The Hours Count Down Until the Finale

Tonight ends an era for me on television. The final episode of “24” will play out in a 2-hour series finale that I’m sure will eventually find a new time on the big screen.

My mother and I began watching it in the fall of 2001 because we like Kiefer Sutherland, and yes, maybe in those months following 9-11, we needed to see an American hero putting some whoop on the bad guys.

As television became less and less appealing to me with all of the “reality” shows that aren’t real, Mom and I stuck with “24.”

When she lived down the road from us, we usually watched it separately in our own homes, calling each other during commercials, replaying every last tick-tocked moment and anticipating what would happen next.

We watched it together first in 2004 when Mom was in the hospital after her heart attack.

The show even became a way for our German daughter to stay connected. They were always a season behind what we were seeing, but it gave us something to talk about, and the DVD of the season gave us a gift to send at Christmas.

When Mom moved to the senior apartment building, I began staying with her on Monday nights after I took her dinner over and we would watch the show together. Although surrounded by more people, she seemed even lonelier there and she never wanted me to leave. Watching “24” was still something she enjoyed and one of the remaining things we could do together.

In her final weeks while in the hospital, we watched the final episodes she would see again in her room. When she didn’t respond to the show that last week, it was one of the first times I acknowledged that she probably wouldn’t make it.

I remember after the first season that Kiefer Sutherland was hesitant doing a second. He was quoted as saying something to the effect that sequels are never as good as the original and he was afraid of not being able to live up to the greatness of that first season.

It did, however, by constantly introducing excellent writing, plot lines (it had a black president before we did in reality) and acting by some fine guest stars.

Although I’ve stuck with it, “24” for me hasn’t been the same since my mother died.

Last season, I finally realized that it wasn’t me, the show had gone past its prime, losing it’s punch, which is what Kiefer Sutherland was afraid of after the first season.

I continued watching it this season, more out of nostalgia than anything else. It was the final past time in my life that I enjoyed with my mom and tonight it will also fade to black.

Have you ever stuck with something more out of nostalgia?

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8 Responses

  1. Jack Bauer is brilliant, I really think they should hurry up with the movie if they’re going to get on with it!

  2. Reader says:

    My grandmother’s favorite show was Gunsmoke and I still think of her whenever I see it.

    A one-legged mynah bird and his/her partner (they mate for life) has been hanging around our house for a couple of years and of course I named it Chester!

  3. Frugal Kiwi says:

    I watched the season (6?) where Jack comes back from China and found I wasn’t engaged with the show anymore. Too same, same. But I loved the first few seasons.

  4. Oh, I loved the Andy Griffith show, too, Kathleen! The show that reminds me most of my dad is Gun Smoke, although I was way too young to watch it with him.
    Next, is football, probably why I hate it so badly today!
    Thanks for sharing your memories!

  5. Kathleen Winn says:

    I enjoyed reading about you and your mom sharing the love of a TV show together. I have to get in the way-back machine to remember a show that I used to enjoy with my dad- The Andy Griffith Show. My dad loved it and so did I, though I was just a small kid when it was on TV. In fact,Andy Griffith, in that role, always reminded me of my dad. He was from a small town, loved to fish and had solid common sense and wisdom (also a love of music and singing.) Every time I hear the familiar whistling theme song from that show, I think of my dad. And, any time I come across an old re-run while channel surfing, I have to watch. It’s funny how certain things like a television show, can trigger feelings of nostalgia and make you miss someone.