A quick review of tonight's "24: Live Another Day" coming up just as soon as I don't have an ideal work situation right now...

As is inevitable with the ninth season of a show like "24," we're in Greatest Hits mode at the moment, with President Heller's sacrifice a mix of the ends of both George Mason (another doomed man who decided to make his death count for something) and Ryan Chappelle (executed by a very reluctant Jack). It's a bigger deal because it's the President of the United States, and because William Devane(*) is one of the best actors the show has had in that particular gig (his stealth farewell to Audrey was a really nice scene), but there's no way of escaping the notion of "24" going down some very familiar paths. Even Kate ordering the doctors to, as Jack so kindly put it, "wake the bitch up" was a variation on things the show has done before (including the arc about Jack corrupting Renee) and thus didn't have quite the visceral impact it could have.

(*) Devane playing a scene on a famous athletic field of course requires a link to this clip.

On the plus side, though, Mark's willingness to go along with Heller's plan out of respect for the man, even as he knew that it could easily destroy his marriage, went a long way towards redeeming what had been one of the show's more irritating characters in the early going.

Just like I feared last week, the show didn't have the time, money or interest to properly convey the sort of chaos there would likely be in London after a missile attack on a hospital, especially after we got the embassy riot earlier in the season. But things are awfully peaceful as Jordan is fighting for his life, Heller's staff are getting ready for meetings, etc.

What did everybody else think? Will the rest of the season involve Margot destroying the drones and Jack completing paperwork to return to America now that he's been pardoned by Heller? Or do you reckon there's more action to come?