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This article's subject relates to Season 5 of 24.
"He may be in charge, Bill, but he's not in control."
Audrey Raines, "Day 5: 3:00pm-4:00pm"

Lynn McGill was a high-ranking official at Division, sent to oversee operations at CTU Los Angeles during the Sentox nerve gas crisis on Day 5. High-strung and controlling, McGill had a reputation for firing most of his subordinates soon after taking command of a new office. As pressure mounted from the White House to stop the terrorists, he became increasingly erratic and paranoid of his employees' activities, eventually leading Audrey Raines and Curtis Manning to invoke Section 1.12 of the CTU charter and remove him from his post. Bill Buchanan, arrested earlier for defying Lynn's orders, was reinstated as director.

During the afternoon, Lynn's key card was stolen by his sister Jenny and her boyfriend. Embarassed, McGill failed to report the theft of the card, which was later used by terrorist operative Ostroff to gain entrance to the building and release one of the Sentox canisters, killing 40% of the staff. In a last-ditch effort to flush the gas from the building, McGill left his secure room to unlock a nearby control panel, succumbing to the effects of the gas soon afterward. His action allowed Chloe O'Brian to restart the ventilation system and clear the air, ensuring no further loss of life among the survivors.


Lynn had a sister, Jenny McGill, who struggled with drug addiction. ("Day 5: 1:00pm-2:00pm")

During his CTU career, Lynn had previously met Chloe O'Brian at a lecture on memory management, and apparently recognized Bill Buchanan on sight. He had also worked once before with Spenser Wolff, who told Chloe that Lynn's management style included slowing down operations and firing 20% of his employees everywhere he was assigned. ("Day 5: 10:00am-11:00am")

Day 5[]

Bill Buchanan greets Lynn

Lynn arrived at CTU Los Angeles shortly after 10:00am to oversee the rescue effort at Ontario Airport, which had been taken over by Dawn Brigade terrorists trying to stop the anti-terrorism treaty between the United States and Russia. After briefly meeting Chloe - who claimed she didn't remember him - he spoke to Bill Buchanan and asked for an update on the situation. Somewhat bothered, Bill asked Lynn why he was there and he informed Buchanan of the pressure coming from the White House to save the hostages, particularly with Jack Bauer's involvement. When Bill told him he could set up at station 4, Lynn insisted on using Bill's office in order to have a central vantage point. Lynn also suggested to Bill that he should refer to him as "Mr. McGill" in front of others, but Bill refused.

Just as he was about to leave, Bill received a call from Jack which Lynn listened to. Jack told them that he had earlier had to cut the transmission when a hostile got to close to him. He then insisted that Curtis Manning change the entry point of their assault to an emergency exit south of Gate 12. Although Curtis didn't seem comfortable with that position, Jack insisted it was their only shot and added he was in a "flank 2 position."

Lynn then went upstairs to Bill's office and started settling down. He called the White House to inform everything was on track. He then told Jackie he wanted to talk to Buchanan. While she looked for him, Lynn called Donna to inform her everything was ok. As he was talking with her, Bill came in the office. After hanging up, Lynn asks Bill to sit down with him. Bill, who is bothered by his presence, resists telling him how busy he is coordinating the rescue efforts at the airport. Lynn insists and tells Bill about his call to the White House. However, he tells him that he wasn't comfortable talking about a plan he hadn't personally reviewed, so he asked Bill to see the playbook. Buchanan resists at first, but he complies reluctantly after Lynn assures him he's only doing his job. As Bill walks out, Lynn tells him that fighting against him won't make the situation at the airport any easier. Chloe then sent the playbook to his laptop.

After 10:30am, Lynn comes to the Situation Room where Buchanan and Audrey Raines are finishing details on the raid. Lynn asks them why the assault plan is so drastically different from the original plan and Audrey tells him about the new intelligence Jack gave them. Lynn argues that Jack being out of contact for so long is suspicious so he asks Bill to send him the transcripts from every conversation they've held with Jack after the crisis started. After he returns to the office, he starts reviewing Jack's phone transcripts. As he is doing so, he finds a few items he wants to clarify so he calls Chloe. When he's explaining what he wants, Chloe interrupts him telling him she's busy with the revised assault plan. He then tells her to unlock Volume 5 so he can check some things. Chloe complies and he hangs up the phone.

