Murphy’s Law – Jack Bauer’s America

Joel Murphy

Joel Murphy

Another Fourth of July is upon us. I’m sure many of you are staring at the clock at work right now, just trying to kill enough time playing Candy Crush to get home, kick your shoes off and prepare for some epic barbecuing/blowing shit up tomorrow.

And while I’m excited for all of you and excited to have spent another year in America, I have to be honest – it’s a little tough to muster up much patriotism this time around. Look, I enjoy eating grilled meat and watching things explode as much as the next guy, but it just feels off this year. Like a bitter, sad couple having their 22 wedding anniversary at Applebees, I don’t want to leave, but I’m basically just going through the motions during this year’s celebration.

In addition to all of the normal crap about America that generally bums me out, finding out the NSA has been spying on us, the IRS targets political dissidents and journalists are getting harassed tips the scales a bit too heavily toward Sadtown. I wish I could just eat an apple pie or pet a bald eagle and be happy once again, but when I’m faced with the prospect that President Hope and Change is either asleep at the wheel or much more evil than I gave him credit for, it’s a tough pill to swallow.

So what’s a jaded and unenthusiastic patriot to do? Frankly, there is only one solution. I’m counting the days until 24 returns to Fox. Jack Bauer will make it all better.

In case you missed the news back in May, Bauer will be returning to Fox for a 12 episode miniseries entitled 24: Live Another Day. And frankly, we need Bauer now more than ever.

Kiefer Sutherland’s CTU superagent lived in a black and white world. Sure, he tortured suspects and gunned down attackers with no remorse, but it was always for the greater good. Maybe he was a bit high strung and trigger happy, but you would be too if you were locked away in a Chinese prison and forced to grow a ridiculous beard. Add in a daughter who has a knack for getting kidnapped and attacked by random cougars and who among us wouldn’t be a bit edgy?

Even though his superiors inexplicably doubted him time and time again, I always trusted Bauer (and I’m pretty damn liberal in my heart). He didn’t always follow the rules, but we understood why he had to bend and break them to keep us safe. If Jack Bauer told me he needed to read my emails to keep the terrorists at bay, I’d write my password down on a slip of paper with smiley faces and a thank you note. It would save him from having to yell at Chloe to hack it for him. (“Damn it, Chloe – try his favorite food and his birthday. We need to get into that Hotmail account.”)

And, more importantly, with Bauer on the case, Edward Snowden wouldn’t be backpacking across the globe, making our government look incompetent in addition to looking evil. It’s one thing to think Big Brother is watching you so that it can rule with an iron fist, but if Big Brother can’t even track down one doofy guy that everyone in the country could instantly recognize thanks to the endless cable news coverage, then why are they riffling through my Grumpy Cat email forwards again?

Bauer would have Snowden bagged and tagged before lunch. It would only be one hour-long detour in a much larger adventure. Snowden would be locked away and he’d be off battling some Russian spy across town while Kim locked herself in a bathroom and needed an extraction team to get her out.

So please, come back to us, Jack Bauer. Your return to Fox can’t come soon enough. We need your scary, unorthodox brand of justice to remind us just how awesome America can be when one unhinged superagent is out there keeping us safe.

The apple pie never tasted sweeter than when Jack Bauer was out there on the case.

God bless America.

Joel Murphy is the creator of HoboTrashcan, which is probably why he has his own column. He loves pugs, hates Jimmy Fallon and has an irrational fear of robots. Follow Joel on Twitter @FreeMisterClark or email him at

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