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Tony comes back to '24,' despite being dead

September 19, 2007 | 10:58 am

Carlos1 Perhaps it’s the “Ugly Betty” influence on television. Or maybe the producers of “24” just couldn’t get enough of Laura Spencer’s brief return to “General Hospital” last year.

When “24” has its seventh season premiere on Jan. 13, Tony Almeida (Carlos Bernard) will somehow be miraculously resurrected. We use the term “miraculously” because, even though executive producer Howard Gordon declared in a Fox news release today that Tony’s fate was “uncertain,” we’re pretty certain we saw Tony taking his last breath in Jack Bauer’s arms in Season 5.

This belief was further reinforced when we interviewed Gordon, Bernard and star Kiefer Sutherland, and they all expressed how sad they were that Jack no longer had his running buddy. But they all agreed that it was in the service of telling a good story.

What could that good story be now? According to Fox, the season opens with Jack on trial in Washington, D.C., for his actions in the pursuit of justice. CTU no longer exists and there is a woman, played by Cherry Jones, running the White House. The only thing stated about Tony’s return is that it is “shocking.”

In lieu of facts, let's spin some fan-fiction:

So that he could go on special assignment in Timbuktu, CTU faked Tony’s death. In his new location, he met a Russian spy, they fell in love, and she was kidnapped and taken to South Africa.

Trying to rescue her, Tony almost died when an RPG blew up the boat he was driving. His lover assumed he was dead and went back to Russia. Months later, Tony washed up on the shores of Cape Verde and was taken in by a monastery when they discovered he had amnesia. With no memories of his past life, Tony became a priest and was sent to Russia, where one day, walking through a market, he ran into his spy lover. One look into her eyes and it all came back.

They joined the Peace Corps and started adopting African babies. But then her past caught up with her and she was killed. Tony had no choice but to pack up his family and head back to Los Angeles.

When he hears that Jack is on trial, he flies to D.C., marches into the courtroom and screams, “Jack Bauer
es inocente!”

Update:

The producers have spoken: The answers are all in the silent clock.

You will recall that when lovable Edgar Stiles (Louis Lombardi) died in the episode right after Tony Almeida took his last breath, there was a sad, sad silent clock that marked the passing of our favorite CTU analyst.

There was no such clock when Tony died in Jack's arms and this was deliberate, executive producer Howard Gordon wrote in an e-mail to The Times this afternoon.

"We didn't give him the silent clock because we always wanted to keep alive the possibility for some kind of (admittedly) miraculous resurrection ... which we will explain," Gordon wrote. "He's definitely NOT the Almeida we once knew."

The horror! Could it be his Evil Twin?

-- Maria Elena Fernandez

(Photo courtesy Robert Voets / Fox)

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