Things to Do

Veep Recap: How Old Is Sue?

Sufe Bradshaw as Sue. Photograph by Lacey Terrell via HBO.

As Sue, Selina Meyer’s all-knowing secretary who spends most of the series lurking in the background, Sufe Bradshaw has one of Veep‘s most understated but vital roles. She’s never as manic the other characters and always ready with a barb or explanation to shut down her male colleagues. Heck, if I had to pick one of this fake White House’s resident knuckleheads to run things, it’d be Sue without question.

So it’s nice to see Sue get a bit of a subplot, even if it is a Kenneth Ellen Parcell-esque mystery about her true age that Kent starts investigating after on old political hand brought in to settle the impending Nevada recount remarks that it’s good to see her still working in the White House after all these years.

Meanwhile, Amy, Dan, Jonah, and Richard are off to Carson City, Nevada—which is not part of Las Vegas, no matter how much Amy’s sister insists—to work said recount. Oh, and Representative Furlong (Dan Bakkedahl) is there, too, to make sure Nevada’s hard-working elections officials feel terrible.

Back at the White House, Selina’s “banking task force” introduces John Slattery as Charlie Baird, a calculating banker with Roger Sterling levels of charm. There’s political drama at the end of the episode, but Slattery’s appearance peaks when Gary walks into the bedroom after Selina’s and Charlie’s “second banking task force.” To Gary, it’s as if he walked in on his mom.

Here are four other things to fixate on from “Nev-ah-da”:

Old Guy Arms Race: Selina’s general-election opponent, the often drunk Senator O’Brien, brings in an ex-Secretary of State to run his recount operation. To counter, the Meyer team brings in Ben’s (Kevin Dunn) old mentor, Bob Bradley (Martin Mull), if you consider someone nicknames calls his disciple “buttfucker.” The obvious inspiration is the 2000 Florida recount, in which George W. Bush‘s operation was led by George H.W. Bush-era Secretary of State James Baker, while Al Gore‘s team was led by Clinton Administration Secretary of State Warren Christopher. For further reading, see the movie HBO made a few years ago literally about this thing. At least Veep’s recount will have Martin Mull calling people “buttfucker.”

Mike McClintock Health Watch: Last week, Mike was all about the Fitbit. This week, he’s on the “Master Cleanse,” which Kent accurately describes as a term the Nazis might have used. At this rate, Mike will be in SoulCycle by episode five, and probably just straight-up worshipping R’hllor by the season finale.

Anything to Get on TV: After Amy and Dan’s near-hookup is interrupted by the sudden appearance of Amy’s sister, the three retreat to the hotel bar. Dan can’t help ask Amy’s sister the “What do you do?” question—you can take the hacks out of DC, and so on—and is immediately turned on when he hears her say “CBS,” even though to the viewer, she clearly said “CVS.” Good luck to Dan on his night shift guarding the Gillette cartridges.

Jonah’s Hoop Dreams: This was Amy’s night for insults. First she calls the bumbling Richard a “Paddington Bear-looking fuck,” and when Jonah compares himself to Michael Jordan, Amy drops some acidic basketball knowledge on everyone’s least favorite goon: “You are not Michael Jordan. You are a 7-foot-7 gooey-looking Lithuanian who’s going to drop dead from Marfan syndrome. Get your ass to the car.”

Staff Writer

Benjamin Freed joined Washingtonian in August 2013 and covers politics, business, and media. He was previously the editor of DCist and has also written for Washington City Paper, the New York Times, the New Republic, Slate, and BuzzFeed. He lives in Adams Morgan.