Variety has word that the current season of 24, its eighth, may very well prove to be its last: Studio and network execs declined comment — but it’s believed that the
final decision will be made in the next day or two. Move is not a huge
surprise, but still reps the end of an era for Fox. Reasons include escalating production costs and ratings that have been off. Shopping it to other networks is still a possibility, but a slim one in all likelihood.
I think this is far from a bad thing; in fact, I think it’s a good thing. The show has been monumental for most of the last decade, but it’s had its share of issues, the least of which has been a formula that, while innovative and gripping in initial seasons, has played itself out even a couple of seasons ago. Even when the show supposedly switched gears in Season 7, it was still a lot of the same and the changes were mostly cosmetic. Plotlines were recycled, villains became repetitive, and the need to outdo the season before finally started to weigh on the show. You can only really have so many nuclear, biological or chemical terrorist threats; and I think everything that could have been done on TV has been done.
In years past, I couldn’t wait for the next episode to come ticking in, but I’ve got the last nine episodes from this current season DVR’ed and I’ve been in no hurry to catch up on them. I will eventually, of course, but the days of watching the entire season in one 18-hour marathon session (did that for Season 2, went to work the next day bleary-eyed, but amped) are long gone. Kiefer Sutherland has been tremendous in the role, and the next logical step is to take Jack Bauer to the big screen, which is what’s probably going to happen, with Billy Ray (State of Play, Flightplan) having been hired by Fox already to pen a theatrical script.
The show’s run its course, and I’m looking forward to seeing it take the next step.
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