Murphy Brown s01e03 Episode Script

Nowhere to Run

Miles! I've been looking for you.
There's a story idea I've been working on.
It's a very special piece, and I'm very passionate about it, Miles.
- I hope you say yes.
- What is it? I want to interview Indira Gandhi.
She's dead.
Well, then somebody like her: Golda Meir.
Also dead.
Well, it doesn't have to be someone in politics: Margaret Mead.
Dead.
All women.
All famous.
All dead.
I think I'm on to something, Miles.
I'll get back to you.
Hi there.
I'm Miles Silverberg, executive producer of FYI.
Let me be the first to welcome you to our little family.
Listen, how is Murphy today? - Good mood? - Sure.
Fine.
Great! See? Despite what you may've heard, Murphy Brown can be a kind and caring person.
Get lost! Now, I'll need the German footage by Saturday, latest.
Mickey, I'm begging you, for the good of the show and for two 40-yard-line seats.
That's my guy.
Miles, I think I'm finally getting somewhere here.
I've got a source that says his father met Bormann in Argentina as late as '75.
Oh, the missing Nazi thing.
Right.
And there's a chance Geisler and some others are in a fishing village on the coast of Argentina.
I can see why you're so excited.
Jeez, we get a shot of some old geezer in some big rubber fisherman boots and maybe a shot of one playing Parcheesi by a bait-and-tackle shop Exciting stuff! Cut to the chase, Miles.
Well, I did come here with another story area but it's really more of a "current/today" type of thing, you know.
Headline blockbuster Who needs it, huh? Besides, I can see you're already married to this old geezer-Nazi thing.
You know, Diane Sawyer did the same story on 60 Minutes last week.
- But, hey, it's not like people compare you.
- What's your story? I just got a telephone call.
Anonymous.
It looks like there's dirty laundry on a highly visible federal prosecutor.
Something about prostitution.
You expect me to drop everything because a federal prosecutor is fooling around with hookers? Miles, that's not a story.
That's a given.
Even if the prosecutor is Robert Hawk? Who happens to be putting together a senate campaign? Keep talking.
The prostitution stuff is probably just a tiny, itsy-bitsy part of a very big payoff some sort of not-so-legal favor.
By whom? - I thought you weren't interested.
- I'm not.
Who made the payoff? I don't know yet, but I've been promised it's someone very big.
Who's your source? "The Asp.
" The what? - The Asp.
- What? Asp! A-S-P like the deadly snake.
But if you're more comfortable with a story about retired Nazis who fly fish I'll give this Asp 15 minutes.
That's it.
The Asp will be waiting.
Close the door! Now, there's a face I recognize.
Hey there, Phil.
- What can I get you? - Nothing yet.
I need to ask you: - Is there an Asp here? - What? Asp! Asp! Like the snake.
Oh, Asp.
Sure.
Over there.
Okay, if you've got something for me, let's see it.
Otherwise, I've got things to do.
Hey, lady, I just came in here for a drink.
What are you talking about? Oh, what the hell, you smell good.
I got 30 bucks.
You looking for the Asp? Hey, wait.
You're Murphy Brown.
Okay, I'll go 40 bucks.
You're the Asp? I don't remember.
I've been sitting here so long.
I couldn't get here sooner.
Got a very busy I know you're very busy with this and that and blah, blah You want a drink? No, thanks.
You got something for me about Robert Hawk? Federal prosecutor, my eye.
The guy is a crook.
I know.
I was his secretary for six years.
This is from Hawk to Leon Sturgess, the crime boss.
That's right.
You know, honey, you've put on a little weight.
You better lay off the crullers.
"Situation has been resolved.
Charges dropped.
Six digits, well-received as were Fifi and her sister.
My thanks, Bob.
" You're telling me Hawk has mob connections? Why are you doing this? Well, if you must know I got tired of him undressing me with his eyes.
The guy is a lizard.
I am not a piece of meat.
Right.
Listen, how can I get in touch with you? You can't.
You gotta do the rest yourself.
Well, it's been a fiesta.
What're you looking at? Hey, you walk like that, you gotta expect it, kid.
Get me the Federal Building right away, please.
I'll need copies of anything on Leon Sturgess from AP or UPI for the last three or four years.
Sure.
Fine.
Listen, I want you to know that I'm sorry I haven't spent more time with you.
I know it's your first day, and sometimes I can be a little gruff.
Just let it roll off your back, okay? Sure.
Fine.
No problem.
There's a roving band of gypsies behind you and they want you to be their queen.
Sure.
Fine.
No problem.
It's open.
Hang on to your penny loafers, Miles.
I spent all afternoon in the archives.
In March of '87, Leon Sturgess was accused of tax evasion.
