Nov. 06, 2001
60 min.
FOX TV Network

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24, an innovative and thrilling drama, follows a day in the life of federal agent Jack Bauer of the Los Angeles Counter Terrorist Unit. Each episode covers one hour of real time, and the season’s entire story will take place in one day.

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Bill Buchanan 24
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Bill Buchanan

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  Played by:
James MorrisonJames Morrison
A filmmaker, playwright, poet, actor and yoga teacher, James Morrison was born in Utah and is a product ...

Character Bio

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Bill Buchanan was the former Special Agent in Charge of CTU Los Angeles. Before taking command of the LA CTU, he was a Regional Division Director at CTU. He was initially sent to CTU Los Angeles by Division Command to oversee the exchange of Jack Bauer for Behrooz Araz in Day 4. When Michelle Dessler resigned as Director of CTU at the end of Day 4, Buchanan took permanent command of CTU. He was forced to step down in Day 6. During Day 7, he was working covertly with Chloe O'Brian and Tony Almeida to uncover a conspiracy within the United States government to aid African dictator General Benjamin Juma. During Juma's attack on the White House, Bill sacrificed himself by creating an explosion that destroyed most of the attack force and allowed the FBI to retake the White House and save President Allison Taylor.

Before Day 4
Bill Buchanan worked closely with Michelle Dessler in Homeland Security restructuring, CTU Seattle, and Division. Bill and Michelle worked well together, but were unable to connect outside of work because she still had feelings for her ex-husband Tony Almeida.

After transferring from CTU Seattle to Division, Buchanan earned a position in Los Angeles as the Regional District Director, replacing Ryan Chappelle.

Day 4
During the events of Day 4, Bill Buchanan was sent to CTU Los Angeles to oversee the ongoing crisis. Buchanan was put in charge of running the exchange of Jack Bauer and Behrooz Araz. However, due to both Michelle Dessler and Tony Almeida working at the Los Angeles office during the day, tension was constantly erupting.

Buchanan wasn't willing to just give up Behrooz, as he believed Behrooz might have sensitive information that Habib Marwan may not want to become public. Curtis Manning interrogated Behrooz and Tony did a basic questioning. When it was revealed that Behrooz didn't have any information, Buchanan decided to go forward with the trade, as he believed it may have been the best chance of finding Marwan. Buchanan had trackers placed on Behrooz, one implanted in the back of his neck.

Marwan's men initially planned on taking out Jack and the TAC team, but their attempts failed. Buchanan became furious when Chloe O'Brian reported that all the trackers have been destroyed, including the one implanted in Behrooz's neck. Buchanan, however, was relieved when Jack told him he short circuited wires in the place he was being held. Jack led a team over to the location, after Chloe tracked it down, but Marwan was able to escape and the hostiles destroyed Marwan's hard drive.

Jack brought in terrorist collaborator Joe Prado and both he and Bill agreed that Prado would only break through a physical or medical interrogation. However, Prado's attorney David Weiss arrived and took legal action to prevent Prado's rights from being broken. Prado was also guarded by a US Marshal, and Buchanan decided to take the case to the Justice Department. Buchanan wasn't able to find a judge to sign off on torturing Prado, and he called the recently sworn in President Charles Logan for authorization.

President Logan refused to let Prado be tortured and Jack continued to push Prado, while Bill expressed his belief they would both be fired if they tortured Prado. Jack suggested to resign and for Bill to release Prado, so they would both be private citizens. When Prado was released, Jack knocked out the US marshal and physically attacked him. Prado eventually gave in and both Mike Novick and Audrey Raines disapproved of Bill's complicity in the event.

While on the phone with Mike, Bill asked Mike get the president to sign off on Prado's torture, so they could cheat the timeline. Bill then expressed his concern for Logan's leadership skills, and Mike agreed to help. Mike wasn't able to get the president to sign off on Prado's torture and he told Bill that Logan wanted Jack in custody. Secret Service agents sent to apprehend Jack forced CTU to move in before they were ready, and Marwan managed to escape. Afterwards, Logan realized he was wrong and decided to drop the charges against Jack.

Buchanan later learned that Jack and Tony worked together to raid the Chinese consulate, under the authority of President David Palmer. Jack needed to question Lee Jong, who was under China's protection. During the raiding, friendly fire caused Consul Koo Yin to get killed. Cheng Zhi blamed the US government for his death, and wanted someone to be brought to justice.

Though Bill was first angered at Tony and Jack for keeping the operation from him and Michelle, Bill agreed to help create an alibi for Jack's team. When Cheng Zhi came to CTU to question Bauer, Buchanan was able to help obfuscate Zhi's investigation. When it was learned that Howard Bern was identified at the consulate, Bill distracted Zhi, while Jack helped Bern escape from the building.

