It's time for 24's Jack Bauer to die

Some television shows are amazing and some are ordinary. I can deal with that.

However when a television show starts as amazing and becomes ordinary? That's too much for me.

I've touched on one of the reasons for this - the way that British television tends to call a halt while shows are still at their prime (e.g. The Office) while US shows continue way beyond it (e.g. err... The Office).

But has any show, ever, had a greater fall from grace as 24?

I remember the first season vividly. I had heard about it but hadn't watched any episodes when I happened on the DVD box-set in a local shop.

Before I had any children it was easy to binge-watch television shows, and boy did we binge-watch that first season.

It took us less than a week and we immediately gave it to our best friends to watch.

We didn't see them for three days - we thought they were sick. Nope, just addicted to 24.

The thing that got us most was, SPOILERS, the way they were willing to kill off a major character without implausible ways of them coming back from the dead.

Since then, however, 24 went downhill. And implausible became the standard operating procedure.

There was Jack's heart condition, the nuclear bomb going off, Jack's heroin addiction (which he kicked by sheer willpower in about 5 minutes), the President of the USA engaging in a massive conspiracy, Jack's fake death, Jack's exposure to a lethal pathogen. You get the picture.

24 went from a story of a man conflicted about his sense of honour and whether to prioritise his family over his duty to the country to torture porn.

It's a neo-conservative, Fox News viewer's ultimate fantasy.

The only positive thing I have left to say is that they had a black president and a female president. I've got to give them some kudos for not going with old, white dude every time they bumped one off.

Which brings us to the new season of 24, helpfully entitled 24: Live Another Day.

After a break of four years Jack is back and this time... oh, wait like every other time, he's hell-bent on killing as many people as it takes to get his own way.

But this time it's different. Because this time it's in London! Which is filled with a huge number of American accents.

And it didn't take me long to get to my first eye-roll moment - Jack breaks into a secure CIA facility to rescue Chloe, who has become a l33t h4ck3r, leaking secrets ala Wikileaks.

But that wasn't the worst. Oh, no. Not by a long shot.

His dig at Chloe about how she can pretend that no-one comes to any harm because she is leaking secrets was a 'hit my head off a brick wall until it bleeds' moment.

A man who has tortured, killed and seriously injured so many people in the course of not doing what he's supposed to be doing, but doing it the Jack Bauer way is lecturing someone on morality?

If you feel the need to define a shark-jumping moment, that was it.

Annoyingly the new season has a massive 9.2 rating on IMDB, a system I generally trust.

But I think people are rating based on rose-tinted spectacles - because I honestly don't understand the attraction of seeing Kiefer Sutherland once again maim his way through a day.

Me? I'm left with the forlorn hope that Jack FINALLY dies and stays dead at the end of this season so there can be no further Bauer winces.

And if you must do another season, how about one set around Yvonne Strahovski and her character, agent Kate Morgan?

It might finally rid what was once a unique and excellent show of the macho 'only one-man can save the world' bullshit which has plagued it over the years.

The clock is ticking...