Designated Survivor Season 2 Episode 12 Review: The Final Frontier

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Bloody hell that was dull. 

I cannot believe that we had to sit through all of Designated Survivor Season 2 Episode 12 only for the "Kirkman being menacing to the drunk driver who killed Alex" fiasco to be teased at the end of the hour.

The best thing that came out of this installment was Kim Raver's appearance. Otherwise, it was colossally dull. 

Working With Russia - Designated Survivor

By the end of the hour, I had to remove my dog from my keyboard. The poor guy was so bored he fell asleep five minutes in. I envied him. 

Meanwhile, I spent the rest of the hour watching with glazed over eyes and listening to doggie snores. 

The crisis of the installment was the hacking of a spacecraft. You would think with hacking and space combined it would be something of interest, but that was not the case here, unfortunately. 

Oh right, and the Russians were thrown in too. You can't have hacking or anything remotely related to space without Russians, now can you? 

I don't need his happiness. I need his cooperation.


NASA was hacked by a cyber hacker extraordinaire, and it interfered with the spacecraft as well as prevented Kirkman and company from successfully sending supplies to the astronauts in space. They were in dire need of water and faced death without it. 

Damian, who allowed himself to be knocked out and dragged in for questioning by Hannah, tipped them off about the hack. Lo and behold, the rocket launch was a bust, and the White House realized that their best shot at getting supplies to the astronauts in time was by relying on Russia.

Related: Designated Survivor Season 2 Episode 11 Review: Grief  

Let the negotiations commence! 

It was a tough ask. The Russians were uneasy because they knew their Russian spy, Damian, was in custody. They felt that the US blamed them for Lloyd and the Capitol bombing/First Lady set-up because he was tied in with the Russians. 

You sit in that chair you have an obligation. Not just to the American people but to the office. Every president who sat there before you and will sit there after you. Your judgment is off, Tom, and I can't let you implode. I won't.


They had nothing to do with either, though. Also, Russia and the US have always been competitive when it came to space achievements, so there was that too. Since some of the astronauts were Russians, they figured that was enough to keep the Russians invested. 

Whatever. It boiled down to the fact that Cornelius had to strike a deal with the Russian Ambassador to get them to help, and it led to a huge blowout between Kirkman and Cornelius. 

Secretary Moss has been a tough position since Alex died because he's been doing a great deal of the work that Kirkman was supposed to be doing. He also has noticed that Kirkman has become a poor leader as a result of his grief. 

Kirkman Fires Moss

It's a tough but fair assessment. The country has to be run regardless of what happened to Alex, and Kirkman has been wavering and putting things off. Moss wasn't wrong. 

Kirkman, however, was defensive, and he still wanted to hold the Russians accountable for their actions in the Icarus investigation and their inadvertent role in Alex's death. He wasn't willing to trade all of that in exchange for the Russians helping the astronauts. 

Somewhere in the middle of all of this Dr. Andrea Frost fit in because she had some super high-tech technology that would help with the issues the spacecraft was having. Honestly, this felt like a repeat of that "Two Ships" installment with the battleships, except that installment was decent. 

Related: Designated Survivor Season 2 Episode 6 Review: Two Ships

Dr. Frost was a bit frosty because she and the government are not seeing eye-to-eye at the moment, but she's down for serving her country and Kirkman. I don't know in what capacity she'll be sticking around though. Is it because the hacking business will lead to other stuff? 


There was a weird chemistry there. I say weird because Kirkman is in the throes of grief, so I don't understand why sparks were flying between Kirkman and Andrea. Can we not do that? 

Elsewhere, Lyor was, I'm sorry, what the actual fudge was that Lyor rubbish? I get it, he's the comic relief, and they've made it a whole thing that he has insipid storylines that toggle between quirky and mind-numbingly stupid. 

But I lost precious minutes from my life not fast forwarding through his space camp chronicles, which did nothing but induce a simmering rage I haven't the foggiest clue how to rid myself of at the moment.

Did you give a flying fart about Lyor's space camp? Why does he act like a child? 

Hannah: What are you doing here, Damian?
Damian: I have something America might want. Information.

Speaking of rage, Hannah was livid that her former lover wasn't dead. She also loathed the fact that he was breathing the same air as her. 

Meanwhile, what was loathsome is that another promising Hannah and Aaron team up was teased for the first ten minutes or so.

Related: Enjoy UNLIMITED access to thousands of Movies and TV shows with Amazon Prime Video. WATCH ANYWHERE. CANCEL ANYTIME!

Then, somehow, despite finally being useful and working a case that would have fit within his gosh damn job description, Aaron disappeared off the screen into whatever nowheresville hole he stays in whenever they aren't using him, which is all the freaking time.

Inquiring minds want to know, why is this man so poorly utilized in this series? It's absurd! 

Aaron on the Move - Designated Survivor Season 1 Episode 21

We had Aaron and Hannah and then got downgraded to Hannah working together with Damian again for the remainder of the hour. What the what? The justification was so flimsy.

But I'm sure everyone missed the Dream Team that is Hannah and Damian working together, begrudgingly because you know, he's a spy and a traitor. But he's pretty, and he has an accent, so that's all that matters, right? 

They proceeded to show us a series of events where Hannah was pissed and made snarky comments about locking him in the trunk. Damian is a saint because he could have shot Hannah countless of times, but he didn't because he's a good guy and he cares about her. 

Hannah Annoyed

Hannah lends her cuffed prisoner her gun to take the shot because she can't do it, and she has to trust that he won't used it on her. Then, an exchange as she turns him over, temporarily because they'll find a way to drag him back out, you know it, I know it, everyone but Hannah knows it. 

In fact, he'll be out by the next installment when they realize that this NASA hack was just one of many attacks that will plague the country. Damian has first-hand knowledge on all of it because of course, he does. 

The next "attack" will be sowing seeds of unease and doubt by releasing the hacked video footage of Kirkman "abusing" the drunk texter. 

Oh Kirkman, at least Penny was getting in trouble for fighting at school because she was defending her friends and didn't want anyone to get hurt like her mother got hurt. Kirkman had a sweet little talk with Penny, but it felt hollow considering he's about to catch holy hell for lashing out at a citizen. 

Mature Penny

If we're basing who is more presidential and mature at the moment, Penny: 1 Kirkman: 0. 

Over to you guys, did you enjoy this episode? What's your impression of Andrea Frost? Do they lock Aaron up in the White House basement when he's not being used? Hit the comments.

As always, you can watch Designated Survivor online right here via TV Fanatic. I would suggest the Designated Survivor Season 1, though. It's more consistent. 

The Final Frontier Review

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Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. She is an insomniac who spends late nights and early mornings binge-watching way too many shows and binge-drinking way too much tea. Her eclectic taste makes her an unpredictable viewer with an appreciation for complex characters, diverse representation, dynamic duos, compelling stories, and guilty pleasures. You'll definitely find her obsessively live-tweeting, waxing poetic, and chatting up fellow Fanatics and readers. Follow her on X.

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