The Mary Tyler Moore Show

Season 3 Episode 5

It's Whether You Win or Lose

Aired Saturday 9:30 PM Oct 14, 1972 on CBS

Episode Recap

There's a blizzard in Minneapolis and Mary lingers in the newsroom with trepidation when she hears that flights out of Minneapolis are being canceled due to the weather conditions. Mr. Grant is scheduled to fly to Las Vegas to meet his buddies for poker. Gordy laments that everyone blames him when the weather is bad, and sure enough, when Mr. Grant arrives his mood quickly sours when he hears the report, and he turns his wrath on Gordy.

Mary takes on the happy idea of organizing a poker tournament there at the station instead, and puts phone calls in to Mr. Grant's friends and colleagues. After seeing Ted's stash of cash, they agree to let him play; Murray finally agrees to be the sixth poker player, after some reluctance.

The night of the game, Marie knocks on the door of Mary's apartment, where Mary and Rhoda are struggling to keep warm thanks to a faulty heating and electrical system. Marie is worried about Murray's whereabouts, and Mary assures her that Murray is fine - he's playing poker. Then Marie hits Mary with the bombshell: Murray is a compulsive gambler and can't be trusted with it.

Feeling guilty and responsible, Mary goes over to the studio where they men have set up a game in the kids' castle and round table studio. In vain she tries to pull Murray away, until Lou finally shuts her out and deadlocks the doors to the kiddie castle behind her.

The next morning, Mary discovers that Murray has lost over $300 to Ted. Murray can't face Marie so he makes an offer to Ted to go double or nothing for the money, which Mary pleads with him not to do. The wager is whether or not Ted will mess up the Japanese prime minister's name on the evening news. All throughout the day, Ted practices and flaunts his ability to say the name. Murray, Mary and Gordy watch the news holding their breath, and after the commercial break, Ted does it: he inverts the syllables of the name and messes it up. Horrified to lose all that money, Ted says "damn!" on air while the rest of the newsroom celebrates.

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