Ending 24-2 (or 48 as I liked to call it) with a cliffhanger was a terible idea. It is one unfortuantely picked up from the rest of US season based TV that do not have such tight ongoing storylines. In those cases the season cliffhanger exists mainly to make it harder for the networks to cancel them. Leave the audience up in the air and risk a letter writing campaign from hell.
Problem with 24 is that it is merely one grand narrative punctuated at hourly intervals by cliffhangers. By not giving us a resolution the final episode does not feel special, does not supply the full stop. I am waiting for the next episode with the knowledge that I am waiting for half a year – and feel a bit let down. Certainly I can see them wanting to emulate the tremendous ending of season one – the death of Jack’s wife by Nina was a grand conclusion. Poignant, shocking and leaving us satisfied – and waiting for more. Season two does not really feel like it has ended, there are too many loose ends knocking around.
It was still great to watch Palmer take control again, Tony and Lady Tony get their come-uppance on Chappelle and the final shoot out – but the assasination attempt seemed rushed. What would have worked a lot better would have been Jack’s heart attack from the previous episode – it would have been tied into the storyline and not left scheming baddies in the wings. This has been part of the problem with this series, especially post The Bomb. The lengths my imagination went to trying to work out the next twist was rarely surpassed by the scriptwriters. Still, I am waiting for next year: 24 with its serial narrative is the only show I actually do work my life around. So despite my minor niggles, I’m waiting for another long day.