Designated Survivor: Episode 4 Recap


Spoilers ahead for Designated Survivor’s Episode 4: The Enemy.

Man, what an show! Episode 4 was tense, heavy, and full of twists and turns! The President dealt with insurrection and insubordination at every turn and showed his mettle several times. Here’s a few of the highlights.

General Cochrane

The episode begins with an agent sending info regarding the location of Majid Nassar, the man who took responsibility for the attacks, before getting captured by the terrorists. General Cochrane urges the President to attack. However, the President refuses to order an attack that could potentially kill the American agent that sent them the information. He orders them to wait the 24 hours and let the agent get clear before moving to attack.

When the President’s back is turned, Cochrane goes ahead and orders the attack, directly disobeying the Commander in Chief. When Kirkman realizes this, he fires him on the spot!

Designated Survivor Episode 4 Recap

Mykelti Williamson as Admiral Chernow

Afterwards, the agent’s body shows up on the American embassy, removing all of the President’s hesitations. He gives Admiral Chernow (Bubba from Forrest Gump) command and orders him to prep for war. Let’s do this.

Governor Royce

When the governor of Michigan learns that President Kirkman was asked to step down before the State of the Union and subsequent destruction, he uses that to justify his Islamophobic agenda. When Kirkman sends his Special Advisor Emily Rhodes to oversee a peaceful protest by Michigan citizens, Royce blocks her leaving the tarmac and refuses to acknowledge her federal authority. Kirkman responds by mobilizing the National Guard to keep the peace and enforce civil rights, but in a sudden twist, General Munez declares his allegiance to the Governor and defies the direct orders from the President!

Designated Survivor Episode 4 Recap

Governor Royce Defying the President


Emily does some quick thinking and gets the Islamic American Coalition to come to the airport for their protest. This forces Governor Royce to either fire on unarmed citizens on live TV or meet with the President, which he does. He boards the plane and off they go to D.C. When he arrives to parlay with Kirkman, the President immediately has him arrested for treason, much to his surprise (and mine).

Again, Kirkman’s not messing around.


FBI agent Hannah Wells continues her investigation into how Congressman Peter MacLeish survived the attack. She checks his alibi and it checks out. Disappointed in herself and how her emotions made her want to find MacLeish guilty, she asks to be reassigned. The Deputy Director of the FBI Jason Atwood tells her to sleep on it. Well, that was a good idea it turns out, because as she’s in bed she gets a cryptic phone call telling her to “Find Room 105, and you’ll understand more about Peter MacLeish”.

Designated Survivor Episode 4 Recap

What is Room 105?


Notable Points

  • There’s some definite flirting going on between Shore and Rhodes. What’s going on there?
  • Hookstraten is increasingly frustrated by Kirkman shutting her out. When Alex Kirkman goes to her for help in an immigration case, she jumps at the opportunity to have the First Lady owe her a favor. That won’t end well…
  • Seth Wright steps up and assumes the role of White House Press Secretary, a position Kirkman later offers him. And he accepts. That should be good to see, as he’s a very capable communicator! He gives a very moving speech near the end of the episode.

Next Episode

Well, hopefully we will see a bit more into how the public sees President Kirkman’s show of force and whether or not they are incensed or impressed. Honestly, who knows what they’ll think? And what secret is Peter MacLeish hiding? Also, it will good to see the beginning of the counter-attack on the part of the USA. Hopefully that will pacify some of the growing unrest across the nation.

What were thoughts on the show? What do you hope to see in the future? Share your thoughts in the comments below!