Designated Survivor (

Designated SurvivorCast of Designated Survivor premiere September 21st on ABC

Designated Survivor!
By Ken Werther

In the United States, a designated survivor is an individual in the presidential line of succession who is placed at a physically distant, secure, undisclosed location when the President and the country’s other top leaders are gathered at a single location, such as during State of the Union addresses and presidential inaugurations. The intent is to maintain continuity of government in the event of a catastrophic occurrence that kills the president and others in the line of succession. Did you know any of that? I sure didn’t!

One of the most anticipated new television series this fall is — you guessed it — Designated Survivor. This ABC suspense thriller will star Kiefer Sutherland as Tom Kirkman, the designated survivor who becomes president when very bad things happen. Without warning, Kirkman faces the challenges of keeping the country from falling apart while leading the search to find out who is responsible for the very bad things that landed him in the Oval Office.

After eight seasons of 24, Sutherland was disinclined to take on the rigors of another TV series. When he read the pilot script of Designated Survivor, however, he instantly changed his mind. I’ve seen that pilot episode but I’m not allowed to share anything about it here… so I’ll just say this: plan to watch.

Designated Survivor” premieres on ABC on September 21st.