After last week’s incredibly tense and dramatic military operation, Designated Survivor: 60 Days returns for a more straightforward slice of political intrigue, but one that really shows how far Park has come since the early days of the series.
Myung’s interrogation begins and the detectives suspect his motive is to get back at the North Korean government. Park wants to find out what’s going on during these interviews so he asks the Blue House to bypass NIS regulations and make the interrogator report to him personally. In the interrogation room, Myung makes a fatal mistake by threatening to kill Assemblyman Oh, confirming once and for all that he’s not behind the attacks. However, while Na-Gyung is out the room, Myung is killed. This causes huge consequences across to the administration as Park realizes he cant say anything to the people as it will destroy his political career. Thankfully Secretary Han returns to the office and decides they need to form a non-party cabinet to avoid political conflict.
Back at the crime scene, Na-Gyung tries to piece together what’s happened and finds a message written in blood on the walls. As she tries desperately to find out what the two words mean, she suspects that someone from within the agency is in league with the bomber. To make matters worse, the detectives find Thallium in Myung’s food. With the threat of someone inside the organisation working with the bomber, Na is shocked to find Assemblyman Oh promoted to Minister Of National Defence.
Yun disapproves of Park’s plans for a non-party agreement and asks him to reconsider. Given her distrust toward Oh, she sets to work in trying to impeach the administration. After some deliberation and realizing that he’s backed into a corner, Park takes some time to think over his options back at home with his wife.
Competing against approval ratings of over 50, Mayor Kang realizes that there’s no way Park is heading back to school now. Here we learn there really is a leak in the administration thanks to Chief An but Park and the rest of the group catch wind of this soon after thanks to the black box in Mayor Kang’s car. Instead of firing the man, Park decides to keep it a secret and invites him in to ask his interpretation of the constitution. He doesn’t agree with his line of thinking so Park rallies the troops and calls a meeting where he’ll decide on a new cabinet. Seonjin Republican Party strategically move their meeting for the same date and time in a bid to snub out Park’s plans.
The day of the meeting arrives and Yun enters the room to find the Seonjin meeting completely empty save for photographers and reporters who snap pictures of her shocked face. As it turns out, Park played a clever political game and managed to convince Chief An to work for his side thanks to the incriminating black box footage. Park played the game and came out unscathed and even better, without enemies.
As the non-party committee gets underway, Park is advised to put his name forward officially as an actual presidential candidate where we leave things hanging on a cliffhanger.
If there’s one thing Designated Survivor: 60 Days has done really well this season it’s Park’s character development. The way he’s grown into the role, all the while playing off his own credibility as a political candidate, makes him a really empathetic and easy character to warm to. The threat of Yun, Mayor Kang and the various other countries are an ever-present danger here and help to keep tensions high throughout the series.
Of course, the show itself continues to borrow plot ideas from the original show but there’s enough originality in the way they’re presented here to make 60 Days stand on its own two legs all the same. This Korean drama continues to deliver the goods and although the episode does ease up a little with the tension, it replaces that with some deep political intrigue that does a great job furthering Park’s character.
Assemblyman Oh is really the wildcard here though and the back and forth over whether he’s really in on the act or not makes him one to watch going forward. Whether this is a red herring to throw us off remains to be seen but for now, Designated Survivor: 60 Days is consistently high quality, and one well worth sticking with for the long haul.