The Jack Bauer Power Hour In Review.

I've never met anyone worth a damn who doesn't watch 24. That doesn't mean everyone who does, is.

Naked Stripper Three-Way Sex with Chloe and Nadia aside, in just about anything in life, you're gonna have your pros and your cons. The Jack Bauer Power Hour is no different.

The Pros:

Jack Bauer
Watching 24 the way 24 was meant to be watched: on a TV, at the time of its broadcast, WITH commercial interruptions
Ready supply of alcohol
No Foolin' Free Shots
Comfortable seats
In the presence of other 24 fans

The Joes:

Have to go all the way into Manhattan as opposed to sitting in the comfort of my own room
Have to get there early, thereby subjecting me to the last half hour of Prison Break (unless I somehow talk someone into going with me, giving me someone to talk to)
$7 for draft beer and they only have one tapped in the upstairs bar
Chloe & Nadia are not there making themselves available for Naked Stripper Three-Way Sex
In the presence of other 24 fans

Now, let's go over these on a line-by-line basis, starting with The Pros. The first two just go without saying. But, before I move on, can I just expound on the mind-blowingness of this show? I mean, you had to know that since they never properly explained Mr. Bluetooth Headset Man last year, they HAD to bring him back the next season and have him atone! But, if you tell me that you ever had the SLIGHTEST inkling that he could've been Jack's brother, I will rip out your heart and shit down your aorta right this second! And THAT is why I love this show; THAT is why this is my favorite hour-long drama of all time.

OK, moving on. We can't discount the fact that I'm a junkie for this show. As such, it's unabashedly difficult for me to wait even one extra day for a downloaded version to show up on my computer. The peace of mind for something so simple as not having to worry my ginormous head about whether my Internet will remain functional or not is reason enough for me to go back at least one more week.

As for the alcohol, yeah I guess having a couple beers while watching 24 enhances things somewhat. And, even though there were no fatalities in last night's episode, the bartender (a semi-hot, semi-pot-bellied, pretty-faced, long-haired, big-bootied white girl with a lisp) set up a round of Kamikaze shots at the episode's conclusion. She ran out of shot glasses (I was one of the fortunate ones to get a full-shot), so she had to resort to filling up these little mini half-shot plastic thimble-like thingies (I took down one of these too; some dude got all pissy and said, "Hey! Wait until everybody gets one!"). But, Jesus H. Christ, $7 for a pint of beer (I couldn't tell you what kind it was, as she DID have the lisp) is just too fucking much.

Since I was there so early, I took a stool at the end of the bar nearest the flat-screen TV on the wall on the left side of the room. Plush, captain's stools, verrry niiiiice. And, for a while there, it was me and like seven or eight other random dudes. And that felt right, you know? Even if it DID mean we'd have to octuple-team the semi-hot lispy bartender (I wonder what that lisp does for a blowjob ... hmm, I should ask). But, sigh, the room ended up filling to capacity; and yes, that did include the occasional group of cackling hens. I guess, really, the only highlight of having all these people there was when, near the end of the episode, and Jack knocks his brother out with one punch. Obviously, not a fatal blow, but everyone kept shouting out, "He's dead! He's dead!" Alas, semi-hot lisp wasn't biting ... hmm.

Now for The Joes. I guess I don't REALLY mind going into Manhattan, because it's just off the L-Train. But, regardless, this is a point against because it's still more work than sitting on my ass at home.

I've never seen an episode of Prison Break, but I've kind of followed the course of this show over its one and a half seasons. The name pretty much gives away the entire premise, so by not watching I'm saving myself the misery of seeing bad actors acting badly. Those two douchey brothers make Vin Diesel look like a multiple Oscar Winner. And, since I ended up getting to the bar insanely early - even before they were finished setting up the upstairs bar area - I had the opportunity to watch the last half hour or so. The show has the FEEL of 24, in that they're constantly building up suspense until you get to the high-tension action scenes, but the writing/storylines look like they're written from Lifetime's Movie Of The Week creators. And, I can tell, just from watching this one half of an episode, that they drag out EVERYTHING. They had loose-ends upon loose-ends when that episode ended! That's more All My Children than it is 24. One white guy kidnaps this family he's close with; this black guy got some broad in trouble with the law for harboring a fugitive; the douchey brothers kidnapped this rich prick who fucked over a bunch of people; and this ex-warden - who's now IN the very prison he used to warden for some reason (that would NEVER be allowed to happen in real life, by the way) - just fucked up this hulking, muscle-bound black thug with a sock full of rocks or something. Granted, it's not Erica Kane giving her daughter's boyfriend a rimjob down in Pine Valley, but it's the same kind of open-ended storywriting that makes for frustrating viewing.

But, here's my main problem with the whole experience, and the reason, ultimately, I'll eventually stop going: with the exception of my dad, Konstantin, and Jake, I don't like watching 24 around people. Now, I understand these people who are there participating in the Jack Bauer Power Hour are real hardcore fans of the show, probably have seen every episode, awesome. But, they're too talkative, they're around alcohol, and they have no concept of shutting the fuck up when the TV show comes back from a commercial break! You remember when you were in school, especially K-12? You remember whenever you had a new teacher or a substitute or an assembly to go to? You remember how long it would take for all the kids to shut the fuck up when the teacher/principal started holding their hands up in the air, shushing everyone silent? Probably not, because like me, you were most likely one of those participating in the din of conversation. But, trust me, it took a while. THAT'S what it was like last night.

First off, they talked through the "Last Week On 24" section in the beginning. Then, as the clock started beeping, everyone would cheer - which served in alerting the idiots who weren't paying attention that the show's starting. But, even though they could CLEARLY see that it was time to shut the fuck up, there was always the last 5 to 10 seconds of last-ditch conversation that just HAD to be spit out as we're getting into the story.

Listen, you can't just ease into 24; it knocks you on your ass from the first moment, so you better be fucking ready to pay attention. If I've got to contend with noise from behind interrupting my concentration, it's taking away from my 24 viewing experience. And, remember, I listed Jake up there in those exceptioned people, but that didn't happen overnight. I had to train him night and day to get to the point where he knew the proper times to interject a witty comment. Training he's now, I'm sure, passing down to Lee Ann as the weeks go by.

So, yeah, I'm thinkin' about going back next week. It may take a few days for me to get over the annoyance that is the 24 crowd. I'm thinking, too, since this just started happening last week, it's just gonna get bigger as more and more 24 fans start hearing about the Jack Bauer Power Hour. Fuck it, man, I'll buy a bottle of Jack Daniels and have my own fucking Jack Bauer Power Hour.