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Recap / Designated Survivor S 2 E 16 Fallout

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Kirkman's administration and the FBI race against time to find the dirty bomb on American soil before it goes off.


Tropes in this episode:

  • Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene: Kirkman and Darby share a quiet chat in the bunker amidst the hectic search for the bomb.
  • Ambition Is Evil: Discussed by Kirkman and his new vice-president, Ellenor Darby. Turns out that he nominated her for Vice-President based in part on the fact that she didn't actively have designs on the Oval Office.
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  • The Atoner: Director Forstell has become this, holding himself responsible for Alex Kirkman's death.
  • Back for the Dead: FBI Director Forstell hasn't been seen since his investigation into Alex Kirkman and her family came to an abortive end, and he dies at the end of the episode.
  • Cliffhanger/Sequel Hook: The episode ends with Kirkman ordering a military strike on targets in Kunami.
  • Commuting on a Bus: Andrea Frost reappears, this time to employ her firm's proprietary software to seek out those responsible for the bomb.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Kirkman's administration worries that striking Kunami is this. Kirkman orders it anyways.
  • Downer Ending: The bomb goes off, killing Director Forstell and several FBI agents, and Kirkman orders a military strike on Kunami in response.
  • Evil Counterpart: Lyor's Evil Brit former colleague, Greg Bowen, shows up again in the service of Chairman Kim.
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  • Five-Second Foreshadowing: Agent Wells calls up Forstell as soon as she deduces that the real bomb is inside a DC Metro station. Mere seconds later, it goes off.
  • Frame-Up: Turns out that Kunami is framing East Hun Chiu for the bomb threat, to scuttle the peace negotiations with West Hun Chiu and keep the two nations on a war footing, to in turn preserve several billion dollars in arms deals for Kunami.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Several FBI agents are killed when the bomb goes off in a DC Metro station, along with Director Forstell, who charged in to get them out.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Agent Wells and her partner find the bomb maker, but he is already dead from the radiation poisoning.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: Director Forstell and President Kirkman have this understanding over Forstell's prosecution of the FBI investigation.
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  • Inspector Javert: Agent Wells gets more and more belligerent at Joon Kim as he keeps his silence.
  • Number Two: The episode confirms that Ellenor Darby has officially become the new Vice-President after being nominated by Kirkman.
  • Qurac: The emirate of Kunami shows up again.
  • Redemption Equals Death: A subplot deals with Director Forstell trying to apologize to Tom for his investigation into the First Lady's family which indirectly led to Alex Kirkman's death. He succeeds, but then promptly dies in the explosion of the dirty bomb.
  • Red Herring:
    • When Chairman Kim's son Joon goes missing, it's assumed that he's involved with an East Hun Chiuan plot. Turns out that he tried to seek out his girlfriend.
    • The first bomb the FBI finds is a pipe bomb with minimal explosive power and none of the missing radioactive material. This leads Agent Wells, her partner, and the rest of the FBI to search for wherever the real bomb went.
  • Ripped from the Headlines: Andrea Frost's firm's proprietary data-mining software, L.Y.R.A., is a clear allegory for Facebook and other corporations or government agencies which have prominently been doing the same thing.
  • Spotting the Thread:
    • Intrepid Reporter Simon Day and other members of the Press Corps manage to deduce that a crisis is afoot when Kirkman and much of his administration are nowhere to be found all at once (being hustled to the White House bunker) and the Speaker of the House is away.
    • Chuck Russink does this again, figuring out the route that the bomb maker's van took to drop off the bomb.
      Chuck: Suck it, L.Y.R.A.note 
  • War for Fun and Profit: Kunami is manufacturing a pretext to keep East and West Hun Chiu at war to preserve billions of dollars in arms deals for Kunami interests.
  • You Are Too Late: Chuck Russink, Agent Wells and Wells' new partner deduce that the bomb has been taken to a DC Metro station and inform Director Forstell, but it goes off as Forstell runs into the station to extract his agents.

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