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Whedonesque - a community weblog about Joss Whedon
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February 15 2008

Television Without Pity speculates on what would happen if Joss Whedon took over 24. Also Rob Thomas and some other familiar names.

He would write,"The end." Over and over again:)
Is it wrong that I really would like to see that?

It's like a mirage in a desert wasteland of television.
Yes, Please.
Especially Alexis Denisof
Guess we're sitting in the same court.
I'd pay money to see Joss Whedon's 24.
Just about anything new on that show would do it for me. Including, for example, its cancellation.
He would have the illegal torture exposed (not to mention killings and other illegal activities), and everyone responsible called to account; brought down by a band of anarchists who hate these kinds of fascist propaganda shows as much as I do!
I actually liked the Whedonesque (ahem) premise. And it seemed to me of the ones I read (so far only the pasge Whedon is on) it was the only one that was somewhat a new story. All of the others were just combining the gimmicks of 24 with the gimmicks of the writers. And while they got Whedon's (girl power, repeat casting, metaphor's abound) they actually gave it a premise.

I like the Ron Moore one too, but then i just plain like everything Ron Moore.

[ edited by theMidnighter on 2008-02-16 02:35 ]
Hey, I'd watch that :)
these kinds of fascist propaganda shows

It amuses me, this. Having seen every season of 24, it's really not a fascist propaganda show. I mean, in the current political environment, I think it's hard to call a show in which (for example) a wishy-washy and incompetent President of the United States was one season's big bad a "fascist propoaganda show".
I agree, lighten up a bit, you'll live longer!
Paul Wolfowitz (Armin Shimerman)

While not always a propoganda show, 24 definitely has its moments. My favourite was a couple seasons ago when the terrorists screwed with CTU by reporting their "prisoner abuse" to amnesty international. Way to suggest that human rights organizations help the terrorists.

I stopped watching shortly thereafter.
It has its moments in a number of different political directions, however. Mainly, the assertion amuses me because (to take one example) I don't hear people talking about the long litany of abuses Apollo mentions in court at the end BSG season 3 and going, "Oh my god, this show is full of fascists! I'm never watching this again!"
Sarcastic is TV Without Pity's middle name, but this is off base.

Obviously if Whedon did 24, Jack would be assisted by a strong female lead who can also kick butt. But I doubt he'd take on the Watcher role (despite the movie). They'd probably work together and there'd be a bit more character woe (and terrorism would be the metaphor for real life in some way).

Oh and people would die. Like they already do.

[ edited by BrownCoat_Tabz on 2008-02-16 03:35 ]
"Thomas has Jack Bauer switch to thwarting a brand-new terrorist threat each hour. This ends up freeing a surprising amount of Jack's time to make smart-ass remarks and endure patronizing comments about what a tough line of work he's in for a tiny little blond."

Hee, tiny Kiefer.

Looking forward to the apparent "fix" that Season 7 will be for the series. It really should end soon, and I say that as a pretty big fan.

If I was gonna have a currently airing series be one Joss would join, 24 wouldn't be my first choice. The Office or Lost, maybe Heroes. Oooh, or I bet he would love to write for Dexter. I can see that.

I've watched and liked/loved at least one series each that the showrunners listed created or, at the very least, were heavily involved in. With the exception of two of the folks. I watch too much TV.

Alan Ball ~ Six Feet Under (movie bonus: American Beauty) When is the HBO vampire drama True Blood premiering ?

Greg Berlanti ~ Everwood, just the first season though (movie bonus: The Broken Hearts Club)

Mark Burnett ~ Survivor

Chris Carter ~ the bulk of The X-Files (plus movie!), what I saw of Millenium, wasn't keen on Harsh Realm after the pilot + second episode

Mark Cherry ~ The Crew (this was probably not a good sitcom, from the mid-`90s, but a 13 year old me enjoyed it and it was my first exposure to a genuinely funny gay character), the first season of Desperate Housewives

David E. Kelley ~ Ally McBeal (parts of it), Boston Public was kinda awful but I had fun with the first two seasons of it as a guilty pleasure (movie bonus is the giant crocodile movie Lake Placid, heh)

Tim Kring ~ Heroes

Damon Lindelof & Carlton Cuse ~ Lost and a bonus to Cuse for Brisco County Jr

David Eick ~ American Gothic (haven't watched BSG yet, I promise I will eventually)

Ronald D. Moore ~ the first and arguably superior of Carnivale's two seasons, Roswell (I know it wasn't often very good, but the best parts, maybe they can be attributed to Moore's involvement?), Star Trek: TNG (movie bonus is that series' second film, First Contact)

Josh Schwartz ~ I saw Season 1 of The O.C. It had some laughs and some of the cast was great, plus there was lots of pretty. I couldn't give the show another year of my life though. And, as predicted, it had a sophomore slump and Seasons 3 and 4 don't sound so great on paper either, so I'm kinda glad I bailed.

