Gaslit (2022) s01e07 Episode Script

Year of the Rat

Look, let's just both take a breath.
My mama slaps me harder than that.
True immortality rests in a pure and mighty will For history isn't written by the feeble masses.
It is written and rewritten by soldiers carrying the banner of kings.
There she is, machos.
Our destiny.
That is what it means to be strong.
I want you to know that I fired those bastards.
They had no right roughing you up the way they did.
You are the first person that I am aware of to publicly accuse the president of responsibility for the Watergate break-in.
Pretty sure I won't be the last.
How do you feel about your wife potentially speaking to the Senate? Well, I support Martha in whatever she decides to do.
I'm testifying on Monday.
They said the judge was sending you to a bad prison for a long time.
When I was a boy, my only friend was my nanny, Frau Teresa.
She told me the story of a boy who, from the power of his own will, became the leader of her Fatherland.
She made me realize that I, too, could choose to be strong.
This will be Father's trial by fire.
I'm at the center of this thing.
I mean, that guy Well, what if you're the guy who saw an injustice and decided to do something about it? Mr.
Dean, Mr.
Dean, how do you feel? Everyone seems to think you did pretty darn good.
I hear Martha is on deck for Thursday.
The problem with loving something too much is that you can't do what needs to be done.
I trust you'll do what needs to be done.
Well, let's see.
I don't, uh, know where I end up on this thing.
According to this, I was born in the Year of the Rat.
Says I'm bright, patient, and inspiring to others.
Somebody's been reading your mail.
Fuck off.
It also says I can be happy on my own or make an outstanding partner.
I'll be sure to inform your wife.
Yeah, good idea.
What's going on with these girls? I thought they were supposed to be here at 7:00.
John, you're not screening them for the secretarial pool.
As long as they know their way around an inseam I don't think they heard you in the kitchen.
Who gives a shit? Nobody speaky the Engrish around here.
You're a terrible man.
I've learned it all from you.
But before they do come in, there's something you should probably know about your girl.
I-I Don't tell me she's a cryer.
I can't deal with another cryer.
No, nothing like that.
But she's married.
Married? - Not happily.
- Oh, Christ.
As though I-I don't have enough stress in my life.
So she's married.
You've been with married girls before, and this this broad's got a rack like Claudia Cardinale.
You're gonna love her.
Trust me.
She's a real alley cat, boy.
Yeah, I should go.
No, why? Because these girls are 20 minutes late, and the only marriage I can stand getting in the way of right now is my own.
Come on, don't be like this, John.
Hey, speak of the devil.
Ladies, we've been waiting for you.
It was bumper-to-bumper all the way to Columbus Circle.
Hey, John, this is Peggy Quinn.
- Pleasure.
- And, uh, I'm sorry, darling.
What's your name again? - Martha Jennings.
- Martha Jennings.
John Mitchell, meet Martha Jennings.
I'm-I'm John.
I heard.
Are you going somewhere? Uh, no, I was, uh Looking for the coatroom.
Yes, could you take this? Thank you.
Could you point me toward the restroom? No, no, no.
I'll walk you.
It's right up here.
Okay, great.
Thank you.
Would you? Oh, sure.
Thank you.
Sir? Yes, thank you.
Uh, may I? So, uh, Peggy tells me you're married.
Well, evidently, Peggy likes to talk.
That she does.
Ken tells me the same about you, marriage-wise.
Wow, those two are cut from the same cloth.
Absolute vipers.
Can I come a little closer to you? Now, there's one thing you can say for marriage.
Makes everything beyond it a little more fun.
Little more, uh, beautiful.
Oh, um it's a little you have an eyelash.
Yeah, make a wish.
You know, I don't believe in wishes.
Well, I don't believe in wasting them.
What was it? Mm-mm.
I can't tell you.
That's the first rule of wishes.
But I do hope it pans out for you.
Really, I do.
It's a doozy.
- Can I get you a drink? - Yes, please.
And what would you like? Gin and tonic.
Sir, can I get the lady a gin and tonic, please? Thank you.
Where is everybody? Your lawyer opted for a closed-door session, Mrs.
No press.
Take a seat.
Now, we've got a long day ahead of us, so let's get to it.
I understand, uh, you have an opening statement prepared.
Yes, Sam.
Thank you.
Chairman, before we begin, I would just like to register the minority's skepticism regarding the relevance of Mrs.
Mitchell's testimony.
It's still unclear to me what official role she held within the administration.
Senator Gurney, as Mrs.
