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So I’m inside Les Deux in Hollywood for the "24" Season 5 DVD launch party and And I’m trying not to suffocate in a mushroom cloud of toxic cigar smoke filling the tented patio.

At first it feels like just another smoky, noisy industry party. But people start to look eerily familiar. Ear-pieced security men in suits seem suspicious.That mustachioed man rolling cigars that are – I am told – “Jack Bauer’s favorites” keeps watching me. A dark-eyed bald dude with the beard looks like a covert agent in Season 4. People laughing idiotically by the pizza table may be party moles.  I would swear that the leering man sitting alone on a sofa is a suicide party bomber.

These are the thoughts that race through my head as I wait anxiously and pray for Jack Bauer to arrive and save the party…

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I caught sight of Martha Logan before she headed deep into the bowels of the restaurant. I could have sworn I saw Tony Ålmeida but that’s crazy because he’s dead. Then I spotted Vladimir Bierko lurking in the corner. This feels wrong, all wrong. I try to talk to Audrey Raines. But she’s too busy being nice to a producer and coughing occasionally from the cigar stench. I never trusted her anyway.

Finally Bauer arrives and is rushed over to his well-protected reserved table in a corner of the patio. I wanted to ask him about his new assistant who is supposed to look just like Ricky Schroeder but I could only get one question out: “Were the cigars your idea?” “No, not my idea,” Bauer replied in his husky whisper and pulled out a pack of Camels to prove it.

Okay, so who ordered the cigar-roller? And how long will it be before this second-hand smoke kills us all?

I raced outside to breathe fresh air and ran into Chloe O’Brian on the red carpet. "Don’t go in there. We need to get help fast. Do you have your computer with you?,” I said, gasping and choking. 

“I’m not Chloe, I’m Mary Lynn Rajskub,” she replied. “Everyone is always so disappointed when they find out I don’t know anything about computers, tracking devices or communication systems.” 

“Don’t you ever feel like you’re going to die," I asked. “Sure, every other day I think my character is going to get killed off,” she replies, smoothing her Kenneth Cole gown. “But you’re still alive,” I say reassuringly. “Yeah, and I’m in almost every episode of the new season,” she confided.

When I tell her not to relax her guard because Bauer is the only essential character on the show, she gets a little snippy. “Why are you trying to depress me? So I could die tomorrow. We all could! Then she whipped around and headed into the doomed smoke-filled party.

It was too late. I couldn’t help her or them. Anyway, I had another job to do. I had to get to “The Good German” party in time to tell George Clooney how sorry I was about the death this week of his 300 lb. pal, Max, a pot-bellied pig.

More about that later.

Photo Credits: Unsuspecting Emmy winner Kiefer Sutherland and his leading lady Kim Raver arrive at the DVD launch party
Albert Ortega/WireImage
Photo Credits: Mary Lynn looks super hot in Kenneth Cole. But where’s her laptop?
Albert Ortega/WireImage
Photo Credits: Julian Sands doesn’t look like a maniacal terrorist, does he? But was he behind the toxic smoke at the DVD Launch party? We may never know
Albert Ortega/WireImage

Posted by:LATimes