Amy Sherman ~ was involved with Roseanne for a while, I think possibly at the same time Joss was. Big Roseanne fan as a kid, lost track of it during its later years though. Wouldn't mind checking out Gilmore Girls some day, maybe.

Aaron Sorkin ~ I swear I'll check out Sports Night and The West Wing eventually, I might even just go ahead and buy the DVD sets based on all the praise the two get. All I've seen of Sorkin's was Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip, which featured a cast I loved, a handful of good episodes including a wicked promising pilot, but ultimately ended up being kind of a spectacular failure in the end. Seriously uneven show.

J. Michael Straczynski ~ Man, I think this guy had more of a hand in raising me than my parents--He-Man, She-Ra, The Real Ghostbusters, Murder, She Wrote (anyone else really like that series as a kid?) and more recently Babylon 5 and Jeremiah. Also many comics that he's written, I've liked or loved most of the ones I've read. Landing a gig as the writer for the next films by directors Clint Eastwood, Paul Greengrass, and Alex Proyas was a huge coup, he was noticed by Ron Howard.

Dick Wolf ~ Miami Vice, 5 and 6 year old me loved it. Along with Dallas and Werewolf and whatever else my parents were watching devotedly in the late `80s.

Edward Zwick & Marshall Herskovitz ~ My So-Called Life...I wanna watch Once & Again some day too, I hear it's a solid drama, lasted for three seasons (movie bonus for one or both of these guys include Shakespeare in Love and Traffic)

Only showrunners left out are Shonda Rhimes and Rob Thomas. I didn't give Veronica Mars a fair shot (just three eps) and I'm not sure if I'll ever bother due to what folks have said about the show getting progressively worse (or at least, less good) and I've liked Kirsten Bell too much in her Heroes role to go back to her plucky gumshoe teen angstery. Gave Grey's Anatomy a fair shot, couldn't find enough to like and it's really not my thing. I mean I've liked my fair share of chick flickery in the past on TV and in movies, but that's beyond anything I can endure.

[ edited by Kris on 2008-02-16 04:58 ]
Okay, okay, my comment was over the top, and even worse when you consider that I've never watched the show! But the very fact that the current administration uses 24 as proof positive that the American people are cool about torture is sufficient to set me against it. If Bush and Cheney could praise BSG I might doubt it too, but that'll never happen, THAT show is clearly not flag waving.
Well, FWIW, the right-wingers who try to tout 24 as evidence for support of torture also don't watch the show, because there's any number of things that have come up with which this particular administration would very much not agree. So, their use of the show is purely ignorant demagoguery.
I've never seen 24. If Joss took it over, I would see it.

That'd be the only difference I'd be able to notice ;)
Where's the Nash Bridges love? Every time I see Carlton Cuse's name mentioned I expect someone to mention NB. Sigh. I miss that car.
I'd love to see Nathan Fillion's disgraced cable news pundit. And also to know what a cable news pundit has to do to get disgraced.
Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse's take on 24 made me giggle.
Ronald D. Moore and David Eick's version would sound retarded if it were not for the fact that I adore BSG.
Joss's version sounds awesome, period.

Oh, Lost. I'm really glad I never got into Lost, what with hearing how much the mysteries and questions screw with the audience. And no, I'm sorry, I'm not going to apply a philosophical viewpoint according to Locke and then the whole thing makes sense on a philosophical level! OooooOOOOOOOOooooooh! Granted, I'll have to watch more than a few episodes to really give validity to what I'm saying, but if they really planned the show to be that deep... whatever. The quality didn't seem that great. Applying the philosophical viewpoint (or whatever it was) to make the show makes sense feels either pretentious or a desperate need to justify the show's plots and wanderings. Or both.
Sorry, ran into an old "friend" who screwed me over and had a random conversation and realized that he wasn't as interesting as memory led me to believe. And more pretentious.
'24' is most definitely propaganda though i'm not certain it's the right-wing kind (though given right-wing barbs against liberals, I don't think a "wishy-washy" President ending up being the bad guy is exactly evidence the show isn't right-wing). It's clearly pro moral pragmatism and torture though and it's implicitly pro government and armed/intelligence services.

