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S01.E01: Pilot

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11 hours ago, ProfCrash said:

Ford was elected as a Representative from Michigan and was the Minority Leader of the House of Representatives when he became the Vice President when the Democrats, who controlled the House at the time, insisted that Ford be named the new VP.

So while he was not elected on the national ticket, he was elected by some segment of America and approved of by the House of Representatives.

That bit about Ford being elected somewhere is true, but it's also a bit of a copout if anyone was really using it as a real world justification for a President truly being elected. 

I mean for all we know, Kirkman could have been elected Dogcatcher or a City Councilman somewhere. Does it really make a difference? And Kirkman, as a Cabinet member, also required Senate approval (just as much as Ford did to become a replacement VP). 

2 hours ago, blackwing said:

I know we are supposed to dislike the general, and, well, I did.  It didn't help that he is played by the same actor who plays the truly asstastic Richard Woodhull on "Turn".

It was sloppily done though with how overt his villainy was. It needed at least a shade of "what if he's right" and we got none. 

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^^^There is no way to present that fool as right. Of course the script is going to have Kirkman's macho posturing "succeed," so that the Iranian boats cower. But suppose the writers had been writing a real plot, instead of setting up a fake heroic scene. Suppose the Iranians had not withdrawn within three hours because they were afraid of the "hard charging" carrier group from a destabilized hostile power catching them at harbor, like sitting ducks? Then Kirkman is bombing Tehran, and starting a war. What happens if it turns out the perpetrators of the real assault, the slaughter at the Capitol, were Islamic State et al.? Iran is one of the key states fighting Islamic State, versus the IS allies of Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey and indirectly the US. For no particular reason at all, Kirkman committed to the US to a possible war against Iran when Iran's military influence could very well play a vital role in a war against the true enemy!

Perhaps the show is committed to cobbling up similar fake triumphs, where badassery rules. If so, I for one won't be able to tolerate much of that. But maybe casting Bauer was the announcement of where they're going?

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I don't think I liked the pilot very much, mostly because of all the political fluff that seemed to bore me. Unlike others here, I was actually rather interested in both the scheming general and the drug-dealing son. I'm especially wondering how the son knows "Mike" on such a first name basis. That moment definitely got my attention. I'll keep watching because I wonder if this show might actually become really soapy in certain ways amidst all of the politics.

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Maggie Q starred in the CW series Nikita, which was based on the film La Femme Nikita. Last year/season she starred in the CBS series Stalker, with her now-fiancé, Dylan McDermott. That's just her TV work.

Thanks, BW Manilowe; I'm not familiar with either of the shows you mention, so this show is still the first time I'm seeing or hearing of her. Clearly, she's quite established.

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I like the concept of this-man lowest possible on the totem pole suddenly gets thrust into the spotlight as the President. But where will they take this, and for how long is what I'm wondering.

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I don't think that guy taking the pictures is necessarily a bad guy, but I thought it was pretty awful that Kirkman had to get sworn in while wearing a college hoodie.  That picture is going to be memorialised forever.  When the Secret Service agents went to his home to collect his children, why couldn't they have gone into the closet and packed a suit for him, instead of him having to borrow a suit from his conveniently same-sized aide.

But I get it... he was wearing the hoodie to show how unlikely it was that he is now the President.  I would have thought that even if he was the Designated Survivor that he would have put on a suit to hole up in that secure room, after all, it was technically a work function for him.  It could be argued that he would have nothing to do, so why bother with business attire.  But there were other professional people from his staff or from the White House there and they were in working attire.

Meanwhile, his wife (who somehow was allowed to be with him at this secret location) was all dressed up like she was going out to a fancy dinner.  Because we can allow the loser accidental president to look like a schlub but not a woman?  He at least could have worn business casual attire.  A button down dress shirt and a pair of khakis or wool pants.  I refuse to believe that any politician ventures out onto the streets of DC in public looking like a schlub.

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14 minutes ago, blackwing said:

I don't think that guy taking the pictures is necessarily a bad guy, but I thought it was pretty awful that Kirkman had to get sworn in while wearing a college hoodie.  That picture is going to be memorialised forever.  When the Secret Service agents went to his home to collect his children, why couldn't they have gone into the closet and packed a suit for him, instead of him having to borrow a suit from his conveniently same-sized aide.