Remembering that Jack used the term "flank 2" to give his alleged position, Lynn found out that "flank 2" was a CTU duress term used when Jack was active. Realizing that Jack was leading the CTU TAC team to an ambush, he ran down to the Situation Room just as the raid was about to start, and ordered Buchanan to abort it. After explaining what he had found, Bill asked Chloe to confirm quickly which she did. After doing so, Bill quickly told Curtis to cancel the raid in the last second. With this new information, Curtis went to his original plan and successfully raided the airport killing all the terrorists, securing the terminal and saving the hostages. Lynn congratulated Curtis as he informed CTU of the success.

After the raid, Lynn went to the Situation Room where Buchanan apologized to him and told him how if he hadn't found out about Jack's duress code, they would've walked into a trap. However, Lynn told him he had done so because of him and how adamantly he defended Jack's integrity. This prompted Lynn to double check the transcripts for any incongruities. Lynn then asks Bill to still take Jack into custody for the matter of the deaths of David Palmer and Michelle Dessler. When Audrey tells him about the mitigating evidence of Chloe's testimony on Jack's favor, Lynn insists that the situation is still too complicated and that Jack needs to be brought back to CTU. ("Day 5: 10:00am-11:00am")

After receiving information from Curtis about the findings at Hangar BB, Lynn and Buchanan started backtracking the ownership of the hangar. When the forensics team at the hangar confirmed that there was nerve gas there, Lynn ordered Edgar to get a trace of the nerve gas so he could trace the manufacturer. He also told Chloe to raise the alert level. Sometime later, Lynn also approached Audrey Raines and asked him to debrief Diane Huxley. Audrey was reluctant, but Lynn insisted arguing that her personal relationship with Jack could allow her to connect with Diane. Audrey complied and left to meet Diane.

Lynn gives Jack level 2 security clearance

When Jack arrived at CTU, Lynn introduced himself and told him he believed in his innocence. He then gave him a key card with a Level 2 security clearance so that he could work with them more easily. Lynn then brought Jack up to speed with the finding of the nerve gas, and Jack told him that they should find whoever ordered the hit on Palmer since the two events were probably related. Lynn agreed and told him that he thinks Palmer was about to expose that plot. Bill came and told them that Logan had been informed of the new events and wanted to restrict the media on it. Lynn then went to tell Division to restrict the flow of information.

Lynn then went with Jack to an office to debrief him. Lynn asked questions about the people who knew he was alive, and about anyone that he might know wanted him dead. Jack confessed that 18 months prior, Palmer had informed him that someone inside Logan's administration wanted to kill him, which prompted him to fake his own death. Lynn, who can't believe that someone close to the President would approve this, argues that an investigation on the President and his people would take months. However, they are interrupted by a call from Dr. Paulson, informing them that Tony Almeida had regained consciousness and wanted to speak with Jack. Jack excused himself and headed to CTU medical clinic.

Some minutes later, after learning that someone tried to kill Jack at the clinic, Lynn met with Bill and Jack at holding. Jack questioned Spenser Wolff, who confessed having cleared the assassin inside CTU, while Bill and Lynn watched. When Spenser confessed he was under orders from Walt Cummings, Lynn told them they could contact the President to inform him. However, Jack preferred to go personally since Logan was in Los Angeles.("Day 5: 11:00am-12:00pm")

Buchanan gives Lynn his advice.

Reluctantly, Lynn agreed to Jack's plan to go to the Presidential retreat and extract information from Walt Cummings. As they waited for feedback from Jack, Lynn received a notification from Division to stop the search for the nerve gas, on orders from the White House. He tried to contact President Logan, but he didn't answer. When he notified Buchanan and Audrey, Bill insisted on him to disregard the order. When Bill accused him of lacking experience, Lynn pulled him aside and blasted him for not treating him properly. Buchanan apologized, but assured him his advice still stood. Buchanan insisted that he should disregard the order, arguing it was his responsibility to ignore anything that jeopardized the search of the nerve gas. Lynn agreed and they continued working.

