Netflix revives Kiefer Sutherland political thriller Designated Survivor for third series

By Jack Beresford

September 06, 2018

DESIGNATED SURVIVOR, the American TV drama series focusing on Kiefer Sutherland’s de facto President Tom Kirkman, has been revived by Netflix.

The series, which saw Sutherland’s character thrust into the White House after a terrorist attack kills most of the US cabinet, was previously cancelled after just two seasons by ABC.

Available to UK and Irish viewers via Netflix, the series garnered positive reviews from critics, even as the show’s viewership began to decline in the US.

While the show’s premiere attracted around 10 million viewers by the end of its run on ABC the series was drawing audiences as low as 3.29 million.

Netflix is reviving the series for a 10-episode third season run that will see Neal Baer take over as showrunner.

Baer is best known for his work on hit shows like ER and Law & Order.

“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to play President Kirkman for season 3 of Designated Survivor with Netflix,” Sutherland said.

“I believe this format will allow us to continue to delve deeply into storylines and issues concerning the American electorate that were not previously possible.”



According to The Hollywood Reporter, the show’s third season looks set to tackle issues closer to home, following on from two seasons centering on issues around terrorism.

Fake news, political campaigning and the murky areas of campaign financing will all be touched upon.

Netflix’s decision comes ahead of the final season of the streaming service’s other major US political drama, House of Cards.

House of Cards is wrapping things up with a final season focusing on Robin Wright, who will take centre stage following the departure of Kevin Spacey from the series.