But I get it... he was wearing the hoodie to show how unlikely it was that he is now the President.  I would have thought that even if he was the Designated Survivor that he would have put on a suit to hole up in that secure room, after all, it was technically a work function for him.  It could be argued that he would have nothing to do, so why bother with business attire.  But there were other professional people from his staff or from the White House there and they were in working attire.

Meanwhile, his wife (who somehow was allowed to be with him at this secret location) was all dressed up like she was going out to a fancy dinner.  Because we can allow the loser accidental president to look like a schlub but not a woman?  He at least could have worn business casual attire.  A button down dress shirt and a pair of khakis or wool pants.  I refuse to believe that any politician ventures out onto the streets of DC in public looking like a schlub.

I do think it was a disconnect to have Kirkman as casual as possible and his wife dressed to the nines, but I don't have a problem with his casual attire.  The guy had basically gotten fired and then told that he'd have to spend the night locked up in some undisclosed location while basically the world went on without him (which, of course, turned out to be a good thing).  While I think it would have been more realistic to have his wife similarly attired, I think it would have been ridiculous to have him sitting wherever he was drinking a beer in a three-piece suit.

As for taking the oath, I think they have to do that as soon as they possibly can....but I suppose he could have swapped clothes with the Trump jr.-ish asshat who fired him earlier that day (isn't that whose clothes he was wearing by the end of the ep?)

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The actions of the people in the Situation Room/bunker really rang false to me.  I don't care that there's an unfathomable crisis happening; every single person in that room would have been knowledgeable about the chain of command and would have enough experience to have their actions regarding protocol be almost automatic.  If they were in that room, they would have known that Kirkman was the Designated Survivor and, considering what happened, wouldn't have to be told/informed/reminded that their Commander in Chief just walked in.  It was unbelievable that the Chief of Staff (I think?) had to bang on the table to get their attention.  I know that was to show how much chaos was going on, but the members of the military there would (I assume) be used to swift changes in their command structure and would act accordingly. 

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I  agree the first soldier to see President Kirkman would  have called for attention forcing the General from Doctor Strangelove to show respect to the office 

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Raja, thank you.  I am willing to suspend a lot of disbelief but there is simply no way in hell a senior officer, let along the CIC, walks into any room, anywhere, unnoticed by military personnel present.  Sorry, just will not happen.

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Exactly.  Several years ago, I went on a tour of the Pentagon, hosted by a non-military friend.  I don't know what the normal tour sees, but we were able to freely go through where the Joint Chiefs offices were and to the interior plaza area (ground zero, I guess it's called).  We didn't see too many people in this area, but what I did see, was notable.  Most of the offices were open and anyone coming or going was at attention or prepared to be so.  Heck, there was one door that was manned by a member of the military (not sure why).  Obviously we didn't get saluted or anything, but the way he opened the door spoke volumes as to how well they are trained in those positions.  We were no one, so he could have just opened the door, but he did the whole silent, precise step thing.

So if a member of the military does that for random visitors to the Pentagon (knowing that these casually dressed people might just be visitors of an employee), but still does pretty much everything but salute as an automatic thing, then I find it ridiculous that the new president would be treated with less respect, regardless of whether he was the Secretary of HUD or the Secretary of the local community college, if that was in the line of succession.

Heck, I can't recall any job I've ever had where I haven't been forewarned when the "big" boss is coming.  I've worked in several industries and we've always had a warning call and heeded it, regardless what was going on. 

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Hey, I just wanted to point out that I've seen Italia Ricci's character referred to several times as Kirkman's "assistant." She identified herself as his Chief of Staff. Very, VERY different jobs. :)

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Finally watching this from my DVR, can't believe I forgot that I'd recorded it, was reminded when I listened to The West Wing Weekly podcast today. I haven't read anyone else's responses yet, will do that tomorrow. First thoughts as the pilot ends, I like this show so far. I like Kirkman and his wife, enjoyed Kal Penn's character, Mike the SS agent, is it Aaron he was the Deputy Chief of Staff? so many character so fast I might need to spend time on imdb to get it strait. The general that I'm assuming is the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs (Did they ever specify that?) yeah him I don't like, at all, I understand his concern about Kirkman, I get his concern about the country but something about him rubs me the wrong way.  Now I feel like I need to do some research into what would actually be done to replace Congress.

