Watergate Series “Gaslit” on Starzplay: Stop Dumb Cheeks – Media

Criminal dupes associated with the intelligence community are hired to frame dirt on the Democrats in the 1972 election campaign. They burglary, but find nothing and basically do no harm, but are caught. The Democrats still lose the election against the uncatchable Richard Nixon – just stupid that Nixon ordered the paranoid action in the first place. At the end of the all-encompassing idiocy, the President must resign. That was, in short, Watergate.

If you look at the whole thing with the insanely steeled view of the post-Trump years and the current Putin years, you ask yourself one thing above all: How could this become a myth of journalism, American civil society and the system of checks and balances? A crook fails in the highest office of state because of his fundamental stupidity – and that of everyone else around him. Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman, who discover this as reporters in the film “All The President’s Men” and fall away from the faith, seem like innocent lambs from another time today.

Is it still possible to tell all this again, but for the cynical present? It was on this question that Robbie Pickering and his collaborators in concocting the series clashed gas lit to the character of Martha Mitchell, wife of then Attorney General John Mitchell. He wasn’t just Richard Nixon’s close political friend, he was something of a dumbass when it came to Watergate – he headed the committee for Nixon’s re-election, which planned all the illegal activities.

Sean Penn plays John Mitchell, almost unrecognizable under a heavy double-chin mask, as obedient to power, corrupt and weak

Martha, on the other hand, was known for television appearances in which she staged herself as an opinionated matron from Arkansas and never allowed her husband or Nixon (whose war in Vietnam she opposed) to muzzle her. She had enough insight to immediately connect the Watergate burglars to her husband – whom she feared more than any reporter in America at the crucial moment. She was held in a hotel room by bodyguards for a few days. And then spoke anyway.

Making this really odd couple the center of a series is a real gamble – and it has already paid off once Julia Roberts jumped into the role of Martha Mitchell. Both come from the southern states, that already connects. The ad is now selling the whole thing as a story about a strong woman who “can’t be silenced” and who demonstrates moral backbone at the decisive moment – a real American heroine, who unfortunately has been largely disregarded up until now.

Well, this story is told gas lit Fortunately not. Because how could there be a moral backbone in the middle of Nixon’s crime clan? Sean Penn plays John Mitchell, almost unrecognizable under a heavy double-chin mask, as a tragic figure who is powerbound, corrupt and weak. Martha, on the other hand, doesn’t want to know much about his mistakes, acts as a rescuer and gets her husband even deeper into trouble with every action she takes. She is driven by an insatiable thirst for recognition, which the series does not sugarcoat. In the end, this woman only knows loyalty to herself.

While the Nixons haven’t had sex in ages, the Mitchells still rock it

But, and this is a huge leap, the gas lit tried and then also attracted actors of this caliber – the two just love each other anyway. And hate each other, and need each other, and use each other, and are afraid, give each other resounding slaps in the face and yet desire each other the next moment. While Pat and Richard Nixon haven’t had sex in ages, the Mitchells giggle and congratulate each other, they’re still having it.

About this power couple, which rock each other up to tragic heights, the series then groups around a lot of smaller dumbass, some with great comic potential. Because the whole Watergate story is told again: from hiring the criminal “plumbers” to the actual burglary (genre: scoundrel comedy of incompetence) to the story of the Porsche-driving dumbass John Dean (very funny: Dan Stevens), lawyer in the White House, who is chosen as the scapegoat and then becomes a whistleblower with the help of a tough stewardess, whom he occasionally marries.

All in all, it’s hard to believe what kind of characters were jumping around the Oval Office, such as little G. Gordon Liddy with a macho mustache, a piercing, dark, demented look and a pathetic, lyrical readiness to make sacrifices in every sentence (Shea Whigham). At first you think of this manikin as a mythical figure in the sense of comic pressure equalization, but then you have to realize that the former FBI agent and head of the Watergate burglars was apparently really like that.

The nicest thing is the nonchalance of the staging in many scenes that don’t relate to the Mitchells’ drama or Richard Nixon himself, who never really comes into the picture. Almost all of the smaller characters have screwed up fundamental shit and know it, all watching in slow motion as their house of cards inevitably collapses, and all knowing that it was actually totally unnecessary. dumbass stop. But they can also be complex here and, yes, yes, not all completely unlovable.

gas liton Starzplay on Amazon Prime.

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