Sunday, baby!!

Kiefer smiling over new ’24’ season
PASADENA, Calif. ó Kiefer Sutherland was passing a hot tub when he first started to realize Jack Bauer was becoming a cultural icon.
This isnít a story about steamy, naked girls recognizing Sutherland as Jack Bauer from 24, and calling him over for some wet-and-wild fun. Well, that might have happened, too ó if it did, Sutherland left that part out ó but itís more of a family-friendly tale.
ìA bunch of people from the crew of 24, we all went skiing in Mammoth,î said Sutherland, recalling an incident from a few years ago. ìWe were coming around the back of the main lodge, and there was a series of hot tubs.
ìThis one kid came running from a snow bank and jumped off it, into the hot tub. In the middle of the air he yelled, ëIím going to Jack Bauer youí, and splashed.
ìWe started laughing at that.î
Well, Fox and Global are going to ìJack Bauer youî again this Sunday and Monday, with the debut of the eighth season of 24. As has become tradition, 24 kicks off its new campaign with a four-hour extravaganza, two hours on Sunday and two hours on Monday.
Early in the first episode of the new season, you will see something very unusual, and it has nothing to do with the fact that 24 is set in New York this time around.
We see Jack Bauer smile broadly.
ìIt felt weird to do it,î admitted Sutherland, who definitely smiles more often than his character. ìThe only time Jack Bauer smiled ó just because it happened so rarely, we noted it ó was in Season 3.
ìHe had finally captured Nina (played by Sarah Clarke) and was flying back with her on the cargo plane and he had her in handcuffs. He looked at her and smiled. And that was about four episodes before he got to shoot her. So this was a different kind of smile.
ìBut I must say, when we first shot (this seasonís smile), it felt awkward for me and I think everybody else involved.î
Whether Jack Bauer will be ìnot smilingî beyond this season remains to be seen.
Fox has been promoting the eighth season of 24 with the slogan that Jack Bauer has to ìsurvive one more day.î But Sutherland and the showís producers said such intricacies are the domain of Foxís marketing department and not too much should be read into it one way or the other.
ìIíve always said that as long as people wanted us to make it, and people were really interested in watching it, I would be interested,î Sutherland said. ìThere are a lot of components involved. The task of writing it is far greater than the task of acting in it.î
The task of acting it looks pretty tough sometimes, too.
ìOur cinematographer and I were sitting at an event for our 150th episode, and they put together a montage from the very beginning through the 150th episode, some behind-the-scenes stuff, and we were laughing and thinking, ëOh, how cool all of this is,í î recalled Sutherland, 43.
ìAnd then about halfway through the little documentary, they showed some pictures of us from Season 1. We realized that we had aged and we stopped laughing.î
There have to be some advantages, though, to playing Jack Bauer for so long and having people recognize you as such.
ìIíve always been shocked that people who Iím flying with actually say, ëOh, I feel safer on the plane,í î Sutherland said.
ìIím thinking, ëYou must not watch the show because everybody around me gets killed.í î