The streaming giant made the decision to cancel Designated Survivor shortly after the third season. Ever since the announcement, fans have been wondering if it is a popularity stunt or their final call.
Designated Survivor, the political thriller drama series starring Kiefer Sutherland was impactful, and fans were hooked from the first episode. It gave the viewer a glimpse into the life of the POTUS and the problems they deal with every day.
- Designated Survivor earned a straight-to-series order from ABC
- Why ABC canceled the show despite its success
- Netflix has cancelled Designated Survivor yet again..but is this a popularity stunt?
The story follows American politician Thomas Kirkman (Kiefer Sutherland), the U.S. Secretary of housing and urban development. He was named designated survivor for the State of The Union address, when an explosion blows up the Capitol Building. Kirkman suddenly ascends from his Secretary position and is immediately sworn in as the President.
The first few episodes follow him as he learns about his inexperience as a leader, eventually growing more confident. He becomes a hero, doesn’t refrain from talking about important subjects and gets his colleagues to trust him. Designated Survivor sometimes feels like a political soap opera, but its writing and performances make the show an entertaining glimpse into the workings of the White House.
Netflix decided to cancel Designated Survivor once again, but is this the truth or just a publicity stunt? Keep reading to find out.
Designated Survivor earned a straight-to-series order from ABC
The series marked Actor Kiefer Sutherland’s first television comeback, since he played Jack Bauer in the Fox drama series 24. Just two years later, Sutherland was back to suit up for his role as President Thomas Kirkman in Designated Survivor.
The original ABC series follows Kirman as he is sworn in as the leader of the free world. An explosion at the State Of The Union address kills everyone ahead of him in the presidential line of succession. Kirkman was the designated survivor that evening, and suddenly finds himself in the most terrifying situation ever. He must now make decisions that affect an entire nation, uncover the truth behind the devastating attack.
The ABC series skipped the pilot stage, earning a straight-to-series order particularly because of how popular Sutherland’s really was. He had been really captivated by the script. At the TCA tour back in August, he had some words to share.
“I remember getting to the end and realising I was potentially holding the next 10 years of my life in my hands. I felt the script was so beautifully structured.”
Unfortunately, ABC didn’t feel the same way and cancelled the series shortly after the second season premiered.
Why ABC canceled the show despite its success
The apparent reason behind ABC’s decision to cancel Designated Survivor was the ratings plunge during the second season. The series’ viewership sealed its fate when the network tracked a massive loss of traction during its delayed viewing.
The secondseason had an average of 8.6 million viewers and a 1.7 rating in adults 18-49 in L7. The number was staggeringly less compared to the first season’s 12.1 million viewers and its 2.9 rating. The network also lacked a definitive roadmap to navigate through with the third season.
While some say the ratings are to be blamed, some sources talk about Sutherland’s frustration with the creative team. There were rumours that the actor felt detached from the show because of the twists that turns the series took.
There were too many changes behind the scenes that frustrated the lead actor and eventually led to the series’ demise. But that was for a short while, before Netflix renewed the series for a third season again!
Netflix has cancelled Designated Survivor yet again..but is this a popularity stunt?
After ABC decided to cancel Designated Survivor, fans rejoiced as Netflix snapped the political thriller for a brand new season. They took away all chances of celebration by cancelling the show once again, after releasing ten new episodes.
The third season saw the cast together in action again, new characters made appearances and a new threat loomed over. The third season ended with small cliffhangers that saw Kirkman embrace the politics of greed, and a new biochemical emergency.
: Fans hoped that the new story arcs would be unraveled in the fourth season. But following ABC’s old footsteps, Netflix decided to cancel Designated Survivor, to the dismay of fans. Netflix has announced this officially so we hardly think this could be a publicity stunt. The show was popular during its time, but the plunging ratings and rumours of a limited contract ended its story.
Do you think Netflix will change their decision and renew Designated Survivor again? Let us know what you think in the comments.