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Aaron looks like that guy from Blood & Oil...whose child had been kidnapped by Iran Intelligence? I'm too lazy to imdb him to confirm. I'm also enjoying it, despite the ridiculousness of it all. I've always enjoyed Kiefer Sutherland as an actor. Though I only watched the first season of 24, all other roles he was a bad guy, except for that one television movie where Keanu Reeves was the ass, but cool boyfriend, and Kiefer the shy boy who liked Keanu's girlfriend. I can't recall the name of it.

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On 9/21/2016 at 10:13 PM, anna0852 said:

I haven't watched a political show since West Wing and I kept thinking that A) the Situation Room looked wrong B) Fitz and Leo would know what to do and C) I never want to see that image of the Capitol destroyed and in flames again. That hit *way* too close to home.

Yes, yes, yes and now :( for Leo and Fitz. Maybe that's why I don't like this general, Fitz was so much better, or how bout Dr Nancy NcNally? They would be on this but so much better. 

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I can't help but keep comparing this to In the Shadow of Two Gunman, when Leo make sure everyone stood for the vice president, and it was clear that both Nancy and Fitzwallace knew exactly what they were doing.

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1 hour ago, twinkietwin94 said:

Finally watching this from my DVR, can't believe I forgot that I'd recorded it, was reminded when I listened to The West Wing Weekly podcast today. I haven't read anyone else's responses yet, will do that tomorrow. First thoughts as the pilot ends, I like this show so far. I like Kirkman and his wife, enjoyed Kal Penn's character, Mike the SS agent, is it Aaron he was the Deputy Chief of Staff? so many character so fast I might need to spend time on imdb to get it strait. The general that I'm assuming is the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs (Did they ever specify that?) yeah him I don't like, at all, I understand his concern about Kirkman, I get his concern about the country but something about him rubs me the wrong way.  Now I feel like I need to do some research into what would actually be done to replace Congress.

I thought the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs was dead and this was some other guy? One gets that job from the heads of the military, right? They should be promoting someone, but they haven't said is it the general we're seeing.

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25 minutes ago, KaveDweller said:

I thought the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs was dead and this was some other guy? One gets that job from the heads of the military, right? They should be promoting someone, but they haven't said is it the general we're seeing.

Right now we are speculating that the Chairman and all the service Chiefs of Staff were lost on the explosion. Due to rank inflation all of their Vice Chiefs are also 4 star Generals and Admirals and would step up just like a Sergeant does when a Lieutenant is wounded or killed in battle 

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On ‎9‎/‎21‎/‎2016 at 10:58 PM, Constantinople said:

I never understood in real life why, if the Designated Survivor were taken seriously, it wasn't the Secretary of State or Secretary of Defense instead of the Deputy Assistant Undersecretary  for Public Urinals.

It rotates from year to year so it's never the same person twice.  And the designated survivor only takes over if everyone ahead of them in the line of succession were to die.  In 2014, the HUD Secretary was the designated survivor.  Here's a link to a 2014 article that gives a good explanation of the process (and I apologize if someone has already done this - I didn't have time to read through 6 pages of comments to make sure no one had already answered this).

http://www.politico.com/story/2014/01/designated-survivor-state-of-the-union-2014-102658

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On 9/29/2016 at 1:23 PM, LadyMustang65 said:

It rotates from year to year so it's never the same person twice.  And the designated survivor only takes over if everyone ahead of them in the line of succession were to die.  In 2014, the HUD Secretary was the designated survivor.  Here's a link to a 2014 article that gives a good explanation of the process (and I apologize if someone has already done this - I didn't have time to read through 6 pages of comments to make sure no one had already answered this).

http://www.politico.com/story/2014/01/designated-survivor-state-of-the-union-2014-102658

Taking this over to the Real World thread...

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On 9/27/2016 at 4:51 PM, blackwing said:

I refuse to believe that any politician ventures out onto the streets of DC in public looking like a schlub.

I apologize in advance for what you are about to see, but I lived through the 90's, so...

I want to know what kind of crazy bunker of a room Kirkman was in that he was close enough to the Capitol that he could open the shutters and see the giant fireball, but not to have heard or felt the blast while sitting there flipping channels.

BILL-CLINTON-AL-GORE-SHORTS.jpg

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On ‎9‎/‎22‎/‎2016 at 0:59 AM, Silver Raven said:

I hope this new President stops moping around and starts making decisions.  He was just being really annoying. His threat to blow up Tehran was a little over the top, wasn't it?  He could have just threatened to attack their warships.

