02x03 - Hostages

( Theme music playing )

Selina: Are you watching this? Look at this.

Sean Penn is doing more about the hostages than we are.

These poor kids... they're like Catherine's age.

I'd be terrible in a hostage situation, even as a hostage taker.

So, ma'am, no word yet from the Secretary of Defense about joining him at the Marine base?

Uh, no, nothing from Maddox, but he knows I've got a bigger role in the White House now, which means I've got a bigger dick, which means he can suck it.

I'm so happy about that. How's my speech coming?

Oh, one minor change. Just one word, really.

"Considered response" is now gonna be "robust response."

Robust? Damn, that's good.

Yeah, I mean, it's subtle enough to seem loyal to POTUS.

That's gonna electrify DC.

Oh, it's gonna AC DC.

Robust is a good word.

And you don't hear it often, like bumptious.

Yeah, it's what you want to hear in a hostage crisis.

Robust, not bumptious.

Mike, what do you think? What do you think about robust?

Robust? I like it. It makes me think of wine.

It's actually how I like my reds.

You like your reds through a bendy straw, too, right, Mike?

You got donut on you, Mike.

Sue, good luck at the hearing.

Dan: Remember, Sue, be dull.

I will.

Are you here for a meeting? I'm not expecting anyone.

Sue, I'm your fill-in, Cliff.

Cliff. Hey, I'm Gary.

I'm your neighbor. Remember, take care of Selina, okay?

VP stands for "very precious."

Okay?

Okay.

Cliff.

Yes.

This is the Veeplopedia.

It's everything you'll ever need to know.

Wow. Hope it comes with CliffsNotes.

That was a play on my name. My name is Cliff.

Don't do jokes, Cliff.

I don't have a sense of humor and neither should you.

Good morning.

How do you make two perfectly pleasant words so irritating?

And here he is, the man who can't take a leak without polling his balls.

Bring me my cerise-colored binder, Jonah.

Cerise? Yes, sir.

The VP's base visit today.

Secretary of Defense Maddox is living up to his name.

He's mad as an ox.

I'm sure I can break up any catfights when I get there.

The veep's more concerned with the hostage situation.

Yeah, I was talking to POTUS last night.

He had a pro-strike hawk boner the size of Jonah.

And then you talked to him about it this morning and he's suddenly totally against the operation.

All I do is provide POTUS with the polls.

Cold numbers.

God, I hate numbers.

There's cultures that don't even have any numbers and they do just fine.

Well, Ben, it seems like you're ill-suited for your job and you should resign.

Ben's breakdown aside, the VP feels we need a quick military strike here.

Yeah, precise and surgical, like your lobotomy, Kent.

The cerise binders, sir.

No, that's cherry red.

Cerise.

I'm sorry, sir.

I must have a very specific form of color blindness.

I cook these noodles every day.

Oh, the noodle analogy.

You guys are gonna love this.

I will leave.

They need to be heated at 800 watts for three minutes and 35 seconds.

Any more and they'll dry out.

Any less and they will be flaccid and damp like a lady's hair in the rain.

Why are we talking about noodles?

No, let me rephrase that.

Why the f*ck are we talking about noodles?

I'll tell you why. Hostage crisis, noodles... same principle.

Both require precision timing, neither should be rushed.

Inaction only becomes untenable when more than 65% of Americans support intervention even with casualties.

So you'd like me to tell the vice president we do nothing until then?

Waiting is not doing nothing.

I choose to wait for my noodles even though my salivary glands are crying out to me like newly hatched birds.

But they will thank me because I waited until...

( Snaps fingers )

( Microwave beeps )

You just timed out that whole sh1t analogy for your little ding?

That is f*cking pathetic.

( Sirens blaring )

Hey, have we heard anything from Maddox?

Is he spitting bullets 'cause I'm showing up at the base?

Nothing. Nada.

Really?

Gary: It's eerie, right?

Selina: It is eerie.

Gary: Hey, Neilio. We're in.

See you in there, I guess.

Okay. Thanks.

Probably got his head stuck in her ass.

Yes, I do. Oh, my gosh, yes.

Hey, ma'am, you've got five minutes of veep time before Maddox arrives.