At around 12:45pm, Jack contacted them with President Logan with the intel from Walt Cummings. Jack gave them the location of the Sentox canisters at the Port of Long Beach. Lynn then asked Logan about the order to stop the search for the nerve gas, but Logan told him to disregard it. Lynn then asked Jack if he would return to CTU, but Jack told him he wasn't sure. They then started working with a CBP task force that was near the port to recover the canisters. Once Lynn verified with Chloe the intel that Jack gave them, he told her to make sure that the team knew about the contents. They then watched through a live feed as the team, led by Agent Finn, stormed the container only to find Schaeffer, Cummings' inside man, tortured and killed, and the canisters missing. At this point, Ivan Erwich called Cummings' while CTU listened, and threatened to use the nerve gas on US soil.("Day 5: 12:00pm-1:00pm")

Lynn received new casualty estimates from Civil Defense that said each canister could generate a kill zone of 1 to 3 square miles. With the terrorists holding 20 canisters in their possession, the casualties could mount to a million. As Lynn was heading to the Situation Room, he received a call from his sister, Jenny, shortly after 1:00pm. Jenny, who had an addiction problem, wanted some money, and told Lynn she had cleaned her life and was working two jobs. She wanted to come over to CTU, but Lynn refused to meet her there. When she threatened to hurt herself, Lynn told her to meet in a parking lot across the street from CTU in 20 minutes. Lynn then walked into the Situation Room where Bill Buchanan, Audrey Raines and Chloe O'Brian were meeting. Bill told them that the terrorists' canisters could only be activated via satellite, and hence were useless right now, unless they received valid activation codes. Lynn asked about evacuation scenarios, but Buchanan said it wasn't possible because there was no time-frame and no target. When Lynn asked what were they doing to trace the canisters, Chloe told him she had pulled Erwich's voice-print from his previous call to Cummings and was scanning all sat-com frequencies for a match. Lynn said they better get lucky, and informed them of the new casualty scenarios he had just received.

After CTU managed to intercept a call from Erwich to Jacob Rossler, they raided his apartment and held him in custody. However, Rossler asked for full immunity, unfreezing of his assets, and transportation to a foreign country. He also insisted on taking his sex slave, a 15-year old called Inessa Kovalevsky, with him as part of a deal to help CTU catch Ivan Erwich. Although Jack wasn't willing to deal, Lynn ordered him to accept since they had no time.

Lynn cleans himself after being mugged.

Lynn then slipped out of the building to meet his sister, Jenny. When Jenny asked him if he had brought the money, Lynn gave her the phone number a doctor instead, and told her he could pay for it. As they were talking, Jenny's boyfriend, Dwayne Thompkins, came from behind and attacked Lynn. After dropping him to the floor, Dwayne took his wallet and stole some money and Lynn's CTU key card. As they left, Lynn stood up and returned to CTU.("Day 5: 1:00pm-2:00pm") After entering, he went into a corner to straighten his tie and his suit, and wipe the blood from his mouth.

Lynn then walked into the Situation Room to confront Bill on the situation. Bill told him that Jacob Rossler was killed by his female companion, so now they had to find a new way to reach Erwich. Buchanan also told Lynn that they put a tracker on the chip to follow it to Erwich. He also told him that they've picked up increased chatter from Erwich asking for help to launch nerve gas attacks on larger targets from terrorist sleeper cells in Los Angeles. Chloe suddenly interrupted them after intercepting an incoming call from Erwich on Rossler's phone. They listened to Jack answering, as Erwich gave him a meeting place to exchange for the chip. Jack then suggested to Lynn and Buchanan that he could pose as Rossler to see if the terrorists led him to the canisters. Audrey and Lynn agreed it was too risky, but Buchanan gave him the greenlight.

As Jack went on with the transaction on a parking garage, Lynn and the rest of the staff monitored them from CTU. After Jack installed the chip for terrorists Polakov and Komar, they heard how they punched Jack forcing him to go with them. As they drove out, Lynn ordered Curtis not to intervene but to reassemble his team for a follow operation. As the terrorists drove to an unknown location, CTU heard Jack say that they had one of the canisters with them. Curtis asked if they should intercept them, but Lynn ordered him not to, until they had a visual of the canister. As they kept on following them, they realized that the terrorists' target was the Sunrise Hills Shopping Mall.

Lynn briefs President Logan, as Jack listens.

After the terrorists got out of their van, Chloe started sending redeployment orders to tactical teams to intercept them. However, Lynn stopped her and argued that if they stopped them, they wouldn't be able to find the remaining 19 canisters. When Audrey asked him if he planned to allow the terrorist attack to go on, Lynn told her that he was willing to risk it, if that allowed them to find the other canisters. When Audrey tried to vouch for Buchanan to intervene, Lynn screamed at her that he was the one in charge, not Bill. Bill, who agreed with Lynn, told them they had to call the President. When President Logan returned their call, Lynn briefed him on the situation. When he suggested allowing the terrorists to release the nerve gas, Logan was outraged. But after he explained his reasoning, Logan started to consider the alternative. After some hesitation, Logan authorized them to go on with their plan. Lynn then relayed the orders to Jack and told the tactical teams to move out of the mall.

