Like it or not, 24 was the show that changed television. It brought a movie-style action and gritty presence to the small screen that had not been there before (and, frankly, has yet to be replaced). That it hit the airwaves in the weeks following 9/11 only served to make it timely as well. The writers were amazing as well, essentially creating a 24 hour long movie with more twists and turns than Lombard Street.

Now, no one’s saying that this show was in any way realistic. First of all, Jack Bauer was virtually always right. No one is that right in real life all the time (except me and, if you ask her, my wife). Also, Jack seemed to be able to get to anywhere in LA within about three minutes. CTU seemed to be in some sort of mystical vortex that defied commuting.

Why am I talking about 24? I run walk really fast on the treadmill just about every morning, and so I watch old shows. Nothing new that I need to fast forward through usually.

I’ve just finished season 5, and that’s certainly my favorite. It’s the one that went the closest to going wire to wire with no weird family crap (Terri Bauer’s amnesia, Kim and the Cougar, Kim working at CTU) and had a plot that went all the way to the top. Poor Jack winds up in a red Chinese prison, but other than that, a solid effort.

If I’m ranking the seasons, it’d look something like this: 5, 3, 7, 1, 4, 2, 6.

Hmmm…I’m going to have to write a post about odd numbered sequels more often than not being vastly superior to even numbered ones (except in Spider-Man…3 was awful).

What’s your favorite 24 season? How about 24 character (Jack doesn’t count)?