24: Underground #1 Review

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Monday, May 5, will be a BIG TV day for me. On that night, one of my very favorite shows will return for a new miniseries. That program is 24, and the 12-episode series is called 24: Live Another Day.

To prepare us for that event, IDW Publishing has begun a comics miniseries filling in the gaps between the end of the eighth season and where the new show will begin, and it’s called 24: Underground.

24: UNDERGROUND #1
Writer: Ed Brisson
Artist: Michael Gaydos
Publisher: IDW Publishing

Cover Price: $3.99

Previously in 24: “Jack Bauer lives again! Before the Emmy Award-winning drama returns to your television with Live Another Day, find out what the heroic agent has been up to in the several years following the events of the final season.”

A LITTLE BACKGROUND

I’ll never forget Keifer Sutherland’s thank you to the fans that aired before the final two hours back a few years ago. Honestly, the fans never get much in the way of appreciation. After all, we’re supposed to watch the show, buy the products, then be glad we did. It was great to see such appreciation from the star himself! It was a great conclusion to eight years of action, adventure, shocks, spills and everything else a fan like me could have asked for!

So, what does this have to do with comics? Well, there were several 24 comics miniseries that graced local comics shops while the series aired, including 24: Midnight Sun (2005), 24: Stories (2005), 24: Cold Warriors (2008) and 24: Nightfall (2006) The latter was written by J. C. Vaughn with art by Renato Guedes and cover by Davide Furno.

A COMIC THAT MATCHES THE SHOW

24 is fast-paced, full of character moments as well as multiple storylines happening at the same time. We get to that format at the end of the comic, but the show was sure to focus on the important events, so I’m not bothered by that.

One of the tenets of the series was, when Jack is smiling and happy, it won’t last long. And sure enough, this book starts out with Mr. Bauer in a good place in hiding, but it doesn’t take long for trouble to find him again.

Brisson’s script matches the television show in pacing and characterization, which is terrific considering how great the program is!

THE ILLUSTRATIONS ALSO FIT THAT “24” FEEL

One of the things that can go wrong in a comic based on a television program is that the likenesses might not resemble the actors at all. Some of the previous comics have done a better job than others, but they all did a good job of presenting the drama and the action sequences.

The first issue has a painted feel that has something of a dark tone to it. Jack has been living in the shadows, after all, so it’s a perfect choice. And Jack looks like Jack, which is very important to this comic.

Sometimes, though, it’s a little tough to understand what’s going on, but that didn’t slow me down in my reading much.

BOTTOM LINE: We Always Want More 24, and This Book Delivers!

If you haven’t watched the series before, you might want to get the DVDs first. This book will make more sense after you watch them, but it’s not required! It’s just so worth your time!

I highly recommend this book if you want to get back into 24 mode before May 5. I wasn’t able to find out just how many issues will be in this miniseries, but I’m definitely along for the ride!

Oh, and please let me tell you one 24 story.

Whenever I came across someone who hadn’t watched the show, I would loan them my DVDs. I would always warn people, pace yourself! You’re going to want to keep watching, but don’t do it because you have to go to work tomorrow morning. They’d assure me they understood, then took the discs home with them.

The next day, I’d see the person with big bags under their eyes, shuffling around the office. I’d tell them, “I told you not to do that!” “Yeah, you did, but I just couldn’t stop watching it!”

That’s what many of us call 24 Syndrome! I’ve succumbed a time or two myself!

Be sure to pick up this title and watch 24: Live Another Day on Monday, May 5!