Mitchell's counsel stipulated, she maintained an official public relations role within the Committee to Re-Elect.
Doing what, appearing on game shows? Ed, that's Now just hold on a second.
I was employed in the campaign at the direct request of the president.
Oh, and I'm sure we're all very appreciative of your tireless dedication to your own celebrity Pardon me? but I'm still unsure what any of that has to do with the matters that uh, we are examining in this committee.
Honestly, Ed, this is beneath you.
Senator Gurney will suffice.
Not according to your wife.
- Mr.
- Order.
With all due respect, there are significant facts that this witness has failed to disclose.
I would like to submit this official report from Bellevue Hospital.
So submitted.
It indicates that Mrs.
Mitchell was institutionalized after the birth of her daughter, January of 1961.
It was given to me by a close, personal source.
Your father suffered from acute mental illness, just like you.
Isn't that so? I do not suffer from acute mental illness.
In interviews, you have stated that your father died in a car accident, but that isn't true, is it? In fact, he, uh he was a drunken, degenerate gambler, a fanaticist prone to paranoia, delusion, and, ultimately, suicide.
What's your point, Ed? Isn't it possible that your instability could perhaps have been passed down from your father? Could it be that that that's why you see conspiracies and plots where Where none, in fact, exist? But if there is an issue with her mental stability There are no issues.
Then why risk your marriage? Why risk your husband's position? Mrs.
Mitchell, why risk the happiness of your own daughter? Because it's the truth.
It is the truth.
And what about your husband? Does he share your understanding of the truth? The fuck are you doing? What are you doing? You told them everything.
Told who what? What are you talking about? You know exactly what I'm talking about.
You set me up.
You gave them the knife, and you told them exactly where to stick it! Sweetheart, I only wanted to keep you on the right side of this whole goddamn thing.
You're the one who wanted to testify.
Oh, my God, you're driving me crazy! You make me feel like I am losing my mind! What's going on? Go back to your room, honey.
- But - Now! Oh, cleaning up after Martha again.
I'm grown so used to it.
Big John Mitchell, lord of the manor, living in devoted service to a man who won't even return his phone calls.
Just you're just drunk.
It's enough.
Another drunk.
Martha's on another Blow it out your ass, Mitchell! - Yeah.
- Huh? I've been watching you for months just sitting around here staring at the phone like some teenage girl waiting for a call from the boy with the magic fingers.
When are you gonna get it through your thick fucking skull that nobody on the whole fucking planet gives a goddamn what you think? Plenty of people care what I think.
Barbara Walters wants me on The Today Show to tell my story.
Huh? My story! They're just looking for a fucking sideshow! And that's you, lady! Do you know why Dick hasn't called you back? Why he hasn't made any effort at all to contact you? Oh, fuck off! Because he doesn't give a shit.
He never gave a shit about you ever! You think you're so much better than the rest of them, right? Don't you? Dean, Magruder, Haldeman.
Oh, they're just in it for the money or ambition, but you're the only one dumb enough to think you actually matter to Dick, that he valued your friendship.
Hey, Martha, I am warning you You have ruined everything in your life, in my life! Your reputation, your marriage, and for what? For what? I can't stand the sound of your voice! Well, that makes two of us! - I can't stand to look at you! - I can't stand you! - I can't stand your face! - Get fucking off of me! I love you, Martha, 'cause you're America's clown, and you're a pig.
And all your moaning and bitching and your morning drinking and your day drinking and your night drinking, and your own daughter has to fish you out of the tub 'cause you're too stoned on pills and booze to stand.
Whose idea were the pills? - To stand! - Who? I thought it would help you! I didn't know you were gonna eat them like M&M's! It's the only way I can sleep in my bed when it smells like your whores.
Oh, you fucking bitch.
I should have had them go harder on you in California.
- What did you just say? - Yeah, you heard me.
Even you can't be so fucking dense as to think that this was just an overzealous bodyguard.
You're a cheap joke, Martha.
And every fucking word that comes out of your mouth humiliates you and humiliates me.
Is it - See, no - No.
- No, no, no.
- No.
I'm leaving you, and I'm taking Marty with me.
I'm not going to let her watch you melt the fuck down.
No, you will not.
You can't take her.
You can't wait.
Mitchell, you will not take my daughter.
You I know what you've done.
I'll tell everyone.
You and Dick, both of you, worse than the break-in at Watergate.
Worse than anyone knows.
And who the hell is gonna believe you, Martha, after all this? Who's gonna believe little Martha? I'm just realizing this is my favorite new position with you.