Hawk has the case dismissed because of insufficient evidence.
Then a federal investigator decides to reopen the case and Hawk had him fired.
I love the smell of this, Miles.
Murphy, I was thinking it over.
I mean, this guy Sturgess So he was just trying to save a few bucks on his 1040.
Who doesn't do that? What's the matter with you? Nothing's the matter with me.
I just got to thinking, "Hey, let's lighten up here! Let's give the poor guy a break!" And you know, it's kind of disturbing to me to be thinking that while we're wasting our time on this, Hitler's golfing buddies are scot-free! You're blithering.
What is going on with you? Some guy called.
He said if we don't drop the story, he'll send me to Toledo in several small sandwich bags.
Is that what this is all about? Hey, everybody! Miles just got his first death threat! Death threats happen to good journalists.
You've gotta look at it as a rite of passage.
I'm sorry.
I had my rite of passage.
There was a rabbi and a big buffet.
Why would this guy wanna kill you? I'm the one doing the story.
That's what I told him.
But they watch you on TV every week, and they think you're really pretty and they're old-fashioned about killing women.
Talk about your sexism.
All the more reason to nail these guys to the wall.
- Your hair's on fire.
- No problem.
So let me just get this clear here, Murphy.
You're saying I should treat this death threat business like a crank call? You know, Miles, we've all been in your position.
Believe me.
The first time I got a death threat, I nearly went berserk.
What did you do? Two minutes to airtime I looked down and realized I had put on a light-blue tie with a brown suit.
Stack of Bibles.
What we're trying to say is it's only a scare tactic.
They never follow up.
Is there a Miles Silverberg around here? I'm here to see Mr.
Silver I'm here to see Mr.
Silverberg on some business.
He called about a bodyguard.
I'm Miles Silverberg.
Hey, how you doing? Tiffany Howard.
Tiffany? Isn't that sort of a girl's name? Now, as you know rates increase substantially for 24-hour protection and/or multiple locations plus transportation to-or-from.
So how long you gonna be needing protection? Well, I guess until Wednesday, until we run the story on Leon Sturgess.
By then Wait a minute.
Leon Sturgess? The mob guy? Yes.
But like I said, by then I forgot.
I gotta I got a Jazzercise class at 3.
I could kick myself for not remembering.
What a dunce I am, huh? You have a nice day.
I'm a dead man.
Sure.
Fine.
No problem.
Oh, no.
Well, when did Mrs.
Perón pass on? Please send my condolences to Mr.
Perón.
This is depressing.
Corky why don't you try lmelda Marcos.
Very funny.
- Hello.
I'm Murphy Brown.
- Yes, I know.
It's a pleasure to meet you.
I am Katie Holtz.
Hi, Katie.
Listen, you've probably gone through this with personnel already but just out of curiosity what sort of background do you have? I worked five years as an administrative assistant at the Ross Corporation before that, as an executive secretary at Kreppler & Hobbes legal offices Great! Excellent.
I'm sure this will work out fine.
Oh, so am I.
I already like you and when I spoke to Satan this morning before breakfast he pretty much guaranteed this would be a great experience.
So, what would you like me to do? Take this stapler to the lobby.
Hey, Murphy.
Jim, Frank.
So how are you? Miles, what happened to you? Oh, nothing really.
A car.
Lost control on South Capitol.
Ran up on the sidewalk.
Miles, I know what you're thinking, but I'm sure it was an accident.
And followed me for two and a half blocks.
That sort of thing has happened to you guys, huh? - No, not me.
- No.
Just a phone call.
How you doing on the story? I'd hate to think you hit any snags that'd make us drop it.
Miles, I'm this close to frying these guys.
Oh, good.
Great.
Look at the time.
Frank, you don't think there's anything to this death threat, do you? Well, if he asks you to slow dance near a window ix-nay, babe, ix-nay.
What am I supposed to do, drop the story? I've never dropped a story.
It's extortion.
Look, take what you've got to the prosecutor.
Let them handle it from here.
They could be dirty.
I don't know the good guys from the bad yet.
Frank, what would you do? Ask your advice.
It wouldn't be so bad if he'd tell me to drop it.
But he's being so brave.
I know.
My bet in the office pool had him on a bus to Seattle two days ago.
I hate when stuff like this happens.
Everything was working so well.
I was gonna put guys in jail.
It's my favorite thing.
Don't take it so hard, Murph.
The Republicans are still in office.
There'll be other chances.
Miles? Miles, I know you're in here.
Look I know you're scared.
Am not.
Would you get out here? - How'd you know I was here? - The janitor.
The janitor? Ernie? Ernie told you I was here? I can't believe it.
He said they'd have to cut out his heart before he'd tell.
That's what he said, they'd have to cut out his heart.
