Rabbit Hole is 24 squared – recommendation. I have a confession to make. When 24 premiered in 2001, I watched all 204 episodes without fail until the show’s end in 2014. Even the really dumb ones where, for example, we were stuck watching as his daughter was trapped by a mountain lion… or some such nonsense. But always, Kiefer was epic, that first season was scripted like a banshee, I loved it. All of it. The new idea of utilizing a real-time format, the crazy espionage dog piles. Yeah, it was a real barn-burner. And yeah, it was terrible. But I loved every minute of it. My wife and I would invite friends over for the new episodes for pizza, beer, and Kiefer. Can’t think of a better way to spend an evening!
Well, Kiefer has a new show and the long and short of it is that Rabbit Hole is 24 on steroids.
Now the good news, for those of you who weren’t really deeply into 24 like I was, is that Rabbit Hole is way more aligned with the THiNC. films that we know and love here. The story follows John Weir, a “corporate espionage expert” whatever the heck that means. We watch as the show establishes his normal MO in the opening episode. He hooks people into selling positions that causes a free fall on those stock values, which then allows someone else to scoop in and pick them up for a bargain. Moral? No, apparently not. Clever? Abundantly.
But Weir is tormented. He thinks everyone is following him, and he holds an extremely close relationship with the local police that have people following him day in and day out. Hrmm. (This cop is going to become his only friend he can turn to soon enough, trust me on this.)
Here’s the THiNC. aspect of this show. We have no idea who the good guys are, who the bad guys are, or whether or not Mr. Weir is just uncoupling from reality. Could someone be out for revenge for something he’s done… yes, yes they could. Could John be the prime mover of all of this Rabbit Hole’ness? Why yes, yes he could. Could Weir just be mumbling to himself in an asylum? Yeah, actually, that might make the most sense.
I liken this show to an amped up version of the movie The Game… remember that one? Michael Douglas I think it was? 1997, pre ring of the millennial new year? The conceit of that movie was that a bored executive signs up for a game… a real world, real life, spy-cop-robber, game? But after he signs up he changes his mind, but they’ve abandoned shop? And then his life goes to pot? People are out to get him, his life implodes? Remember that movie? If you haven’t seen it, that is definitely a film that you will enjoy. The reveal of the movie is a tad much, but overall, a really fun idea/conceit. (I would like props for not spoiling a 25-year-old movie… thank you very much. If you haven’t seen it yet, why is that my moral responsibility to not spoil it? Gah. Anyway, go watch The Game if you haven’t yet.)
I will say, that the opening episode of Rabbit Hole is about as near to perfection as is humanly possible. It has a lot to do and not a lot of time to do it in. It has to establish Weir, his paranoid anxieties. It has to introduce us to his team, his work, and what they do day in and day out. We watch as a normal job happens… and we see how clever that is. Then we get the real pitch, the one that will set the agenda for the entire show… and we watch as that one goes horribly wrong. Right? That’s a lot. And the way in which it all happens is fantastic. Let’s be frank – we don’t watch Kiefer to ponder the meaning of the universe. We watch Kiefer to have him mutter to himself incoherently as he tries and figures out what went wrong. We watch Kiefer to see him scream NOOOOOO into the camera in his hoarse, raspy, screamy bellow. And we watch because we know that somehow, someway, Kiefer is going to come out on top in the end. Everyone else might be dead… or in the hospital, but Kiefer will slide under the door, with the corporate espionage plans in his hand, and his nemesis impaled on a forklift.
Actually, it would be interesting over on Discord to start throwing theories at the wall to see where this show will end up. Trust me, we have all season to ponder, because we will be no closer to an explanation at the beginning of the final episode than at episode 1. I promise you that. I’m sure this will turn on a dime at the end… and it is that reveal that we will all watch for, and I can’t wait to see where it goes.
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Edited by: CY