What's that, Martha? You're gonna have to speak up, 'cause for once, I can't hear you.
Go back to your room, honey.
Oh, I love this.
This is great.
How groovy.
Yeah, maybe we could do a little uh, shaken not stirred.
That's great.
Hey, sweetheart, can you fix his hair? Right on.
Just one thing more.
I'm the first married woman in Playboy.
Uh, could you put your arm around her? Yeah.
Gotta say, Mr.
Dean, for a man who just went through a nationally televised gauntlet, you seem to be in incredible spirits.
Well, thank you.
I, uh I didn't go through it alone, so Why did you decide to come out and speak at all? I mean, wouldn't it have been easier if you'd kept quiet? Well, sure.
Um, I guess you could say I, uh, I saw an injustice, and I decided to say something about it.
Simple as that.
And, uh, how have you held up throughout this experience, Mrs.
Dean? I imagine it's been uh, difficult.
On the contrary, uh, I think when you strip everything away from someone, you know, all the power and prestige, that's when you really get a glimpse of who they truly are inside.
John and I have gotten to know each other more completely than we would have if Watergate had never happened.
And that's, um that's a gift.
You'll have to be sure and send a thank-you card to the president.
Straight up his ass.
Don't don't print that.
Would you um, would you excuse me? Please don't print that.
Um Oh, Charlie.
Come on in.
Hey, everybody, this is Charlie Shaffer, my lawyer.
This is, uh, Anthony and uh, Joaquin from Playboy.
I'm trying to convince them to give us the centerfold.
John, do you mind if I talk to you in private? It's, uh, urgent.
Oh, sure.
Uh, excuse us.
Just through here.
You want a ice water or a Prosecco? We're doing mimosas.
No, thanks.
Hey, look, uh, I know you said keep the interviews to a minimum, but, you know, it's Playboy.
And, uh, they said they might even publish one of Mo's short stories, so cheers.
Yeah, I'm-I'm not, uh, here about that.
Um, John, do you wanna, uh, maybe sit down in the other room? No, I'm fine.
What's going on? I got word on Sirica's preliminary ruling on your case.
He's recommending a sentence of five years.
W-what? I testified.
I was the first to flip.
I I cooperated.
He took that into account.
A reduced sentence was never part of the deal.
Then what the hell did I go through all of this for then, huh? Ostensibly, because you wanted to do what was best for the country.
Oh, fuck that.
John, the good news is that you can still appeal for leniency if you cooperate further.
The special prosecutor's going after Haldeman and Ehrlichman and and then Mitchell.
No, no, no way.
I am not ratting on anybody else.
John, I hear you.
That was not part of the deal, Charlie.
They can't ask me to do that.
They are not asking you to do anything, John.
You obstructed justice.
You broke the law.
Oh, fuck that, Charlie.
People break the law all the time.
What, you think Kennedy's boys didn't color outside the line? Or Johnson's or Roosevelt's? They all lied.
They all cheated.
And not a single one of them would hesitate to do it again if it suited their needs.
- Maybe.
- No, definitely, Charlie.
So how do they get to walk away scot-free, and I'm the one who spends five years testifying against my friends, sleeping in a cell? Fuck.
Oh, God.
You're not wrong, John.
Thing is, those guys they didn't get caught.
You did.
Mo, uh Mo.
"Dearest Frances, I bet you and the boys" are wondering how life's been for me since I left you and the children and arrived at Danbury.
Well, I'm happy to report that things are going just fine.
Upon my arrival, I discovered that the prison staff "are just as courteous and polite as you might expect" Arms up! from our hardworking law enforcement community.
Lift your stick.
Turn around and spread 'em.
Like what you see back there, Jimbo? " And surprisingly, the atmosphere among the prisoners is one of congeniality.
" Motherfucker! How that dick taste, bitch? " I even found a way to help some of my more civilized compatriots with their legal queries.
" If there's double jeopardy is there triple jeopardy? Excellent question, Meat Machine.
Everyone, if you'll turn to chapter two in your books.
"Of course, I've had my share of gloomy days, most of them brought on by the knowledge that our brave president is beset on all sides by quislings and traitors.
I'm ashamed to say that my dispirited attitude even caused me to run into a little trouble with one of my more unruly neighbors.
In the cage, motherfucker.
"But in the end, I was given a great, little room of my own.
And ever since then, I've been truly happy here, able to reconnect to my natural rhythms.
