White House Plumbers Episode 3 Summary


White House Plumber remains very funny but gets a lot more absurd here as repeated failed attempts to break into the DNC office lead us to inevitable disaster.

This recap of White House Plumbers Episode 3, “Don’t Drink the Whiskey at the Watergate” contains spoilers.

How many times does one have to fail at a task before realizing that a) it’s a bad idea or b) you’re not capable of doing it one way or the other? Don’t Drink the Whiskey at the Watergate argues that if you don’t succeed at first, try again. And again. And again.

One suspects that the logical end point is that one has left so much evidence undermining the very fabric of American democracy that one could not try again even if one wanted to.

White House Plumbers Episode 3 Summary

What goes wrong on the first break-in attempt?

The first attempt to break into the DNC office in the Watergate Hotel fails – twice.

A team led by Liddy attempts to break into George McGovern’s campaign office. After spending a while turning out the lights outside, they are prevented from having Liddy’s “insider” get cold feet after he’s spotted by a janitor and denies them entry into the building.

McGovern’s team then hires 24-hour security. The place was probably impossible for someone as dumb as Liddy to break into anyway, but it’s impenetrable now, period.

Elsewhere, Hunt books a banquet room at the Watergate Hotel, internally connected to the DNC office, with the idea that he and Villo can sneak in if everyone leaves. While they wait, they drink and party, and then accidentally get locked in the banquet’s pantry pantry all night.

The title of the episode goes back to the fact that the two have to relieve themselves in half-empty whiskey bottles. It goes without saying that no bugs are planted anywhere.

What goes wrong on the second and third break-in attempt?

You will remember the second try episode 1. In the process, Villo brings the wrong tools to pick the lock, and McCord is recognized by a security guard he used to work with.

Incredibly, McCord has absolutely no qualms about revealing that he currently serves on the presidential reelection committee.

On the third try, the team succeeds in planting the bugs and photographing the files, but neither works. Most bugs aren’t even operational, and the one that just picks up stupid secretarial babble.

Eventually, Hunt realizes the futility of this whole endeavor. His wife reminds him that Nixon will probably be re-elected anyway, especially on the back SALT contract. He has a family to devote his time to, and Gordon Liddy is obviously a psychopath.

And yet, for whatever reason, Hunt is forced to try again. This time it’s really going wrong.

The ending of episode 3 of “White House Plumbers” is explained

What does macho have to do with Hunt?

The last try is one too many, and everyone knows that.

Despite Liddy’s insistent promises of political loot from a re-elected Nixon, Hunt at least has the wits to keep her off the grounds himself. And that’s a good thing, because McCord and all the Cuban locksmiths are being arrested for it.

As always, it’s stupidity that binds Bernard “Macho” Barker to Hunt. In real life, Hunt’s name was found in his address book. Here it is on the envelope of a letter addressed to the Lakewood Country Club to settle its overdue membership bill. Macho should have posted it on the way but forgot.

So it’s over. Attempts to spy on the DNC in favor of Nixon’s re-election, which was already virtually assured, amounted to nothing but repeated attempts to rectify past failures. With two episodes left, it’s now time for the resulting scandal to grab Hunt, Liddy and the entire government headlines.

At least they are mentioned in the same breath as Nixon. But it hardly seems worth it.

You can stream Episode 3 of White House Plumbers, “Don’t Drink the Whiskey at the Watergate,” exclusively on HBO.

Additional reading:

https://readysteadycut.com/2023/05/23/white-house-plumbers-episode-3/ White House Plumbers Episode 3 Summary


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