Show #504: Just Please Keep The Macarons Away From Me.

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This show also known as: Respect The Chop, Jack.

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Straight into the 24 this week, we don’t have time to waste on stuff like that garbage Robocop remake, that crappy World War Z movie, stupid Death Note, and how much Macarons suck!

Topics for Consideration:
Fatal Resuscitation
Special Agent ‘elen Mc’Arthy
Cat Decoys
Viking Helicopter Burial (#yolo #2014)
A Stephen Fry Edict
Gorilla Death Note
Bumbling Assassin

Music Selection: Am [Jack Bauer] Still Ill?

This show is about:

This one goes out to you, Big C.

  • Quinn K

    Macarons a okay junk food anywhere else in the world, don’t know why people like to hype up Macarons because most places that make them over here certainly overcharge you for them.

  • Lacan

    Death Note is dumb but so is 24!

    And other fun things mentioned on this podcast are dumb too!

  • Guys, I don’t know how you do it, but even without having EVER watched 24, I still enjoy your podcasts about it. So great. By the way, if you want to see a “good” Robocop remake, check out Our Robocop Remake – be warned, it is very NSFW, but it is very worth your time in revisiting what Robocop is all about.

  • Jason Robard

    I know that no one should really take 24 seriously – although I suspect that far more people do than society should be comfortable with – but it’s gone from simply being annoyingly inaccurate, to totally unwatchable, if you have any respect for how the world actually works. If anyone actually believes that even the majority of drone strikes have been targeted at genuine terrorists, let alone succeeded in eliminating them, they’ve been misinformed. There’s far too many stories of random cars being struck where no terrorists were even suspected of living, of women out in the field being blown to pieces for apparently no reason, and dozens of other examples.

    You could almost believe that the drone operators, or whoever supervises them, is just having fun killing people thousands of miles away on a computer screen. In fact, when they’ve killed someone with a drone strike, they call it a “bugsplat.” So when 24 wants to insinuate that people have no right to be wary about drones, even those directly affected by them like Catelyn al-Harazi, because we only meant to get the “bad guys,” they’re just being flat out mendacious, although I doubt they’re aware of that.

    Anyway, like I said, you obviously can’t take 24 too seriously, and I enjoyed watching it when they only took themselves 80-90% seriously, but now that they’re being totally sincere with their bullshit, it’s just unbearable, to me anyway. Although of course you guys make it much better than it has any right to be.

  • James

    What are Macarons? Do you mean, Macaroons?

  • Quinn: if you’re talking NYC, yeah! They’re one of the most expensive sweets I’ve seen.

    Lacan: that is accurate!

    Regis: thanks!

    James: NOPE! :D

    Jason: Yeah, I feel like “drones” might be a fridge too far, even in 24 terms. When they’re talking about suitcase nukes it’s like… okay, but that’s really never happened. It’s still pretty much in the realm of fantasy. Even poison gas attacks feel like a pretty fictional thing. Though, of course, Japan would feel differently, but the connection between that sort of terror and Season 3’s HYPER SUPER SICKNESS that killed the only Hispanic agent CTU ever hired is far less direct.

    Whereas this “rah rah, drones! oh wait, drones are bad?” seems like a more subliminal jingoism than 24 usually trucks in. I feel like maybe it’s by accident, like maybe the writers thought “well everyone thinks drones are bad, and they’re really scared of them,” without pausing to think that the reason people are scared of drones is not because they COULD be turned on innocent people, but that they frequently already ARE.

    A lot has been said about the dehumanizing effect of killing someone through a camera. Gamers especially seemed to tune into it with Call of Duty 4, which we talked about in this episode, and there was a lot of hullabaloo about how close Modern Warfare’s attack plane scene was to actual attack plane footage. But it seemed, like always with warfare games, the response wasn’t “wow, look how gross this is!” it was “wow, look how accurate this is to real life!” Having the verisimilitude without the reflection or context is what most distresses me about war games. 24 has been largely immune to that because it’s so absurd–like, Russian terrorists are probably not going to attack US anytime soon, Europe, however…–but this drone stuff has really been cutting close to home. I recognize the need to abstract and devalue murder to keep soldiers sane, but, as someone who detests all forms of killing, completely removing any moral valuation from killing (your point about “bugsplats”) is deeply distressing for me.

  • The Joel

    I agree that drones are bad but I’m having a hard time believing their inclusion in this season of 24 makes it more exciting to people’s sensibilities than previous seasons. The villainous drug cartel as a cultural icon was the corner stone in propaganda that fueled a drug war that has killed more people than all the drone strikes everywhere combined. Arab sleeper cells operating within the US, however conflicted and counter acted by Arab sports equipment store owners, is part of the broader message that all brown skinned people are to be suspected of something at all times.

    The reality is that I like talking to Dave about 24 because it is transgressive. I don’t think we really cheer Jack on so much as engage in the oldest theme of comedy: taboos. Jack’s consistent violation of The Bill of Rights in an effort to save America is not ok. Jack threatening a baby is not ok. Jack murdering foreign diplomats is not ok. Jack Bauer never does anything that is ok. Making of fun of how something isn’t ok is a lot of fun. If 24 didn’t cleave so closely to reality this effect would probably be attenuated. Just think about Louie C.K.’s whole bit about the N-word.

    You can easily watch 24 and not engage in any criticism of it but I hope that’s not what we’re doing. To be clear: I like mocking 24. I like spinning stories about Tony, and Miranda, and saying coming up with stuff like “President Audry’s Dad.” If I didn’t have a means to do that I wouldn’t watch the show.

    • Jason Robard

      Thanks for the replies, guys, I appreciate you taking the time! You don’t need to explain anything, it’s obvious you don’t take the show seriously, at least not in the same way as someone who considers Glenn Beck the font of all wisdom. I’m not even particularly bothered by “conservative” ideology, though I’d probably be considered pretty liberal on most issues. Frankly, it’d actually be nice to turn off the carping critic in my brain and just enjoy shows like 24, which for some reason I had no problem doing for the first season. Anyway, I think at the point you actually portray the POTUS turning himself over to a terrorist, when in reality, he’d probably be, in whatever way, removed from power before they’d even allow him to make such a decision, I think it’s safe to say you’ve jumped all the sharks. But I don’t know, it seems like 24 is just one example of a broader turn in media towards even greater support for America doing whatever it feels like, and I don’t know if that’s necessarily a good thing, for us or anyone else. I’m still looking forward to whatever 24 does next.

      A last note: their portrayal of fake-Julian Assange is possibly the most ridiculous thing in the show. The real Assange has no influence over any government official, let alone the CIA, other than being at most a mildly annoying thorn in their sides. It’s not like they’ll do anything different because of Wikileaks’ revelations. But 24 wants us to believe that this guy has enough clout to bend America’s most powerful spy agency to his will, and obviously, they’re insinuating the same about real Assange. Just shows you how wrong their picture of the world is – the whistleblowers are the real problem, not the corruption they’re exposing.

  • James

    Actually, England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are all part of Britain and thus, their people are British.