Designated Survivor Recap Kirkman Shot

Designated Survivor Ends Fall Run With a Bang: Will You Return When It Does?

As foretold by Maggie Q, Designated Survivor‘s FBI Agent Hannah Wells entered “full Jack Bauer” mode this Wednesday in the ABC freshman’s fall finale.

For one, Hannah not only survived last week’s purposeful Michael Vaughn-ing, she immediately thereafter fended off the not-so-friendly bystander who came to her aide (by trying to choke her). Slamming the pedal to the metal, she knocked away the assailant, crashed her car anew, and then ushered her blood-gushing self out of the vehicle and down the street into an alleyway, while her attacker called into his boss with the bad news.

Hannah and her gnarly abdominal wound then got to colleague Chuck’s (sprawling, amiright?) apartment. Using YouTube, the computer wonk managed to bandage sleeping Hannah up nicely, and then set out to reverse-track the last phone call she got from her mystery tipster. That led Hannah to a convenience store managed by a conveniently computer-proficient clerk, who helped her ID the buyer of the burner that’s been ringing her. Hannah in turn tracked down the caller’s remote cabin, where she found…  dead President Richmond’s also-dead chief of staff, Charlie Langdon?!

Before Langdon can utter anything more than cryptic warnings about Hannah digging into something wayyyyyyyyy huge, a shot rings out from the woods. Hannah manages to gun down the shooter, while Langdon flees. A card key found on the shooter points to a room in an office building that faces the Capitol steps location of Congressman MacLeish’s imminent swearing-in ceremony.

Now, Hannah surely can just call into any number of law enforcement agencies her firm suspicion about an assassination attempt, right? No, because….

As MacLeish planted in POTUS ear last week, the White House has been led to believe that Agent Wells has a “personal” obsession with the VP candidate. And her disappearance from the scene of a suspicious car accident isn’t helping matters. Nor is the eventual spotting of her fleeing a remote cabin, where an unidentified man was gunned down. Add in the fact that, as her FBI file reveals, she was (gasp) dating a (double-gasp) married senator, and she is easily written off as loco. Kirkman, though, wants to give Wells the benefit of a doubt, seeing as she apparently was looking into the Capitol blueprints long before Kirkman got the mysterious file demonstrating how to level the landmark. Plus, Wells allegedly had intel that prompted Kimble to hold up the vote on MacLeish. But as Secret Service agent Mike argues, better to “overreact and be wrong than underestimate [Wells] and live to regret it.”

Amid all the above, Chronicle reporter Lisa chided Seth for blowing her off in the briefing room, and then later blindsided him there with a Q about Majid Nassar’s killer being in custody. To that, Kirkman tells Seth to promise Lisa the exclusive (on Atwood’s confession), if she waits a bit longer. Also, Emily and Aaron shared a kiss, only for her to soon afterward learn that he may have been involved in getting the Capitol explosion demo into the hands of terrorists.

Anyways, with Hannah unable or unwilling to bring anyone else into the loop, she sped to the Capitol, where she was able to abandon her car close enough that she was just a few footsteps away from the crowd. She looked up at the office building facing the steps, spotted the shooter in an open window, and fired off her own shot with a handgun — striking the window sill and seemingly averting his aim as the trigger got squeezed.

Was Kirkman in fact the target? or someone else? And will anyone have gotten shot, when the series resumes its full season on [TBA] March 8? Or will there be no trace of the assassination attempt, further fueling the fallacy of “Crazy Agent Wells”?

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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110 Comments
  1. Mike says:

    will I return when the show come back yes

  2. CM says:

    The First Lady.

  3. Al says:

    It returns March 8th according to promo

  4. laurelnev says:

    This is still a show that needs to decide which path it wants to take, and then settle into it. I keep watching for one reason though. My Dad, who was a huge 24 fan, now likes this, and this way, he’ll have someone to discuss it with. (He doesn’t do this whole internet discussion thang.)

    • MMD says:

      @laurelnev
      What a nice thing to do for your Dad. It’s frustrating when you don’t have anyone to discuss and dissect a show with so I am sure you have made him very happy.

      BTW I agree this needs to decide what direction it is going.

    • geegee says:

      Say hi to Dad, I still love 24, think its one of the best first and more seasons on tv in recent years

    • Rusty James says:

      I didn’t like the last dramatics but have enjoyed the show overall. And it’s one that I can watch with my elderly mom, and after I explain what is going on (!), we can discuss, too. Funny enough, I’ve never noticed any reference made in “real world” to D/S during Congressional gatherings such as last night (2/28; Trump’s first speech

      • Rusty James says:

        ooops, something malfunctioned for me

        As he entered, I did hear one analyst state who that night’s D/S was … first time ever. I wonder how many people had little to no idea what the term means, or even caught the reference. Now, thanks to ABC, some of us do!

