Anyone hoping that this show will be like "24" may be sorely
dissappointed. If you liked that show because of its
non-stop action and it's right-wing, paranoid viewpoint, you
will not get that here. If you liked that show because of
the handsome hero (Kiefer Sutherland) and the political
conspiracies in the white house, and other conspiracies
among terrorists and other people, then you may indeed enjoy
this show as well. It's a little bit like West Wing, but
without all of the humor and pithy dialogue (and largely
without the soap opera-excesses of that show as well).
Sutherland plays the U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban
Development, Tom Kirkland. He's unhappy because the
president is not using his input in his speeches (and
presumably in his plans), but then the president suggests
that he might be better off as an ambassador somewhere else.
Essentially, he fires him. Just after that happens, though,
the President and almost everyone else in the government is
killed in a bomb in Washington, DC.
Tom was chosen before this event as the "designated
survivor," something that, I guess, they do in real life.
He's the one who gets to be sworn in as president if
everyone else dies. Perhaps the DS is chosen well in
advance, and that's why they chose the same man that the
president fired that same day (seems unlikely). A Republican
Senator, Kimble Hookstraten (Virginia Madsen), also survived
as the secondary DS. I don't believe they ever say
which party Tom and the late President are, but I think
we're supposed to think that they're Democrats.
Tom is unsure, at first, whether he event wants to be
President, but he is forced to adapt to the job as best he
can. He has to learn how things really work, and quickly. He
has to be tough and not let everyone walk all over him, but
he wants to make the right decisions.
They don't know who set the bombs. There are clues, but some
of the clues may be fake. This is the big mystery.
Maggie Q plays an FBI agent that helps uncover the truth.
Kal Penn, who briefly worked in Obama's White House in real
life, plays a former speechwriter who becomes White House
Tom's family are a big part of the show. He and his wife
seem to have a good relationship, but there are some secrets
there. Tom's son, Leo, likes to party. Tom's family
has to also quickly learn to adapt in their new home, and
their new life. The other characters are Tom's Chief
of Staff, his Senior Advisor, and more.
Many of the people in the show seem to have their own
secrets and agenda, and they're not all on Tom's side. I
love Sutherland, and this show is very good, and enjoyable.
I could do without all of the flag-waving (the bombing is
supposed to remind us of 9/11), but otherwise, it's a good
show, and I look forward to seeing how it plays out. I don't
watch "Scandal" or "Madam Secretary," so I can't tell you
how it compares to those other political dramas. Check it
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