Jack Bauer's Power Hour

Jack Bauer

This week saw the return of 24 to American television, the real-time show where an hour's worth of action takes place over a 45 minute period. The programme's hero is special agent Jack Bauer, a character who shoots first and only asks questions later if the writers know how to answer them. Aiding and abetting Jack in his morally dubious deeds (which have including cutting the head off a convicted paedophile and executing his own boss) are the surprisingly attractive staff of CTU Los Angeles, most of whom are actually moles for a terrorist organisation, and all of whom have severely dysfunctional personalities and ego complexes.

24 is now in its fifth series. That means that there have been four previous terrorist attacks on Los Angeles which Jack Bauer has thwarted. In series one, he prevented an assassination attempt on a black presidential candidate. In series two, he successfully prevented a nuclear bomb from being detonated in the city, but he did this half way through the series and nothing else happened for the rest of it, apart from a circus load of wild cats being let loose and wreaking havoc (I think that's what happened). In series four, Jack fought hard against logic and common sense as he battled a terrorist who not only caused every nuclear power plant in the country to melt down, but also shot down Air Force One using a stolen stealth fighter, kidnapped the Secretary of Defense, stole a nuclear warhead and fired it at LA. It's all in a day's work for the modern terrorist.

Don't get me wrong, 24 is a great show, but I feel that over the years its originality has diminished somewhat. To add a bit of variety to the proceedings, I've had a couple of ideas of my own which I'd like to bring to the table. All I can say to the 24 writers is this: take heed.

Jack the single mother

Picture the scene. It's breakfast time at a typical suburban home, but little Janey isn't even up yet. She's going to be late for school! Step in Jack Bauer, determined single mother. He's not going to let this happen. He grabs his 9mm pistol from his dresser and bursts into her room with the will of a madman. Poor Janey's disoriented; she's distraught, but Jack's got the gun and he's calling the shots. He holds her at gunpoint until she's dressed, grabs her forcefully and jumps maniacally through the window, into his SUV. He assures her everything will be OK if she does what she's told, reversing his car into the traffic and speeding off.

Beep - BEEP, beep - BEEP

It's after the commercial break and Jack's speeding through town trying to get to school on time. It's 8:57am. He has exactly three minutes. He looks at his watch. "Dammit". Janey's still crying. Jack swerves into the pavement to avoid an oncoming car, but hits an innocent pedestrian. Another casualty of this damn war. Jack spies the school and accelerates, smashing through the surrounding chain link fence. As the car skids around, he fires random shots out of the open window to get people out the way, unfortunately hitting a five-year-old child in the face. He feels no remorse. The screen pulls back and splits into three parts. Jack rushes towards the entrance of the school with Janey cradled in his arms. Ambulances gather around the pedestrian Jack mowed down. A small cat drinks some milk from a saucer. The screen zooms back in on Jack. The school bell rings just as he puts Janey down inside. He tells the headmistress that her bell is running a few seconds too early, then the credits roll.

You could probably develop this story by making Janey forget her homework or something.

Jack the dolphin trainer

It's 1pm. Jack is undercover at Seaworld Florida, posing as a trainer. He's attempting to infiltrate a gang of terrorists using porpoises to smuggle radioactive fish into the country, but once again time is against him. His dolphin Kelko can barely jump through a hoop and he's performing to the tourists in 45 minutes. If Kelko can't perform a grade-A show, Jack's cover will be blown. The first 40 minutes shows Jack and his increasingly futile efforts to train Kelko. At one point he tries to electrolyse the water to torture Kelko, but this nearly ends in disaster when he falls in himself.

Finally, Jack has an idea. He calls up his friends at CTU and tells them to bring the helicopter. Miraculously they can fly the helicopter across the whole country in the time it takes to show three minutes of advertising, but that's suspension of disbelief for you. The crowds are gathering and Jack is getting nervous. This is his big chance to shine. The helicopter circles overhead. The screen splits and shows all the main characters looking on anxiously. Jack blows his whistle. Tony Almeida is in the helicopter with a fishing rod. He dangles a tasty fish down and Kelko jumps through the hoop to grab it. The crowd cheers. Jack pats Kelko lovingly on the head. Out of nowhere, Kelko's head erupts into an explosion of blood and fish. A sniper in the crowd runs away like a mischievous child. Jack cries as the clock ticks silently away to 2pm.

I think this particular script may have too much of an emotional impact on the audience so may not be suitable for primetime.

That's all I can think of now. If you have a problem with my scripts, remember, at least they don't contain profanity.

Permalink || Posted 21/1/2006 by Pete

8 comments »«

  1. Dan - 22/1/2006 - 12:12am

    I have never seen 24, but it seems those ideas really have some potential.

    good job with the new site PN. I'm loving it

  2. The Writer™ - 22/1/2006 - 1:22pm

    That is inspired Pete. I love the ideas and will be using them in Series 6 of "24". Since these ideas havent been copyrighted...yoink.

  3. Matt - 22/1/2006 - 5:07pm

    Good effort nattress - I do wonder whether this particular creation is your own though - since it lacks the usual smattering of expletives . . .

  4. Noodle - 22/1/2006 - 7:56pm

    And, it's shit.

  5. Noodle - 22/1/2006 - 7:57pm

    But then again, anything to do with Nattress is shit.

  6. Mr Bigglesworth - 25/1/2006 - 11:43pm

    I think it should be changed to thescatflap.co.uk

  7. fuzzbear - 25/1/2006 - 11:51pm

    you need to sort yourself out mate-this is one fucked up website-still i suppose it would have to be with that serial killer type picture on the front page.......

  8. A relative of Ken Bigley - 25/1/2006 - 11:55pm

    The is one fucked up person, with no fucking idea about things in Iraq for a start. You spend too much time in front of the computer, and not enough time in the barbers.

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