We're shown repeatedly that torture works, that it yields reliable, useful information when, in fact, the evidence on this point is extremely murky and many intelligence officers consider information obtained under torture to be basically useless. A couple of times we see Jack "flinch" from torturing someone, only to find out that the victim is actually a terrorist - the message being "if he seems innocent it's because you haven't tortured him enough". Due process and the rule of law is sacrificed to expediency pretty much every week.

Here's an interesting (if long and clearly biased) article on '24' and Joel Surnow (its unashamedly right-wing co-creator - which is fine BTW, not saying he should be ashamed).

(and I have watched - and largely enjoyed - the first five seasons of the show. It's a cartoon, seen in that light it's mostly good fun IMO. The question is, does everyone see it in that light ?)
Mark Cherry ~ The Crew (this was probably not a good sitcom, from the mid-`90s, but a 13 year old me enjoyed it and it was my first exposure to a genuinely funny gay character)

No way, I didn't know Marc Cherry did that one. I used to watch that all the time when I was a kid.

Though on another note, it's funny the things you grow out of. I haven't watched a sitcom since then.
That was so funny, anyone who didn't skip back through the previous pages and read the whole thing, really should.

My favorites are Chris Carter .... "Together [the newly paired agents]can do anything, short of tying up plot threads ;-) and JMS.

Saje I agree with everything you said about 24, the difference being, I didn't stick with it after the first season, as I'm just not into cartoons.
I swear I'll check out Sports Night and The West Wing eventually

I display The West Wing right up there with Buffy, Angel and Firefly, so maybe that tells you how highly I regard it. I also agree with you about the wicked promising pilot of Studio 60, it just smaked of early West Wing and I was disapointed when it didn't keep it up.
Joss's shows are much more realistic than 24. Not even magic works as reliably and efficaciously as torture works in 24.
It's a guy show. And by guy show I mean, stuff gets blown up, people get killed, tortured and (did I mention blown up?)

I think though that 24 does show the effect of Jack's life on Jack himself. Sure he gets the bad guy - but at great personal cost to himself. Therefore it's a bit more than propaganda - it's just fast-paced drama on steroids. Even Buffy made Andrew believe he was going to die (a form of torture).
Oh, Lost. I'm really glad I never got into Lost, what with hearing how much the mysteries and questions screw with the audience.

"Screw with" is a highly subjective thing, in the end. The thing about Lost is that it either works for you or it doesn't, and it's very much a show that if it doesn't work for you, it really really doesn't work for you.

The only thing that bugs me about Lost (because I think it's awesome) are (on one side) the fans of it who try to tell non-fans of it that they are stupid, and (on the other side), the non-fans who think that because the show doesn't work for them, the SHOW must be stupid and/or bad.
Those are funny. I liked Sorkin's "walk-and-talk that has them reaching Washington, D.C. by the season's climax." (Don't watch the Sorkin shows much, but that definitely evoked them for me.)

I think I've watched most of the 24 seasons at some point, mainly because Kiefer is great, but I've always been bothered by the incredible efficiency of torture in the show. The "great personal cost" to Jack doesn't address the issue because the problem with torture isn't its effects on the torturer. The show is so wildly unrealistic that it seems like no one would take it seriously (as Saje said), but I can't quite get comfortable with it.
Most movies and shows in which there's fighting, dying and blowing stuff up don't depend on the magical powers of torture to reveal plot points. They don't depend on torture at all.

Propaganda often emphasizes the "great personal cost" paid by the hero in the battle against those he or she considers evil -- that's not a way to distinguish propaganda from art. If it were, a book called "My Struggle" by a German World War I corporal would not be propaganda.

