Teleplay by Simon Blackwell & Tony Roche
Story by Armando Iannucci & Simon Blackwell Tony Roche
Directed by Chris Addison
“God, there’s so many people in here. It’s like a Mormon orgy.” – Selina
En route to D.C., the staff celebrates Selina’s impending presidential transition. Amy reminds Selina that she still also has to campaign for her election, though it falls on deaf ears. Instead, Selina is delighted to receive a congratulatory voicemail from Beyoncé, calling her a “single lady.”
Selina returns to her offices and is greeted by an excited mob. Sue informs her of her swearing in ceremony the following day and notes that, afterwards, Selina will acquire the nuclear codes. “Goodbye, China,” Ben mutters. As her first order of business, Selina tells Kent to get rid of Leslie Carr. Kent questions specifics about the particular name, but she blows him off.
“It’s going to be Def-Con fun.” – Ben
Selina takes Ben aside and asks him to be her acting chief of staff. He begs her to spare him, claiming he was “bulimic the whole first year but didn’t even lose any weight.” She threatens to bring back Prohibition if he doesn’t agree to continue in his role.
Kent calls for a meeting with Dan in a storage closet and informs him that the Washington Post has traced the Danny Chung torture rumor back to its source -- aka, “the river Dan.” Dan begs for 24 hours to find a solution, and Kent agrees to six hours. “I’ll see you then,” Kent says. “Alternatively, goodbye forever.” Dan rushes to find Ben, but the chief of staff denies ever telling him the story. “The f*ck stops here, Dan.”
“The web made me, I can’t denounce it. That’s like Peter denouncing Christ. Or worse.” – Jonah
Dan meets with Jonah, who tells him he’s done in D.C. and has plans to head to Africa “to help install sewage systems in poor communities or go to Wall Street -- one of the two.” Dan tells him that’s too bad, since they have a position for him in the White House, on the condition that he deny to the press that the Chung torture rumor came from the Veep’s office
Out of deference to the former First Lady, Selina is sworn into office in a White House state room with no pomp or circumstance. While she recites the oath, Mike bumps into a lamp, interrupting her recitation.
“I’m like a boom op on a porn shoot right now.” – Jonah
Jonah finds Dan to complain that he’s buried so far in the West Wing that he’s “practically in Pyongyang.” He’s receiving massive amounts of hate from the internet community after blaming the web for the Chung torture story, which includes a meme of him having sex with a chicken while dressed as Bin Laden. Jonah adds: “And it’s really well done so it legitimately looks like I’m engaging in bestiality while insulting 9/11 victims.”
“The perfect shoe for the perfect moment for the perfect life of the perfect woman.” – Gary
Gary presents Selina with a pair of “special shoes” she told him she wanted to wear if she ever became president. Selina pretends to be touched by the gesture, despite being thoroughly creeped out. As Selina approaches the podium to give her first address as president, she realizes that the “perfect shoes” squeak. Ben, Dan, Gary, and Mike watch on in horror as Twitter explodes with the headline “President squeaks to the nation.”
Following her address, Selina threatens her staff that “any f*ck-up from now on is not just a f*ck-up, it’s my legacy.” Adding insult to injury, Kent informs her that her decision to remove Leslie Kerr from State has freaked out the Iranians. Selina tells him she didn’t mean Leslie Kerr, she meant Leslie Carr, “that bitch from Energy.” Kent explains that she meant Leanne Carr. Selina freaks out, and asks if she could just say it was an error, but Ben warns her that it would be terrible public relations. “You might as well drive a suicide clown car into the f*ckin’ Lincoln Memorial.” Selina orders Kent to New Hampshire to “attach some electrodes to the corpse” of her campaign.
“We just need bodies now, Amy. Warm, upright bodies that can still punch a hole in a card.” – Kent
Kent and Amy discuss campaign tactics after watching a new advertisement from Joe Thornhill blasting Selina. Kent admits they need the support of Jonah’s uncle, Jeff Kane, now that Maddox has backed out of the race. Amy orders Dan to talk to Jonah, who remains miffed about his new position in the White House. He’ll only help if Dan hires him an assistant, as well as gets him West Exec parking and mess hall privileges. “You want a Jonah?” Dan asks. “Yeah,” Jonah says. “And henceforth, they will no longer be known as Jonahs. They’ll be known as Jimmys or Pepes or Sarahs or whatever the f*ck that person’s name turns out to be. And you can’t hire anyone named Jonah!”
Dan and Ben tell Selina that Maddox and Pierce have publically endorsed Chung. She decides they need to head to New Hampshire to do a photo op among the people, as long as it’s not at a hospice. “I can’t risk some f*cker flat-lining right next to me,” she mutters.
“It’s not like I’m trying to get sworn-in by an Elvis impersonator.” – Selina
Selina heads to a factory that manufactures protective gear for firefighters and the employees love her. Amy delights over the fact that Selina is “so good at making people believe she’s good with people.”
Ben interrupts Selina’s tour to tell her that she’s not actually the President. She messed up the oath when Mike bumped into the lamp and now the Speaker is demanding she be sworn in properly. Selina refuses to head back to D.C. and demands that they find a local federal justice to swear her in at the factory. “It could be really great for us,” Amy agrees. “Play up to New Hampshire’s already inflated sense of self-importance.”
Selina returns to the tour only to be interrupted by Ben, yet again. He’s gotten word that Iran is “officially pissed” about her decision to fire Leslie Kerr. “Apparently, they like the guy. It must be the beard.” He warns that their statement could spook the markets and spike gas prices, so she needs to reinstate Kerr despite it being a PR disaster.
“I came in third, Amy. Even the Nazis came in second.” – Selina
The night of the New Hampshire Primary, the staff watches the polls dejectedly as Danny Chung is confirmed as the winner, and they wait to learn whether or not Selina comes in second. The final blow comes when CNN confirms Joe Thornhill beat her by 1 percent of the vote, placing her in third. “It’s 1 percent, that’s nothing,” Gary reassures her. “You’re basically second. You’re second in our eyes, I’ll tell you that much.”