" "My only regret is that I will not have the chance to watch our boys grow into young men.
" "But perhaps by my example, I can teach the boys what my nanny, Teresa, taught me all those years ago.
When a man's trial by fire arrives, he must meet it with the power of his indomitable will.
"If not, he will perish.
" "Yours, in love and in victory" Oh, you motherfucker.
Oh, God! "Dearest Frances" "I am afraid that since our last correspondence, things have taken a turn for the worse.
" "I was foolish to think my trial was nearing its end.
" "It seems now to have only just begun.
" "I realize now that life has brought me here" to my unholy solitude in this cell, waging holy war with a demon "I know all too well" "my own weakness.
" "I now know that it has been lying in wait inside of me all this time.
Festering, growing, quietly gathering strength as it prepares to devour me whole.
And the only way for me to defeat it now is to flush it out and crush it, "once and for all.
" Where are you? What do you want, what do you want? What do you want, some food? Oh, the food.
I'll play with ya.
I'll play with no, no.
Come on, where are you? Where are you? Come on, come out.
Come on, come on.
Come on out.
Come on out, come on out! Oh, come on, come on! I strike at thee! Shut the fuck up, you nutcase! God damn it, Liddy, you crazy fuck! Oh, Jesus.
Liddy, Liddy.
Get up.
Get the fuck up.
Come on.
- Leave it, leave it.
- I had him! Leave it! I had him! I fucking had him! Liddy, fucking dummy.
The wheelie king.
Oh, my.
Nice boy.
Slumber party time, baby.
Mm, your bed is nice.
Mm, baby it's just gonna be the two of us for a little bit, okay? Okay.
It's good.
We'll have fun.
We can listen to all your records.
We don't need Daddy right now.
Just you and me, baby.
I called Dad.
I'm I'm gonna stay with him for a couple months until school starts up.
I'm sorry.
I just just need to go.
We can, um, celebrate birthdays together, and we'll see each other for Christmas.
That'll be so fun.
Okay? Mom? As Congress begins its historic impeachment inquiry, I take a moment to sit with the woman who claims to know more about the inner workings of Watergate than anyone else.
The indomitable, the formidable, the complicated Martha Mitchell.
She joins us to set the record straight right after this.
I'm sorry, Mrs.
Mitchell, but you're wanted on stage.
Thank you.
All right.
We'll see you in a minute.
It's a throbbing of my heart to the beat of the wing! It's me and Carol riding off into the sunset! Welcome back to The Today Show.
Last Monday night, I received a telephone call from someone I had not heard from in quite some time, Martha Mitchell.
For the past two months, Mrs.
Mitchell has been living alone in a luxurious Washington apartment her husband used to call the Taj Mahal.
Her husband, John Mitchell, left her after a 16-year marriage.
He now lives in a Georgetown hotel.
Some say that in a matter of weeks, Mr.
Mitchell is expected to be indicted by a grand jury for conspiracy, obstruction of justice, and perjury in connection with the Watergate break-in.
Mitchell told me that she would like to clear up some matters which have been reported inaccurately.
We asked her to appear on this program.
She gave us her word that she would, and now she's here.
Good morning, Barbara.
How are you? I'm fine.
I'm sorry I cannot welcome you to the Taj Mahal.
Well, we welcome you here.
It's a lonely place, but it's awfully pretty.
You have said, and you said to me last week, that President Nixon is asking his subordinates to take the blame for things of which he is guilty.
What do you know, Martha? Well, Barbara, you can't say that I-I know anything, and I would tell this to the Senate Watergate Committee if they ever asked to see me again, is that I am now so confused by what I have read, what I've heard, what I've seen, that I-I-I-I couldn't possibly be a good witness, not in the slightest.
Do you think the President should be impeached, Martha? I have no idea whether the President should be impeached.
I can't answer that.
I'm not sitting in Let's move on.
Let-let me ask you some questions - about you.
- Oh, Martha.
Let's talk about Martha.
I started out by asking you, why after 16 years? Why after a marriage that looked awfully good to an awful lot of people? - It was.
It was great.
- Why It was the greatest thing in the world.
You think perhaps somebody's forced him to leave you? I think very definitely, because a man doesn't tell you two weeks before he walks out and causes a conspiracy on his wife that it's legitimate, put it that way.
Why do you think they did this, Martha? Whoever they are? Well, I don't I don't know.
That would be, uh, hard for me to say.
I Again, I just need to get myself back to a train of thought where I'm not so emotionally involved, you see? I need to do a doctorme Documentary on the whole thing to analyze it.