A Cabinet Secretary serves at the will of the President.  He doesn't get to say "Hell no, I'm holding on to my job."

No this is not "The worst terrorist attack since 9/11".  This is the worst terrorist attack in history.  The entire Congress, Supreme Court, and executive branch were destroyed. I'm also shaking my head that all of this business going on at the White House wasn't being done in a bunker somewhere.

Is there more than one nuclear football?  Didn't the previous President have one with him?

I guess with all of the people scrambling around at the site of Capitol building, the bomb wasn't nuclear?

They couldn't send in a robot to investigate that dud bomb?

Even if Islamic terrorists didn't do this, wouldn't they still want to claim credit, and wouldn't Islamic terrorist leaders still want to relocate their families just in case the US decides to get revenge on the wrong people? 

I bet that general was behind it.

"worst since 9/11" - I think they were talking numbers of people killed.  Now this is probably worse for the US because almost the entire elected govt (and most of the unelected leaders) were killed.  But fewer total people.

Not sure why they weren't at a bunker either.  Or is it that the bunker is under the WH?  Certainly the Situation Room is there.

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On ‎9‎/‎23‎/‎2016 at 3:35 PM, Hanahope said:

Actually, there are 3 footballs.  1 with the president, 1 with the vice president and 1 with another person, maybe head of the secret service?  I assume Kirkman got the third football, that the 2 with the prez and vp blew up.

I liked the premier,  the scene with the blown up capital building was very affecting.  

I expect that there are a couple of people that didn't show up to the state of the union address for one reason or another, but yeah, most of the federal government is gone.

I can see where people in a club may not know right away about the explosion and that was the only 'non-government/police scene shown.  I'm sure the rest of the city/country is in an uproar.

Well, most of the elected federal govt is gone.  But all the career professionals are left, including under secretaries.  I binge watched this week, so can't remember if the 2 DOJ lawyers being idiots with the new President was part of the pilot, but that didn't ring true.  Undersecretaries likely weren't at the State of the Union.

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I couldn't help being reminded of 24 with the son's plotline - it was very reminiscent of the Kim Bauer storyline from Season 1 (teen child sneaks out to take drugs/score). Loved the Secret Service agent spinning the tale of how he mobilised hundreds of agents to track him down - "Really?" "No - We pinged your cell phone!" And when Kirkman was presented with the nuclear football, I half expected him to say, "I know, I've seen it before." There were also Battlestar Galactica vibes where the person assuming the Presidency is an unknown (also about to be fired).

I do wonder if America is always on the verge of a military takeover or do TV writers just think it is. It does seem (I'm completely unspoiled) that it's some internal coup by the General, given the nature of the attack (bomb(s) in the Capitol, presumably and lack of internet chatter). He clearly thinks he should be running things -  for all the General's talk of "He's just the Secretary of Transportation, he's not been elected to anything!" I wanted to yell at the screen "And neither have you!" I also found it unbelievable Tom wouldn't know what the Designated Survivor was (I mean, I knew and I'm not even American) - I get the need to inform the audience, but they could have just had his wife ask him why he couldn't watch their daughter. Though on that subject, at least as President he'll now be working from home, so he can be there to tuck his daughter in at night!

On ‎9‎/‎22‎/‎2016 at 1:12 PM, ProfCrash said:

2) The new President is not going to be wandering into bathrooms by himself. Nor is he going to go into a bathroom with anyone else in it.

This was the one I found completely unbelievable. There is going to be an Agent glued to his shoulder until some sort of order was restored and the Agent is going to check the cubicle for bombs (after all, "they" had just planted bombs in Congress, why not also in the White House?). Paranoia is going to be the order of the day for the foreseeable future.

On ‎9‎/‎22‎/‎2016 at 2:39 PM, kili said:

I'm suspicious of Scott. He's totally involved and not answering his phone because he has more "planned".

I assume he's a fellow FBI/CIA/SS/WTF Agent and is probably in the Capitol. That doesn't preclude him being either a) alive (though presumably, badly injured) or b) involved in the attack, however.

On ‎9‎/‎22‎/‎2016 at 3:26 PM, marinw said:

Kiefer is a very convincing vomiter.

I believe he's had a lot of personal experience!

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