Yeah.

They're not saluting you.

They don't salute indoors, Gary.

They don't salute indoors, Gary.

Good morning, Marine.

Ma'am.

You served in Iraq? I see.

And were you anywhere near...

Baghdad.

Anbar.

...Anbar?

Yes.

Anbar, wonderful.

Ma'am, this base houses Marine 2.

I understand that Marine 2 is here.

And did you know in the CD player I've got "Ride of the Valkyries"?

( Laughs ) "Apocalypse Now."

That's one of my favorite films. It's dark, but I like it.

Marines like to be called Devil Dogs.

Devil Dogs.

You are a bunch of Devil Dogs, that's what I hear.

I was married to a Devil Dog, but he wasn't a Marine.

He was more of a devil.

( Laughs )

She's so funny.

Thank you for your service.

Good morning, Marine.

He has a nice face.

You have a nice face.

Thank you, ma'am.

And where did you serve, Marine?

( Siren blaring )

Cease fire! Cease fire!

These small arms have a max effective range of 25 yards.

Small arms means guns, ma'am.

Oh, really, Gary? Not T-rex hands?

Okay.

Mr. Secretary, would you like to try?

No, I'm good. I've fired a gun before.

( Scoffs ) Okay.

In anger, too, I might add.

Oh, uh-oh.

But why don't you give it a try, Madam Vice President?

Oh, I don't...

( Marines cheering )

Um, can you give me just half a sec?

What the f*ck?

This could backfire.

It's not gonna backfire.

The gun could literally backfire. That's where the phrase comes from.

Ma'am, this could really chap Maddox's ass, too.

Selina: Oh, yeah, it would, wouldn't it?

You could chip a veneer and I don't really want that to happen.

I don't care. I'm going in.

You know what? Let's lock and load. What do you say?

( Cheering )

Yeah? Yeah.

Here he is, Kanye West Wing.

Congressman Ramsey, right?

No, I'm Cliff. I'm Sue's Sue.

I'm the boy named Sue.

What?

Cliff, when I said no jokes, that wasn't a joke.

Sue, Hessler's efficiency hearing, you've got to keep it dull, okay?

Give 'em a blah job. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

I know, Jonah. That's what everyone's been saying.

Keep it dull, which incidentally, is also dull.

I'd like to first of all thank the vice president for waiving executive privilege in the interest of transparency and allowing Miss Wilson to join us today on the committee.

Do you think she's nervous?

Why would she be nervous?

The only people watching this are you and some guy in the hospital with locked-in syndrome.

If I may, I'd like to begin with percentages of your office budget dedicated to international and domestic transportation.

My pulse is racing, sir.

Here you are, Madam Vice President.

Ensure you keep your finger straight and off the trigger.

All right. This is fun, isn't it?

If you don't mind my saying, ma'am, there speaketh a civilian.

All right. There speaketh a pricketh.

( Cocks shotgun )

Oh, Jesus f*cking Christ!

( Applause )

Oh!

Oh, I'm so sorry. I didn't...

These fellas have heard a lot worse than that, ma'am.

Tremendous shot, by the way.

Really?

Oh, how about that? Fastest gun in the West Wing.

Did you see that? How about it?

Marine: Yes, ma'am.

As you know, we have a very special guest here today.

It would have been nice to have been consulted about your speech, ma'am.

I could have given you some advice.

I know what I'm doing, George.

With this hostage situation, I don't think you have the intelligence.

As in intel, of course, ma'am.

Are you serious?

Are you actually questioning my qualifications, George?

There are just some security issues with the four countries that neighbor Uzbekistan.

Is it four or is it five?

Or is it six? Or is it seven?

You don't know, do you?

It's five.

So first, please welcome the Secretary of Defense George Maddox.

( Applause )

I pulled that straight out of my ass.

You were born for that moment.

I know. He's Iwo Jima.

I'm planting a flag right on his head.

Now I'd like to work on breaking down the vice president's official versus political duties if we can.

Sir, I was told that I'd be asked questions about efficiency.

So far you have barely asked me any.

Your efficiency hearing isn't very efficient.

You want a question? What can you tell me about this visit to the Marine base at Quantico?

