’24’ Backlot Talk

Feb 6, 2007  •  Post A Comment

Chuck Ross: Hello again everybody, it’s Chuck Ross here at TelevisionWeek, and we’re here with Howard Gordon, executive producer and showrunner at “24.” Good morning Howard.
Howard Gordon: Good morning Chuck.
Mr. Ross: Well, quite an episode last night. I want to start at the ending I guess, which is … one of the most tense and edge-of-the-seat scenes I’ve ever seen on “24,” which is the demise of Graem at the hands of his father of all people.
Mr. Gordon: Intense and hopefully not too confusing. But yes, a very twisted ending and I was pretty happy with the way it came out.
Mr. Ross: You’re setting this man up as the monster of all monsters, so we’re going to see how this develops. You mention confusing, one of the things a couple folks have already mentioned to me this morning is if they were in this together, why the subterfuge when Graem was supposedly going to be killing both his dad and Jack? Why not just have both of them say, take Jack out by themselves?
Mr. Gordon: It’s explained very quickly and you have to really be paying attention. When Graem, as he said, held his mud, he says, “Dad, I did it. No one knows you’re involved, and I’ll continue to hold my mud.” And so we learned then that basically their plan was to sell to Jack the idea that the father was innocent, that it was all Graem. And Graem was going to take the fall and then the father, who still has his power and his position, would at some later point get him out jail.
Mr. Ross: Well thank you, because a couple people did say they were confused about that.
Mr. Gordon: I’ve explained it to a number of people between last night and this morning.
Mr. Ross: Well, thank you very much for doing that. Also was the great twist there with Morris. And that brings some questions about Milo and his loyalties. You have that whole mojo going on now with the show, which is going to be a lot of fun going forward.
Mr. Gordon: Yeah, I think they’re doing a great job. I think Carlo Rota is doing really really fun work as Morris.
Mr. Ross: He has, and what I like about it is it brings intensity and a little different mix to the show. I mean the way he plays that character is not, for example, as Edgar was played, or Chloe, or Milo or any of the people so far. So I really liked that touch.
Mr. Gordon: The show has really sort of staked out a lot of idiosyncratic ground and the fresh territory, it feels fresh, is pretty great and he’s doing a great job.
Mr. Ross: You also had the conflict last night. With Karen Hayes gone, folks were wondering what was going to happen with President Palmer. Was he going to bend to the wishes of the Peter MacNicol character? And he showed some backbone last night.
Mr. Gordon: He did. He did. Although as my wife pointed out, at the same time he’s susceptible to the last person he’s spoken to.
Mr. Ross: [Laughs] Yes, one seems to notice that about him.
Mr. Gordon: It has an effect as well, but isn’t that the way decisions and complicated issues are resolved?
Mr. Ross: You wonder if that might be reflective in real life as well. One of the things I forgot to ask you last week: was that the appearance of the same phone number that was in last season when you guys, not mistakenly, didn’t give a “555” number on the air? You actually gave a cell phone number last week.
Mr. Gordon: The fan phone. Yeah, I think that was it.
Mr. Ross: OK, that was the fan phone again. Because I tried to reach it, and I think for half of it, the message is in Spanish and I wasn’t quite sure what it was saying.
Mr. Gordon: It was saying, “You’ve reached the ’24’ fan phone.” [Laughs] Actually, I don’t know what it said.
Mr. Ross: The person who actually wanted to ask you a question, as you know, we’re having the fans ask questions themselves, wasn’t able to make it this morning. His name is Ryan Martin, so I’m going to stand in for him, from Buies Creek, North Carolina. And I thought Ryan had a great question, Howard. He said, “Why, in the first episode this season, the first word that Jack uttered was Audrey and not Kim?” I thought that was an interesting question.
Mr. Gordon: That’s a great, great question. And to be honest with you, I went back and forth on both. In a sense, Audrey was the lingering … you know in some ways Jack has not written off Kim. Their relationship is certainly unresolved. I just made a judgment call. It was really as simple as it felt like the first question for him to ask.
Mr. Ross: And another thing people have been mentioning this morning is again speculation on Graem’s son: Whether Josh really is his son or there actually is some speculation that we have maybe a situation not dissimilar to the Chinatown thing, where maybe actually it’s the father’s kid. But don’t tell us, we’ll find out.
Mr. Gordon: [Laughs] I’ll tell you this: On that subject, nothing has been resolved. I don’t even know the answer to that, although there are a whole lot of possibilities. Everyone’s barking up the right tree.
Mr. Ross: I love it. Well look, again, it was quite an hour and ended in the most unexpected of ways. We’re certainly looking forward to next week and I appreciate it. We’ll talk to you then.
Mr. Gordon: Thanks Chuck.

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