Last week’s episode ended in typical 24 fashion with a cliff hanger – Jack Bauer caused a scene in order to get into the U.S. Embassy (by shooting a few protester’s legs). Jack and Chloe uncovered the mastermind of the drone attack was Margot and are trying to get to Tanner’s flight key so they can prove that there is an imminent attack. Agent Kate Morgan and her partner Agent Ritter are hot on Bauer’s tale as he enters the Embassy. Simone is trying to convince Navid not to abandon their plan, and Margot and her son are attempting to crack the device so they can take control of US drones for their attack.
This episode begins with absolute chaos. Jack is attempting to break into the Embassy in order to talk to Chris Tanner, the drone pilot who’s drone was hacked and used to attack Coalition Forces. By the time Bauer locates the pilot, Agents Morgan and Ritter have alerted the US Marines that Bauer is en route to Tanner. Before they get there, Bauer renders the Air Force officer unconscious and convinces Tanner to give him the flight key so he can prove his innocence and leaves just as the squad of Marines arrives. Chloe realizes that Adrian, the head of Free Information purposefully tried to get Bauer caught by not inputting his credentials correctly into the Embassy systems. Upon discovering the downed officer, the Marines lock down the Embassy, which disables Jack’s key-card. Jack heads to the Comms Room so that he can upload the flight key data to Free Information, who can then provide proof that the device was hacked.
Margot’s son hacks Yates’ drone-stealing device and says it will be ready to take control of the drones within the hour. Simone’s husband, Navid, is attempting to sway Simone to leave her mother and their plan and go away with him (which would be a good idea if her mother hadn’t bugged the room). CIA Station Head Navarro is still trying to track Bauer via Morgan and is trying to figure out why Bauer wanted the flight data (he doesn’t seem like a bad guy, just caught under the Chief of Staff’s power). Bauer makes into the Comm Room and gets directions from Chloe on how to upload the flight data. With the Marines closing in on his position Jack makes Chloe promise that she will get the data to the President. Unfortunately, the data needs to be decrypted from his end before the transfer can be completed which will take time, but the Marines are forming up on the door. Jack buys time by purposefully shooting some of the Marines in the body armor and attempting to make it a hostage situation so he has a chance to decrypt the data.
Simone is contemplating the turn of events when her mother creepily enters the room for tea. Her “motherly instinct” tells her something is wrong (motherly instinct is code for she has a camera over their bed and listens to their pillow talk). Simone tells her mother that her husband plans to leave and asks her not to hurt him. Margot lets her know that she will do whatever it takes to avenge her husbands death (the teapot boiling in the background really drives the point home). President Heller is giving an address to Parliament and is doing a pretty good job despite the Chief of Staff’s (CoS) worries. Mark, the CoS, has to step out so he can talk to Navarro about Bauer. CoS is not very happy that 1). Bauer has not been apprehended, and 2). that Bauer is now involved in a hostage situation in a US Embassy and threatens Navarro’s job. Jack is working on a slow computer which is no good. The Marines contact Bauer to negotiate, but Bauer says he will kill everyone if they enter hoping that they will not make a play. Bauer does attempt to calm the hostages by telling them that he will not do anything that would actually harm them. Ritter and Morgan return to the interrogation room and ask Tanner why Bauer helped him. Tanner tells them that Bauer took his flight key to help stop the upcoming attack and prove his innocence. Ritter (who doesn’t generally care for Morgan anyways) is mad that Morgan didn’t push Tanner harder, but Morgan thinks Bauer might actually be trying to stop telling the truth and wants to talk to him. Heller ends his speech to applause. Mark (CoS) comes up to Heller to talk to him about the developing situation in the Embassy. He specifically tries to throw Bauer under the bus in order to try to get Bauer killed by the Marines. Heller tells Mark that he isn’t making any decisions until he talks to Bauer.
Simone and Margot enter the bedroom to confront Navid. She gives him one chance to discard his plan to run away or face consequences. He says he will not murder innocents and says that if Simone ever got free she would see it was madness too. In order to convince Navid that he should do as she says she has her guards hold Simone down and cut off her pinky finger. Navid gives in (obviously). Morgan attempts to convince the Marines that they need to talk to Bauer, but they say no (remember when he shot them in the body armor? Because they do). Navarro tells her the the President is going to be calling Jack and that they will be tapped into the call. The President calls Jack in the Comm Room and tries figure out why Bauer is holding hostages and wants to resolve it. Bauer tells him the the US drone fleet is vulnerable and they will be attacked with using Yates’ device. He goes on to tell him about Margot Al-Harazi and tries to convince him that he is just doing what is necessary to provide actionable intelligence. He tells Heller that all he needs is fifteen minutes to upload the data and that after that he will give himself up. After the call, Mark tries to convince Heller that Jack is just trying to cover up the fact that he is working with Free Information and is playing them. Heller’s daughter tries to convince him otherwise, but Mark is a manipulative asshole and convinces Heller to send in the Marines.
While the Marines are prepping for their entrance, the commander tells one of the Marines to take a shot as soon as he has it no matter what. Morgan believes that Jack actually is telling the truth and is trying to figure out how to keep Jack from being killed. She takes Ritter and has him watch her six so she can go through the ceiling vent to convince Bauer to surrender so the Marines won’t shoot him. The Marines begin their assault by cutting power to the cameras. Bauer is convinced he has to hold them off and starts barricading the doors and tells the hostages to stay down and to cover their ears. The Marines see another heat signature and realize that Morgan is entering the room. Ritter unsuccessfully tries to get the Marines to stand down as Morgan tries to convince Bauer that she is on his side. She drops into the room and tells Bauer she can get him out alive and that she wants the flight key so she can finish the upload, since Bauer doesn’t have enough time. The Marines storm the Comm Room, Morgan is standing in front of Bauer forcing the Marines to stand down. She then takes Bauer into CIA custody.
At the end of the episode Simone is recovering, Bauer is arrested, Navarro is trying to figure out what the hell is happening, and Margot’s device is ready. Margot has the device readied to take over the ten closest drones to London and has Navid ready to pilot. Beep Beep.
This episode was probably the most intense of the season. Bauer’s standoff in the embassy was a nailbiter, and I had no idea how it would end. When the Marines were preparing to assault the Comm Room and Morgan was trying to convince Jack she was willing to help him, I just stared at the screen wide-eyed. It will be interesting to see whether or not Navid is able to get away or stand up to Margot.