The government sending two different motorcades, the defense secretary's and the VP's, to the same location.

That doesn't seem very efficient.

Oh, sh1t a shark.

This is why I told her to be dull.

Do you not have measures in place to prevent this kind of wasteful duplication of government resources?

Sir, we have a system that I believe to be... robust.

Robust?

Robust.

And you don't think it's a sign that your office is poorly managed?

Our management team is... robust.

Okay, now she just sounds mentally ill.

Don't you have somewhere you're supposed to be?

I'm working remotely.

I'm guessing you have one of those word a day calendars.

And I know what the word for today is.

It's robust.

Would you like to give me a definition as well?

Well, I'm guessing that you think you have a sense of humor, Mr. Hessler.

Which you are wrong about, as you are about the calendar.

That is my definition of robust.

My speech is a face-melter. These buzz cuts are gonna flip.

It's not your speech. My fingerprints are all over that sucker.

They're sticky and they're on the back, Mike.

It's time to robust a nut all over this place.

Oh, sh1t. We can't.

What?

Sue, she just used robust three times at the hearing.

No, she didn't.

Yeah. What the...?

Selina can't use that now. We need another word.

Just a synonym for robust.

Dan: Give me something. Give me a word. Any word!

Amy: Aggressive.

No, that's too aggressive. We don't want to say that.

Okay, resolute.

Determined.

That's the exact same thing as resolute.

Then we'll use mine.

Explosive. Punchy. Fearless. I'm just saying words.

Strong. Go with strong.

Strong? Strong, got it.

Gary, I need the speech. I need the vice president's ear.

Get your own ear, van Gogh.

Back off.

( Applause )

Thank you.

Thank you.

What the hell?

Good morning, Marines!

Oorah.

Oorah!

Oh, my goodness. ( Laughs )

We who have answered the call to serve this great nation know this, that those who challenge our freedoms can expect a robust response.

There goes the R-bomb.

I thought we weren't doing robust.

I thought we were still on considered.

We have the best military in the world.

And we are not afraid.

Hey, Mike?

Yes, ma'am.

Stick a thermometer up Washington's ass.

See how much heat I just created.

Parting the cheeks.

( Chuckles )

You know robust is my word. She stole my word.

She was supposed to be dull, Mike.

And did you see that photo of me in "Politico"?

My God, I look constipated.

No, you don't.

Meet me in my office.

You don't look constipated. You look the opposite of it.

What's the opposite of constipated, Mike?

Relieved.

No.

Relieved is not the opposite of constipated, Mike.

Hang up the phone, dummy.

Hey, ma'am, you seen this yet?

What is it?

Just the "Post."

"VP sister act robusting the moves"?

Ma'am, there's also... yeah.

What in the living f*ck is this?

It's a word cloud from this morning's "DC Press."

The size of each word corresponds to its total number of uses.

Do people not use sentences anymore?

Well, I mean, your word... I mean, robust is dominating.

So, you know, that's good.

Look at the word Sue.

Sue made it.

Sure. It's there, too.

Well, where's the word Selina?

Oh, it, um...

It's, uh...

I just saw it.

Ha! There. There it is.

Look how teeny tiny that is.

It's bigger than collapse.

It's teeny tiny because technically you have four names.

Vice President Selina Meyer.

Yeah, plus all the nicknames that we don't talk about.

I mean, Sue only has one name like Pocahontas or Hitler.

Or Moby or Bigfoot.

Hey, Sue!

Sue!

Yes, ma'am?

What? You're not f*cking Sue.

I'm Cliff. I'm filling in for Sue while she preps for her return appearance on the sixth.

She has a return appearance?

What does she need an encore for?

Yeah, it's an encore. Start popping your popcorn.

Okay, thank you very much.

Must Sue TV.

I said that's enough. Thank you.

Gary, we need to start prepping for the whole senator swearing-in thing.

Oh, yeah. It's Gary-oke time.

Yes, it is.

All right, I put together one card for each senator.

Actually, ma'am, I had some ideas about some opportunities here.

I think it'd be a good idea if we focus more on each senator's particular policy interests rather than small talk.

Yeah, I don't think that's a bad idea.

What?

Yeah, take the coat. That makes sense to me.


