16 February 2007


Who didn't like the real-time perspective 24 offered when it premiered all those years ago? One of the characters would fly to LA from DC and it would take five episodes until you saw that character again, in order to allow for his/her flight. Mad cool. Not so cool (or perhaps DEFINITELY UNCOOL would be a better way to describe it) has been the increasing use of torture to procure information from the bad guys, who more often than not were"radical Islamists bent on destroying the American way." Not that this was ever entertaining, but after Abu Ghraib it struck me as seriously irresponsible.

So I was fairly dismayed when I read a recent piece in The New Yorker on Joel Surnow, the show's co-creator and executive producer. Not only was Surnow unrepentant about the torture, but the suspicions I had of the right-wing politics behind the show were confirmed in the article. But apparently I haven't been alone in my distaste for the nasty turn the show has taken. I mean for heaven's sake, how bad must the show's use of torture be, when a Brigadier General (also the dean of West Point) has to fly out to LA to suggest that they tone it down?

It seemed, however, that this was going to be a lost cause... until I read a piece at IMDB.com today, stating that 24's producer had agreed to cut the torture scenes. Lord bless the The New Yorker is about all I have to say to that. Though as a parting shot, I'm tempted to send Joel a little note letting him know that if he's that right-wing, that hair under his bottom lip can't really be referred to as a "soul patch."

Now if only the Vanity Fair piece on SAIC would work a similar sort of magic...

1 comment:

  1. Cheers for this- came in handy for a last minute lecture on representation and ideology in popular TV.