When you called me the other day, you said something to me.
Very frankly, you said, "Barbara, a lot of people say that-that I drink, that I am an alcoholic" Why are you watching this? "And that's why I say a lot of things.
" - It's depressing.
- Let me interrupt you.
Do you drink, Martha? Do you drink when you make those phone calls? When I when I make phone crawls? Phone calls? What I think has happened, Barbara, is that the the media has kinda built me into this sort of character, and a lot of people don't even know me.
Martha, we have three minutes left.
Is that all? I know you have a lot of fans watching, Martha.
What would you most want them to know about things now? I think just that the trying things that have been imposed on me No one in this country realizes or understands that I I'm working very hard.
I'm not just sitting in an apartment lonely.
I'm doing a great deal of research on this book, and you've done a book.
You know how much work it takes.
And and I have other offers and all kinds of various and sundry things and other things to keep me busy.
I'm not just sitting lonely.
I ha-I have my bad days.
I have days when I'm terribly blue, but other days when When I-I-I can get ahold of myself and-and go ahead.
So just that's all that.
And uh, and also, I-I want to say to all the people who have always corresponded with me that my mail hasn't been coming through.
Well, we've laughed together, we've been on programs together, and I want to just say now that I think for a great many people that you have, at this point, our compassion.
We look forward to your book.
We know it's been a hard time for you, and I thank you for being here and for expressing yourself.
Thank you, Barbara.
We'll be right back after this message.
And we're out.
That was wonderful.
Thank you.
Thank you.
And you look beautiful, and I really hope I see you again, and I'm thinking about you and your family.
- Take good care.
- Okay.
- Bye-bye.
- Bye-bye.
She can kiss that book deal goodbye.
"Dearest Frances", I'm not sure if I'm really writing to you or if this is all happening in my head.
I don't know if I ever told you about what eventually became of my beloved nanny, Frau Teresa.
She killed herself after the war.
Mother said it was because she suffered from hysteria, a mental sickness, but I knew the truth.
She was destroyed by the death of the Fuehrer "toppled by life's unceasing splendor and cruelty.
" "I always hated her for giving in to that sadness.
" "But now, I understand her.
" "Our noble leader, too, has been devoured by rats, and their sickness has infected the rest of us.
" "I know now what Frau Teresa was doing with that rope around her neck.
She wasn't killing herself.
She was freeing herself from love.
" "If they ask, tell the boys I died in battle.
" Fraulein Teresa? I lost my strength.
I found you! I found you! I knew it! Oh, this bad motherfucker's Oh, oh.
Fuck, I can Huh? I knew it! I knew it! No.
No, no, no.
No, no, no, no, no! - So that's it, huh? - Yeah.
I don't know what I was picturing.
It doesn't look like a jail to me.
Well, it's it's a military base.
This is this is home sweet home until we testify.
Hunt's in there, Colson, Magruder.
Getting the gang back together now? How much longer do we have? Three minutes.
You don't have to stick around, you know? I-I'd understand if you wanna If you wanna move on, find somebody else.
Oh, I already have another boyfriend.
I'm serious.
Five five years is a long time.
I am yours.
I'm in this, even if I'm not in there.
That said, I was thinking I could pull some strings with the airline.
Oh, yeah? Yeah, I think I could get us as far as Manila.
We could change our names.
I'm sorry.
I love you.
Oh, here are my dates.
Marty left her books.
She's in the car.
Uh This is, uh, all of them.
Well I guess that's it.
She said that you, uh Your migraines were acting up.
Oh, um I'm fine, thank you.
Thank you for asking.
Well, take care of yourself.
Wait, Mitchell, I just wanna talk to you for a minute.
- No, no.
- Just just - Martha, don't.
- Please.
- I just - Martha, don't.
I just wanna talk to you for a minute.
I just wanna I know I'm a disappointment to you, Mitchell.
And I I've been an embarrassment with the press and the and the interviews, and I've learned my lesson, and I'm just ashamed, and I'm sorry.
But I know I can do better and go back to the way that it used to be with you and me.
Just please stay here with me.
Please? Please don't leave me here alone.
I'll send someone for the rest of Marty's things.
Well, he's handsome, for starters, and well-established at his firm.
Is he boring? He sounds boring.
Oh, God no.
No, he's the kinda guy you can really cut loose with.
Look, he's a card, and he has the most macabre sense of humor.
- No.
- I'm telling you, Martha.
You're really gonna like this guy.
Come on.

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