I think that... oh, there's Sue.

Okay, get away from me. Sue!

Sue! No, the real Sue.

You stay away from her ear. Do you hear me?

Gary-oke is done, my friend. It's time for Danny-oke now.

Danny-oke?

End of an era, buddy. End of an era.

Don't be ridiculous. I'm not famous.

Maybe only in DC.

Oh, yeah, me and Kim Kardashian.

Oh, I've got to go. Bye, bye, bye. Ma'am?

Why don't you take a seat, Sue?

Oh, sorry, ma'am.

Sit down, Sue.

All right, I've got a bone to pick...

Ma'am, I know you really love me, but now you're gonna hate me.

What?

Sec Def Maddox just did an interview with Bloomberg.

Yeah?

He's now calling for an aggressive response.

Aggressive?

Dan: Yeah, I just got that, too.

Does aggressive trump robust?

Well, it's robustier.

No, robust is like a rock and aggressive is like paper.

Oh, shoot, paper covers rock. I forget about that.

We just got a text from Ben.

And? What's his word?

His word is "get-the-vice-president-over-here right-now-we're-having-a-fucking-meeting."

It's all one word hyphenated.

Remind me, you said what?

Your response needs to be what?

Robust.

Robust. And you said?

Aggressive.

You see the problem?

No, I don't.

They're different words.

And saying different words means what?

It means we're not on the same...

Diet?

Page.

Oh, I thought you were gonna say diet, Ben.

I don't like your tone.

And I don't have to answer to you, Ben.

Or to Lara Croft here for that matter.

Yeah, perhaps not, but we all work for the president.

Oh, where is the great and powerful Oz, by the way?

Listen, we all know the White House would work so much better if there wasn't a president, but there is.

So we work around that.

And we do that by sticking to the same f*cking words.

And it's your job to coordinate that, maestro.

That's right. So from now on, the words are calculated response.

Calculated? That sounds so...

Calculated?

Pussy-ass, that's what I was gonna say.

You've got to light a fire under the president's butt.

Let's get some action here.

She fires a gun one time and she thinks she's Rommel in the desert.

Yeah, let me tell you something. I'm a good shot.

You know what? I may even start... you know, whatever it's called... packing heat. How about that?

When you do that, I'm gonna start supporting gun control.

I have news on the noodles.

What's he talking about?

We can move on the hostages.

Cock-a-noodle-doo.

Oh, my God. I'd kiss you right now, but I'm never gonna do that.

Earliest we could go in would be the sixth or the ninth.

We got to go early. You know POTUS.

If we give him enough time, he's gonna change his mind.

He's gonna procrasterbate forever.

Madam Vice President?

Huh? Yeah.

Um, just give me one second.

One second.

Amy, call the office.

Office of the Vice President.

This is the vice president.

Yes, it is.

No, no, this is the vice president.

Oh, okay. I'm sorry, ma'am.

It's fine.

Look into my calendar and tell me if there is anything on the sixth that is immovable.

Uh, no, ma'am, it all looks moveable.

The only thing that can't move is Sue's second hearing appearance on the sixth.

Oh, that's on the sixth?

Yes, ma'am.

Set your DVR. I'm thinking of... okay, you hung up.

Well, gentlemen, the sixth it's gonna be.

Let's bring these kids home as soon as possible.

So we're all agreed?

The sixth, it's gonna be a bad day for the bad guys.

Let's go find POTUS.

Now you went with the sixth because it's before the ninth?

Yeah, of course.

And Sue's return to the committee has nothing to do with it?

You know what I'm interested in?

Getting innocent Americans home safe and sound, right?

Move everything off of the sixth for me.

You can clear that.

Absolutely, ma'am.

The only thing I need to move is the senator swearing-in ceremony, so we're good.

What?

The senator swearing-in ceremony.

You said that everything was moveable.

And that's not moveable.

That's immoveable.

Surely nothing is immoveable.

Amy, this is like explaining gravity to a chicken.

The senator swearing-in ceremony is set in stone.

She's the president of the Senate.

She swears in all newly elected senators.

Right? You get that? You understand it?

Do you need to Google it?

No, ma'am, I understand.

I don't think you do understand.

