Study Guide

Dr. Strangelove Scene 8

Scene 8

Scene 8

  • Back at the base, Mandrake enters Ripper's office with his radio.
  • The Group Captain points out to the General that a civilian radio station wouldn't be casually playing music if Russia had started a nuclear war.
  • Mandrake thinks that this Plan R order must've been some kind of test from the powers-that-be.
  • This is a relief because the bombers are only 20 minutes away from Russian airspace. Mandrake says it would cause "a bit of a stink" if those bombs were actually dropped.
  • He again points out that the civilian radio stations are just playing music—no air raid warnings, etc. Isn't that a bit strange if the Russians had really attacked?
  • Ripper doesn't want to hear it.
  • When Ripper refuses to issue the recall code, Mandrake realizes that the General ordered Plan R all on his own.
  • Mandrake tries to recall the bombers, but he doesn't know the recall code and Ripper has locked him in the room. That's a shame.
  • The General tells Mandrake to chill out and points out that soon the President will have to commit to nuclear war even if he doesn't want to.
  • Ripper now delivers his famous justification for inciting nuclear war: the Communists have been sapping and impurifying our "precious bodily fluids."
  • War is too important to be left to politicians, he thinks.

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