TV Rewind | Designated Survivor: New, but not improved Jack Bauer


In the early 2000s, the introduction of Jack Bauer in 24 because the agent who might do-it-all modified the sport for action-dramas on tv. The thrill of watching each minute unfold because it occurred in real-time gave the viewers a rush and in a few years since, there hasn’t been a present that has been in a position to match the urgency that 24 captured in each single episode. Of course, there was speak for just a few spin-offs but everyone knows that revisiting an previous traditional is rarely a good suggestion.

So when the trailer for Designated Survivor dropped, it felt like an extension of the identical world of 24 but this regarded extra polished and this time, Jack Bauer wouldn’t be within the trenches but, working the free world.

Starring Kiefer Sutherland within the lead function with Natascha McElhone, Adan Canto, Kal Penn, Italia Ricci and Maggie Q in important roles, Designated Survivor had a brief run of three seasons from 2016-2019.

What is Designated Survivor all about?

Designated Survivor follows Thomas Kirkman (Kiefer Sutherland) who occurs to turn out to be the President of the United States after an explosion on the Capitol kills everybody who’s within the line of Presidential succession. Kirkman now has to resolve the case of the explosion on the Capitol whereas additionally being the top of the nation and coping with points that he’s completely not ready for.

The three seasons of Designated Survivor comply with Kirkman’s administration as he offers with terrorists, public outcry and the various ethical conundrums the place he has to decide on between performing his responsibility vs choosing the proper path.

Designated Survivor began off actually robust in its first season. (Photo: ABC)

Jack Bauer 2.0, and now he’s POTUS

As quickly as the primary promo of Designated Survivor dropped, it reminded us of these Jack Bauer days when Sutherland saved the world a number of time in a span of only a day. In the preliminary seasons of 24, Sutherland’s Jack was the President’s confidante who generally disobeyed direct orders from him, simply because he knew higher. And whereas it will have been fascinating to see his character ultimately turn out to be the President in that universe, the dream was finally realised in 2016 with Designated Survivor.

As a personality, Kirkman was a meek man who’s burdened with accountability after the blast. His family-man persona makes him a likeable character, but his saccharine-like nature makes him a bit too overbearing, particularly as probably the most highly effective man on the planet.

Designated Survivor – the professionals and cons

Designated Survivor began robust proper from the beginning. The first season handled the aftermath of the terrorist assaults and with supporting characters like Alex, Aaron Shore, Emily Rhodes, Mike Ritter, Hannah Wells and Seth Wright, we acquired an fascinating bunch of characters whose unbiased storylines have been fascinating sufficient for us to care about them. Since all these characters are thrown into the deep finish after the explosion, the viewers sees them begin their journey when they’re simply as clueless as us. The two narratives – White House and Hannah’s investigation are robust sufficient to hold the plotline, which is a bit too predictable at occasions.

The second season is full deja vu when you have watched 24 because the plot follows a possible bio-terrorist assault and as a viewer, you solely hope for the tempo that 24 introduced with it. The plot twists really feel dated and the eventual introduction of politics, as Kirkman is now an lively participant, feels infantile. The present retains itself on an ethical pedestal because the characters are fairly black-and-white and it’s far too straightforward to identify the villain from a mile away.

By the third season, the present was already cancelled by ABC but Netflix gave it a contemporary lease of life for 10 episodes. It was apparent from the primary episode that the present had entered the soap-opera area. There was approach an excessive amount of drama and secrecy within the storyline for it to be taken severely. Kirkman’s storyline of being an unbiased candidate, Aaron’s political desires and the various new characters launched right here have been simply not meaty sufficient for us to remain . Even the finale that had Kirkman pulling off the unattainable did not appear convincing in any respect and if the characters look so not sure, it’s exhausting for the viewers to return on board.


The first season of Designated Survivor is simple to get by and is simply the right kind-of popcorn tv. Season 2 and three may be watched simply since you already began with the sequence and it’s higher to have one thing to look at than simply scroll aimlessly.

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Designated Survivor is streaming on Netflix.


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