Designated Survivor possibly headed to Netflix after cancellation


When ABC canceled Designated Survivor, they said that it was the live viewings that doomed the Kiefer Sutherland political series.

According to Deadline, eOne reported that Designated Survivor did great in delayed viewings (DVR and watching on demand). However, because it didn’t do well in Live-same day viewings at the 10 p.m. EST hour, it ended up playing a part in the cancelation of the show.

Streaming services like Netflix and Hulu don’t care about live viewings and thrive on people watching their shows at their own leisure — or even in frantic same-day binges.

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That makes the news that eOne is in talks with Netflix about Designated Survivor interesting. The way people watch television is changing and if this is a trend, network television will lose more and more shows to streaming services, which caters more to how people watch TV.

With that said, Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime can only bring in a  certain amount of shows and even those services are not beyond canceling a cult favorite show early (see: Sense8).

When ABC axed Designated Survivor, it seemed like it was more than just numbers though. After Sutherland went through nine seasons on Fox with 24, it looked like his new show would end up dead after two seasons.

In those two seasons, there was a lot of turmoil behind-the-scenes. The series went through four different showrunners in two seasons — which makes it hard for a show to find its footing. A fifth showrunner signed on for season 3, and if Netflix picks it up, that choice will remain onboard.

The show started with an explosion at the State of the Union, which killed everyone from the President to almost all his line of succession. The only person left alive to take over the presidency was Sutherland’s, Thomas Kirkman.

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From the start, people loved to watch Designated Survivor on their own time. The very first episode set records for DVR recordings, with 7.67 million. That continued through the two seasons and could make this a perfect pickup for Netflix — if they choose to pick it up.

The season 2 finale of Designated Survivor airs on Wednesday night, May 16, on ABC.