***DISCLAIMER*** The following review is entirely my opinion. If you comment (which I encourage you to do) be respectful. If you don't agree with my opinion, that's fine. To each their own. I am just sharing my opinions and perspective. Finally, the reviews are given on a scale of 1-5. 1, of course, being terrible. 2, being not great. 3, being okay. 4, being good and 5, being epic!
24 Season 8 - 4 out of 5
After many MANY sleepless nights of stopping terrorists, Jack Bauer has finally earned a vacation as this Fox mega-hit closes up its final season--unless of course you've actually watched the last episode, you realize that Jack will NEVER have a vacation.
I'm not going to lie, I am a fan of this show. The writing is incredible and extremely addicting and the presentation of having a show take place in real time (or about as real time as it can get) and have story arcs take place in a single twenty-four hour time frame was definitely appealing and made the show extremely unique in an otherwise cliche world of cop dramas and crime stoppers. Sadly, being the final season, the show had a HUGE standard to live up to--especially when you realize that it has to somehow outdo season 5 or live up to seasons 4, 6 and 7 (all of which were unbelievably amazing, especially season 5). With the heavy weight put on the shoulders of the writers of the show, it's not surprising that the show didn't quite deliver. This final season didn't really kick into high gear until halfway through which was very VERY different from the last seasons as the very first episode roundhouse kicks you in the face with suspense, drama and action. However, once this show gets going, it gets going like nobody's business.
Even after the show finally picks up to its usual hectic and addicting pace, there were still some elements that the final season did not get right. Mainly, the problem was some poor casting choices. Keifer Sutherland still delivers like a boss as Jack Bauer and he's backed up with returning favorites like Cherry Jones as President Allison Taylor. Mary Lynn Rajskub once again fills the shoes of C.T.U. agent Chloe O'Brian and the development and maturity this character sees in this season was very interesting to watch. However, the inclusion of pretty-boy Freddie Prinze Jr. really hurt my interest in the show as it seemed from his delivery, he was so desperate to throw off the bonds of teenage romantic dramedies that he overacted in every scene he had--and don't get me started on the New Yorker accent he tried to have in some scenes and felt he didn't need in others.
New additions to the cast were also brought in that quickly took all the attention away from Freddie's terrible acting. Battlestar Galactica alumni; Katee Sackhoff plays C.T.U. data analysis Dana Walsh and her performance, to my surprise, was really good. Despite my eternal love of BSG, Sackhoff's erratic performance was something that kept me from truly enjoying her character, Starbuck but in Jack Bauer's world, she proved she has some acting chops. Another great addition to the cast was Anil Kapoor from Slumdog Millionaire, as well as two special guest appearances by D.B. Sweeney and Michael Madsen. Yes, despite the generic acting of Freddie Prinze Jr., the cast on this final season was fantastic.
So, despite some bad acting from one man and a story that took awhile to finally get up to speed, the final season of 24 wasn't completely terrible but wasn't the best either. It still was really entertaining and we still got to see Jack Bauer torturing people at the drop of a hat and proving he's got the harshest whisper in the world but after some amazingly stellar previous seasons, there was just no way this show would be able to end in a way that would have been perfect.