Because you are grinning. Why are you grinning?

I'm not grinning.

You are grinning.

You have made a fuckup the size of France and you are f*cking grinning about it.

I'm trying not to. I'm not sure why my face is doing this.

Oh, damn it.

Okay.

I don't know what's going on, but she didn't mean what she just said, okay?

Okay. Ma'am, is there anything...

Classified!

Oh, my God!

I pushed for the sixth, right?

I got my date. This is my date, Amy.

This is my hostage rescue mission.

The most important thing on the day is we can't look suspicious in our movements.

Yeah, I know that. I know how to act normal, okay?

I'll be normal. It's gonna be great.

Selina: I can't believe I'm in this position.

This is all Cliff's fault, that grinning f*cking Ewok.

They're all in the situation room.

I'm stuck here swearing in a shitload of senators.

Well, the virtual sit room is right back there and we've got a secure video teleconference in the situation room, so...

Oh, great.

My secure video teleconference with history.

Okay, ma'am, you got 33 senators to get through.

Oh, boy. Well, I feel like that p0rn star who had to do 200 men in one day.

At least she got to lie down, right?

( Laughs )

Well, let's bring this beautiful family in.

Oh, look at this. You all have good blood.

Jonah: What's up?

Selina: I can see it. It's right here.

This isn't a POTUS thing. Why is scrotus here?

Think of me as a cheerleader, Mike.

Oh, God. I'm imagining you in a bathtub full of rose petals.

Thank you. Off you go. Brian, you're up.

Come, come.

Madam Vice President.

Congratulations.

What an honor.

It's so good to see you.

I want to know how all your filmmaking is going.

Beg pardon?

And so on.

Beg pardon?

Your fishing.

Oh, yeah. It's good. I'm still hunting for that big one.

Well, that's all we want. We all want the big one, don't we?

Did she just make an innuendo?

Yep. Yep.

That I will bear true faith...

( Repeating ) and allegiance to the same. That I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office of which I am about to enter, so help me Brian.

Yes.

Uh, I am Brian.

I know.

I think you mean, "So help you God."

Yes, yes. Oh, so help you God.

So help me God.

Me, God, yes.

Oh, my God. Okay, let's get the family in here.

What's going on?

It's just a blip. She's gonna be fine.

I'm Ruby.

Oh, Ruby.

Oh, I wish that was my cousin's name.

This is the worst small talk I've ever heard.

And I'm including mine in that and mine is horrible.

She's done worse.

I can't think of when, but she has.

And off you go. Maryanne.

What in the living...

Lord of Christ are you doing here?

( Laughs ) But you are.

I'm here.

So you had a good New Year's?

Yes, we were skiing in Vermont.

Well, that's how the cookie crumbles.

Yeah, now let's take a photo.

West Wing. Jonah.

Okay, Philip Dorsey's the last one, so he's gonna be quick.

His wife just died and he has no family left.

That's great. For us, I mean.

'Cause we're done.

Okay.

Amy, it's time o'clock.

What's time o'clock?

Time o'clock.

This is... I can't take this anymore.

And so won't you give my love to Patty?

She passed away.

Yes. Yes.

Excuse me, ma'am. It is time o'clock.

All right, let's get swearing, Philip.

I do solemnly swear...

( Repeating ) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.

That I will bear true faith...

Maybe she's pregnant again.

Oh, God.

Or she's menopausal.

Oh, God, she's gonna want that testosterone gel. I'm out of here.

...so help me God.

...so help me God.

So help me God.

Uh, I have to move on, Philip.

They all leave me eventually.

Something's up. Something's up. What's going on?

Ma'am. Ma'am. Right here.

Oh, yeah.

Ma'am, I've got...

No, you're not needed here, Gary.

This is man's work.

Ma'am, should I...

Same goes for you, Dan. No.

Let's black out till we drop.

Sorry, fellas.

I'll just be closing this door right now.

Wait a minute. Jonah's going in?

( Coughs )

Say hi to history, ma'am.

Oh, God.

The men get the situation room, I get the shituation room?

Ma'am, the comms should be live now.

Oh.

Hi, gentlemen.

I hope you heard that joke.

That was meant for you to hear it.

