Jack Bauer fakes his death. I used to think this was the moment that 24 jumped the shark. And then I revisited Kim’s Day 2. This is really no worse than that. But it does signal a shift into an era of 24 that kind of goes off the rails.

Join us on Tuesday, April 8th to discuss the Emmy award winning Season 5 of 24

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  • Brett Barsanti

    I really like Season 4 too and I agree with pretty much everything said.

    I think the last few episodes of Season 4 feature many of the greatest 24 characters of all time: Jack, Chloe, Tony, Michelle, Palmer, Logan, Edgar, Bill Buchanan, Mandy, Curtis, Mike Novick, Aaron Pierce etc.

    This podcast/recap felt kind of incomplete to be honest though. You guys didn’t even mention Behrooz, Paul Raines, or Mandy.

    • Josh Wigler

      Only so much we could cover, but all three of those characters are great — the return of Mandy felt a little on the nose for me, but it’s fun if you roll with it. The Paul Raines stuff is really devastating, especially after his brief bromance with Jack. And Behrooz! I still have hope that he’s the big bad responsible for Live Another Day.

      • Brett Barsanti

        Yeah I understand that there is only so much that can be covered, I just feel like the Paul Raines death is one of Season 4’s highlights, the Behrooz thing is infamous among 24 fans (and yes I also hope he is the big bad of Live Another Day), and I guess I am just personally a big Mandy fan (I will be very upset if she does not come back for Live Another Day)

        • Josh Wigler

          Fair enough!

  • Swamp Fox

    How could you forget Behrooz???

  • Singtoast

    Just finished a rewatch of season 4 and I agree that it was way better this time around. I think that the lack of awful side story lines puts it above season 3. They didn’t need to put the prez in every week so he didn’t get any ridiculous personal drama (although the introduction of his son just before air force one gets blown up I thought was funny). I agree that Marwan is the best and most competent 24 villain (although the complete incompetence of CTU’s ‘perimeter’ was on full blast this season). TerrorFamily were great and I love the reintroduction of Mandy!

    Poor Audrey Raines though. I think she actually has the worst day here. I’d love to see a top 10 worst 24 days list.

    Anyway! On to season 5!!