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The "her" turns out to be Chloe O'Brian (Mary Lynn Rajskub), former CTU analyst and (historically) Jack's only real friend. She's been charged with treason for leaking confidential documents, and is being held by a "special activities"—an even nicer euphemism for torture than "enhanced interrogation"—agent. Jack soon dispatches of the agent, shoots Chloe in the heart—with adrenaline!—and the two escape the subterranean compound with a little help from Jack's Serbian friend and his little friend, a grenade launcher.
This all happens in the first hour because, subtitle or none, this is still 24: action is guaranteed; plot less so. The second half of the premiere fleshes out the main storyline, which involves a conspiracy, drones, and of course, hackers and hired guns; it also introduces William Devane as President Heller (who is something like the twelfth president to make it to this show's Oval Office), and our possible Big Bad, Michelle Fairley (that's right, Cat Stark) as Margot. We also see the return of Jack's former love (and the president's daughter), Audrey Boudreau née Raines (Kim Raver), who is now married to the president's chief of staff, Mark Boudreau (Tate Donovan), a character who must have already kicked off a few betting pools on the odds of his duplicity (and the extent of it).
Longtime fans of the show will be happy to see that Jack is very much back for the proverbial kicking of ass and taking of names, though there hasn't yet been a single utterance of "Don't fight it." But old and new viewers should be engrossed by the show's treatment of drone attacks—not only do we see protestors decrying the use of drones, but we also see how it can go wrong (there is a friendly fire incident that quickly turns into an international incident). In the past, 24 was criticized for what was perceived as tacit approval of torture as a reliable interrogation method, so this more nuanced look at modern warfare ushers in a new day indeed.
24: Live Another Day, Fox, 10 PM, Mondays