Right Wing Politics and TV's "24"
I'm just catching up on the debate over whether "24" is a right wing show endorsing torture.
Jane Mayer in the New Yorker devotes three pages to the right-wing politics of Joel Surnow, the shows creator and executive producer.
I just started watching the show this season. There's an African-American President who is sensitive to the Constitution even though sometimes conflicted about the right thing to do, his sister who is an ACLU type lawyer and a female high level advisor who advocates against internment camps and argues for constitutional rights to counterbalance the ridiculous positions of the advisor who wants to trample rights (played by an ex- Ally McBeal co-star. There are also two former Six Feet Under characters and one from Commander in Chief now in "24".) There have also been scenes from detention camps revealing that many of the guys locked up had nothing to do with terrorism.
Last week, the show highlighted the absurd policy of making one of the CTU workers go through an extra clearance to log onto her computer because she was of middle eastern heritage. Also, there were plenty of American villains, including Jack Bauer's brother and father, and some guy named McCarthy who was willing to provide someone who could release the triggers on nuclear bombs in exchange for money.
I'm okay with the show so far, and again, I've only seen five episodes. Steve at the Carpetbagger Report says it's just television.
People will take from it the parts with which they identify. I like watching the CTU people work feverishly at their computers under impossible time deadlines and the parts about their inter-office relationships. But then, I'm partial to relationship shows like Grey's Anatomy, Brothers and Sisters, What About Brian and the like.
So, any "24" watchers out there? What do you say?
Update: Tim Grieves at Salon weighs in.
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