All the people who've died on all the episodes of all the seasons of this show, and we're supposed to care more about DrisKid than almost any of them? Not likely. But it does mean that Soul Patch is in charge of CTU when Driscoll goes home. Which makes for some predictable head-butting between himself and Curtis. Meanwhile, it turns out that ImhoTerror has been an employee of MacGuffin Factories all this time. Kiefer and Grayadder team up (I know!) and head to MF to find out what they can about ImhoTerror's computer activity there. But Mr. MacGuffin doesn't want them to learn anything, so his guys set off an EMP to wipe every electronic file in the place. And then they nab Grayadder. Soul Patch's gig as interim CTU boss doesn't last long, because Division happens to have a more permanent replacement handy to step in at the very last minute of the episode. Of course it's Bitchelle; who else would it be?
This week: L.A. goes dark really fast. Twice.
Previously on 24: Kiefer tortured the name Harris Barnes out of Grayadder (who, interestingly, gets the first freeze-frame of this week's previouslies), and we get to see almost the whole scene all over again. Thanks a lump for that, especially since the torture aspect isn't going to get mentioned again this week. Special Agent Breck instantly connected the name Harris Barnes to ImhoTerror, and even found out where he was leasing office space under that alias. Efficient! At the office building, Kiefer and Curtis chased ImhoTerror away from the MacGuffin in an office full of workers so diligent that even after five o'clock, the only way to clear them out was by firing off a few rounds of live ammunition. Kiefer failed to catch ImhoTerror due to ImhoTerror's brilliant disguise as a CTU agent. And then ImhoTerror apparently left the building, in a shot that wasn't actually in the episode. Lispy Skip and Curtis shut down the MacGuffin. Driscoll (who also gets a freeze frame with her name) learned that her daughter had offed herself, and a grateful nation breathed its thanks, although Driscoll herself pretended to be devastated. And apparently the TerrorFamily never existed. The following takes place between 6:00 PM and 7:00 PM.
In the lobby of the Rocklyn Building, all sorts of CTU agents are milling about rather than closing the net on ImhoTerror. Lispy Skip calls Curtis with some "new intel": it turns out that ImhoTerror is an employee of MacGuffin Factories under his alias, Harris Barnes. Ooh, that's going to be embarrassing for them. Of course, I'm sure the company did everything it could to make sure ImhoTerror was really who he said he was when they hired him. After all, how long did it take Special Agent Breck to blow his cover last episode, with time left over to look up his secret business address? Almost a minute? Lispy Skip offers to send a team over to the MF headquarters, but Curtis declines; he and Kiefer are regulars, so one of them will go. Or maybe he said "closer" instead of "regulars."
Curtis steps over to pass this along to Kiefer, who decides to go to MF HQ himself. He wants Curtis to take DoDder and Grayadder back to CTU. So DoDder isn't needed at the local DoD office any more, then? If she ever was? Upon hearing that Kiefer's going to want to dig around in MF's computer systems, Grayadder offers to go with him. Everybody jigga-whats at Grayadder as he explains that his company sold MF its IT systems, back when Grayadder was an analyst. Apparently he designed the database himself. So he's a systems guy who worked his way up to tycoon? He's like Bill Gates, if Bill Gates knew how to program. Kiefer says he'll just get the MF guys to help him, but Grayadder insists that he can get the data faster, since he left back doors that MF won't even know about. Kiefer stares hard at the guy he tortured as a terror suspect less than an hour ago, who's now (a) admitting a connection to ImhoTerror's employer, and (b) acting all suspiciously helpful-like. But Kiefer has no choice but to bring his romantic rival along, because the plot demands it. The unlikely threesome -- Kiefer, Grayadder, and Contrivance -- head out.
Driscoll stands in a doorway at the CTU clinic, watching an orderly get ready to zip DrisKid into a body bag. The rest of the clinic staff has wisely made itself scarce. Or maybe Driscoll fired them all. Driscoll tells the orderly to stop, and takes about ten minutes to bid her dead daughter goodbye. Some nice acting here, because she looks devastated, when you know she's really thinking, My life is going to be so much easier now. In fact, whatever I tell you she's thinking for the rest of the recap, keep in mind that she's keeping up a flawlessly sad façade. It's really quite impressive. And please, don't interpret my total lack of sympathy for DrisKid as an indicator of any larger disrespect to the millions of real people who struggle with mental illness, or their families. Because I'm sure that they, unlike DrisKid, are not all assholes.