        I’m eager for it to return, and I also would like to see it choose a path and dig into it.

      • laurelnev says:

        High five to a fellow “I’m not the ass you always feared” type child! What we do when the roles start reversing. ;)

  5. Dawn says:

    I’ll be back when it returns in march! And I’m seconding the theory that the FLOTUS was the one shot.

  6. Claire says:

    I’m either betting the First Lady was shot, or that Aaron was shot shielding the president, proving his loyalty and making them look elsewhere for the traitor (if only because it’ll take a bullet wound to get him out of this one).

    • Chloe says:

      in the promo it showed aaron pulling emily back after the shot was fired so he survived and i think alex was shot as well

  7. Iris says:

    I will be there but this should have been episode 5.

  8. Tom says:

    Is it really right to say Kirkman shot? We don’t know who was shot.

  9. Mollymoo says:

    Only one actor on the Capital Steps is slated for a 10 episode season on IMBD. The rest are down for 22. My guess is the goner is the one with the short run. :) my son and I like the show. Hate the long winter breaks.

    • Joe Castrianni says:

      IMDB only has Virginia Madsen down for six episodes, so I don’t know how accurate it is as a source for who was shot.

    • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

      A well-trained chimpanzee can ostensibly submit edits to IMDb, and a large book could be made of such “oopsies,” so….

      • Mails24 says:

        Matt, are you sticking with this show (or would you if you weren’t paid to)? Being a huge 24 fan, I want to like it, but I just kept rolling my eyes at everything Maggie Q’s character went through in this ep, while Seth’s biggest problem is a reporter. The show needs to figure out if it wants to be the West Wing/Madame Secretary or the next 24.

        • mary says:

          If you read what the writers had in mind with the series, they want to be a little Of West Wing, Homeland, etc. I don’t have a problem with it. It’s focusing on the conspiracy-which the president has just figured out-while trying to get the government on track. The two are dependent on one another as we know.

        • Rusty James says:

          After listening to Spicer the first time, I wanted to draft whoever writes Seth’s lines to serve instead!

      • Nan says:

        LOL. So right. I look at everything on the ‘net with squinty eyes. Wasn’t the old saying only believe 10% of what you read? I am not even that high with the web. BTW- I like this show. I was a little skeptical when it premiered but it is ramping up quickly.

  10. Cindy says:

    There were 2 “cheap shots” in this episode. One was the shot at the end, which reminded me of the old “who shot JR?” cliffhanger. Annoying, and it’s been done before. Why can’t the writers come up with something better? The other cheap shot is that the evil VP is some sort of super-nationalist – the sort of bogeyman that the left loves to invent to distract us from real radical Islamist terrorists..

    • drb999 says:

      So the VP is basically some Alt Right guy? The Alt Right is real but way overblown. Most of those guys couldn’t fight their way out of a soggy paper bag.

    • Aeol says:

      I think it’s more than just a play at nationalist/neo nazi machinations. With all of the war crime stuff, and the suddenly-weird relationship with his wife, it feels more like a Manchurian candidate, secret power society-type thing. Nationalists are out in the open. MacLeish’s string-pullers are in the midst of a global conspiracy.

      • PatriciaLee says:

        I’m going to be totally bummed out if Atwood stays in jail. This show has to move faster in moving him back into the team. So far, the show has caught my attention.

  11. Kevin says:

    Talk about a suspenseful cliffhanger no one saw it coming and kudos to Maggie Q’s character in full Jack Bauer mode. Designated Survivor is becoming like 24 all over again and I can’t wait when the series returns March 8th (promo says – who took the bullet). BTW, the cliffhanger reminds me of that moment in the Season 1 finale of West Wing.

  12. M Thomason says:

    I think Kirkman’s wife got shot and that she will die.

    • MIKE HAMMER says:

      Hopefully, the head writer got hit then perhaps the replacement will move the show along with a modicum of tension and suspense and give the President a backbone and enough already with the endless whining and handwringing.
      When last I looked the alt-right never flew 747’s into buildings or slaughtered LGBT Americans at a nite club or murdered fellow employees at a Christmas party. Maybe release the Governor of Michigan being held unlawfully and appoint him head of Homeland Security or reinstate the General relieved of command and actually let him engage the enemy?
      This far left Hollywood wet dream — Islam peaceful/America evil/dweeb lefty President wonderful/Conservative pols clear and present threat to the world— was clearly created figuring the Hillary Administration and just like the Dems, completely missed the national mood. IF they want to stay on the air for more than one season better get with the national agenda: MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN, not nibble at her ankles!