Look, I know this hasn't been easy for you.
Easy? I stopped answering my phone.
I'm afraid to start my own car, so I took the subway where, by the way, I was mugged.
Look, there's a reason why I needed to find you tonight.
I've been giving this a lot of thought and considering the circumstances I think we should drop the story.
What? It isn't all bad.
I can pass it on to Jane Pauley.
Maybe they'll kill her.
I really appreciate it, Murphy.
But I've been giving it some thought too.
And I've decided that we're journalists, right? A free and courageous press is the backbone of this society.
The public needs to know the truth and it's our responsibility to see that they get the truth regardless of personal risk.
Crime cannot must not win out.
We can't drop the story, Murphy.
We owe it to the American public.
Okay.
Wait! It was a joke! Kidding! We don't owe the public anything! They don't care.
We don't even know most of them anyway.
I was kidding, Murphy.
I'm here all alone waiting for some guy to come in here and hack me up like a piece of liver.
Miles, it's late.
I've got a long drive home.
You're in bed already.
Now, what's it gonna be, story or no story? Why are you making me decide? I thought you'd do the story no matter what.
So did I.
- Will you stop looking at me like that? - Like what? Like Bambi caught in my headlights.
This should be easy.
Cut and dried.
We're journalists.
We run stories.
But I like you, Miles.
I like that you never give up.
I like the way you pester me.
I'm even getting used to the smell of Clearasil in your office.
And, believe me, I hate it that I like you.
That's the nicest thing you've ever said to me.
Just don't blab it around, okay? All right, let's come to a decision here.
You know all I ever wanted to do was work in the news.
When I was a kid, that's all I'd watch on TV.
I'd think, "Look at those pictures.
There's a reporter and a camera crew crawling in the trenches getting that story.
Those guys are heroes.
" Other kids wanted to be cowboys.
Not me.
I had this fedora with the word "Scoop" written on a little card stuck in the brim.
We run the story.
You got it.
You gonna be okay? Yeah.
See you tomorrow, Scoop.
Late today, both Robert Hawk and Leon Sturgess were arraigned in federal court.
Hawk has been charged with accepting a bribe and obstructing justice.
Sturgess was brought up on three counts of bribery, two counts of obstructing justice.
In addition, federal authorities are now looking into allegations of extortion.
- Jim? - Thank you for that electrifying report.
Frank, fascinating tour of Edwards Air Force Base.
And, Corky, interesting visit to a séance.
Nice try.
This has been another edition of FYI.
Good night.
And we're clear.
Has anybody seen Miles? Silverberg? Is he still alive? Ernie, you seen Miles today? Murphy! Fantastic job.
Winner.
Beauty.
Miles, where have you been?! If you ever scare me like this again, I'll kill you.
I fell asleep in the bathroom.
But I got up to the booth just in time to see Sturgess being taken into custody.
Did we stand our ground.
I feel good.
Guess people know not to mess with Miles Silverberg.
Miles, don't make me deck you.
- Hey, Miles, you got a call.
- Oh, yeah? Yeah.
Guy named Leon something said: "I'll be out in five to seven short years.
Then I'm gonna hunt you down and kill you like a hog in the street.
" No, that's a D.
It says "a dog in the street.
" Why would a hog be in the street? - Well, it says "hog.
" Look at it.
- You're out of your mind.
That's a D.
Dog in the street.
A hog wouldn't be in the street.
That's stupid.
Miles, some advice: Hang tough.
You made the right choice, you know.
Right.
So see you tomorrow.
Wait a minute.
That's it? Did I forget something? I don't know.
Just seems a little strange, doesn't it? After all this, life goes on as usual.
You thought that maybe when someone risks their life, there'd be acknowledgement.
I don't know.
Hey, everybody, let's hear it for Miles.
- Yeah.
- Right on.
Thanks.
Eldin, I'm home! Come on, I know you're here.
You're always here.
Jeez, could you please keep it down? I got a splitting headache.
Do you know you need a new box spring? So I see you got a lot done today.
Scaffold's still here.
Wall's still unfinished.
But I don't care.
I had one of those really perfect days and I feel great.
What do you gotta be so cheery for? You know, it's very annoying.
What's wrong with you? Painter's block.
The trim.
It just doesn't It doesn't sing to me.
Well, I think maybe you need a little inspiration.
I've got just the thing.
Oh, please, I'm not in the mood.
Use the headphones.
Come on, Eldin, how could you listen to this and not feel better? I bet you're a great dancer.
Come on, Eldin.
Life's too short.
It's good for the soul.
Come on.
You dance like a white girl.
What are you talking about? Like this.
- You feel better? - I feel tremendous.
- This is the part where I flip you.
- What?