Buffy, the vampire slayer, threatened to kill people for real more than once. She remains the hero, but we're invited always to question her decisions -- for instance, whether she really should carry out her threat to kill anyone who tries to save the world by killing her sister. Buffy the Vampire Slayer does not present a world in which violence has unintended consequences, not one in which torture is our fairy godmother.
Huge Joss-writing fan, but I think it'd be bad.
I think it falls under one of those just because you don't agree with somethings fictionals policitics doesn't mean it isn't just that, fiction. Not every fiction is a metaphor for how much our world sucks. Personally I've watched the first 5 seasons of 24 because it's a friends favorite show and if they were going to give my favorite shows (Buffy, Carnivale, Lost) a chance I could do the same. I found that I really like 2 things about it: Chloe and the bisexual bad chick who is in seasons 1, 2 and 4. Because I have a strong love for chicks that kick ass even crazy ones that may be evil. Do I think torture is right in any scenario? No, not really. But I also don't believe suicide is ever the right decision and The Gift is still a beautiful moment in BtVS.
I also am man enough to admit if was a show about rounding up homosexuals for concentration camps, I wouldn't be able to ignore the politics and enjoy the show. So I guess like everything this really comes down to each their own idea of what's too far.
See, now this is why I like stupid comedy cartoons. If people get offended I can just say it's a stupid cartoon and it's funny- lighten up.
Torture was shown as effective in Buffy. For instance, in When She Was Bad Buffy tortures a female vampire by sticking her crucifix necklace in the vamp's mouth, in order to get info on where The Anointed One had taken the Scoobies. And it totally works. Obviously, Whedon endorses torture. :)
theMidnighter, you're thinking about Mandy the bisexual terrorist assassin-for-hire (it sounds trashier than it plays out over the series, folks who are not 24 fans). She is played by one of my favorite TV hotties, Canadian Mia Kirshner, and her cold, get-the-job-done attitude and death-stare are effectively chilling (weirdly enough, where the character gets her only sliver of sympathy is in Season 1--despite having blown up a plane full of people--which features her most appearances and explores a relationship she has with another woman). Her surprise appearance in Season 2 was an awesome callback for fans and genuinely tense. Her Season 4 appearance was a nice culmination of her arc (maybe, unless that's not her last appearance) and she finally got to tangle with the main CTU characters.

It's continuity like Mandy that make the show fun (even though there's really no requirement for her role in each of her three seasons to be filled by that particular character).

And as mentioned by others, the toll everything takes on Jack is a big part of the emotional draw for watching the series. Kiefer isn't just all about kicking ass, he's also a damn fine actor. Despite the show being a big crazy action-drama/cartoon, it's still got a heart most seasons (well, okay, it barely escaped with its soul intact for Season 6, but I think the final emotional closing 10 minutes redeemed it somewhat).
I couldn't remember the characters name but I knew Mia Kirshner played her. I've kinda been fascinated by her since I saw her in commercials for the Crow sequel all those years ago (don't think I ever actually saw the movie though.)
West Point cadets are taking 24 too seriously.

[U.S. Army Brigadier General Patrick Finnegan, the dean of the United States Military Academy at West Point] told the producers that “24,” by suggesting that the U.S. government perpetrates myriad forms of torture, hurts the country’s image internationally. Finnegan, who is a lawyer, has for a number of years taught a course on the laws of war to West Point seniors—cadets who would soon be commanders in the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan. He always tries, he said, to get his students to sort out not just what is legal but what is right. However, it had become increasingly hard to convince some cadets that America had to respect the rule of law and human rights, even when terrorists did not. One reason for the growing resistance, he suggested, was misperceptions spread by “24,” which was exceptionally popular with his students. As he told me, “The kids see it, and say, ‘If torture is wrong, what about “24”?’ ” He continued, “The disturbing thing is that although torture may cause Jack Bauer some angst, it is always [portrayed as] the patriotic thing to do.”

theonetruebix: Fair enough. Looking back on that post, I think I was mostly feeling frustration with the aforementioned guy than with the actual show... ::sighs::

Wow. "If torture is wrong, what about '24'?" That's just sad. One should never base their morals off a tv show. Draw from it, perhaps, learn from it, sure, but use it as a moral compass? No. I can understand people finding truth in shows (I do all the time), but... gah, this is hard to explain, seeing how well Firefly deals with some moral issues (note: The Train Job), but I think you know what I mean.
Pointy your post is disturbing on so many levels. It's bad enough that West Point age young adults think they should be basing this kind of moral and ethical decision on a TV show that has it the wrong way around. It's like thinking it's somehow legitimate to base negotiating techniques on the Die Hard movies.

