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Recap / Designated Survivor S 2 E 11 Grief

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Ten weeks after Alex Kirkman's death, Tom is still trying to come to terms with his grief while struggling to defuse a hostage situation involving a group of trade delegates caught in Cuba.

Tropes in this episode:

  • The Cast Showoff: Adan Canto plays Aaron Shore and is fluently bilingual in English and Spanish, which he gets to demonstrate.
  • Cliffhanger/Sequel Hook: Damian turns up in Hannah's apartment with a *Click* Hello.
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  • Cliffhanger Copout: A helicopter is sent to reconnoiter the rebel camp and encounters incoming fire, which results in apparently being Disconnected by Death from the perspective of Kirkman and the others in the White House command ops centre. After the commercial break, it is offhandedly mentioned that the anti-aircraft fire merely took out the camera feed, and the helicopter limped back to the American fleet offshore.
  • Creator Cameo: Episode director Timothy Busfield plays Kirkman's therapist.
  • False Flag Operation: Of sorts. The leader of the Cuban rebels has struck a bargain with the Cuban president to get the rest of his rebel organization demolished by the American military, while the lead insurrectionist himself retires to a life of relative peace.
  • Innocence Lost: A flashback shows how distraught Leo and Penny Kirkman were when Tom had to inform them of their mother's death, followed by Alex's subsequent funeral.
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  • The Lost Lenore: Alex is heavily this for Tom, and it's impacting his ability to function as president.
  • The Mole: A prominent businessman on the trip is actually in league with the Cuban rebels, which Hannah witnesses and reveals to Aaron.
  • Obfuscating Disability: A businessman who is actually The Mole fakes a broken hand to hide his ties with the rebels. Aaron notices that the man's wrist and hand are actually fine, and proves it by tossing the man a fruit.
  • Ripped from the Headlines: Cuba and the United States seeking closer international ties.
  • The Shrink: Kirkman has unhappily been seeing one, played by director Timothy Busfield.
  • Time Skip: It's been about ten weeks in-universe since Alex Kirkman's death in the preceding episode, "Line of Fire".
  • We Need a Distraction: Aaron gets into a deliberate and physical argument to provide cover for Hannah escaping the shack the captives are held in. Unfortunately, she is recaptured before getting too far.


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