The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Entertainment & Events

May 5, 2014

Jack Bauer's back again

NEW YORK — Jack’s back.

A counterterrorism agent forced to go rogue, Jack Bauer had been lying low since 2010. He’s been off the grid and off-screen since the final cycle of “24.”

For eight seasons of this Fox thriller, the indomitable Bauer repeatedly saved the country from innumerable disasters (or tried to) at grave cost to himself. But far from being showered in the thanks of a grateful nation, he was branded and re-branded a most-wanted villain for his service. He had no choice but to go on the lam.

Viewers — like his fictional pursuers on “24” — might reasonably have given up on ever seeing Jack again.

But on “24: Live Another Day,” he is nabbed by the CIA shortly after 11 a.m., London time, as this real-time, sequential drama erupts with the first of a dozen episodes that will carry the saga to a breathless resolution 12 hours later in the same hectic day.

Noted: Past “24” seasons ran 24 hours, hence the series’ title. So “12” might have been a more appropriate, if lame-sounding, name for this miniseries, which premieres at 7 p.m. today with two episodes, spanning the period from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

A few possible spoilers follow.

Returning as the intrepid, long-suffering Bauer is Kiefer Sutherland, whose far more upbeat post-”24” drama, “Touch,” was axed a year ago after just two seasons.

Also back is Mary Lynn Rajskub as marvelously mopey Chloe O’Brian. Bauer’s former Counter-Terrorism Unit running buddy has had her share of tribulations of late, including torture and charges of treason as well as a severe Goth makeover.

And also back, remarkably, is Kim Raver, who, as Bauer’s former heartthrob Audrey, was last seen in the conclusion of Season 6 in a coma from which she was not expected to emerge. But there is no happy reunion in store for Jack. It’s quite the opposite, even though he — ever the trickster — deliberately contrives to be captured by authorities.

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