It reminds me that on BtS, even torture of demons (season 4) was considered unacceptable by the real good guys, as opposed to The Initiative. As well as the fact that even decent people like Riley could get caught up in it, without giving any thought to the moral ambiguity. (Really love season 4 ;-)

Worse yet, these West Point Cadets observe that our government teaches one thing and does quite another, starting with our resident idiot in the White House and his band of thugs.
Where has the moral high ground gone, on TV shows? Check out the last two (BBCA) episodes of Torchwood, just for the issues they raise.
Too bad I don't get to C A single Beeb, Shey, Torchwood sounds worth the while.

ETA: a single comma. That's real improvement.

[ edited by Pointy on 2008-02-17 18:57 ]
Shey, the real good guys in the Buffyverse tortured demons, too. And occasionally people.

Unfortunately, torture works intuitively, and thus dramatically. Empirically, results are mixed, at best. Torturers usually want their victims to know more than they do. So victims make stuff up. Morally, there was an international consensus to make torture illegal. We really should have stuck with that. The lawyers of all the armed services have been saying all along that the restrictions against torture shouldn't be loosened. Unfortunately, in this case, people don't always listen to their lawyers.

There's a black and white fighter mentality common to both real fighters and the arm chair variety in and around the White House and, apparently, the makers of 24 (I haven't watched the show much). It seems to me from my experience that most of the real fighters need that mentality. That's exactly why they shouldn't make the rules. And why we shouldn't elect simpletons to make them. Artists should be free to make their choices, but should also think about what they're putting out there in the culture. Think of the children. And our president.
Think of the children. And our president.

dreamlogic | February 17, 19:30 CET

As for the children, I really think it should be up to parents to make sure that kids aren't watching something like 24 (or for that matter, the majority of TV that I as an adult enjoy, although that doesn't include 24).
As for thinking of our president, I try really hard to avoid it ;-)

edited for bad spelling

[ edited by Shey on 2008-02-18 01:28 ]
Actually the main thing why I stopped watching 24 was the "girl in distress" cliche, that was in my opinion becoming unreal.

I mean come on, trained agents standing around frozen not taking action till Jack Bauer saves the day? That's unreal in a show like this, right? Ahhhhh, but they were female. Bad for them. Made me really angry. Plus, I usually knew where the plot was going. I hate that.

A little bit of Jossness would do the show a lot of good. Chicks who kick ass and absolutely unpredictable turn of events plus a little moral ambiguity with deeper meaning behind it - yeah!
Michelle had brains since her introduction in Season 2, was a strong leader in Season 3 after Tony got shot and did something cool and I think even got to kick a little ass that season.

Terry and Kim Bauer weren't trained fighters and not much could be expected of them in Seasons 1 and 2 (Kim later joining CTU in Season 3, though as a tech). Statistically, more men are in Jack's line of work than women and 24 has mostly focused on men in his role, though there are female field agents as well. So naturally, since Seasons 1 and 2 were very much about family, we were gonna have Jack's family in distress a lot. Both mother and daughter had their chances to shine though, in the courageous department. They just weren't performing any superheroics (though it could be argued that the sacrifice Terry made by taking Kim's place when they were trapped in the barn by Gaines was more harrowing than anything Jack had to put himself through that first season).

Chloe is brains and she got to wield a taser and a machine gun when extreme situations called for them. Chloe can be a little annoying sometimes, for me, but sometimes I like her a lot and I know she's a fan-favorite.

Karen Hayes is the strongest higher-up we've seen yet as far as I can remember.

There've been more...

The women of 24 might not always kick ass in the physical sense, but at least for the main characters, when they don't they're usually being of some essential use in another department. It isn't always Jack saving the day (or, well, the hour). You can juxtapose that with some of the male characters on Buffy and Angel. Xander, Giles, and Wesley got to fight once in a while and do well at it even, but they were usually more useful to the team for their brains and/or empathy.

Joss has got mostly kick ass women (lead characters--I realize there're a ton of secondary kick-ass male characters in the Buffyverse so the balance thing I'm going for here with 24 doesn't exactly level out), 24 has mostly kick-ass men. The modern day and feminism doesn't have to equal the death of the male action star or shows and movies following men performing the action scenes. I still enjoy both, just that Buffy and La Femme Nikita and, earlier than that I suppose, She-Ra, presented me with something new in their original runs, while male action heroes have existed since before I was born and any heroines of the same breed I just wasn't aware of until TV and the odd comic or book showed 'em to me.