    • geegee says:

      I love her character so I do hope she does not die. I like they are writing her not as “woman behind the man”, but woman in her own right, smart and composed and successful, ambitious, etc. I think she brings a lot of balance to the doubtful Bauer, ehm, Kirkman, and she should have more to do in the future of the show.

      Actually I think all three major female parts are well constructed, more so than males – I can see women characters clearly, while men are mostly pretty stock-y characters still.

  13. Elda Anazagasty says:

    I love this show. Seems like it is mimicking our current real dilema for the gruntle, dissatisfied dems.

  14. parstl says:

    March 8th…March 8th?! It doesn’t come back for nearly three months. TV line did an article last week with the return dated and most shows are back by the end of January. I commented to that article recalling a couple of other first year shows that were hurt by long breaks. This is an excellent show and it is unfortunate that it may lose a significant amount of its audience.
    The finale was good except the Secret Service would have sealed shut Windows anywhere near where the president was scheduled to speak.

    • Guest says:

      The schedule for this show is so frustrating! ABC is risking a great show leaving it off the air til March!

      Unrelated – it’s pretty bad when real life politics is even more shocking than a tv show.

  15. Elda Anazagasty says:

    Awesome show. I love this show. Seems like it is mimicking our current real dilema for the gruntle, dissatisfied dems.

  16. justsomeguy says:

    Going off the air for 3 months will kill this show, imo. It’s too bad, it’s really entertaining.

  17. we all already know nobody died tonight…that kinda sucked…

  18. peterwdawson says:

    Not bad at all. I dunno if the show still fully has me but it’s way more competent in general than some comparable programs. Some arcs are of course more enjoyable than others but in general it’s grabbing.

  19. Mike Feist says:

    Like how it shows the internal political processes work in White House.

  20. drb999 says:

    The assassin’s shot went astray by Hannah taking a shot at him. Either he hit McLeish or hit Emily and she does and cant tell anyone that Aaron may be the traitor because she dies.

    They may have well had McLeish and his wife wearing the red Trump MAGA hats on as they mentioned bringing baakc the American empire. Sheesh…tone it down next time.

    • mary says:

      They showed Emily in the preview for March. She wasn’t hit & she was looking down at someone on the steps-as though that was the person shot.

  21. DJ Doena says:

    March 8? By that time the show will long be forgotten…

  22. Cordell Garrett says:

    I still think that General who Kirkman fired is involved in this somehow.

  23. mgs2277 says:

    Can we get back to Jason Dohring as Batman.? Because that could work…
    And yes I’ll be back in March

  24. Amanda says:

    I’ll for sure be back in March. This show has been great and I love the mix of “The West Wing” and “24” it has. Keifer is doing a great job as the President and I love the cast. I think either the First Lady, McLease, or Aaron got shot. If it’s Aaron it would fit even more with how this cliffhanger reminded of the first season of “The West Wing” as he’s been reminding me of Josh Lyman. It would also help clear him as I feel he’s being set up especially since his former boss is alive, and I like Aaron and Emily together. Really liking Hannah investigating on her own and very much like Jack Bauer. Hate the long hiatus but do like getting the episodes with limited breaks in the Spring.

  25. bluegrassboy75 says:

    Love the show!! I think the person who was shot will end up being Secret Service agent Mike Ritter. No theory, just a guess.

  26. Jennifer says:

    Kieffer Sutherland has done it again. I’m hooked as I was with 24. I’m not happy having to wait until March. Better late than never. I give the show 👍👍.

  27. ellajasper says:

    Two things. First, I think these fall finales and 3 months off are ridiculous. If they want to make these shows a hit, then stay with them. I remember the “old days” when we had reruns for a couple of weeks over Christmas breaks.
    Second, I still say smarten up these characters, especially the President. Who really thinks the head of the FBI would kill the prisoner? Come on! NO ONE thinks he might be blackmailed into confessing. Give the audience a little credit.

  28. kmw says:

    Yes I will come back. It is an entertaining show. Always realistic? No but sure is entertaining and good performances from everyone

  29. Thank you for the Michael Vaughn comparison, Matt Webb Mitovich. I STILL miss Alias =)

  30. Mommaknowsbest says:

    MARCH?!?!? You gotta be kidding me!! ABC is taking a big chance that this audience will come back in 12 weeks; that’s a long time for people to find other things to do or watch in that time slot on Wednesday night. Matt, have they even said what they’re putting in it’s place in the meantime?

