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Category:    Home > Reviews > Action TV > 24 - Season Three

24 - Season Three


Picture: B-     Sound: B     Extras: B+     Episodes: B



Jack Bauer and his Counter Terrorism Unit (CTU) are still in the thick of things with 24 – Season Three, this time facing a new crisis with the President and a new threat from drug dealers and biological terror.  As before, twenty-four episodes take place over the course of a single day, the 24 shows that comprise the entire season.  Though the show continues in fine form, it was more involved in plot this time around.  Though it is as suspenseful as previous season were, Bauer is more damaged this time around and it is more of an all around action season.


Elisha Cuthbert is more of a known entity, thanks to her underrated work in The Girl Next Door (see my review of the uncut version of the film elsewhere on this site).  I had hoped she would have more of a role in this season, especially working in her father’s unit, but Keifer Sutherland is the star and as Bauer continues to do some of the best work of his career.  It does prove Miss Cuthbert can do a more conservative role, and I believe she is a better actress, if only she gets the chance to prove it.


This is a remarkable show in that it never falls victim to the weekly grind of moist television series, its writers (Robert Cochran, Duppy Demetrius, Howard Gordon, Evan Katz, Michael Loceff, Steven Kronish, Joel Surnow, Virgil Williams) are penning some of the best teleplays in TV and that makes it another high-quality hour-long Fox drama that has everyone talking with storyline twists that really work.  Fortunately, this one is a hit, their biggest and best since The X-Files.  It helps that the show is in an upswing, which makes it all the more fun to watch.  You will want to start at the beginning just the same with Season One, because everyone deserves to enjoy all this hard work paying off.


The anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 images for this third set is the clearest and best yet of the three boxes issued so far.  The digital is the smoothest and seamless yet.  Video Black is also a bit better than box two, and much better than one.  Like the second set, this third box offers aggressive Dolby Digital 5.1 AC-3, both of which are better than the 2.0 Pro Logic surround in the first box.  Good bass continues to show integrated presence and the soundfield much more naturalistic.  With the show a hit, more effort and money is being put into it and the result is continued improvement in fidelity and performance.


Extras here include a minimum of five deleted scenes and an audio commentary on one episode on each of the first six DVDs, leaving the seventh devoted to supplements.  Those 45 deleted scenes are repeated on the last disc with commentary options, twice as much as Box Two, and are activated when a “24” logo appears.  Unlike Box One, Three repeats Two in having chapter stops on all the episodes.  Other extras on DVD 7 include three behind the scenes featurettes and a multi-angle study of the Midnight Shootout in episode twelve.  There is also a teaser and promo piece for Season Four, which we will look at when the DVD set arrives.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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