Hostages - Recap
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The episode begins with Selina watching a news report about a bunch of American kids who have been taken hostage. She and Dan go over the details of a speech she is scheduled to give. Cliff, Sue’s fill-in, arrives for his first day of work. At Ken’s office, Ben and Amy talk with him about the hostage crisis. Amy lets Ken know that Selina wants swift action. Ken retorts saying they will have to wait till the opinion polls reveal that the American people want the hostages rescued. Ken even gives an analogy to explain his perspective. Selina arrives at a marine base in Quantico to meet General Maddox, Secretary of Defense.
While waiting for Maddox to arrive, Selina indulges in some small talk with the marines who have gathered there to welcome her. Maddox arrives a while later. He and Selina are shown around the base. During the tour of the base, while Selina and Maddox are walking past a shooting range, Maddox and the base commander urge Selina to try her hand at some target practice. After consulting with her team, she agrees. At the VP’s office, Sue leaves for a congressional hearing on government efficiency. She will be representing the VP. At the base, Selina impresses the commander with some fine shooting.
Maddox clearly doesn’t look happy with her being given so much attention. While Maddox and Selina are waiting their turn to go onstage and give a speech to the marines, they talk about the hostage crisis in Uzbekistan. Maddox tries to show Selina up by making her realize she doesn’t know anything about the crisis. She, through some well-disguised bluffing, covers up her ignorance. At the congressional hearing, Sue is asked some difficult questions. She is clearly not equipped to answer them and ends up making a mess of things. Jonah is watching the hearing on C-Span and is clearly not happy with how it is going. When the person questioning her taunts her for using the word “robust” too many times, she hits right back, cutting him down to size.
At the base, Amy and team get a text saying Sue used the word “robust” too many times. They decide to come up with a synonym for “robust”, so Selina can use that in her speech instead. They decide on the word “strong” as the replacement for “robust”. Before they can make the change though, Selina goes onstage to give her speech. She uses the pre-decided “robust” in the speech, while her team helplessly looks on. The next day, Selina reads how she copied Sue in the papers, when she used the word “robust”. She isn’t very happy to learn this. At the office, Selina calls for Sue. She is told by Cliff, her stand-in, that Sue is preparing for her encore in front of the congressional committee. She hasn’t come in yet.
Sue arrives a while later, but Selina has to leave for a defense meeting before they get the chance to talk. At the meeting, Ben tells Selina, who used “robust” and Maddox, who used “aggressive”, that both their words are confusing to the American people. He explains they mean two different things. He wants them both to be on the same page, so he asks them to use the words “calculated response” instead. During the meeting, Ken arrives and gives the trio the news that they can move on the hostages. They are glad to hear that. They all leave it up to Selina to decide on the exact date.
Selina calls her office to check her schedule. She learns that Sue’s congressional hearing is on the 6th and decides the hostage situation needs to be resolved on that day. At her office, Amy, who has figured out that Selina deliberately chose the 6th because she is jealous of Sue’s growing popularity, asks Selina about this issue. Selina denies it outright. She says all she was thinking of was freeing the poor hostages. She learns from Cliff that the Senator’s swearing in ceremony, is also on the 6th. Cliff hadn’t told her about this earlier. She as the VP, can’t avoid being at this ceremony.
Amy suggests Selina get through the swearing-in and then she can monitor the hostage crisis. On the 6th, Selina arrives for the swearing-in ceremony and tries her best to rush through it. After she is done with the ceremony, she rushes to the situation room to monitor the rescue operation. Selina and her team rejoice after the hostages are rescued. There are hi-fives all around. At the congressional hearing, Sue learns that her popular moment is over because the focus is now on the hostage crisis.
At her office, Selina is informed by Amy that in the hostage retrieval operation, a marine lost his leg. She is really moved on hearing this. Selina blames herself for the marine losing his leg. Her team consoles her, saying the VP sometimes has to make tough decisions. Gary even offers to get her a croissant to make her feel better. She willingly accepts his offer. The episode ends at this point.