All The Veep Backstories We Learned In The Finale

Photo: Colleen Hayes/HBO.
Veep isn’t exactly a show that needs flashbacks. It’s not like Game Of Thrones, which is mired in centuries of mythological history, or Pretty Little Liars, which is built on a pyramid of secrets. No, the misadventures of former president Selina Meyer very much deal with the here and now of her terrible decisions.
And, yet, the HBO comedy decided to fill its season 6 finale, “Groundbreaking,” with a number of flashbacks, all spanning the last 24 years of Selina’s political career. While viewers were probably wondering why the Veep team dedicated so much of an episode to the past, the ending scene made everything crystal clear. We had to understand the veep’s roller coaster of backstory for the big finale announcement to make sense. Selina Meyer is running for president once again — and she just might win...again.
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Although the flashbacks were just plain funny a lot of the time, they also answered some huge questions we’ve had all season. What was Selina really doing at her “spa” in Arizona? And how on Earth did she find someone as dedicated as Gary (Tony Hale)? Scroll through the gallery to get all those details, and find out why her ex-husband Andrew (David Pasquesi) is officially The Worst.
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Photo: Courtesy of HBO.
The Spa

References to Selina’s time at "The Spa" are made throughout season 6. The phrase is clearly a euphemism for the facility the politician went to after losing the presidency in the most historically embarrassing way possible. That’s proven true in episode 9, "A Woman First," when Selina calls it a "looney bin" during a sexually charged argument with Tom James (Hugh Laurie).

We finally get to see Whispering Sands Wellness Center in "Groundbreaking," with a flashback to Selina’s life two months after losing the election. That means this scene took place a little over a year from the last scene of the finale.

Here, the always-immaculate Selina is clad in terrycloth, disheveled, and can’t tell the difference between yesterday and a month ago. The former president is so heavily medicated she’s fine with people thinking she’s married to Gary and tells Catherine (Sarah Sutherland) she’s beautiful, AKA it's all the least Selina behavior ever.

At least it’s explained how Selina ended up living with her daughter in New York and why the politician rekindled her romance with local trash human, Andrew. Catherine and her partner Marjorie (Clea DuVall) were so concerned for Selina’s well-being they made the offer. The smarmy Andrew was so concerned for his bank account, he took advantage of the wealthy Selina at her most "vulnerable."
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Photo: Courtesy of HBO.
24 Years Ago

On the day of Catherine Meyer’s birth, Selina and Andrew Meyer were peak Selina and Andrew Meyer. Con man Andrew was on his throwback cellphone mere moments before Catherine began crowning and Selina was immediately disappointed by her daughter as soon as she exited the womb. "Is that its hair?" she asks the first time she sees a still un-named Catherine and repeatedly calls her an "it." Andrew, begins flirting with the nurse seconds after Catherine is born and gleefully scores the young woman’s phone number under the guise of needing it for baby "questions."

Hilariously, Selina attempts to bond with her daughter, but can only grimace. Within moments of holding Catherine she announces, "I think I wanna run for Congress."

All of this is good and illuminating, but the most important part of Catherine’s birth is the fact that it reveals how Selina and Gary met. Gary was one of Selina’s nurses during her delivery and brought her ice chips he ground himself. We see the first time he pulls his "whisper into Selina’s ear to tell her someone’s name trick," when she forgets her delivery doctor’s name. It’s Sengupta. Selina mumbles Gundupta between labor pains. Classic.
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6 Years Ago, Concession Night

Selina’s first presidential campaign concession speech was as awkward and humiliating as you would expect. The then-senator ended her original White House dreams on Super Tuesday, after losing in Illinois, Missouri, North Carolina, Ohio, Florida, Texas, and the territory of Guam. When third-place Selina announces she’s officially conceding, superfan Gary shrieks, "No!" despite the obvious proof his boss isn’t going to win.

As Selina drowns in enough balloons to put a smile on Bill Clinton’s face, Amy (Anna Chlumsky) starts planning to "slop-fuck" an intern.
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6 Years Ago, Selina’s First Day As Veep

Selina and Ben (Kevin Dunn) may be BFFs now, but he was originally President Hughes’ chief of staff. That means he was in charge of keeping the VP out of the Oval Office, banishing her to the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, which is across the street from the White House, and telling Selina her sole job is to "continue being a woman." Lovely!

This fun flashback of sexism at least reveals to us the moment Selina and her team first met Jonah "The Giant Barbecue Fork” Ryan. In an encounter I know must now haunt Selina, she tells Amy the man she’ll later refer to as a croissant dildo is "kind of cute." But, of course Jonah shows his true petty colors behind Selena's back and sucks up to both Veep and Ben with the same brown-nosing line.
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16 Years Ago

Then-congresswoman Meyer, an awful-haired Gary, and an even worse-haired Mike (Matt Walsh), are making the rounds in Maryland for her first-ever Senate run. Unsurprisingly in Veep's dark universe, she runs into some confusing anti-Semitism for her could-be-construed-as-Jewish last name. Once Selina confirms she is not a follower of the Torah, she finds Andrew getting a blow job from a major campaign donor named Sally Nuefeld on the Meyer campaign bus. His excuse — he got a pen ink stain all over his pants. Does he know where the pen is? No, he threw it out — is terrible.

But, don’t be confused by the Selina's cutesy headband. The moment the politician realizes what’s going on, she doesn’t get upset. Instead, with the commercial budget completely gone, Selina demands a huge check from a married Sally to keep the adulterous secret quiet. No, $25,000 isn’t enough, Sally. $250,00 would be perfect, though.
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