  31. Diggy says:

    The first lady got shot, will die on the table & come back to life. The writers will use that as part of Kirkman’s transformation into more of a hawkish, darker figure. I’d love it if this show was less predictable but it’s track record thus far suggests otherwise. I’d rather watch an entire show focused on Kal Penn’s character. :)

  32. Cat says:

    Except for the fact that it is on the wrong network, I would say Rittenhouse is behind all of it!

  33. BillyBobJohnson says:

    I think it’s the First Lady. She was standing to POTUS’ left. When the bullet struck the window casing, the shooter jerked right slightly in surprise. Yes, I’ll watch every episode! Just wish it was beforel March.

  34. Press Aware says:

    Two mistakes: 1) A White House reporter would never blow an exclusive by asking about it during the news briefing. Then everyone gets the story without having to attribute it to your news organization. You’d do it by phone. 2) A White House press pass does not give you the freedom to wander about the corridors following aides.

    Mitigating factor: It’s just tv.

  35. I will definitely be back in March. Loved 24 and decided to give this a chance. So glad I did – what a fantastic show!

  36. PhilipDC says:

    My wife and I gave up on DS a few shows back–just found it to be incredibly dumb.

  37. Enjoyed first episode and thought series had promise but it quickly went down hill. Very contrived and the plot was laughable at times. Stuck with it and will probably watch in on its retrun but wouldn’t be devastated if it we cancelled after the first season.

  38. Sandy says:

    I wish Kirkman would not be so agreeable, want him to be stronger. Maggie Q is the best actress so glad they are showing her more. Now if Kirkman and Hannah would work together to get these bad guys. Love this show, started out a little slow but is picking up now. I guess I just keep wanting Jack Bauer to kick ass.

  39. melaniedhi says:

    Loving it!

  40. Jerry Wilker says:

    no i quit but i will stay with your competitor cbs for Blue Bloods because they don’t do what you are doing with this show. I think that now the show won’t make season 2 due to too long of a wait.

  41. Torgen Schneider says:

    Great show and I’m glad the ratings are good. What I don’t like is the long wait for its return. What is it with ABC and the long winter breaks for its best shows? Seriously, March 8? by that time even the greatest show will have a hard time luring back its audience. Really, can someone please tell ABC that this extended hiatus is a major bummer?

  42. monxxx says:

    I think McLeash was shot and they will accuse Hannah and arrest her. In this way the new season will take a complately different route. It will turn more into a soap opera in this case (hopefully not), but I don’t think it will be the First Lady. Anyway, let’s hope the second season has a proper end. Don’t like these breaks.

  43. Patty says:

    Ugh, I like this show but it’s making it hard to keep with it. The mistakes made by a professionally trained FBI agent, the inability to get the evidence to its destination, leaving the evidence behind, running through the crowd like a maniac waving a guy (not to mention it’s been way overdone). And then POTUS et al get word that there’s a traitor amongst them. And the sole survivor doesn’t automatically pop into their mind? I like some of the characters, I like the premise, but I’m finding the writing more and more hard to take. I’ll give the 2nd half a shot.

  44. Tony says:

    There’s a lot of stupidity going on when lends what is a good show to become annoying. The Presidents security guy really can’t figure why Hannah might be involved in a shoot out ? Really ? After she was on her way with evidence to the speaker and was involved in an accident, which would be seen from the damage that she was side swiped.

    Hannah, knowng that someone in Room 7 of a room in an adjacent building is going to shot the President decided she is the only person to deal with the situation. At least she should have called DC Police etc to focus attention on the threat.

  45. John says:

    …march…next year….you gotta be freakin kidding me…..what is that …10 shows, that’s it for 3 o4 months……appears that’s the “norm” these days, doesn’t mean I have to like it….nevertheless, it’s a terrific show, never missed a minute…..can’t wait to see who got hit….excellent “cliff-hanger”…..but March!!!!!,?????!!!!!….come on man…..!!

  46. Mark says:

    What a nice birthday present ABC is giving me. Can’t wait to see what happens next.

  47. Joan Gossett says:

    Best series on tv

  48. Lisa says:

    My bet is MacLeish’s wife. She’s barely said a word all season. She is pushing for him to betray his country. Hannah will be arrested and not believed and it will leave the question of whether MacLeish will continue on his wife’s mission or turn around and support Kirkland.

  49. Gary says:

    Much to slow, to much dragging the story line (much like “Red John”.
    I guess we don’t have many good screenrighters any more, easier to drag the same theme along then to create new ones each week.
    Not in the same league as M.S.