Not even five minutes into Monday's episode of 24, and we've got the identity of mole no. 2 — which, in another thoroughly unsurprising twist, is Agent Slimeball's girlfriend, Erika (Ever Carradine). While the extent of her role isn't made completely clear, when Slimeball confides that he's got Larry's phone tapped, it's obvious she's also playing for Dubaku's team.
Interestingly, it appears that Dubaku's love for Marika is the real deal — or, at least, he does a pretty good imitation of it when he seemingly convinces the confused young woman to leave the country with him. So either the butcher of Sengala actually has a heart or he has a good reason for wanting to take her along.
But it doesn't look like things will work out for those two lovebirds either way. Following Jack's high-speed chase of Dubaku's SUV down the busy streets of D.C., the vehicle crashes and flips over in spectacular fashion; the colonel survives, but despite Renee's best efforts, Marika isn't so lucky. I think we all knew her days (or hours) were numbered, but she was taken out of the equation surprisingly fast.
Of course, things aren't exactly peachy for Dubaku either — first Jack threatens to hunt down and torture his son, then he forces an EMT to perform some street surgery to remove a metal plate from the colonel's stomach. This being 24, though, it's not a simple metal plate, but some type of electronic storage device that contains the names of nearly 100 government conspirators.
Back at the FBI Building, Hillinger and girlfriend are working hard to crash the bureau's servers. Which they successfully do, and then — holy crap! — Slimeball shoots Erika in the stomach mid-celebratory make-out.
Naturally, when Larry and Chloe burst into the server room, Hillinger pulls the "she's-the-bad-guy-and-I-shot-her-in-self-defense" routine, naming Erika the sole mole, and himself the reluctant hero. He may be slimy, but he's good.
Not good enough to outsmart our Chloe though! Despite the bureau's systems having been reformatted, she pulls out some of that patented computer magic and manages to decrypt Dubaku's stomach list — and get Slimeball arrested before he can scurry out of the FBI Building.
Renee is also having a very bad day. After she delivers the news of Marika's death to her sister, Rosa, the wheelchair-bound woman lets Renee have it: "You killed my sister, and you didn't care how you did it, or who got hurt."
Jack tries to reassure the shaken Renee they did the right thing, but she isn't buying the greater-good justifications anymore — which leads to that intriguing scene from last week's previews in which Renee repeatedly slaps Jack, asking, "Do you feel that? Do you feel that?"
Moving from this highly charged confrontation, the next scene, of Jack and Tony sitting on the steps facing the Washington Monument, stands in sharp contrast: In hushed tones, looking out into a dusky sky, Tony tells Jack that the threat isn't over — General Juma, with the help of Sen. Mayer's chief of staff, is planning to strike an unknown U.S. target. And so Act II begins.
- You've gotta love Agent Slimeball's sweet talk as he tries to convince Erika to crash those servers. "Nobody's better at dealing with those servers than you are," he says, caressing her face. "Isn't that true?" How could anyone not melt at those words?
- Bill's heartfelt plea that President Taylor step in on behalf of Jack and put an end to the Senate hearings was pretty touching. "Jack Bauer helped save this country. He doesn't deserve to spend the rest of his life in prison." Amen to that.
Not even five minutes into Monday's episode of 24, and we've got the identity of mole no. 2 — which, in another thoroughly unsurprising twist, is...