By Simon Vozick-Levinson
Updated August 23, 2007 at 05:49 PM EDT
Credit: The Truth About Cats and Dogs: Everett Collection

Many of the online reactions to this week’s news that Janeane Garofalo is joining the cast of 24 have shared a distinctly stunned tone. “The über-liberal actress has signed on for the seventh season of Fox’sconservative-leaning, clock-ticking drama,” marveled E! Online. “We don’t think we’ve ever been so scared in all our lives,” shrieked one blogger. “24…might be going liberal.” OMG! A person who has expressed progressive political opinions is participating in a show that’s often associated with more conservativeviewpoints! Even Garofalo herself got into the act, telling a Canadian paper, “I feel like I’m being punked…Ifeel like the creators are going to make me say things that cause mysphincter to tighten.”

Uh, guys? She’s an actress! Do these people also think that Garofalo is actually a shy veterinarian/radio personality in real life? (Well, I guess they could be forgiven for the radio part.) Were they not aware that no less a conservative hero than Jack Bauer is played by a dude who’s vocally supported Canada’s leftish New Democratic Party, speaking up for decidedly non-24-approved things like public healthcare? (Jack’s idea of fair medical treatment: two bare fists and a brisk waterboarding, dammit.) Who cares whether or not the actors on an intentionally exaggerated TV show really believe the things they say?

Anyway, I know I’m looking forward to seeing Janeane back on the small screen. Are any of you worried that her politics will get in the way of your 24 enjoyment? And now that she’s in a TV mood, does anyone else wish she’d find some way to reprise her hilarious Seinfeld arc on Curb Your Enthusiasm?