24: Are You Pro-Chloe Or No-Chloe?

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default 24: Are You Pro-Chloe Or No-Chloe?

24: Are You Pro-Chloe Or No-Chloe? by Matthew Jaffe TV.com Staff Writer 03/09/10 01:00 PM

Monday was a big night for the ladies of 24, as Chloe O’Brian (Mary-Lynn Rajskub) usurped the reign of Dana Walsh and returned to her rightful throne as queen of computer operations at CTU. But is this a good thing or a bad thing?

For many 24 fans, the Chloe restoration represents a return to order in the 24 domain, especially after the many missteps Dana has made this season. For others, anything having to do with Chloe sparks a different reaction: Dear God, not her again.

How did Chloe become such a polarizing character? She has fan clubs, of course, but also a Facebook group (albeit a small one) called “Chloe O’Brian needs to DIE this season of 24.” The group’s rationale is “Shes annoying and cant act… been on the show too long.” While the group’s mastery of prepositions and apostrophes may be lacking, their message certainly comes across loud and clear.

My take? I’ve always liked Chloe—but over the past couple seasons, her role seems underwritten. The expected sparks with Janeane Garofalo never did fly with quite the vigor we had hoped for back in D.C. during Season 7. And this year, her role—with the exception of the moment when she disabled Marcos’ suicide bomb detonator—has veered heavily into "exposition of computer ops." She’s a one-woman geek squad. We know hubby Morris is sick and that Chloe has a kid at home, but there’s little else that's new or intriguing happening with her character.

She really needs to get out of the office—take a long lunch, a Pilates class, anything that will take her away from CTU. One of my favorite Chloe moments came in Season 4, when she went into the field on an operation to retrieve information about the trigger mechanism for a warhead. And she proved to be a walking, talking lethal weapon: After coming under attack, she so enthusiastically blasted away with an automatic weapon that Jack finally ordered, “Stand down, Chloe!” Those were words that I never expected to hear on 24. And, given the excuse to wield one, she’s not bad with a taser either.

What’s your take? Here are a few of the talking points in the pro-Chlo/no-Chlo schism:

Pro-Chlo: She has no social skills
We've all worked with somebody like Chloe: good at the job, but totally lacking in tact. Chloe says what’s on her mind, oblivious to office politics and the feelings of co-workers, and adds a dimension of bluntness and honesty to the workplace.

No-Chlo: She has no social skills
We've all worked with somebody like Chloe. And a lot of people never want to do so again.

Pro-Chlo: She’s quirky and funny
She pouts. She sighs. She rolls her eyes. In the midst of all the gravitas that CTU operations command, she brings things down to a more human level. Work is filled with all sorts of frustrations and indignities, and Chloe reacts the same way her fans might if faced with a similar situation.

No-Chlo: She’s obnoxious and predictable
She pouts. She sighs. She rolls her eyes... and that’s all she ever does. It might be more pleasant to have a colicky baby as a co-worker.

Pro-Chlo: She’s great at what she does
How many times has Chloe saved the day? How many times would the world have been destroyed without her?

No-Chlo: Okay, she’s good but…
Is there any way to get Edgar back from the dead?

Pro-Chlo: She always has Jack’s back
Here is a key point: Jack trusts Chloe more than anyone. Way back when, Jack had his run-ins with her, but Chloe has helped save him countless times... and he knows it. Together, Jack and Chloe have watched as explosions, gunfire, and bio-weapons have downsized the CTU office with an efficiency that the Up In The Air team would marvel at. Jack and Chloe are the last ones standing, so she is the only other tangible link to 24’s early days. Some would say glory days.

No-Chlo: Enough is enough
Yeah, right, she has been there for Jack... but he would have figured out something in any case. Because he’s Jack Bauer. And no matter what, her character is just plain played out. Plus, she pouts, she sighs, she rolls her eyes…


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