Madam Vice President, this is General Mercer.

This is so awesome. I'll bet you camera three gets a kill.

General, Mr. President.

Operation Good Shepherd is proceeding well, ma'am.

We are looking at live feeds from cams aboard the Black Hawks and we are about to go in.

Good luck, gentlemen.

Ma'am.

Maddox: When the guns go off, they will be loud, Madam Vice President, so no swearing.

George, comments like that are incredibly inappropriate when people's lives are at stake.

Ben: I've got to get a refill here.

Old jumbo needs a refill. Excuse me.

It's a good photo, ma'am.

Jonah, there are more important things going on in the world right now.

Oh, yeah. Huh.

Mercer: Acquisition is confirmed.

The eggs are back in the basket!

Yeah! Eggs-shak-a-laka!

In your f*cking face, eggs.

What? The hostages? We got 'em?

( Cheering )

Yeah!

Legacy marker. Yeah!

Selina: Gary. Gary.

So Sue's return to the hearing's wiped off the news map.

That's the last thing on anyone's mind today. Come on.

Of course. Of course.

Sue: Last year's expenditure on office supplies was held at the exact same level as the previous year.

Which means that the total sum...

Seems like you're no longer news, Miss Wilson.

Your 15 minutes might be up.

Ashes to ashes, robust to dust.

Oh, hey, Sue. How was the sequel?

Short.

Pumped and dumped by the fame monster, huh?

Oh, I got the full mission eval from the NSC.

Let's speak to the veep.

Let's go.

Yep?

Ma'am.

Congratulations, ma'am.

Thank you, Mr. Ryan.

Operation Good Shepherd... total success.

Yeah! Semper f*cking fee.

Fi.

Fi. Fi, right.

All hostages recovered unharmed.

Only one injury.

Detail on that injury?

A Marine sergeant, 2nd recon battalion, stray ordnance, he lost a leg.

Uh... wait, wait.

You mean one of our Marines lost a leg?

Yes, ma'am. His left leg, ma'am.

Um... the entire leg?

I believe he lost from above the knee.

Oh, so they were able to... just salvage his foot?

No, I believe he lost from above... he basically doesn't have a leg from above the knee down.

Was he part of the operation?

Yes. He was actually due to be rotated out on the eighth.

Oh, on the eighth.

Huh. Okay.

Is he... ahem, is he in a lot of pain?

Oh, no, ma'am.

Oh, good.

No, he's in an induced coma.

But I suppose when he wakes up...

I just need to get some air. Excuse me.

Congratulations again, ma'am.

Thanks a million.

( Applause )

Congratulations, ma'am.

Thank you.

I lost a man his leg, Mike.

So good. So good.

No, no, no. I lost a man his leg, Mike.

Thanks. Thanks, guys.

Thank you.

Ma'am, I just want to say consummate performance.

Not only did you rescue the hostages, but you annihilated Sue.

You picked the operation date to blow her appearance off the map.

I mean, genius play, ma'am. Genius.

I call that overshadowboxing.

You know what, Dan?

The problem with being so close to somebody's ear all the time is that you begin to think that you can see inside their head, but you can't, Dan. You can't.

Do you understand that?

Understood, ma'am.

Hey, ma'am.

Yes?

Can I get you a cinnamon mocha or something?

Yeah, let me get that for you.

End of an era, buddy.

End of an era.

I lost a man his leg.

Please stop saying that, ma'am.

He'll bounce back. I got a feeling.

Ma'am, the vice president sometimes has to do bad things to make good things happen.

The leg is just the price of admission to the place you wanted to be.

Well, maybe we could invite him to the White House.

You know, once he's back up on his...

Sure, we'll roll out the ramps.

Ma'am, some of the prosthetic legs they have these days are as good as real legs.

I guarantee you they're better than my shitty legs.

I hate my legs. In fact, if I had the choice...

Huh?

Never mind. I'm gonna go.

Hey, ma'am. How would you like a nice little almond croissant?

Oh, yeah. I would love that.

Okay. Okay.

Can you make it a big one so you can stuff me inside of it and smuggle me out of here?

Of course I can.

And there might be a little raspberry surprise in them.

Okay. Thank you.

My pleasure.