When Jack refused to go on with the order, giving the terrorists a false unlock code for the trigger on purpose, Lynn ordered him to comply with the order of the President. However, Jack refused to do so and the terrorists knocked him out. They heard, however, that the terrorists were trying another way to release the gas. As they heard them finish, Audrey tried to convince Lynn to stop the attack. When he refused to, she tried to force him to look at the surveillance cameras and all the children that were at the mall, but Lynn insisted that they were at war, which meant there would be casualties. However, after the terrorists activated the canister, Jack managed to wake up and kill one of them. After he stopped the flow of the nerve gas, Lynn ordered Curtis' team to move in to evacuate the mall.

President Logan accuses Lynn of incompetence.

Shortly after that, McGill called President Logan to explain how Jack had disobeyed the order to allow the terrorists to release the nerve gas. Angry, Logan accused McGill of being incapable of running CTU and threatened to replace him, if he continued to use excuses for not doing his job. After this, CTU was able to track Polakov, as he arrived at Cal's Bikes. However, he shot himself before he could be captured.("Day 5: 2:00pm-3:00pm")

Logan took Lynn to task for the failure of the mission. Bristling at the rebuke, Lynn ordered Jack taken into custody, over the objections of Bill, Audrey, and Curtis Manning.

While Jack was in transit, Audrey received a call from James Nathanson, who demanded to be put in touch with Jack. She patched the call through, and Jack escaped from custody shortly thereafter. Suspicious, Lynn looked up her phone records, but she had erased them with Chloe's help. He hovered around Audrey to keep her tied up until Jack needed Department of Defense codes, at which point Audrey enlisted Bill to distract Lynn while she sent the information to Jack. Picking up on the tactic, Lynn had Bill taken into holding and put a Section 2.3 redundancy into effect, mirroring all stations through his office so that he could keep tabs on things. Later, he fired Carrie Bendis for not mirroring her station quickly enough.

Security escorts Lynn to a holding cell, after Curtis Manning relieves Lynn of his duties.

Audrey continued to use Chloe to operate behind Lynn's back. When Chloe and Edgar Stiles brought him intel suggesting an attack on the Suvarov motorcade, Lynn told them not to waste their time on it. Audrey and Curtis objected, saying that CTU should hand the tip to the Secret Service. As the only person on site with the clearance to do that, Lynn continued to refuse, suggesting that they pass the information along to the National Security Agency, who would have to submit to a lengthy approval process before giving the intel to the Secret Service. Instead, Audrey convinced both Edgar and Chloe to help her forge the tipoff so it would appear to come from Lynn. She then had Curtis declare Lynn unfit for duty pursuant to Section 1.12, and Lynn was taken to holding.

Stuck in holding, Lynn asked Bill for a phone and called Jenny for a second time to ask for his key card. Jenny and Dwayne met with Ostroff to sell the key card, at which point he executed them and reprogrammed the card so that he could use Lynn's high-level entry and access privileges.

When Bill informed him of Jenny's apparently professional murder, Lynn realized the key card may have been the objective. With this information, Bill discovered that the card had indeed been used to enter the building. Bill ordered a lockdown, and then an evacuation, but was too late to stop the attack. Nerve gas flooded the building, killing 40% of the staff (56 people).

Lynn dies to save the remaining survivors at CTU

Lynn was one of a handful of survivors, as Holding Room 4 was one of the secured areas. He confessed to Harry Swinton, also trapped in Holding Room 4, that the attack was his fault because he was too embarrassed to report the theft of his key card. Meanwhile, the gas was eating through the protective seals and threatening to kill everyone who was left. Lynn was the closest person to the computer console that could restore control of the ventilation system, so he agreed to do the job. Jack promised both he and Harry that their families would be notified of their sacrifice.

Background information and notes[]

  • Sean Astin was only supposed to guest-star in a few episodes, but his role was extended. Beginning with the "4:00pm-5:00pm" episode, he was credited as a Special Guest Star.
  • In his first appearance, when he introduced himself to Chloe, McGill said he was from District. In the following episode, when he assumed custody of Jack from Mara Tyler, he said he was from Division.
  • When Lynn was killed off the show, Sean Astin received a cake that said "Farewell Sean".

Live appearances[]

See also[]

Wiki 24 has a collection of quotations related to Lynn McGill.
Wiki 24 has 36 images related to Lynn McGill.