Stay Tuned
Reviews, previews and much more on "The Real Housewives," "How I Met Your Mother," "NCIS" and many more of your favorite shows. This is the place to talk about all of the things that make us "Stay Tuned"…

Thursday, December 07, 2006

DVD Review: "24" Season 5

It’s easy to understand how Kiefer Sutherland could get so wrapped up in watching a “24” episode (most of it for the first time) that he forgets he’s supposed to be doing commentary.

That, after all, is the magic of the fifth (and best yet) season of “24.” For the first time, we care about other stories besides Jack’s.

We’ve always cared about other characters like Tony, Michelle and Chloe. But their stories were always a part of Jack’s overall story. We cared about David Palmer, but most of the time his story didn’t make all that much sense (Remember the Vice-Presidential coup? How about his doctor girlfriend whose husband killed himself for no reason?). This year, not only did we care about President and Mrs. Logan, we found ourselves totally involved in their story. One particular episode, Jack only appeared on screen for eleven minutes, but I was so engrossed in the Logan storyline, I didn’t even notice until the show was almost over.

This was the second season “24” ran uninterrupted, and it’s clear the writers learned a great deal from season four. The continuity is the best it’s ever been as even the most outlandish twist still makes sense.

As for the DVD itself, the special features are pretty extensive and highly entertaining. There are interviews with all of the supporting characters that share a few interesting tidbits (Gregory Itzin wears earrings and a leather jacket? Jude Ciccolella is a folk singer?). We go behind the scenes with the camera operators for an extensive look at the shooting of a major explosion scene. Plus, two-time Emmy winner Sean Callery shows us how he scores the show. There are also commentaries from the writers, directors and several of the stars including Mary Lynn Rajskub, Gregory Itzin, Jean Smart, Julian Sands and Kiefer himself.

If you think you were upset at the deaths of some of the characters, wait until you hear Kiefer’s reactions. The first death (which occurs within the first 10 minutes of the premiere) actually makes him jump—and he knows it’s coming.

The most disappointing part of the DVD is the season six prequel that is supposed to connect the fifth and sixth seasons since it really only serves to advertise Toyota. We do get a glimpse at what Chinese captivity is like for Jack, but the sequence is truly pointless. I do, however, get some satisfaction in knowing that Jack has been able to keep quiet for seven months.

There are many of you out there who have said you would only watch “24” if you could watch all of the episodes one right after the other. If you’re one of those people, this is the season for you.