PLOTS WITHIN PLOTS. Rick at Right Wing Nut House resumes his spring service of "24" plot summaries. These summaries are useful to casual watchers of the series as they include reference to past seasons. The current day's action features a promoted Vice President (whether the President who was shot down on Air Force 1 eighteen virtual months ago is still alive but incapacitated has not been clarified) with Nixonian mannerisms and a Clintonian obsession with a legacy and a First Lady who appears to be based on Martha Mitchell of Watergate plot notoriety who must take time out from a summit to deal with a hostage situation. Or something. There is a double agent on the President's detail who is communicating with some shadowy figure who is communicating with the hostage-holding terrorist leader who may or may not be running cover for some other plot involving poison gas.

Got all that? The September 11 operation was sparse but effective. Somehow the script writers at Fox have to put the equivalent of three centuries of Byzantine intrigue into three months.

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