Designated Survivor: 60 Days Recap: Don’t F*** With Acting President Park

By Daniel Hart
Published: August 19, 2019 (Last updated: November 8, 2023)
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Netflix series Designated Survivor: 60 Days Season 1, Episode 16 - The Last Case


Designated Survivor: 60 Days Season 1, Episode 15, “The Trap” reveals the peak of Park Mu-jin’s development, as he deals with moving parts with precision in an incredible chapter.

This recap of Designated Survivor: 60 Days Season 1, Episode 15, “The Trap” contains significant spoilers. The Korean Netflix Series will be running weekly every Monday and Tuesday until season 1 ends. You can read the recap of the previous episode by clicking these words.

2019 is the year we were treated to Chernobyl — hailed as one of the best, and considered as one of the greats of all time. However, hiding away in the Netflix thumbnails, we have another GOAT that unfortunately will never be spoken about at a mass level — Designated Survivor: 60 Days. This Netflix Series is written to a formidable level that is outrageous, and the character development is breathless. Episode 15 was incredible to watch from start to finish. Let’s recap.

With the coup ready to rage, Park Mu-jin (Jin-hee Ji) is gambling on Lee Gwan-muk to take his side in the military. “The Trap” delivers possible bad news to Park Mu-jin; that General Lee has joined General Eun. Park Mu-jin turns to the camera and tells his team that he has already delivered his order; General Lee arrests Eun under the Military Crimes Act, and a flashback reveals Park had already convinced his military acquaintance.

Episode 15 shows Park Mu-jin at the peak of his development. He’s not just principled in his decisions; he’s brave, calculated, but most importantly, politically smart. The Netflix series has tentatively built him up slowly over time, growing into his pure leadership form, ready to rule — don’t f*** with Acting President Park.

With the coup squashed, President Park won’t reveal the reasons to the public, believing it will deter the investigation to the real culprit. He asks the leader of the opposition parties not to make the coup into a political campaign. Park is using trust as a goodwill weapon, knowing that by playing this move, he is one step ahead on the chessboard.

Yeon-jin receives a package, showing photos of Assemblywoman Yun in a delicate spot; pictures of the politician with Mr. Kim, the VIP’s second-in-command. The images have devastating consequences for Yun, which link her directly to the bombings, but surprisingly, Park opts not for speculation, but an internal investigation. Park sits with Yun about the photos and tries to understand the scenario.

The coup is leaked, and the media are accusing Park of trying to cover it up to keep his advantage in the polls. Yeon-jin advises that to gain back the votes, Park should make Assemblywoman Yun into an open investigation. As usual, Park is wondering if his principles should be taken into account.

This leads on to a landmark scene between Han and Park. Han asks Park the question: “if you lose the election, will you be happy because you followed the rules?”, which is met by a flashback when President Park dropped the Discrimination Act due to dwindling polls.

Park invites Yun in again, and she explains that Mr. Kim is a supporter, an election broker, and she was not tied to the bombings. Yun states that Park should make it an open investigation, but then he will be derailing everything he believes.

Yun asks her assistant to meet Mr. Kim, but we learn it is a trap by Na-gyeong and her team. We are treated to a tense chase and fight scene, and in the final moments, as Mr. Kim is running away from the scene, Na-gyeong aims her gun at him — this is met by flashbacks of her training how to use a weapon with her deceased lover and then she pulls the trigger, expertly shooting his leg so he drops to the ground. It’s later revealed Park teamed up with Assemblywoman Yun on this trap. Another card played by the Acting President.

With the press conferences now positive, the coup well and truly defeated and Mr. Kim arrested, the Presidency looks to be in favor of Park Mu-jin. Yeon-jin asks Han the question — is Park qualified to be President? Season 1 has seen Han battle with Park’s qualifications, and openly dismiss them. His allegiance with the former President has been abundantly clear, but Park has kept Han by his side regardless.

What follows is a series of flashbacks where Han witnessed Park Mu-jin excel in his decision making and had an impact with his words. In a grandstanding moment, Han agrees to join Park Mu-jin’s Presidential Campaign.

Designated Survivor: 60 Days Season 1, Episode 15, “The Trap” ends with Mr. Kim interrogated by the NIS. They continually press him, asking who the VIP is. Mr. Kim states he will only speak if President Park comes to talk. With Park’s Acting Presidency ending in a day, he agrees to meet Mr. Kim without his team knowing. Mr. Kim claims to be the VIP and tells Park Mu-jin that he helped complete the attack.

With the series ending tomorrow, I’m not usually the type to start campaigns, but if they decide not to renew Designated Survivor: 60 Days for another season, I will personally visit the Netflix offices myself.

Presidential Secretary Notes

  • Acting President Park is confident of his election campaign.
  • Mr. Kim used to be an Anti-North Spy — he was abandoned by the Government.

You can read the recap of the sixteenth episode by clicking these words.

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