"Hiya, kids." Ready for the second installment of The Women of Damn! That's A Lot Of Tragedy?
Previously: Three repressed wives in nice clothes, plus three oversexed, promiscuous, politically ambitious husbands, multiplied by enormous national tragedy, divided by one ambitious King Lear-esque patriarch = one big, fat dysfunction cocktail. One which America has to apparently drink from every three years or so. Jesus.
November 22, 1963. Air Force One. Post-JFK's assassination. Many somber dignitaries in black. Jackie's siting in her brains-covered Chanel suit. She murmurs, "I keep hearing that gun," and gives us a little PTSD. Someone tell Jill Hennessy that Emmy voting time is over. Sorry.
Lyndon B. Johnson tells Jackie that they need to show the world that "the heartbeat of democracy goes on." Instead of grabbing him by the nads and twisting like she's opening a locker, she turns into Presidential Stepford Widow and says, "Yes Mr. President." Johnson suggests that she might want to change clothes. Okay, you know what? Maybe Lyndon B. Johnson was an unevolved political shark, and yes, he had an admittedly bizarre appearance, and yes, he was creepy and Machiavellian and there is Vietnam, but he did a lot for civil rights, and I have to say I am secretly fond of the old buzzard, so I do not cotton to this "movie event"'s tendency to paint him as a total jerk. Because I know that's why you read MBTV, for my political views. Ahem. Jackie refuses to change. She wants "them" to see what "they've" done.
LBJ's getting sworn in in a very makeshift ceremony. The actor playing LBJ looks less like Lyndon Baines Johnson and more like Lyndon Huckleberry Hound Johnson. Close-up of Jackie's face. She's going all Apocalypse Now.
Title. Credits. Fade up on newsreel footage on an old-fashioned TV of the assassination and LBJ's swearing-in. Joan, wearing a very pretty sweater, watches. Left out of things, as usual. LBJ speechifies over scenes of Jackie getting into a car. Joan watches on her TV. Cut to Hyannis Port. All the maids are sad. They watch Rose staring at the sea.
November 24, 1963. More newsreel footage of the mourning for the President. The newsreel footage is bizarre, sad, and moving, even with the treacly music playing in the background. Wow, did Wailing Whitney Ovary get fired? Not that I'm not grateful. At home, Joan prevents the nanny from letting the kids go to school, since it "isn't safe" outside. Ted comes home just in time to hear this and tells her she's nuttier than a Mr. Goodbar. Joan doesn't know how to cope. Ted says none of them do, but they have to cope, and go on, and that Joan has to be at the funeral. Those are the first non-moronic words out of Teddy's mouth in this entire miniseries.
Joan asks what if someone tries to kill Bobby or him. Teddy says it was one crazy man, and that it "doesn't matter" -- okay, the non-moronic word count is holding steady -- and that Joan has to be there for JFK's sake.