Torture may be an aspect of 24, but I seriously doubt it's one of the main reasons most folks tune in. I like the frenetic pace, the tension, most of the cast, when the writers are able to throw in a worthwhile surprise, the action scenes, the continuity (really, this should be law by now in TV shows), and well, the music believe it or not.

Anyway, we've had the 24 talk before, with some of the same folks in here coming down on it (well within their rights to do so, of course) and the usual suspects defending it or claiming it isn't being seen in the right light or whatever. It's all good, it's just that we've been here before. But the series features some real heavy and debate-worthy material, so it's worth revisiting every now and then.
It does tickle me slightly Kris that it's (rightly IMO) pointed out that '24' is completely unrealistic and a fantasy that doesn't reflect the real world ... except apparently when it comes to the proportion of men working in the intelligence services, then it's OK to have few powerful, competent women because of, y'know, the show's responsibility to reality ;-).

On the other hand, I agree that there are a number of female characters on the show that play absolutely critical roles in saving the world, Chloe being one of them. She's easily one of my favourite characters partly because, for the first time that I can remember on TV, we're shown a real woman geek i.e. she's not a geek because she wears glasses and has her hair in a bun, she's a geek because she's shit-hot with computers and has a bluntness and impatience with what she (sometimes wrongly) sees as stupidity that borders on social maladjustment. She has the pedantry and literalness you often see in techies too. And though she may not kick ass that often she always has a "fuck-you" air about her and it's unusual to see female characters that have that and are still goodies and portrayed largely sympathetically.
My problems with the use of torture on 24 were a big reason I stopped watching it, and I'm sure that while if Joss were to take over there would continue to be torture on the show, it would be something more than the ugly and unimaginative violence that it is now. I had a number of problems with it -

* Ethics: Given our current flirtation with reversing all we've done and said in the name of human rights because we're mad at terrorists, I really think that the portrayal of severe physical and emotional torture as an effective and vital tool in the fight against terrorisim is something to be avoided.

I'm not a liberal - actually call myself more conservative, but something as basic as we do not torture people should not be a party issue. It's simple human decency and tactical savvy. I know 24 is fictional, but people tend to assume the basic foundations of a fictional story are true. So if government-agent-sponsored torture is going to be a primary theme of your show, please, please show that barely-trained 21-year-old interrogator watching in his off hours at Guantanimo how ineffective it is. I'm thinking a Joss show would leave people thinking a lot harder about the ethics and effectiveness of torture.

* Entertainment: I watch television to be entertained, not to walk away feeling dirty. Not being a sadist, I have a hard time watching the frequent and repeated torture scenes. Joss Whedon managed to film one of the most heartbreaking but also one of the most watchable torture scenes I've come across in War Stories. It was heartbreaking because we had to watch people we loved deeply be tortured. But it was also watchable because it was funny, and made for an amazing examination of two beloved characters and of loyalty and strength and different ways of coping with a horrible situation.

*Story: One of the most frustrating things about 24 to me was their use of torture as a story prop. Episode feeling a little slow? Need some action? Not enough drama? Want to inject some angst? Short on conflict? Audience not emotionally involved enough? Torture a guy!

Come on people.....grabbing the nearest character you can find and torturing him for a while is NOT a substitute for plot, character development, or anything else.

So yeah.....I might not *like* a Joss directed 24, but I'm thinking it would be vastly superior in many ways to the current unimaginative and unwatchable excuse for entertainment.

[ edited by jetflair on 2008-02-18 12:19 ]

[ edited by jetflair on 2008-02-18 12:21 ]

[ edited by jetflair on 2008-02-18 12:23 ]
I watched S1 when I was pulled in by a 24 hour marathon over Labor Day the year it first aired. They had me until the end and then lost me totally. All the women were either duplicitous or incompetent/stupid. As I recall, they had noble male terrorists fighting for a cause, noble male government guys fighting for a cause, female mercenaries who turned on everybody, female double agents with no real alligiance and female family who were there to do stupid things. I watched part of the 2nd season in order to see if that had been a one time thing, but did not stick with it and have not felt impelled to get involved with it again.

The West Point story was truly frightening when I saw it, but not terribly surprising to me.

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