|White House Plumbers|
Integrity: Good People, Bad Choices, and Life Lessons from the White House
|Directed by||David Mandel|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of episodes||5|
|Running time||45–63 minutes|
|Original release||May 1 –|
May 29, 2023
White House Plumbers is an American satirical political drama television miniseries created and written by Alex Gregory and Peter Huyck and directed by David Mandel, based on the 2007 book Integrity by Egil Krogh and Matthew Krogh. The series stars Woody Harrelson, Justin Theroux, Domhnall Gleeson, Kiernan Shipka, and Lena Headey and it premiered on HBO on May 1, 2023.
Watergate masterminds and President Richard Nixon's political operatives E. Howard Hunt and G. Gordon Liddy are part of the "White House Plumbers". Charged with plugging press leaks by any means necessary, they accidentally overturned the Presidency they were trying to protect.
|No.||Title||Directed by||Written by||Original air date||U.S. viewers|
|1||"The Beverly Hills Burglary"||David Mandel||Alex Gregory & Peter Huyck||May 1, 2023||0.216|
|In 1971, former CIA agent E. Howard Hunt and former FBI agent G. Gordon Liddy are assigned by United States Under Secretary of Transportation Egil Krogh to steal the papers of Pentagon Papers leaker Daniel Ellsberg's psychiatrist. They go to Beverly Hills and scope out his office, and Hunt and his wife Dorothy have dinner with Liddy upon their return, though she is put off by his obsession with Adolf Hitler. Hunt and Liddy, now the "Plumbers", return to Beverly Hills and the former recruits his associates Bernard Barker, Felipe De Diego, and Eugenio Martínez to break into the office and photograph the papers, but they trash the office in the process and make up a hasty cover story which passes by the police. White House Counsel John Dean replaces Krogh and informs the Plumbers that Liddy has been made a member of the CRP, and approves the Plumbers' request for a million dollar budget.|
|2||"Please Destroy This, Huh?"||David Mandel||Alex Gregory & Peter Huyck||May 8, 2023||0.163|
|3||"Don't Drink the Whiskey at the Watergate"||David Mandel||Alex Gregory & Peter Huyck||May 15, 2023||0.195|
|4||"The Writer's Wife"||David Mandel||Alex Gregory & Peter Huyck||May 22, 2023||0.172|
|5||"True Believers"||David Mandel||Alex Gregory & Peter Huyck||May 29, 2023||TBD|
On December 4, 2019, it was announced that HBO had ordered the five-episode limited series created and executive produced by Alex Gregory, Peter Huyck, David Mandel, Frank Rich, Ruben Fleischer, and David Bernad. Gregory and Huyck were attached to write the miniseries with Mandel directing all episodes. The series premiered on May 1, 2023.
Alongside the series order announcement, Woody Harrelson and Justin Theroux were set to star in lead roles as well as executive produce. In April 2021, Domhnall Gleeson and Lena Headey were cast in main roles. In May 2021, Kiernan Shipka, Ike Barinholtz, Yul Vazquez, David Krumholtz, Rich Sommer, Kim Coates, and Liam James joined the cast in starring roles while Nelson Ascencio, Gary Cole, Toby Huss, Zoe Levin, John Carroll Lynch, Zak Orth, and Tony Plana were cast in undisclosed capacities. In the same month, the following week, Kathleen Turner joined the main cast. In June 2021, Judy Greer was cast in a main role. In July 2021, Corbin Bernsen and Alexis Valdés were cast in undisclosed capacities.
The series began principal photography on May 3, 2021, and ended on October 21, 2021. Filming took place in Poughkeepsie, New York on Zack's Way, New York City, Albany, New York, Washington, D.C., Charlotte Amalie, U.S. Virgin Islands, Beverly Hills, California, and Redondo Beach, California. On August 5, 2021, production was suspended after an audio recording reportedly captured Mandel berating and threatening the head of props, and the props department walked off the set. Filming resumed on August 12 with additional protocols following the incident.
On the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the series holds a 73% approval rating, with an average rating of 6.1/10, based on 33 critic reviews. The website's critics consensus reads, "White House Plumbers gets clogged up by its overstuffed adherence to real history, but with actors this appealing and material that truly is stranger than fiction, it flushes down easy enough." Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, has assigned a score of 60 out of 100 based on 18 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".