Guy D'Alema/FOX

Carter's wild day comes to an eventful close.

24: Legacy

S1 E12
Show Details
TV Show
April 17, 2017 at 09:00 PM EDT

Up until now, there hasn’t been the time (or writing) for great emotional scenes. But Rebecca’s dire condition changes that in a big way. First, we get a nice Rebecca-and-Carter moment in the ambulance. “What Nicole said, that there’s something inside you that scares her,” she says to her friend. “I know what that is… because I have it too. We all do. People who do this work — it’s a gift and it’s a curse, and it will eat you alive if you don’t deal with it. Go where it leads you.” Right now, hopefully the road is leading to the hospital.

Thankfully it does, resulting in an even more tear-inducing scene. As doctors work to save Rebecca, John gets a bittersweet update from Carter. “You were the only thing she was thinking about,” he tells the politician. But things take a deadly turn as Rebecca can’t be revived, and Smits absolutely crushes his devastated reaction, reminding audiences that he’s JIMMY SMITS! Any hope of Rebecca somehow still being alive is dashed by the silent clock going into commercial. HOLD UP. Didn’t they also do the silent clock for the first time when Tony seemed to die? Just saying.

Okay, she dead. Jumping ahead 12 hours, which I think is a cheat to the structure of the series, John is sitting next to Rebecca’s definitely dead body. Following a long absence, Nilaa, a.k.a. How Am I a Series Regular, makes her return with the sole purpose of telling John that his father is here to see him. You know — the guy who set up Nilaa, leading to her arrest? That couldn’t have been a tender reunion.

Papa D comes in and shows why you cast Gerald McRaney, even if he’s only eight years older than his TV son. “I’m trying to understand how this happened… how I let this happen,” he admits. “They’re all dead because of me.” Well, at least he realizes his wrongs and is on a new path. “But there is one thing as true as it ever was: This country needs you.” Oops, I spoke too soon. He goes on about how John has gone up in the polls and says he should stay in the race. Damn, let the man grieve for more than exactly 12 hours!

“A son should not have to pay for this father’s sins,” declares Papa D, to which his son responds, “And the husband shouldn’t profit from his wife’s death.” BOOM! Upon being called outside, Smitty really brings it in his final goodbye to Rebecca.

Turns out, Simms couldn’t handle the heat, so he killed himself. To protect the man’s legacy, Donovan doesn’t tell the FBI the truth about what Simms had been up to. Wait is this what the entire show was about? Simms’ legacy?! Yeah, probably not. Anyways, Donovan has a sudden change of heart and tells Nilaa to cancel his call with the party, because he’s not dropping out. President Santos would be proud.

Throughout the day, countless times, Carter promised Nicole that it was almost over, and it finally is. The two celebrate at CTU, minus Isaac, who’s “going through a lot right now.” Join the club. “You were right, I need this,” Carter confesses to his wife. “This is where I belong.” Then, Legacy does right by Nicole, not making her the all-too-familiar wet-blanket TV wife. “I’m not gonna lose you,” she says, offering to make it work. He seems much more skeptical, referencing what he’s seen this job do to families, but she convinces him otherwise, and they embrace before he departs for his debrief with Mullins. Watching him leave, Nicole seems to slowly come to the conclusion that she has lost her husband. Isaac, I hope you’re by your phone!

What did you think? Did Legacy adequately fill the 24 void? Do you hope it comes back for another go-around?

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