Designated Survivor: The Enemy
October 13, 2016 5:20 AM - Season 1, Episode 4 - Subscribe

The battle rages on.

President Kirkman vs. the governor of Michigan, and one of his own generals. Congresswoman Hookstraten skulks around. Seth becomes Press Secretary. Aaron and Emily flirt. The First Lady gets back to work, sort of. Congressman MacLeish has an alibi to cover where he was during the attack- OR DOES HE?
posted by ThePinkSuperhero (15 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
Finally he fires that son of a bitch. I hope he shares a cell in Leavenworth with the piece of shit Michigan National Guard commander (incidentally, take one guess which state's National Guard organization has the most Muslim soldiers and airmen in it).
posted by Etrigan at 6:31 AM on October 13, 2016 [2 favorites]


I hope that this is the last we see of evil general and evil governor. Time to focus on some story lines that really matter! Like the thing with MacLeish, the only storyline that intrigues me even a little bit.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 7:57 AM on October 13, 2016 [1 favorite]


I love how Hookstraten feels she needs to be. very. explicit. that she is doing the First Lady a favor and will want one in return some day (also that she didn't feel the need to quote The Godfather while doing so). She clearly knows in her very bones that these two are never going to be political operatives anywhere near her level, so she's going to have to lift them up herself just to the point that they're useful to her.
posted by Etrigan at 8:32 AM on October 13, 2016 [1 favorite]


Finally, some movement forward on at least a few fronts.

She clearly knows in her very bones that these two are never going to be political operatives anywhere near her level, so she's going to have to lift them up herself just to the point that they're useful to her.

I think the show is setting her up to be another person who underestimates/misunderstands the Kirkwoods; she's going to go and call her favour back in and discover the First Lady has already done what she wanted for all the right reasons or somesuch; I think the show is going to have people either be clear villains or else decent people who might disagree with the Kirkwoods from time to time but discover they are honorable people who should be worked with rather than against. There's a definite strong riff on Tom Clancy's everyman (provided that the everyman is white, well-off, well-educated, and well-meaning) Jack Ryan going on here (before Clancy died and whoever the current ghostwriter is decided to turn the Ryan presidency into a rightwing fantasy; I mean, it always kind of was but it went from hiding in the bushes to just jumping out onto the lawn).
posted by nubs at 9:13 AM on October 13, 2016


And I'm still annoyed at how the show is depicting the lack of depth of talent in the government. I mean, what - 1000 people died in the attack? You would still have plenty of bright, ambitious, skilled people around to step in and fill the roles left by their predecessors.

Anyways, I feel like a lot of the improvement over last week was a sharpened focus: the crisis in Michigan, the Algiers situation, the press secretary issue, and the First Lady's problems with a legal client. Clear problems, some resolutions, and some new complications. Kirkman gets a chance to show his authority and decisiveness, along with his quieter leadership qualities; the First Lady gets some added depth; and we get some forward momentum happening.

Room 105.
posted by nubs at 9:42 AM on October 13, 2016


Room 105.

Ugh if they go in on that X-Files "Someone knows everything but is only willing to dole it out in small doses to heighten the tension" bullshit.
posted by Etrigan at 10:03 AM on October 13, 2016


Room 105.

It's a Braindead crossover! (Designated Survivor needs a Jonathan Coultan recap song.)
posted by Catblack at 10:47 AM on October 13, 2016 [2 favorites]


Well, yeah, but every show needs those.

Except Galavant. They can't afford him.
posted by Etrigan at 11:00 AM on October 13, 2016


Ugh if they go in on that X-Files "Someone knows everything but is only willing to dole it out in small doses to heighten the tension" bullshit.

Oh, you know they are going there. They already have. Why does the mystery person say to find room 105 and that it will provide the answers instead of just, you know, providing the answers themselves?
posted by nubs at 1:39 PM on October 13, 2016 [1 favorite]


Why does the mystery person say to find room 105 and that it will provide the answers instead of just, you know, providing the answers themselves?

Best-case scenario: There's a container of some kind filled with proof of [insert conspiracy here], which would sound like some crazy-ass shit if the mystery person just said it out loud.

I ain't betting on the best-case scenario.
posted by Etrigan at 6:31 PM on October 13, 2016 [1 favorite]


Good bet I think. I mean, FFS, room 105 of what? Let's not be too helpful, mystery caller.
posted by nubs at 7:59 PM on October 13, 2016 [1 favorite]


I feel this show has lots of plot flaws, stock characters, and I already wish they'd get rid of the teenage son, but I can't help watching anyway. It's engaging and escapist.

Kiefer Sutherland is fantastic and really lifts the show up. So does Kal Penn.

I want to know what's up with McLeish. I like the hints we've had that this is a domestic bomber. Far more interesting than the usual evil foreign baddies.
posted by daybeforetheday at 10:40 PM on October 14, 2016 [1 favorite]


I want this show to be so much better than it is.

The problems I keep coming back down to are actually as basic as production design and casting. Their version of the White House looks like a suburban office park (with really high ceilings) and there are apparently about ten people who work there. Any show set in the White House is going to be compared to The West Wing, of course, and this show falls incredibly far short of that standard. Think about how many assistants and lower-level staffers were established in the first four episodes of West Wing. Was President Kirkman's secretary even on screen this episode, or did he just yell at him through the door?

And I will keep watching, but the scene I will look back on as when I should have quit was the President saying that the reason that the First Lady is the lawyer he is consulting on whether he can nationalize the National Guard is, although she is an immigration lawyer, that she did really good in constitutional law, too.
posted by jimw at 11:26 AM on October 16, 2016 [3 favorites]


My husband and I are both lawyers and we were laughing so much at him consulting the First Lady about the national guard. They've already established in the second (?) episode that yes, there are in fact still attorneys at DOJ who they can consult on things. The fact she quoted a statute verbatim off the top of her head for something nobody on earth, let alone an immigration attorney, would have a reason to have memorized was even more ridiculous.
posted by gatorae at 7:59 AM on October 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


That's just regular TV stuff -- lawyer is a lawyer is a lawyer. It's actually kind of worse that they admitted there are further nuances to "being a lawyer" and then tried to handwave it.
posted by Etrigan at 8:11 AM on October 17, 2016


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