When Secretary of Defense James Heller got information out of his son Richard, CTU got a new lead on Marwan. Jack, Tony, and Lee Castle lead a TAC team to apprehend a female suspect. During the midst of the operation, Castle was killed and Tony disappeared. Jack called CTU and told them about the situation.

The hostile Mandy called Michelle and told her that she knew about Tony committing treason in the past in order to save her. Mandy decided to test Michelle's love for Tony, by threatening to kill him if Michelle didn't clear an exit for her. Originally, Michelle was willing to go forward with it, but she broke down and told Bill about Mandy calling her. Bill told Michelle she would act like she was going along with Mandy's plan, in order to trap her. Buchanan assured Michelle he would do everything in his power to save Tony, but capturing the hostile was the priority.

When Mandy learned Michelle double-crossed her, she self-destructed the car she and Tony entered. Michelle was devastated over Tony's death and Bill comforted her. Michelle stepped down as the SA in Charge. Jack later discovered the hostile sent in body doubles, and he eventually found Tony and the hostile. With help from Curtis, Jack was able to save Tony and apprehend the hostile. Jack called Buchanan to tell him Tony was alive, and he patched Tony over to Michelle.

Buchanan was later informed that the US government was handing over Jack to the Chinese, as Zhi captured Howard Bern and he confessed to Jack leading the operation. Dale Spalding arrived at CTU to pick up Jack, and Buchanan defended Jack's actions earlier in the day. While waiting for Jack, Buchanan and Spalding heard the lockdown alarm go off.

Chloe managed to track down Jack's location and Buchanan discovered Michelle and Tony hovering over Jack's body. Jack was dead and Buchanan broke the news to Audrey, who had a hard time getting over Jack's death. After Michelle and Tony left CTU together, Buchanan decided to replace Michelle's position.

Day 5
Since Day 4, Bill took over as Special Agent in Charge of CTU Los Angeles after Michelle Dessler quit. Lynn McGill from District came and took over his position. Buchanan was accused of insubordination, therefore McGill detained him. McGill was soon removed from his position by Curtis Manning through Section 1.12 so Buchanan was reinstated. When Homeland Security came to take over CTU Buchanan was relieved from duty. Soon after, he was reinstated as Special Agent in Charge.

After Day 5
Between Day 5 and Day 6, Karen Hayes helped get Buchanan's job back as CTU's Special Agent in Charge. Realizing they had a great friendship, Bill and Karen began a romantic relationship, and eventually married.

Fourteen months prior to Day 6, CTU Seattle detained Abu Fayed and 19 other known terrorists. Seeing there wasn't enough evidence to put Fayed behind bars, Bill signed for his release.

Day 6
During Day 6, Buchanan was involved in stopping terrorist attacks allegedly originating from Hamri Al-Assad. In an arrangement with the United States government, one of Assad's lieutenant's, Abu Fayed made an agreement to trade Jack Bauer for Assad's location. Buchanan made a prior exchange with Bauer's captors, the Chinese government, in order to deliver him to Fayed.
Buchanan would later continue to work at CTU preventing terrorist attacks in US. His wife Karen fired him. Later, Bill aided Jack in the field.

After Day 6
Bill left CTU and was pardoned by Vice President Daniels. He was still married to Karen Hayes. Tony Almeida, thought to have been killed during Day 5, then made contact with Buchanan. Almeida had been working with a domestic terrorist group led by David Emerson and learned of a plot to breach the United States' CIP firewall, which would put thousands of American lives at risk, something that Tony did not want. He informed Bill of the conspiracy, which included senior members of President Allison Taylor's administration, to blackmail her from launching an attack on General Benjamin Juma's regime in Sangala. Along with Chloe O'Brian and Almeida, Buchanan set up a covert operation that placed Tony undercover in Emerson's group. The three of them planned to bring the conspiracy to light and stop Juma from attacking the United States.

Day 7
During the first phase of the CIP firewall attack on Day 7, Tony was apprehended by Jack & Renee. This put Buchanan's entire operation at risk, because keeping Almeida undercover at that point was going to be very difficult. During his interrogation by Jack, Tony secretly gave Jack an old CTU pass code that led him to Buchanan. He gave Jack some vague details of his operation and informed him that Tony was undercover with the domestic terrorist group and that it was imperative that his cover not be blown. The two devised a plan, along with Chloe O'Brian, to break Almeida out of FBI custody. Buchanan picked up Jack and Tony in a van and promised Jack an explanation.

Episode Screenshots

02x17 - Day 2: 12:00 A.M.-1:00 A.M.
Season 2, Episode 17
02x21 - Day 2: 4:00 A.M.-5:00 A.M.
Season 2, Episode 21
07x08 - Day 7: 3:00 P.M.-4:00 P.M.
Season 7, Episode 08
01x03 - 2:00 A.M.-3:00 A.M.
Season 1, Episode 03
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