By David Cohen
You open Netflix on your phone, laptop, or tv, and scroll through a thousand shows that you’ve seen a hundred times over. Although you may believe you’ve seen every great show available, you may not have seen “Designated Survivor.” Created by David Guggenheim, “Designated Survivor” is an American political-thriller following fictional cabinet member Tom Kirkman, played by Kiefer Sutherland, who in one night goes from being Secretary of Housing and Development to the President of the United States
In the pilot episode, a bombing occurs at the U.S. Capital, killing the President and all other cabinet members except Tom, who was the “designated survivor.” This title refers to the person next in line to become president in the event that the president and vice president are killed. Tom faces a slew of issues while in this new position of power, but within the first few episodes, he begins to learn to manage such a stressful role.
The show is set in modern day Washington D.C. Although the government officials are fictional, many of the conflicts “Designated Survivor” tackles align with today's current events. The show explores issues such as discrimination, American and Russian tensions, and illegal immigration. The show remains as unbiased as possible on these controversial topics; Tom’s character is an independent, satisfying both left and right political views.
The show also adds its own element of a conspiracy theory, which follows FBI Special Agent Hannah Wells, who leads the capital bombings investigation. Hannah finds that the terrorist organization that was supposedly behind the bombing was a front to a much deeper secret society controlled by the wealthy and corrupt politicians.
Kiefer Sutherland’s acting is spot on as Tom Kirkman. Sutherland captures a wide range of emotions; from anger and sadness to confidence and pride, Sutherland’s acting never fails to captivate audiences. In fact, the entire cast succeeds in keeping viewers interested in every character’s storyline.
In addition to the cliffhangers and action sequences, the show portrays how demanding the office of the presidency is and the effects the role has on a person and his or her family. For the president, there is no break.
To catch up on all the drama, start binging “Designated Survivor” now!